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It was thought Roman influence during the Roman Empire in Britain did not stretch beyond south-west of Exeter.

But archaeologists have uncovered the remains of a Roman town in Devon, completer with 25 homes, on a construction site where houses are due to be built.

The new discovery is believed to be the most south-westerly settlement ever found in England, in an area where people believed the Romans never settled.

Britain's most south-westerly Roman town complete with foundations for 25 timber buildings has been uncovered by archaeologists in Devon


Experts are working to uncover a well-preserved Roman settlement near Exeter

Foundation trenches were found with post-holes of timber-framed buildings

Devon contains much evidence of Roman conquest and the Romano-British era

Archaeologist says it gives a unique insight into the process of military conquest

By Victoria Bell For Mailonline
6 November 2018

It was thought Roman influence during the Roman Empire in Britain did not stretch beyond south-west of Exeter.

But archaeologists have uncovered the remains of a Roman town in Devon, completer with 25 homes, on a construction site where houses are due to be built.

The new discovery is believed to be the most south-westerly settlement ever found in England, in an area where people believed the Romans never settled.


Archaeologists have uncovered the remains of a Roman town on a building site in Devon where new homes are being built. This image shows experts from AC archaeology at the site

Archaeologists are working at the development in Okehampton, 22 miles south west of Exeter, which was said to be the limit of Roman settlement in Britain in the south west.

AC archaeology have unearthed rare findings which include foundation trenches with post-holes of 25 timber-constructed buildings.

They are situated on both sides of a well-preserved Roman road which extends eastwards to a military fort.

The excavation gives a rare insight into the process of conquest and how the military associated with the civilian community that made Britain part of the Roman Empire, experts say.

Christopher Caine, AC archaeology team lead, said: 'As an archaeologist, this is a unique and exciting opportunity to be involved in the first excavation of a Roman settlement in the county and is one of the most important excavations I have worked on in my 15 years in the profession.'


The excavation gives a rare insight into the process of conquest and the way the military and civilian community worked at the time. This image shows a broken piece of pottery found in the remains



Archaeologists are working at the development in Okehampton, 22 miles south west of Exeter, which was said to be the limit of Roman settlement in Britain in the south west


Exeter contains much evidence of the Roman conquest in around AD50 and the extended Romano-British era, which lasted until AD410.

Small settlements like these or 'vici' were established by the military and inhabited by the local population to service the needs of the troops posted at the fort.

It was thought Rome's influence did not stretch beyond Exeter but in 2016, a group of amateur metal detector enthusiasts stumbled upon a few muddy Roman coins buried in the soil in a paddock.

The find prompted a larger archaeological dig which unearthed more coins and a stretch of Roman road.


Foundation trenches and post-holes of 25 timber-constructed buildings situated either side of a well-preserved Roman road which extends eastwards from a military fort were uncovered


Archaeologists in cooperation with the building company continue to work together. The ancient town is believed to be the most south-westerly settlement ever found in England


Devon was thought to be the principal town for the Dumnonii tribe, a native British tribe who inhabited Devon and Cornwall.

It was thought that their resistance to Roman rule and influence, and any form of 'Romanisation' stopped the Roman's settling far into the south west.

The archaeological works are still ongoing, so further discoveries could still be made.

Once the excavation has been completed there are plans to preserve the Roman road running through the site with an open linear corridor.

The finds and archive will be donated to Plymouth City Museum and Art Gallery. A temporary display at the Museum of Dartmoor Life in Okehampton is also being considered

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencet...sts-Devon.html