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Kent Archaeological Review extract

The Roman Fort at Reculver --
Summer Excavation.
by Brian Philp.
(Reculver Excavation Group.)

The large-scale summer excavation at Reculver was completed in September in cooperation with the Ministry of Public Building and Works. The heavy rain of early August proved a blessing for it softened the ground and the weeks of ensueing sunshine enabled a full programme of work to be completed.

The site lay east of the Principa (discovered in 1960) and immediately south of the Via Principalis. Here the mid-first century ditches were again located and the probable line of the north side of the fortlet established. Substantial Period 1 pebble foundations were discovered on the west side though it may be that this building was never finished. In Period 2 a pair of substantial barrack blocks was built extending southwards for a distance of 130 feet where they bordered the Via Quintana. Later timber structures and material of medieval date were also discovered.

The finds included well over 100 coins mostly from critical levels which should prove invaluable for establishing absolute dates for the various building periods. In addition another garrison stamp (CIB) was found in one of the buildings, two more infant burials, four small ovens and numerous pits and other small finds were also discovered.

Some 75 diggers, drawn from different parts of Kent, including contingents from the Faversham, Fawkham, Otford, Sittingbourne and West Kent groups took part in the excavation. Evening lectures included "Field Archaeology" by Jim Bradshaw, "Fawkham Manor" by Roger Walsh and "The Romano-British Site at Twitton, Otford" by Cliff Ward. A Proton Magnetometer survey was carried out by Mike Ocock and instruction given in its use.

More than 8,000 visitors were shown the site by appointed guides. Nearly 400 copies of the Kent Archaeological Review were sold and the fourth edition of the Reculver booklet sold out completely.

A detailed report on the excavations will appear in the February, 1969 (Number 15) issue of the Kent Archaeological Review.

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