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Colchester Archaeological Trust

CAT Report 834: summary

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Part of a Roman building in Insula 1a of Roman Colchester - archaeological monitoring on the site of the Student Services Building, Sixth Form College, North Hill, Colchester, Essex: December 2014-January 2015
by Ben Holloway and Howard Brooks
(with contributions from Stephen Benfield)

Date report completed: May 2015
Location: Sixth Form College, North Hill, Colchester, Essex
Map reference(s): TL 9926 2540
File size: 4,742 kb
Project type: Archaeological monitoring
Significance of the results: **
Keywords: Roman, floors, walls, buildings

Summary. The site of a proposed Student Services Building at the Sixth Form College lies in Insula 1a of the Roman walled town. An evaluation in August 2014 showed that there was a horizon of modern overburden over a post-Roman topsoil. Collectively, these two horizons formed a 'safe dig-depth' of approximately 700m above the highest significant archaeological remains (Roman, in this case) on this part of the college site. A monitoring and recording exercise in December 2014 and January 2015 observed ground reduction for the new building, largely within the post-Roman overburden. On the northern edge of the ground reduction area, engineering design required the removal of a greater depth of overburden than was intended. This exposed Roman demolition deposits overlying Roman floors, mainly tessellated pavement. There were also two robber trenches indicating the lines of robbed-out Roman walls The floors and (robbed-out) wall-lines uncovered in 2014-15 were probably part of the western side of the Roman building uncovered in 2005 (Building 211 in the numbered series of Colchester Buildings).