The Lunt Roman Fort, Britain

Since 1988 the Department of Classical, Near Eastern and Religious Studies has conducted a training excavation at the Lunt. Work has been concentrated on a newly opened area (20m x 38.25m) in the north-western part of the fort. It has been discovered that the western rampart followed a similar sinuous course to the one on the east, making the fort unique in Britain and without any true parallel throughout the Empire.

Detailed Description: The Lunt Roman fort is located near the village of Baginton, just south of Coventry, England on a well-drained plateau bordered on the north by a steep escarpment overlooking the Sowe River. Near the intersection of two key Roman roads, Watling Street and the Fosse Way, the fort stands in an area that would have been strategically sensitive during the early years of the Roman presence in Britain.

The likelihood of some form of Roman occupation on the Lunt plateau was long suggested by the discovery of nearby pits containing Flavian and earlier pottery. IN the early 1960’s trial trenches laid across the plateau revealed defensive ditches and a rampart, belonging to some sort of military establishment. This was followed by systematic excavation in the 70’s which uncovered standard military buildings as well as an unusual circular structure identified by the excavator as a gyrus or horse-training ring. It also revealed that the eastern defences followed a highly unusual sinuous course. The coins, the coarse pottery, and the familiar red pottery known as “Samian”, combine to suggest that the fort was built first in about AD 60 during the reign of Nero, at the time of the Boudiccan rebellion, and that it was occupied to about 80 AD, with a short-lived re-occupation in the third century. After the excavation reconstruction of some of the fort’s more striking features was undertaken with the assistance of the Royal Engineers.

See also Lunt Roman Fort.