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Tyne and Wear HER(5633): Gateshead, Roman bridgehead settlement - Details

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Gateshead, Roman bridgehead settlement






Documentary Evidence

Pons Aelius Roman Fort on the north bank of the River Tyne occupies a promontory overlooking the supposed northern end of the Roman crossing. There is a similarly commanding bluff on the south side of the river, on the site of St Mary's Church and west of Bottle Bank. Topography, chance finds and recent excavations suggest that this was the position of the southern bridgehead of the Roman river crossing, and settlement is likely to have developed here, mirroring that on the north side. Chance finds dating to the Roman period were reported from this area in the late 18th century and early 19th century. An urn containing Roman coins was found in Church Street in 1790 (HER 271). Coins were found in Bottle Bank in 1802 (HER 5634). It has been suggested that St Mary's Church was built in part with re-used Roman stones (HER 284). A Roman altar was found built into the garden wall of the Rectory (HER 5635). The existence of stratified Roman features and deposits were first demonstrated archaeologically in 1994 on the west side of Bottle Bank. Much of this area was subsequently examined by open-area excavation in 2000, revealing fragmentary remains of stone buildings, stone-lined cisterns, ditches and a paved road.The pottery assemblage from Bottle Bank was predominantly of late C2 and C3 date.




<< HER 5633 >> Oxford Archaeology North, 2003, Bottle Bank, Gateshead, Archaeological Excavation Report - Draft J. Nolan & J. Vaughan/Arcus, 2002, Excavations at the site of the Regional Music Centre, Oakwellgate, Gateshead, Draft Report M.A. Richardson, 1842 The Local Historian's Table Book, Historical Division, Vol II, p 332 Archaeologia Aeliana, Series 2, Vol 1, pp 263-4 J. Nolan, 1995, Bottle Bank, Archaeological Evaluation Draft Report Tyne and Wear Museums, 1998, Archaeological Evaluation at Bottle Bank, Gateshead The Archaeological Practice, 1998, Bottle Bank, Gateshead, Archaeological Monitoring of Site Investigation Trial Pits; DH Heslop, 2009, Newcastle and Gateshead before 1080, in Diana Newton and AJ Pollard, Newcastle and Gateshead before 1700, p. 9-10; NPA, 2010, Gateshead Visitor Centre, St. Mary's Church, Gateshead - Archaeological evaluation, excavation and watching brief report

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