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Tyne and Wear HER(1567): Newcastle town wall, town ditch - Details

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Newcastle town wall, town ditch




Town Defences

Town Wall




A ditch existed outside and presumably parallel to the town wall. It seems clear that it was finished earlier than the wall, probably by 1316, and in some places at least they were probably contemporary in construction. The dimensions of the ditch have only been tested archaeologically once, and outside the wall on the west it was found to lie 9.50 metres in front of the wall, and to be 11.30 metres wide x 4.50 metres deep. In the medieval period it was presumably crossed by bridges at the main gates in the wall, and perhaps at other places, e.g. the Black Friars' turning bridge. Though the ditch was largely filled up by the latter part of the 18th century, it shows on several of the pre-Ordnance Survey maps as a narrow strip along the outside of the wall, and appears in documentary sources as "The King's Dykes". SCHEDULED ANCIENT MONUMENT




<< HER 1567 >> Cal Pat Rolls, 1307-13 461 J. Brand, 1789, History of Newcastle, I, 6 S. Holmes, 1896, The Town Walls of Newcastle upon Tyne, Archaeologia Aeliana, 2, XVIII, 8 C.M. Fraser, 1961, The town ditch of Newcastle upon Tyne, Archaeologia Aeliana, 4, XXXIX, 381-3 R. Fraser in J. Nolan, 1989, The Medieval Town Defences…2. Excavation of the Town Ditch, Archaeologia Aeliana, 5, XVII, 29-30, 51-71 P. Brewis, 1934, The West Walls of Newcastle upon Tyne, between Durham and Ever Towers, Archaeologia Aeliana, 4, XI, 9-12 Pre-Construct Archaeology, 2004, An Archaeological Evaluation at Sallyport Garage, Causey Bank, Newcastle; Newcastle City Archaeology Unit, 1995, The Bath Lane triangle: Evaluation

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