Roman fortlet 440m south west of Restormel Farm

Overview

Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1004660

Date first listed: 09-Feb-1979

Location Description: Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.

Map

Ordnance survey map of Roman fortlet 440m south west of Restormel Farm
© Crown Copyright and database right 2018. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100024900.
© British Crown and SeaZone Solutions Limited 2018. All rights reserved. Licence number 102006.006.
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Location

Location Description: Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.

The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

District: Cornwall (Unitary Authority)

Parish: Lostwithiel

National Grid Reference: SX 10210 61056

Summary

Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.

Reasons for Designation

Roman fortlets are small rectangular enclosures with rounded corners defined by a fortified rampart of turf and earth with one or more outer ditches. The ramparts were originally revetted at the front and rear by timber uprights in shallow trenches and were almost certainly crowned with timber wall walks and parapets. Fortlets were constructed from the first century AD to at least the later fourth century AD to provide accommodation for a small detachment of troops generally deployed on a temporary basis of between one to two years and supplied by a fort in the same area. The function of fortlets varies from place to place; some were positioned to guard river crossings or roads, particularly at vulnerable points such as crossroads, whilst others acted as supply bases for signal towers. Roman fortlets are rare nationally with approximately 50 examples known in Britain, half of which are located in Scotland. As such, and as one of a small group of Roman military monuments which are important in representing army strategy and therefore government policy, fortlets are of particular significance to our understanding of the period and all surviving examples are considered nationally important. The Roman fortlet 440m south west of Restormel Farm is nationally rare and extremely rare in Cornwall. It will contain archaeological and environmental evidence relating to military strategy, administration, trade, social, economic and political significance, the possible re-use of an earlier native hillfort, its influence, longevity, domestic arrangements and overall landscape context.

History

Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.

Details

The monument includes a Roman fortlet, situated on the summit of a prominent spur, overlooking the steep valley of the River Fowey. The fort survives as a central square enclosure with rounded corners defined by a rampart bank, preserved as a scarp of between 0.6m to 1.6m high with an entrance to the south. It is surrounded on all except the east side by a middle rampart located some 20m from the inner rampart. This is up to 1.7m high and also has a southern inturned entrance. A further length of outer rampart is located some 50m to the west with a flanking turn to the north. The accompanying ditches are preserved as buried features. Chance finds of Samian ware, red glazed pottery and a rotary quern attest to its Roman origins. Recent geophysical surveys conducted by the Cornwall Archaeological Society confirmed its identity as a Roman fortlet which was probably occupying the site of an earlier Iron Age round or hillfort. The fortlet continued in use from the 1st to 4th centuries AD and was linked to a second fort or fortlet at nearby Nanstallon. The fortlet at Restormel was of sufficient size to hold two centuries whilst Nanstallon held between two and three and probably contained the Principia buildings. Together they controlled established trade links through Cornwall.

Sources: HER:- PastScape Monument No:-432777

Legacy

The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.

Legacy System number: CO 936

Legacy System: RSM - OCN

End of official listing