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Romano-British villa 170m south west of Winchcombe School, Greet Road

List Entry Summary

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 Culture, Media and Sport.

Name: Romano-British villa 170m south west of Winchcombe School, Greet Road

List entry Number: 1021449

Location

The monument may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

County: Gloucestershire

District: Tewkesbury

District Type: District Authority

Parish: Winchcombe

National Park: Not applicable to this List entry.

Grade: Not applicable to this List entry.

Date first scheduled: 23-Apr-2010

Date of most recent amendment: Not applicable to this List entry.

Legacy System Information

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

Legacy System: RSM

UID: 21700

Asset Groupings

This list entry does not comprise part of an Asset Grouping. Asset Groupings are not part of the official record but are added later for information.

List entry Description

Summary of Monument

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

Reasons for Designation

Romano-British villas were extensive rural estates at the focus of which were groups of domestic, agricultural and occasionally industrial buildings. The term "villa" is now commonly used to describe either the estate or the buildings themselves. The buildings usually include a well-appointed dwelling house, the design of which varies considerably according to the needs, taste and prosperity of the occupier. Most of the houses were partly or wholly stone-built, many with a timber-framed superstructure on masonry footings. Roofs were generally tiled and the house could feature tiled or mosaic floors, underfloor heating, wall plaster, glazed windows and cellars. Many had integral or separate suites of heated baths. The house was usually accompanied by a range of buildings providing accommodation for farm labourers, workshops and storage for agricultural produce. These were arranged around or alongside a courtyard and were surrounded by a complex of paddocks, pens, yards and features such as vegetable plots, granaries, threshing floors, wells and hearths, all approached by tracks leading from the surrounding fields. Villa buildings were constructed throughout the period of Roman occupation, from the first to the fourth centuries AD. They are usually complex structures occupied over several hundred years and continually remodelled to fit changing circumstances. They could serve a wide variety of uses alongside agricultural activities, including administrative, recreational and craft functions, and this is reflected in the considerable diversity in their plan. The least elaborate villas served as simple farmhouses whilst, for the most complex, the term "palace" is not inappropriate. Villa owners tended to be drawn from a limited elite section of Romano-British society. Although some villas belonged to immigrant Roman officials or entrepreneurs, the majority seem to have been in the hands of wealthy natives with a more-or-less Romanised lifestyle, and some were built directly on the sites of Iron Age farmsteads. Roman villa buildings are widespread, with between 400 and 1000 examples recorded nationally. The majority of these are classified as `minor' villas to distinguish them from `major' villas. The latter were a very small group of extremely substantial and opulent villas built by the very wealthiest members of Romano-British society. Minor villas are found throughout lowland Britain and occasionally beyond. Roman villas provide a valuable index of the rate, extent and degree to which native British society became Romanised, as well as indicating the sources of inspiration behind changes of taste and custom. In addition, they serve to illustrate the agrarian and economic history of the Roman province, allowing comparisons over wide areas both within and beyond Britain. As a very diverse and often long-lived type of monument, a significant proportion of the known population are identified as nationally important.

Geophysical survey and partial excavation have demonstrated that despite robbing and subsequent ploughing the remains of the Romano-British villa at Winchcombe survive well and comprise a variety of features including buildings, enclosures and rich buried deposits. The structural remains and associated deposits will illuminate both the development of occupation throughout the Roman period and also provide important dating and other archaeological and environmental evidence. The evidence for earlier occupation and its relation to the known Iron Age settlement excavated to the south considerably enhances the significance of the monument. In a wider context, with Langley Hill Camp (SP 00792902) and Millhampost Roman Settlement (SP 04203062), 1.6km to the west and 2km to the north east respectively, the monument will enhance our understanding of the regional settlement structure from the Iron Age into the Roman period. SOURCES: John Moore Heritage Services, An Archaeological Evaluation at Land off Greet Road, Winchcombe, Gloucestershire (June 2009)

History

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

Details

The monument includes the known extent of the buried remains of a minor Romano-British villa and associated agricultural enclosures. The monument is located on the northern edge of the town of Winchcombe on land gently sloping to the east towards the River Isbourne; Langley Hill rises to the west. The monument was the subject of full geophysical survey and partial excavation from April to May 2009, which demonstrated the presence of buildings, probably part of a single complex farm or villa, in the southern part of the monument and agricultural enclosures, possibly animal pens, as well as a pond, to the north. The buildings are built on terraces and have opus signinum floors. Two main phases of building activity were recorded, which indicate that the buildings were rebuilt during the mid 2nd century, perhaps due to subsidence during an earlier 1st century, and short-lived, phase. Remains of wall plaster and roof tile were recorded as well as numerous contemporary small finds including metal objects, pottery and animal bone. Analysis of this assemblage indicates that the monument's principal phase of settlement was from the mid 2nd century until abandonment by the end of the 3rd century. Excavation to the south of the monument, undertaken in 2007 in advance of redevelopment, indicated the presence of a mid-to-late Iron Age settlement, with a large enclosure ditch. The northern extent of this settlement survives within the southern part of the monument and a partially excavated ditch may correspond with the enclosure ditch to the south. The Romano-British villa site therefore occupies the northern margins of an earlier Iron Age settlement. It is not unusual to discover Romano-British villas built upon the site of earlier Iron Age settlements; a number of which are already scheduled in Gloucestershire and Worcestershire. All post and wire fences, gates and gateposts are excluded from the scheduling. The ground beneath all these features is, however, included.

MAP EXTRACT The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract.

Selected Sources

Other
John Moore Heritage Services, An Archaeological Evaluation at Land off Greet Road, Winchcombe, 2009,

National Grid Reference: SP 02410 29370

Map

Map
© Crown Copyright and database right 2017. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100024900.
© British Crown and SeaZone Solutions Limited 2017. All rights reserved. Licence number 102006.006.
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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 - 1021449 .pdf

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This copy shows the entry on 17-Nov-2017 at 05:48:13.

End of official listing