Brockholes

Brockholes Roman-British Site

Plan of Settlement (north to left)

Plan of Settlement (north to left)

To the east of Low Borrowbridge, directly across the Lune, lies the ‘Romano-British’ site identified in the 1970s by John Anstee, then curator of the Abbott Hall Museum of Lakeland Life and Industry in Kendal. Over a number of years John surveyed and excavated the site. John died before his account of the excavation and finds was published but the material was passed to his daughter, our member Judith Anstee, who has been working through the material with a view to publishing the key findings.

Metal Object

Metal Object

 

 

The site occupies a commanding position on the east side of the valley, across a track that dates at least as far back as the Iron Age and probably far earlier. Less than half mile to the south, along the same track, is the High Carlingill Roman0-British settlement and both are thought to have been contemporary with the use of the Low Borrowbridge fort.

Quern at entrance to 'hut'

Quern at entrance to ‘hut’

 

During his excavations John Anstee found pottery and metalwork dating from the first and second centuries. Evidence for several phases of occupation were found, including internal features identified as huts and industrial workings. The latter were indicated by the presence of coal, charcoal and a number of iron objects including Romano-British type nails and an enigmatic large metal object yet to be identified. Other finds from the excavations included various pottery sherds, including Samian ware, one item of which was identified as being from a bowl with caryatid decoration, part of a glass bangle, two hone fragments for sharpening metal objects, and parts of two millstone grit beehive querns.

Samian ware pottery sherd

Samian ware pottery sherd

With the kind permission of the landowner, Kevin Wharton, the Society visited the site last summer to walk the track and to examine the upstanding banks and ditches.

A selection of the finds will be on display at the Society AGM in April 2014.

Graham Hooley and Judith Anstee 2014

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