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METCHLEY ROMAN FORT

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The site of a Roman campaign fort excavated in 1934-6, 1954 and during the 1960s and 1990s. These investigations have identified four main phases of Roman activity on the site. The earliest fort was constructed circa AD 40 and was defended by double ditches and a rampart. Within these defences, the structures uncovered include a pair of barrack blocks, part of a granary and a workshop and store. The second phase involved the addition of ditched annexes on the northern and eastern sides of the fort and the clearance of the interior buildings, which were replaced by temporary timber framed structures. It is thought the fort served as a stores depot during this phase. Following a period of abandonment a smaller fort was constructed within the earlier defences. This fort was enclosed within a ditch and rampart and its interior buildings included a small granary and a cookhouse. The fort was abandoned again circa AD 75 but evidence suggests sporadic occupation continuing until about AD 120. Excavations undertaken between 1999-2001 have identifed a vicus to the west of the fort. The remains include timber framed buildings, hearths, ovens and trackways. Fieldwalking, test pits and excavation have also revealed three Bronze Age burnt mounds and road surfaces within the fort.

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