St Martin's Lane, Little London car park, Roman site


Heritage Category:
Scheduled Monument
List Entry Number:
Date first listed:


© Crown Copyright and database right 2021. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100024900.
© British Crown and SeaZone Solutions Limited 2021. All rights reserved. Licence number 102006.006.
Use of this data is subject to Terms and Conditions.

The above map is for quick reference purposes only and may not be to scale. For a copy of the full scale map, please see the attached PDF - 1005822.pdf

The PDF will be generated from our live systems and may take a few minutes to download depending on how busy our servers are. We apologise for this delay.

This copy shows the entry on 24-Oct-2021 at 07:16:55.


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

West Sussex
Chichester (District Authority)
National Grid Reference:
SU 86239 04876


Roman settlement and military establishment at Little London Car Park, 57m south of St Mary’s Hospital.

Reasons for Designation

The Roman settlement and military remains at Little London Car Park are significant remnants of Roman Chichester, a civitas capital of the Regnenses (also referred to as the Regni or Regini). The Regnenses were a tribal grouping gathered together under the client king Tiberius Claudius Cogidubnus by the Romans. Roman occupation at Chichester is thought to have begun with the construction of a military supply base shortly after the invasion. The site subsequently developed as a civitas capital, the earliest buildings of which were of timber construction, later replaced with more substantial masonry buildings. The enclosing town walls were built between the late 2nd century and early 3rd century AD. Civitas capitals are towns which functioned as the principal centres of the civitatae or regions of Roman Britain. They were official creations, generally established in the later first and early second centuries AD in newly pacified areas where the process of Romanisation had been successfully inaugurated. They were often established on the sites of earlier tribal centres or settlements and were populated largely by native Britons rather than Roman citizens. Defensive walls usually defined the areas of civitas capitals, these ranging in size from c.14ha to c.58ha. Within the walled area the main features included: the forum-basilica, other major public buildings, private houses, shops and workshops, piped water and sewage systems, a planned rectangular street grid and, in some cases, waterfront installations. The Roman settlement and military establishment at Little London Car Park survive well and are known to contain archaeological information and environmental evidence relating to the Roman settlement and military establishment and the landscape in which they were constructed.

Chichester was a place of significance as a major tribal centre during the Roman period. The site at Little London Car Park has high potential for further archaeological investigation, which will provide further information regarding the earliest Roman military occupation and later development of the civitas capital.


See Details.


This record was the subject of a minor enhancement on 6 November 2014. The record has been generated from an "old county number" (OCN) scheduling record. These are monuments that were not reviewed under the Monuments Protection Programme and are some of our oldest designation records.

The monument includes Roman settlement and military establishment surviving as below-ground archaeological deposits. It is situated between St Martin’s Street and Little London Street in the centre of Chichester. Four main phases of Roman occupation have been identified. The earliest features include an east-west orientated ditch filled with pottery dating between AD 43 and the mid second century, a pit, a hearth, oven and a building thought to have military origins. Phase II includes a large pit, probably dug for gravel in about AD 80-90, a masonry building, a slot for a timber building, post holes and a pit. Phase III includes a gravel layer, possibly of a courtyard, pits and second century AD occupation debris. The final phase includes the remains of a fourth century house with tessellated floor, hypocaust, masonry walls and painted plaster. Partial excavation took place at the site in 1935-6, 1959-63, 1986, 1997 and 2004. The finds from the site include pieces of first century AD military equipment, pottery, brooches and bronze objects. In 1966, excavation prior to development north of St Mary’s Hospital, uncovered a military site, thought to be an early Roman fort or military supply depot, which may extend under Little London Car Park. Further to the north-east, near Chapel Lane, possible barracks have been identified along with finds of pila (javelins), stabbing spears, ballista bolt heads and a complete legionary gladius (sword). Parts of Roman legionary body armour, lorrica segmentata, have also been found at various sites across Chichester. Later medieval occupation was marked by pottery, wall foundations, floors and pits.

Further archaeological remains survive within the vicinity of this monument. Some such as the nearby Roman city walls are scheduled, but others are not because they have not been formally assessed.


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

Legacy System number:
WS 375
Legacy System:


West Sussex HER 4583 - MWS6064, 4752 - MWS6208. NMR SU80SE110. PastScape 924921.


This monument is scheduled under the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas Act 1979 as amended as it appears to the Secretary of State to be of national importance. This entry is a copy, the original is held by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport.

End of official listing

Your Contributions

Do you know more about this entry?

The following information has been contributed by users volunteering for our Enriching The List project. For small corrections to the List Entry please see our Minor Amendments procedure.

The information and images below are the opinion of the contributor, are not part of the official entry and do not represent the official position of Historic England. We have not checked that the contributions below are factually accurate. Please see our terms and conditions. If you wish to report an issue with a contribution or have a question please email [email protected].