Big free open day!

The big event at the Roman circus and it’s all free!

It’s Heritage Open Day 2018, Saturday 8th September 11.00 am – 4.00 pm. If you’ve never visited us before, now’s a good time. There will be lots to do and see. If you’ve been before but not for a little while, why not come again? We’re gradually improving and updating our displays so there is likely to be things here now you’ve not seen before.

The circus site itself is changing too. The curved far end of the circus has been marked out on the ground and the plan of the circus is gradually emerging. Like the displays in and around the centre, this is not the end. More changes are on the way so keep coming…!

Latest additions in the centre include a new exhibition – one about the Roman circuses of the empire. Ever wondered why Colchester has a circus and why it is the only one known in Britain? Well now you can find out why.

And what’s more, work continues on our new giant model of the Roman town. It’s still early days and it is a slow process but the base is finished and contounted to scale to match Colchester town centre. And we’ve carefully marked out the streets and town wall of the Roman town in readiness to start building!

Let’s not forget an important new addition to the centre – it’s our giant circus mosaic, the one we made about ten years ago with the help of about 1500 people. It’s now permanently mounted on a new handsome brick wall and looks the business – just great.

All as part of Heritage Open Day on

Saturday 8th September 11 am – 4 pm

  • Guided tours of the Colchester Garrison
  • Guided tours of the circus centre and circus site
  • Visit the Roman soldiers in their tent (Colchester Roman Society)
  • Try finds handling and our finds quiz
  • Try your hand at metal detecting
  • Have a go at the Roman circus bowling game
  • Can you catch the rattus? game


And for the children…

  • Hook a chariot wheel game
  • Make a horse mask and race in the circus
  • Kids’ sand pit dig
  • Colour and make jewellery
  • Design your own Roman mosaic.

Plus refreshments and a burger bar.

Parking next to the Circus Centre. (Reach us via Butt Road and then Le Cateau Road/Roman Circus Walk.)