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Historic England Research Records

Moridunum

Hob Uid: 1050582
Location :
Devon
East Devon
Axminster
Grid Ref : SY2980097300
Summary : Excavations in 1990 and 1992 discovered evidence for a civilian settlement dating from the 2nd to 4th century. The site would appear to be a vicus associated with the Roman Fort at Woodbury and is thought to have been the Roman town of Moridunum.
More information : (SY 298 973 (GCE)) Excavation on the Roman fort site at Woodbury (SY 29 NE 39) uncovered quantities of 2nd century and later material, as well as indications of at least one building with hypocaust, tiled roof and opus signinum flooring. Air photography suggested the presence of a courtyard building within the fort site, possibly a mansio. Fieldwalking produced evidence of settlement to the east of the fort. (1)

Further excavation and geophysical investigation was undertaken in 1990 and 1992 as part of work on the Axminster bypass and a water pipeline from Musbury to Axminster. This confimed the presence of a number of stone buildings within the fort enclosure, as well as evidence for civil settlement extending c.225m west of the fort, c.200m east of the fort and at least 100m south of Woodbury Lane; suggesting a settlement c.600m long by 200m wide, encompassing c.12ha. This would make it the second or third largest Roman settlement in Devon. It probably started as a military vicus and flourished from the 2nd to the 4th centuries, or later.
In addition to the probable mansio, there is evidence for iron-smithying and pottery manufacture; other finds include various high-quality items.
All these factors suggest that the Woodbury settlement may be the Roman road-station of Moridunum.(2)

A rapid examination of air photography (3a) shows the numerous parchmarks of the 'mansio' complex, visible immediately south of Woodbury Farm. (3)

Sources :
Source Number : 1
Source : Devon Archaeological Society Proceedings
Source details :
Page(s) : 33-57
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) : 42, 1984
Source Number : 2
Source : Devon Archaeological Society proceedings
Source details :
Page(s) : 33-134
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) : 51, 1993
Source Number : 3
Source : VIRTUAL CATALOGUE ENTRY TO SUPPORT NAR MIGRATION
Source details : Andrew Miller/17-JUN-1996/RCHME: AP Primary Recording Project
Page(s) :
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) :
Source Number : 3a
Source : VIRTUAL CATALOGUE ENTRY TO SUPPORT NAR MIGRATION
Source details : NMR, SY 2997/1-9, 12-14, 19-24
Page(s) :
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) :

Monument Types:
Monument Period Name : Roman
Display Date : Roman
Monument End Date : 410
Monument Start Date : 43
Monument Type : Settlement, Vicus, Mansio, Iron Working Site, Pottery Kiln
Evidence : Cropmark, Earthwork, Sub Surface Deposit, Find

Components and Objects:
Related Records from other datasets:
External Cross Reference Source : Scheduled Monument Legacy (National No.)
External Cross Reference Number : 22301
External Cross Reference Notes :
External Cross Reference Source : National Monuments Record Number
External Cross Reference Number : SY 29 NE 47
External Cross Reference Notes :

Related Warden Records :
Associated Monuments : 650063
Relationship type : Is referred to by
Associated Monuments : 449521
Relationship type : General association

Related Activities :
Associated Activities : Primary, WOODBURY FARM
Activity type : EXCAVATION
Start Date : 1981-01-01
End Date : 1982-12-31
Associated Activities : Primary, WOODBURY GREAT CLOSE
Activity type : EXCAVATION
Start Date : 1981-01-01
End Date : 1981-12-31
Associated Activities : Primary, MUSBURY-AXMINSTER WATERMAIN: WOODBURY GREAT CLOSE
Activity type : EXCAVATION
Start Date : 1990-01-01
End Date : 1990-12-31
Associated Activities : Primary, WOODBURY GREAT CLOSE
Activity type : WATCHING BRIEF
Start Date : 1992-01-01
End Date : 1992-12-31
Associated Activities : Primary, RCHME: AIR PHOTOGRAPH PRIMARY RECORDING PROJECT 1992-1996
Activity type : AERIAL PHOTOGRAPH INTERPRETATION
Start Date : 1992-01-01
End Date : 1996-12-31
Associated Activities : Primary, WOODBURY FARM
Activity type : GEOPHYSICAL SURVEY
Start Date : 1993-01-01
End Date : 1994-12-31