Rescue dig at Westminster Lodge

Wessex Archaeology was commissioned to undertake a programme of archaeological evaluation in advance of development at Westminster Lodge Leisure Centre. The evaluation comprised the excavation of twelve trenches positioned across the site to the east, west and south of the existing Leisure Centre buildings.

Archaeological features were revealed in five of the twelve trenches excavated. The archaeological remains appear to be concentrated in the north eastern area of the site with nothing revealed in the southern and western areas.

A roughly east to west aligned ditch was recorded in Trenches 7, 8 and 9. A section dug through the ditch produced moderate quantities of Roman pottery dating from the late 1st to the 4th century AD. The base of a flint and mortar wall and associated features was recorded at the junction of Trenches 9 and 10 in the north east of the site. The wall appears to have been truncated by a later ditch feature. The remains of a flint and mortar wall cut through by a modern pipe trench were recorded at the eastern end of Trench 10.

The wall and associated features were cleaned, photographed and recorded but were not fully excavated. Roman pottery, Ceramic Building Material (CBM), animal bone, shell and opus signinum was retrieved from the surface of the features. Medieval pottery was recovered from the layer overlying the Roman remains.