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Hailey Wood Camp is the site of a scheduled Roman settlement, Coates.
County: Gloucestershire
District: COTSWOLD
NGR: SO 96 00
Monument Number: 382
Scheduled Monument Description:- The buried remains of a C1 to C4 AD Romano-British settlement. The site is not visible at ground level but survives as buried features. The settlement overlooks the Cotswold Hills.
Reasons for Designation
The Romano-British site known as Hailey Wood Camp is scheduled for the following principal reasons:
* Rarity: the form of the site is unusual nationally * Survival: although reduced by cultivation, it survives reasonably well as a series of buried features and archaeological deposits * Potential: the site retains great potential for improving our understanding of this enigmatic site's construction and use and of Roman settlement more generally * Regional character: Hailey Wood Camp lies within an area, broadly corresponding to modern Gloucestershire, rich in Roman occupation, with a distinctive and rich character
The earliest known record of Romano-British remains being discovered in the area of Hailey Wood was when the Sapperton Railway Tunnel was excavated in 1844. Contemporary accounts claim that a Roman villa was removed to make way for the tunnel construction; the site at Hailey Wood may have been ancillary to this villa. The site has been variously known as Hayley Wood Camp, Hayley Wood settlement and Tunnel Mouth Camp, due to its proximity to the Sapperton Tunnel portal
The precise interpretation of the site has remained elusive, and it has been variously described as a settlement, villa, camp or temple site. In form, the site has similarities with known temple sites such as those at Gosbecks, Essex or Hayling Island, Hampshire, which also take the form of a roughly square enclosure with a central building. Finds recorded from the site are, however, largely domestic in character.
Early accounts record evidence of other structures in the vicinity although all the earthworks, including the settlement, were under plough when the site was surveyed in 1976/7 and the banks were reduced to low stony rises. By the 1980s, the archaeological remains were no longer visible at ground level although a resistivity survey and fieldwalking in 1997 confirmed that the complex survives as buried features. Pottery fragments discovered at the site indicate that the site was occupied from the first to the fourth century AD.
This small Romano-British complex at Hailey Wood is located on a low hill in an isolated setting, approximately three miles to the south-east of the important Roman town of Corinium (Cirencester). It survives largely as buried features, visible on aerial photographs.
The complex includes the buried remains of a roughly square enclosure, defined by a double ditch. Early records suggest that these were formerly accompanied by a series of three banks, however these are no longer visible at ground level. The enclosure measures approximately 84m square with an entrance on the south-east side. Within the enclosure a concentration of stone and building material is believed to mark the position of a building. Areas of other archaeological features around the main double ditched enclosure have been recorded, including a rectangular building to the south east and a group of features to the north including an ‘interrupted ditch’, and various other rectilinear features that may be parts of other enclosures.
Fieldwalking on the site has recovered large quantities of domestic pottery including fragments of samian ware; grey and black burnished wares; and amphorae. Building material including stone, brick, box flue tile and floor and roof tile has also been recovered. It is reported that a group of five lead curse tablets was recovered from the site in the 1990s although it has not been possible to confirm this
"Tunnel Mouth Camp", a sharply quadrangular enclosure and entrance at the E, formed by 3 banks and 2 ditches measuring c 70 foot across.
The interior covers 2/3 acres. Inner bank still over 1 foot high, containing large limestone slabs, possibly from the facings of a substantial wall.
A building within the enclosure is defined by traces of walling and pot/stone spread which extend circa 60 feet along inner bank S of entrance Similar debris is associated with 3 walls offset from the N bank.(i)
Cropmarks at SO96520031 indicate Roman? building with internal walls.(ii) Cropmarks of square building at SO96500026, marked on the ground by scattered limestone slabs.(iii)
Artefactual evidence (including 1st to early 2nd century sherds, Samian and 4th century pottery) suggests a building at SO96540036.
APs also show rectangular feature of S of main enclosure (SP96450030), possibly lying across line of outer ditch.{Source Work 862.}
Surface finds by RCHM at Hailey Wood Camp, in Gloucester City Museum {Source Work 902.}
The remains are now reduced by ploughing to a sharp-cornered rectangular revised strip 15-20m wide and up to 0.3m height-measuring 60m by 50m. Densely covered with broken stone. Some grey potsherds, including a rim, and Romano-British brick and tile found. No visible traces of the other associated features noted by RCHM {Source Work 1003.} and St Joseph etc.{Source Work 862.}
Described as a basilican-type building sub-divided in To a number of rooms with a corridor running for the length of the main block - "villa" from APs {Source Work 902.}
Surface pottery found after ploughing.
Romano-British remains were found when Sapperton Tunnel dug 1844.{Source Work 2779.}
Villa destroyed when tunnel built {Source Works 902, 1432}.
Camp completely ploughed so that banks show only as low stony rises and the ditches are invisible. Surface scatter of building debris and pot.{Source Work 470.}
Of known buildings outside settlements 3 (Coates 2-4) are grouped round an enigmatic compound which may have enclosed a temple.
An unusual enclosure at Sapperton has approx. the same shape as the outer 'temenos' of the temple at Gosbecks Farm near the old 'Trinovantian' capital by 'Camuldunum'. The Sapperton site has not been excavated and no cult objects have been recorded (pl & li).
All site ploughed {Source Work 470.}
Information from Cotswolds Museums Service suggests that following a metal detecting incident some tablets were removed from the site. The exact location of these finds is not known but they are presumed to have originated from this site. The tablets comprise five sheets of lead or lead alloy inscribed with Roman cursive script, of which one is legible and four unreadable. They probably relate to the 2nd or 3rd centuries AD. The tablets have been exported out of the country after being acquired by a purchaser in London for a Norwegian collector.
1975 - The site is recorded as one of buildings recorded by aerial photography with an entrance in the northeast side, with side aisles, within a summary of the evidence nationally of Roman villa buildings from aerial photographic evidence. {Source Work 9344.}
