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Excavation in historic Winchester

Update! We now have a project homepage for this site with more detailed information.

An excavation is being carried out in Jewry Street, Winchester, ahead of development on the site by Mr M Bakhaty. The site is in the north-west corner of the historic core of Winchester. This area of the town is known to contain archaeological evidence of Winchester’s medieval, Saxon, Roman and Iron Age past.

A large cellar was built in the middle of the site in the medieval period. It was finely built and some evidence of its thick mortared chalk footings remain. The cellar presumably belonged to a substantial property fronting what is now Jewry Street. This was a prosperous area of the town between the late 11th and 14th century, known as ‘Scowrtenestret’ (Shoemakers’ Street), and later ‘Gywerystrete’. Documents from the fifteenth century list the occupants of the three medieval properties on the site. Amongst them were weavers, labourers, poor men, carpenters, a book binder, a tinker and a widow’.

In the northern part of the site we are uncovering very slight traces of late Saxon floors, but these have for the most part been destroyed by deep pits of later date.

Several pits which date from the Roman period (AD43-410) are being investigated and contain pottery and animal bone. The soil from these pits will be analysed for information about the contemporary environment. On the western side of the site we may find traces of a Roman street, linking the south and north gates of the Roman town (Venta Belgarum).

No remains of Iron Age date have yet been found.

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