More circus discovered

Further traces of the Roman circus were uncovered recently during work on the pavement on the north side of Napier Road. Several spreads of rubble lay surprisingly close to the modern ground level. Most were only about a foot (300 mm) deep. They consisted of building materials derived from both the inner and outer walls of the stands (cavea) of the circus. The spreads associated with the outer cavea wall contained mainly large stones, probably from the gradual dereliction of the circus in late Roman times. By contrast the spreads near the inner cavea wall consisted of stone chips and a few small fragments of Roman brick, as well as mortar debris. This was probably waste from the robbing of large pieces of stone and brick for reuse in medieval times. When the adjacent stretch of Napier Road was excavated in 2006 it was found that most of the comparable layers had been terraced away, probably in Victorian times.

During the recent work under the pavement, the rubble spreads were carefully covered over and left undamaged.