1985 - 1990 Iron Age and Roman pot sherds were collected by J. P. Cooper from ploughed field. Brought collection for identification at Corinium Museum. List of pottery in site file.
1996 - A geophysical survey of Hailey Wood Camp was undertaken by an undergraduate of Durham University in conjunction with field walking around the site in the summer of 1996. The resistivity results revealed evidence for a possibly complex association of linear features and structures. Although no obvious plan of a temple structure was found within the enclosure there are a number of anomalies that hint to a building of some sort within the bank. The results suggest that there may be an entrance (and processual way?) in the north face of the enclosure rather than the south-eastern side as previously assumed {Source Works 484, 4842, 6649.}
2000 - Site visit by T. Grubb and S. Reeve in relation to management plan for Bathurst Estate. Site was under winter crop. Some unsystematic fieldwalking resulting in a collection of tile, shell and pot (including Samian ware).
2001 - .Site visited by Richard Massey of English Heritage on 21/09/2001. Largely post WWII history of cultivation with local oral record of impressive surviving earthworks before that time. Now under continuous cultivation with occasional minimum cultivation as part of arable rotation. Estimated plough depth c. 15cm.
Relatively well structured Cotswold plateau soil but of varying depth on higher contours, with much evidence of subsoil disturbance. Monument situated at top of slope with gradient of c. 3°. No evidence of alluviation but possibly localized colluvial deposits on lower contours, but unlikely to affect archaeology.
Much pottery in varying states of abrasion, including LPRIA greywares and Aylsford type fabrics. Some amphora. Much roughly-dressed stone over site and removed to adjoining headlands- evidence of serious structural damage. It is possible that some vulnerable stratigraphy has been partly protected by the spread of material from degraded walls and earthworks, but the impact of ploughing on both structural features and stratified deposits has been, and continues to be very serious. This site needs to be taken out of cultivation as a matter of urgency {Source Work 7244}.
2009 - Data sent by field monument warden: "Coates SO 96464 00354, Hailey Wood Camp (SAM GC 265) from ploughsoil surface (Jan 2002) scatter of 1st-2nd century Romano-British pottery incl. sand-tempered fabrics and handle sherd of Dressel 20/Camulodunum 157 amphora in buff ?Baetican Fabric. Much stone rubble on surface, including burn T material. SO 96514 00304. On site of building identified from AP: rubble scatter. Samian Drag. 37 sherd - rim sherd w. ovolo. Footstand from rouletted platter form . Sand-tempered sherds." {Source Work 10091.}
2010 Cotswold Hills/South Cotswold NMP
Roman enclosure with buildings: "Tunnel Mouth Camp", a sharply quadrangular enclosure with entrance at the east, is formed by three banks and two ditches measuring about 70 foot across. The interior covers about 2/3 acre. The inner bank is still over 1foot high and contains large limestone slabs, possibly from the facings of a substantial wall. A building within the enclosure is defined by traces of a stone wall and a spread of pottery, tile, sandstone and reddened limestone fragments extending for about 60 feet along the inner bank south of the entrance Similar debris is associated with three walls offset from the north bank. Some 30 yards east of the enclosure (SO 96520031) cropmarks disclose a building, probably Roman, with foundations 100 foot by 40 foot and indications of internal walls. Another building, probably Roman, shows as a cropmark 30 yards. SW of the foregoing (at SO 96500026). It is about 30 feet square and is marked on the ground by scattered limestone slabs. Further limestone slabs, sandstone tiles and pottery indicate a building to the north (at SO 96540036), from the site of which were collected sherds of late 1st or early 2nd century Samian ware and 4th century Oxfordshire colour-coated ware. Finds are in Gloucester City Museum. APs also show another rectangular feature south of the main enclosure (SP 96450030), possibly lying across the line of the outer ditch.
The remains of the Roman enclosure are now reduced by ploughing, to a sharp-cornered rectangular raised strip 15.0 to 20.0m in width and up to 0.3m in height, which measures along the center line, 60.0m north-south by 50.0m transversely. The strip is densely covered with broken stone. Some sherds of grey pottery, including a rim, and Roman brick and tile fragments were picked up within the site. There are no visible traces of the other associated features noted by RCHM and St Joseph. Roman Settlement, conceivably religious.
A rapid examination of air photography shows the site visible as a cropmark in 1990. The ditches and internal bank are visible as is the eastern most building (a negative cropmark), the other building does not seem to be visible.
A Roman settlement is visible as earthworks on aerial photographs taken before 1986, and is subsequently visible as cropmarks. The site comprises a double ditched enclosure with an area of hard standing and an adjacent rectilinear enclosure. A building, possibly a villa, is located 25 meters to the east of the rectilinear enclosure. The site as a whole is centered on SO 9645 0035 and extends over a total area which measures 135 meters east-west and 111 meters north-south.
The enclosure is almost square, and measures circa 84 meters wide. Both the banks and ditches are only partially defined, with the inner ditch being the most completely defined. There is a suggestion of an entrance in the middle of the eastern side, defined by a gap in the inner bank which measures less than 2 meters wide. An area of hard standing, suggesting a building, is centered on SO 9647 0035, and measures 10 meters long by 5 meters wide. Further buildings may be suggested by linear banks extending from the northern inner bank of the enclosure at right angles. A smaller rectilinear enclosure is centered on SO 9645 0030, and is defined by a single bank which defines an enclosure which measures 8 meters wide. This smaller enclosure overlies the outer ditch of the larger enclosure. A probably Roman building, possibly a villa, is visible as cropmarks and is located circa 25 meters to the east of the main enclosure (referred to above by authority 2). The building measures 30 meters long by circa 13 meters wide, and there are hints of internal divisions or sections of double walling.
A probably Roman or Medieval boundary bank is visible as an earthwork extending across the field and along the outer bank of the large enclosure and marking the parish boundary (SO 90 SE 36 / UID: 1512343). {Source Work 4249.}

