Tyne and Wear HER(82): Sunderland, Roman pottery kiln - Details
Sunderland, Roman pottery kiln
In 1849, when clearing some old houses occupying the Pier or Commissioners' Quay (on what was once the north-east corner of the Town Moor) to make the river entrance to the Sunderland dock, the remains of what was supposed to have been the site of a Roman pottery works were brought to light. Eight feet below the surface was a circle, 20 - 25 feet diameter, hewn out of the limestone, and containing a circle of small rubble stones like a horse-mill, apparently erected to grind clay. Close by was found red and yellow ochre, and pottery, both sherds and four perfect Roman vessels of unglazed red earthenware. One went to Sunderland Museum, but was later dismissed as not Roman. From the description of both the structural remains and pottery it would seem likely that they were neither the remains of a pottery works, nor of the Roman period.
<< HER 82 >> J.W. Summers, 1858, History of...Sunderland, pp. 12-14 T. Potts, 1892, Sunderland, pp. 58-9 J.A. Petch, 1925, Roman Durham, Archaeologia Aeliana, 4, I, p. 27