It isn’t often that a remarkable Roman building is discovered on your doorstep (Scarborough, North Yorkshire), but this is exactly what has happened in our local area. Whilst walking our lovely dog at Filey beach, North Yorkshire we learnt of the rare and unusual find. As keen historians my wife and I are extremely interested in this development and so I was ‘sent’ to Eastfield, Scarborough, to take an aerial shot. On arriving I was delighted to discover that it wasn’t just a small site but what appears to be an entire Roman complex. So, I took some stills with the drone but then opted to create a short video as photographs do not convey the size and uniqueness of the most stunning Roman finds found in Britain. I could not believe what I was seeing. We are hoping that Historic England allows visitors or creates some kind of exhibition before recovering the site.
“easily the most important Roman discovery of the last decade”,
Rare Roman Building Discovered, the First of its Kind
The remarkable Roman building was discovered by the builder Keepmoat, who are currently in the process of constructing a new housing development, after they set in motion a geographical survey of the proposed area. Imagine finding out that the Romans had already beaten them to the area! Originally the plan was to build where the site of historic importance has been discovered, however Keepmoat is working with Historic England and North Yorkshire County Council to alter the plan so that the site is protected for future generations.
David Walker (Planning Services Manager at Scarborough Borough Council) said, “In creating new homes for future generations, it is only right that we keep alive the fascinating history of those that have gone before us and how they lived”. Personally, we could not agree more wholeheartedly. Conservation is so necessary and it is reassuring to hear of such a considered approach.
Importantly, this will now be a public open space which will cover and protect the structural Roman remains. This is fabulous news especially since the complex has proven to be rare in its composition. Even-though the Roman remains are to be recovered there will be a representation of the site “expressed at ground level”, for example this could entail interpretation panels, planting or stone constructions. I’m thrilled to hear this as it will be a great experience to visit and ‘see’ what the Romans built. Never before has this structural layout been found in Britain and possibly the first of its kind within the Roman Empire! We are looking forward to learning what has been discovered and how this will impact on Scarborough’s history, and maybe the World!
Roman Discovery in Scarborough
Click the video to see what has been discovered so far.
Roman Complex Discoveries
At the time of typing this the archaeologists have uncovered a large complex of buildings including a circular central room with several connecting rooms and a bathhouse. The current thinking is that this is either a high-status Roman villa or a religious sanctuary, or some combination of both. This information certainly accelerates the anticipation for what may be found next!
“These archaeological remains are a fantastic find and are far more than we ever dreamed of discovering at this site. They are already giving us a better knowledge and understanding of Roman Britain. We are grateful to Keepmoat Homes for their sensitive and professional approach to helping ensure the future conservation of this important historical site.”
Keith Emerick, Inspector of Ancient Monuments, Historic England.