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Colchester Archaeological Trust

CAT Report 1635: summary

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Archaeological evaluation at the former Lexden Springs School and the Fire Station, Halstead Road, Colchester, Essex, CO3 3PZ: February 2021
by Laura Pooley and Adam Wightman
(with contributions from Dr Matthew Loughton)

Date report completed: 10.03.2021
Location: Halstead Road, Colchester, Essex, CO3 3PZ
Map reference(s): TL 96408 25190 (centre)
File size: 9964 kb
Project type:
Significance of the results:
Keywords: Lexden Springs School Fire Station

Summary. An archaeological evaluation (two trial-trenches) was carried out on land at the former Lexden Springs School and the adjacent Fire Station, off Halstead Road, Colchester, Essex to determine the precise location of the Shrub End Dyke/Triple Dyke which runs through the development site. The Shrub End Dyke forms part of the Late Iron Age defences around Camulodunum. Two more ditches and banks were subsequently added to the western side of the dyke during the period of the Roman conquest to form the Triple Dyke.

The aim of this evaluation was to identify the precise route of the Shrub End Dyke/Triple Dyke through the development site with minimal excavation of the remains. As such, the route of the inner (the original Shrub End Dyke) and central ditches of the Triple Dyke were identified and planned. Due to site constraints the route of the outer (western) ditch was not located. Comparison of the remains to an evaluation carried out across the Triple Dyke in 1961 suggests that the ditches of the dyke have a good level of survival through the development site. However, the banks of the dyke appear to have been completely levelled.