Waterworks in Worcestershire have yielded an unexpected bonus – a suspected Roman ford dating to around 1 AD has been unearthed near the site of a Roman Villa complex, discovered near Evesham four years ago.
Aidan Smyth – archaeology officer from Wychavon District Council – said that a ten-metre section of a cobbled roadway was excavated during routine waterworks being carried out by Severn Trent. The ancient roadway is thought to extend to a depth of three metres.
Mr Smyth said that if the date of 1 AD is confirmed, the find would be “beyond rare”. Archaeologists from Historic England are due to examine the find. The exact location of the ford is being kept secret, but it crosses a brook – and marks on the paving stones suggest that it was a route used by carts.
The Romans used carts and wagons as a main form of transport – the plaustrum was used for carrying building materials, as well as produce like cereals, wine and olives.
Mr Smyth said:
“Our teams… are working closely with Historic England, with representatives due to attend the site following further excavations.
“The stonework is absolutely perfect,” he added. “It just ticks every box for being Roman.”
You can read more about the discovery of the suspected Roman ford at BBC Midlands.
Images: BBC News