Site Event/Activity record ECC2913 - Archaeological evaluation at Area B1b, Colchester Garrison, Colchester, 2015-2017


Location Area B1b, Colchester Garrison, Flagstaff Road, Colchester
Grid reference Centred TL 9973 2465 (60m by 177m)
Map sheet TL92SE
County ESSEX



Colchester Archaeological Trust Ltd


July 2015 – October 2017



A further three trial trenches were excavated by Colchester Archaeological Trust (Trenches T1, T1 extension, T2 and T3), along with mitigation excavation (ECC2912) and monitoring (ECC2911), between 2015-2017, at Colchester Garrison Alienated Land (GAL) Area B1b (previously known as Flagstaff House, now known as Arena Place).<1><2> Evaluation trenches T1 and T2 were positioned over the northern cavea of the Roman Circus. The aim of this initial phase of investigation was the establish the depth of significant archaeological contexts (Roman and later) associated with the circus, so as to inform the contractor about limits on dig-depths over the monument. Modern tarmac (EVL66, c 0.07-0.12m thick), crush (EVL67, c 0.2-0.35m thick) and buried topsoil (EVL68, at least c 0.6m thick) sealed a layer of accumulation (EVL69, at least c.0.25m thick but not bottomed). Both trenches were crossed with numerous modern services, which meant that only two small slots could be excavated over the projected route of the outer cavea. An extension was excavated to the west of T1 as it was thought that St John's Abbey precinct wall might be located here. Modern crush (WBL76), buried topsoil (WBL77) and layers of medieval/post-medieval accumulation (WBL78-WBL80) sealed natural (at a depth of c.0.85-0.9m below current ground level). Evaluation trench T3 was positioned to the southwest of the abbey gatehouse. The aim was to establish the depth of significant archaeological contexts and to record (but not excavate) those contexts. Modern topsoil (EVL188, 0.45-0.7m thick) and layers of medieval/post-medieval accumulation (EVL189-EVL191) sealed archaeological remains.<1>

Sources/Archives (2)

  • <1> EXCAV REPORT: Pooley, Laura with Crummy Philip and Masefield, Rob. 2019. The Roman Circus and St John's Abbey: Stage 2 and 3 archaeological mitigation investigations on Colchester Garrison 'Alienated Land' Area B1b, off Napier Road, Colchester, Essex, CO2 7NU. CAT Report 1466, 12.
  • <2> Written Scheme of Investigation: Masefield, Rob. 2015. Revised Written Scheme of Investigation (WSI) for Stages 2 & 3 Archaeological Mitigation, Area B1B, Colchester Garrison.

Related Monuments/Buildings (5)

  • Flagstaff Complex, Colchester Garrison, Colchester (Monument)
  • Precinct wall of St John's Abbey, Colchester (Monument)
  • Roman Circus 200m south of Abbey House, Colchester (Monument)
  • Roman Circus, Colchester (Monument)
  • St John's Abbey, Colchester (Monument)

Record last edited

Mar 31 2020 8:07AM

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