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Cymraeg

What the Romans really did for us

27 August 2010

Roman re-enactment

This bank holiday weekend (28-30 August) visitors to excavations at the Roman fortress in Caerleon will have the chance to learn more about one of the most monumental Roman discoveries of recent times.

People of all ages are invited to join a team of archaeologists from Cardiff University and the University College London at Priory Field, Caerleon, in the fortress of Isca - one of the best-known Roman sites in Britain – to take part in their final season of excavation.

Earlier this month, a complex of monumental buildings, which look like civic buildings and temples, were located by the team outside the fortress walls at Caerleon. The find will change the way we think about how Britain was conquered and occupied by the Roman army almost 2,000 years ago.

There will be regular tours of the excavation site and a chance to see an archaeological dig in action and examine the finds. It is hoped that visitors to the site will get involved in archaeology activities such as wet sieving to hopefully uncover yet more information about the fortress and its inhabitants.

There will also be fun activities over the whole weekend including a Roman pottery workshop, Roman cookery and food sessions and games and activities for the children, including dressing up in Roman soldier gear.

Once home to the Second Augustan Legion, Caerleon was one of only three permanent legionary fortresses in Britain. It is one of only three permanent legionary fortresses in Britain. The other fortresses at Chester and York are much more difficult to excavate because their remains are mostly buried under cities. Caerleon provides the only opportunity to study the Roman legions in Britain.

The project is co-directed by Dr Peter Guest, School of History, Archaeology and Religion, and Dr Andrew Gardner from University College London. The team carrying out the excavation consists mainly of students from the two universities, with volunteers from the UK, Europe and North America.

The project is generously supported by CADW and the people of Caerleon, and is part of the AD 410 Romans Go Home celebrations.

The Caerleon Excavations Open Weekend takes place from 28th-30th August 2010 from 10.30am to 4pm on Saturday, Sunday & Monday.

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