Don't miss a story sign up to Weston Mercury's FREE daily newsletter CLICK HERE

College pulls plug on archaeology study

PUBLISHED: 11:00 04 March 2011

South Terrace, WsM. Excavations at the back of Weston College. Finding of Roman coines and skeleton.; 29-09-09

South Terrace, WsM. Excavations at the back of Weston College. Finding of Roman coines and skeleton.; 29-09-09

Archant

ARCHAEOLOGISTS have been left with just a ‘tantalising glimpse’ of a Roman settlement in Weston after a study into their find was called off.

Weston College has said it will not pay for a full study of a skeleton, coins and stone foundations uncovered during a six-week dig at its Knightstone Campus.

The decision comes despite archaeologists proclaiming the dig as the first clear evidence of a Roman settlement in the town.

This week, the college, which paid for the initial excavation under a planning agreement to refurbish its Hans Price building, said ‘the investigation was complete’.

Principal Dr Paul Phillips said: “The resultant report (of the dig) was crucial to the way the college would move ahead with development.

“In part, it concluded ‘the quality and importance of the archaeology identified on the site, whilst having considerable local and potentially some regional significance, is not judged to be of national importance and therefore is not considered to justify preservation at the expense of future development’.

“On the basis of this information, the college concluded that the investigation was complete.”

The excavation, carried out in South Terrace in 2009, unearthed walls and clay floors as well as a preserved skeleton in a crouched burial position outside the foundations.

Tests later showed the skeleton belonged to a slender man aged between 35 and 45. It was thought he was probably a slave due to the skeleton’s diseased condition.

Coins, metalwork and animal bone were also found, along with Romano-British-style pottery, including pots made in Oxford and tableware thought to be imported from France.

Avon Archaeological Unit (AAU) director Andrew Young this week responded to the college’s decision not to fund a study into the items.

He said: “The decision not to conduct a study into the items represents a missed opportunity. I’m disappointed.

“We could have learnt so much more from the excavation and found out the extent of the settlement and how it served the local area, but instead we are left with just a tantalising glimpse.”

The unit has passed its research on to the college and North Somerset Council, while the items, including the skeleton, will probably be given to the town’s museum.

Meanwhile, work can now commence on the refurbishment of the Hans Price building, which will be used to teach performing arts to students.

0 comments

Other News Stories

Yesterday, 18:00

Youngsters from across North Somerset found out which of the district’s reception classes they will be joining this September during national offer day.

Read more
Yesterday, 15:47

Who said Somerset is nothing but sleepy countryside? There are plenty of adrenaline-pumping activities for thrill-seekers to enjoy across the area, here are just 10 ideas...

Read more
Yesterday, 15:00

A very fit and active retired nurse will celebrate her 100th birthday and her ‘interesting life’ on May 5.

Read more
Yesterday, 12:58

Weston-super-Mare, then-and-now: an interactive journey through time. Move the photo sliders left and right to see how Weston has changed.

Read more
Yesterday, 12:00

North Somerset Council is ‘pleased’ with the new waste collection service which started at the end of February – but many people have aired concerns over the scheme.

Read more
Yesterday, 10:00

Weston has been blessed with some brilliant weather during the past few weeks, which has led to some great readers’ images.

Read more
Yesterday, 09:39

Wells is expected to be a hotly-contested seat in June’s General Election. Here is who have announced they are standing so far.

Read more
Yesterday, 09:34

A parish council has presented three special awards to people who have gone above and beyond for the village.

Read more
Yesterday, 09:08

Political parties in Weston-super-Mare are making quick decisions over who will stand for them in June’s snap General Election. Here is a breakdown on who we know is standing so far…

Read more
Yesterday, 08:28

Part of a busy road in Weston-super-Mare will close on Tuesday for seven weeks so drainage work can be carried out.

Read more

Most Read News

Read Online

Image
Read the Weston Worle and Somerset Mercury e-edition E-edition

Local Weather

Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 7°C

min temp: 5°C

Useful Links

Advertise in the paper
Submit a Story
Subscribe to the paper
Competitions
Send Your Letters
Order Photos
Family notices
iwitness24
Facebook
Twitter
Reader Travel

Family Notices 24

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter
HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Local business directory

Somerset's trusted business finder