Associated Finds

Protection Status

Sources and further reading
305;Saville A;1980;Archaeological Sites in the Avon and Gloucestershire Cotswolds;Vol:0;
403;RCHME;1976;Iron Age and Romano-British Monuments in the Gloucestershire Cotswolds;Vol:0;
470;Saville A;1976;Vol:0;
484;Historic Environment Record;various;Vol:0;
602;Hancock J;1975;Vol:0;
862;Ordnance Survey;unknown;Vol:0;
2873;English Heritage;various;Vol:0;
4106;Richardson RE;1986;Vol:0;
4842;Moore TH;1997;Vol:0;
7357;Cassell G;2002;
7244;Massey RW;2001;
6777;Moore T & Reece R;2001;GLEVENSIS;Vol:34;Page(s):17-26;
10091;Massey R;2009;
4249;Historic England;Various;Vol:0;
9344;Wilson DR;1974;BRITANNIA;Vol:5;Page(s):251-261;
11879;Moore T;2012;
13776;Allen M, Blick N, Brindle t, Evans T, Fulford M et al;2015;
12679;Grubb T;2000;

Related records
HER   38025     A Roman or Medieval boundary bank is visible as a cropmark orientated N-S across Hailey Wood Camp, Sapperton.

Gloucestershire County Council: Historic Environment Record Archive