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Record details

BCC record ID:0105000000
Type of record:Monument
Summary:Course in Buckinghamshire of Akeman Street, a Roman road from London to Cirencester, now the A41.
Grid Reference:SP 7175 1748
Parish:

KINGSWOOD, Aylesbury Vale, Buckinghamshire

AYLESBURY, Aylesbury Vale, Buckinghamshire

LUDGERSHALL, Aylesbury Vale, Buckinghamshire

QUARRENDON, Aylesbury Vale, Buckinghamshire

WADDESDON, Aylesbury Vale, Buckinghamshire

WESTCOTT, Aylesbury Vale, Buckinghamshire

WESTON TURVILLE, Aylesbury Vale, Buckinghamshire

WOODHAM, Aylesbury Vale, Buckinghamshire

WOTTON UNDERWOOD, Aylesbury Vale, Buckinghamshire

BUCKLAND, Aylesbury Vale, Buckinghamshire

DRAYTON BEAUCHAMP, Aylesbury Vale, Buckinghamshire

FLEET MARSTON, Aylesbury Vale, Buckinghamshire

GRENDON UNDERWOOD, Aylesbury Vale, Buckinghamshire

ASTON CLINTON, Aylesbury Vale, Buckinghamshire

Monument type(s)

  • ROAD (Roman - 43 AD to 409 AD)

Associated finds: none recorded

Public access information

Is the site accessible to the public?Yes
Is the site visible from a public viewpoint?Yes

Full description

Plan Form - LINEAR
BEYOND AYLESBURY LINE FOLLOWED BY PRESENT ROAD. DISTINCT AGGER VISIBLE WHERE ROAD DIVERGES AT HAYDON HILL FARM (B1). DOUBLE DITCH VISIBLE ON A/P BETWEEN SP7694 1588 & SP7717 1581 (B2). AT SP7990 1485 A41 VEERS N OF PRESUMED COURSE. FROM SP7694 1588 COURSE FOLLOWED BY FOOTPATHS & FIELD BOUNDARIES (B3).
Evaluation trenching at Billingsfield carried out by AC Archaeology revealed the Roman road, comprising a gravel surface 6.6m wide max, with 2 ditches on each side. The inner ditches were larger than the outer ditches but varied considerably in width and depth. The gravel surface had been constructed on a raised bank of 3 make-up deposits, with a buried soil possibly surviving beneath. The road mid-line was found to be not on the published (OS) line, but parallel and approx 20m to the SW. [Subsequent analysis suggests this apparent difference in alignement was due to an surveying error during trial trenching]. The road seems to have been constructed fairly early during the Roman occupation as 2 cremation urns of the mid 1st century AD were inserted into pits cutting the edge of the outer ditch. Pottery from the fills of the flanking ditches is 1st to 4th century in date. The road and/or its ditches was identified in trenches C12, C14, D10, D10a, E4, E6, F2, F4 and G0 but was not identified by augering or in the 6 trial trenches in field 2 to the SE. APs clearly show the line of the road continuing to the SE beyond the river, so it seems likely that the road continued on the same alignment across the river but in a different form, perhaps a raised wooden trackway or an earth embankment? (B4).
THE COURSE OF AKEMAN STREET THROUGH AYLESBURY IS UNCERTAIN; (FOR DISCUSSION SEE B7-8).THE ROAD INTERSECTS WITH THE TOWN BOUNDARY AT NGR SP8462 1321 ON E & SP7931 1507 ON W.
Negative evaluation on projected line of route through Aylesbury (B6).
VERULAMIUM TO ALCHESTER (37 MILES). RUNS ON FINE AGGER 3-4FT HIGH FOR MOST OF WAY TO AYLESBURY (B1). ENTERS COUNTY ON COURSE OF PRESENT A41 AT SP9098 1102 (B3). BROAD BANK BESIDE A41, SP8619 1264 TO SP8661 1254, ON N SIDE AGAINST HEDGEROW. UNLIKELY POSITION FOR MEDIEVAL HEADLAND, SO ?=AKEMAN STREET (B9).
Geophysical surveys carried out by Pre-Construct Geophysics between January and May 2009 identified the remains of the flanking ditches of Akeman Street at the south of the survey area in Field 8. See report for detail (B13).

Sources and further reading

---Aerial Photograph: RAF. 01/01/57. RAF 2081. \.
---Aerial Photograph: Michael Farley. 2001. 2001 oblique AP by Mike Farley. SP89281260. Yes.
---Aerial Photograph: Michael Farley. 2001. 2001 oblique AP by Mike Farley. SP89641257. Yes.
---Aerial Photograph: Michael Farley. 2001. 2001 oblique AP by Mike Farley. SP89001220. Yes.
<1>Bibliographic reference: MARGARY I D 1973 ROMAN ROADS IN BRITAIN 3RD EDITIO N PP155-158 (ROAD 16A).
<2>Aerial Photograph: RAF. ?. RAF Vertical Aerial Photograph, ?: run?, frame 2081.
<3>Map: OS 1960 1:10560 MAPS,WITH NOTES BY A R PIKE,FEB 19 77.
<4>Unpublished document: AC Archaeology. 1997. An Archaeological Evaluation of a Proposed Housing Development Site at Billingsfield, Aylesbury.
<5>Photograph: Michael Farley & Jonathan Parkhouse. 1997. BCM slides of evaluation trenching at Billingsfield in 1997. Colour slides.
<6>Unpublished document: Thames Valley Archaeological Services. 2006. 91-97 New Street, Aylesbury: An Archaeological Evaluation.
<7>Bibliographic reference: VCH BUCKS 3 P1(NOTE).
<8>Bibliographic reference: VIATORES 1964 ROMAN ROADS IN THE SOUTH-EAST MIDLAN DS PP34-45 (SEE ESPECIALLY PP43-44 & MAP P371.
<9>Bibliographic reference: FARLEY M E,JAN 1974,FIELD VISIT.
<10>Unpublished document: Buckinghamshire County Museum Archaeological Service. 1997. AYLESBURY NORTHERN LINK ROAD ARCHAEOLOGICAL APPRAISAL OF ROAD FOOTPRINT (BASED ON STAGE 1 & 2 ASSESSMENT).
<11>Unpublished document: Buckinghamshire County Museum Archaeological Service. 1998. AYLESBURY NORTHERN LINK ROAD ARCHAEOLOGICAL APPRAISAL OF AGREED ALIGNMENT.
<12>Unpublished document: Thames Valley Archaeological Services. 2003. 91-97 New Street, Aylesbury: An Archaeological Desk-Based Assessment.
<13>Unpublished document: Pre-Construct Geophysics. 2009. Geophysical Survey: Fleet Marston, Aylesbury.

Associated excavations and fieldwork

  • EBC13962:
  • EBC15874: Evaluation trial trenching
  • EBC15875: Evaluation trial trenching
  • EBC16746: Evaluation trial trenching (Ref: NSA 03/09)
  • EBC17219: Geophysical surveys

Related monuments

Reports

No image caption available  © Buckinghamshire County Council

No image caption available © Buckinghamshire County Council