Excitement as hidden 'Roman road' unearthed by workers in field

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A ford thought to have been built by the Romans has been uncovered in a UK town.

The cobbled path, which has been hidden for almost 2,000 years, was uncovered by workmen this month.

If it is confirmed to be Roman, it will be the only road of its type in Britain.

Specialist archaeologists have been brought in to try and establish its authenticity, reports Birmingham Live.

The cobbled ford was discovered by workmen in a field never Evesham, Worcestershire. The owners of the property contacted Wychavon Council’s archaeology advisor, Aidan Smyth, to get his opinion.

After seeing a photograph of the site, Mr Smyth confirmed the residents’ suspicions.

Excavations are now taking place to find out more about the site, but he said everything pointed to it being a genuine Roman structure – built 1,900 years ago.

He said: “At the moment everything is ticking the boxes for it to be Roman. But it feels too good to be true, so we are keeping an open mind.

“If it turns out to be medieval then it could still be considered to be nationally significant as nothing similar has been found in Britain to date.

“If it is a 1st Century Roman structure, with its only known comparisons in Rome and Pompeii, then it is the only one of its kind in Britain to date making it nationally important.”

At the moment the location of the site in Evesham is not being disclosed to protect it.

A ford is a shallow place in a river or stream which allows people to walk across it or vehicles to travel across it.

Mr Smyth said “everything pointed to” this being genuine.

He said it was 2.95-metres wide – the standard width for a single-track Roman road.

It has also been constructed in the same way Romans worked, and ruts in the stones indicate it was has been used by carts for a long time.

The site where it was found is understood to be just across the river from where a Roman-era villa complex was discovered four years ago.

But no other objects, such as pieces of pottery or coins, have been discovered which would usually be used to help date the site.

Instead, a section dug from the road is being sent off for Optically Stimulated luminescence testing, which will measure the last time the sediment was exposed to sunlight.

This process could take several months.

In the meantime, the site may be reburied to protect it from deteriorating.

Historic England is being kept informed in the hope it will list it as an ancient monument, protecting it from future development.

Worcestershire is fertile ground for important archaeological finds as Worcester was possibly the site of the Roman town of Vertis.

The Roman army passed through the area now known as Worcestershire in the 40s and 50s AD as it pushed west to reach the River Severn on its way to Wales.



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