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Historic England Research Records

Wall Roman Bath House

Hob Uid: 304407
Location :
Staffordshire
Lichfield
Wall
Grid Ref : SK0979106575
Summary : The Roman bath house at Wall (Letocetum), built to serve official travellers and couriers as they passed along Watling Street, and also the townspeople. The bath house is not aligned with Watling Street, and was situated on the hillside alongside a route running to the forts on the hilltop, a route which may have had an Iron Age origin. Its water supply came from a spring above the guest house.The remains of the bath house visible today include the furnace room (praefurnium), hot room (caldarium) and warm room (tepidarium), exercise hall (palaestra), cold room (frigidarium) and changing room (apodyterium). The bath house was first built in circa 100 AD of stone, and was maintained for over 150 years with several phases of alteration and repair. Phase 1 of the bath house had an exercise hall attached; this would have been the town's main covered space, and would also have functioned as a meeting place and was probably used for entertainment, trade, and school lessons. Phase 2 saw the baths extended in the AD 130s during the reign of Hadrian. Phase 3 included a larger exercise hall, surrounded by a colonnade with a paved or tiled floor, and further rooms, built in the AD 170s. The furnace was converted into a warm room in Phase 4, dated to the early 3rd century AD. During Phase 5 in the later 3rd century AD, the baths were reduced to a small number of rooms. Following this decline many of the doors were blocked and the building may have become a house prior to its abandonment and ruin.
More information : (SK 09790656) Roman Baths (R) (Rems of) (1)

Roman bath building at Letocetum excavated in 1872 and 1912, with five main phases of construction beginning towards the end of the 1st.century AD. In the guardianship of the Dept. of the Environment and open to the public. (2-4)

1:2500 Survey revised. (5)

No change since reports 15.4.58 and 25.2.74. (6)

ST 8 Group of building west of Forts at Wall, including baths and a building formerly described as a villa or mansion. 'The Butts', a large area north of these buildings, is also scheduled. (7)

The Roman bath house at Wall (Letocetum), built to serve official travellers and couriers as they passed along Watling Street, and also the townspeople. The bath house is not aligned with Watling Street, and was situated on the hillside alongside a route running to the forts on the hilltop, a route which may have had an Iron Age origin. Its water supply came from a spring above the guest house.
The remains of the bath house visible today include the furnace, hot room and warm room, exercise hall, and cold room/changing room. The bath house was first built in circa 100 AD of stone, and was maintained for over 150 years with several phases of alteration and repair. Phase 1 of the bath house had an exercise hall attached; this would have been the town¿s main covered space, and would also have functioned as a meeting place and was probably used for entertainment, trade, and school lessons. Phase 2 saw the baths extended in the AD 130s during the reign of Hadrian. Phase 3 included a larger exercise hall, surrounded by a colonnade with a paved or tiled floor, and further rooms, built in the AD 170s. The furnace was converted into a warm room in Phase 4, dated to the early 3rd century AD. During Phase 5 in the later 3rd century AD, the baths were reduced to a small number of rooms. Following this decline many of the doors were blocked and the building may have become a house prior to its abandonment and ruin. (8)


Sources :
Source Number : 1
Source : Ordnance Survey Map (Scale / Date)
Source details : OS 6" 1968
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Source Number : 2
Source : VIRTUAL CATALOGUE ENTRY TO SUPPORT NAR MIGRATION
Source details : Trans Birmingham Archaeol Soc 4 1873 pp38-9 (J N Bagnall)
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Source Number : 3
Source : VIRTUAL CATALOGUE ENTRY TO SUPPORT NAR MIGRATION
Source details : Archaeol J 71 1914 p360 plan (C Lynam)
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Source Number : 4
Source : Field Investigators Comments
Source details : F1 VJB 15-APR-58
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Source Number : 5
Source : Field Investigators Comments
Source details : F2 DJC 25-FEB-74
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Source Number : 6
Source : Field Investigators Comments
Source details : F3 JR 14-JUL-76
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Source Number : 7
Source : A gazetteer of Roman villas in Britain
Source details :
Page(s) : 173
Figs. :
Plates :
Vol(s) : no.1
Source Number : 8
Source : Wall Roman site, Staffordshire
Source details : English Heritage Guidebook
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Monument Types:
Monument Period Name : Roman
Display Date : Built circa 100 AD
Monument End Date :
Monument Start Date : 100
Monument Type : Bath House, Furnace, Pool, Hypocaust, Water Pipe, Spring, Drain
Evidence : Sub Surface Deposit
Monument Period Name : Roman
Display Date : Phase 2: extended
Monument End Date : 139
Monument Start Date : 130
Monument Type : Bath House
Evidence : Sub Surface Deposit
Monument Period Name : Roman
Display Date : Phase 3: extended
Monument End Date : 179
Monument Start Date : 170
Monument Type : Bath House
Evidence : Sub Surface Deposit
Monument Period Name : Roman
Display Date : Phase 4: altered
Monument End Date : 232
Monument Start Date : 201
Monument Type : Bath House
Evidence : Sub Surface Deposit
Monument Period Name : Roman
Display Date : Complex reduced
Monument End Date : 300
Monument Start Date : 267
Monument Type : Bath House
Evidence : Sub Surface Deposit
Monument Period Name : Roman
Display Date : Re-used as house
Monument End Date : 325
Monument Start Date : 300
Monument Type : House
Evidence : Architectural Component

Components and Objects:
Period : Roman
Component Monument Type : Bath House, Furnace, Pool, Hypocaust, Water Pipe, Spring, Drain
Object Type :
Object Material :

Related Records from other datasets:
External Cross Reference Source : Scheduled Monument Legacy (County No.)
External Cross Reference Number : ST 15
External Cross Reference Notes :
External Cross Reference Source : SMR Number (Staffordshire)
External Cross Reference Number : 33
External Cross Reference Notes :
External Cross Reference Source : National Monuments Record Number
External Cross Reference Number : SK 00 NE 2
External Cross Reference Notes :

Related Warden Records :
Associated Monuments : 304414
Relationship type : General association
Associated Monuments : 304404
Relationship type : General association

Related Activities :
Associated Activities : Primary, CASTLE CROFT (LETOCETUM)
Activity type : EXCAVATION
Start Date : 1872-01-01
End Date : 1873-12-31
Associated Activities : Primary, BUTTS FIELD (LETOCETUM)
Activity type : EXCAVATION
Start Date : 1912-01-01
End Date : 1914-12-31
Associated Activities : Primary, WALL (LETOCETUM)
Activity type : EXCAVATION
Start Date : 1956-01-01
End Date : 1956-12-31
Associated Activities : Primary, FIELD OBSERVATION ON SK 00 NE 2
Activity type : FIELD OBSERVATION (VISUAL ASSESSMENT)
Start Date : 1958-04-15
End Date : 1958-04-15
Associated Activities : Primary, BATHS (LETOCETUM)
Activity type : EXCAVATION
Start Date : 1971-01-01
End Date : 1971-12-31
Associated Activities : Primary, BATHS (LETOCETUM)
Activity type : EXCAVATION
Start Date : 1974-01-01
End Date : 1978-12-31
Associated Activities : Primary, FIELD OBSERVATION ON SK 00 NE 2
Activity type : FIELD OBSERVATION (VISUAL ASSESSMENT)
Start Date : 1974-02-25
End Date : 1974-02-25
Associated Activities : Primary, FIELD OBSERVATION ON SK 00 NE 2
Activity type : FIELD OBSERVATION (VISUAL ASSESSMENT)
Start Date : 1976-07-14
End Date : 1976-07-14