Record Details

NHER Number:10418
Type of record:Monument
Name:Circular structure of possible Roman or medieval date and Romand and medieval finds


The alleged position of a Roman structure, given various interpretations since the early 19th century, including a pharos or lighthouse. In the 1930s the foundations of a circular building were found, together with Roman coins, pottery fragments and a copper alloy lion's head.

Images - none


Grid Reference:TG 4264 0245
Map Sheet:TG40SW

Full description

In early 19th century. Leighton found a Roman site 'a little east of Low Street'.

R.R. Clarke (NCM) recorded that in 1933 local people said that this was either Camp Hill (4260 0250) or Abbots Field (4270 0240). Foundations were found of a circular building (called lighthouse, fortress, etc) and earthworks, associated with coins of Claudius, Vespasian, Trajan, Hadrian, Antoninus Pius, Faustina II, Marcus Aurelius and Gordian, (seen by G.Chester), sherds and a bronze lion's head.

Clarke said that there was no proof that the structure was Roman, but if so it might have been a mill or dovecote.

22 September 1976.
Local people still disagree as to which of the fields was the site. The name Camp Hill is said by them to come from the Roman camp, and the name 'The Barracks', given to same spot by Ordnance Survey, to have come from cottages erected for workers at Reedham Hall.
Both names could refer to a more recent military use; perhaps Napoleonic? (S1)'s guide to Reedham mentions an 'agnus dei' found 'on the Roman site' in 1816; but (S1) is often inaccurate.
E. Rose (NAU).

See (S2),(S3),(S4),(S5),(S6),(S7),(S8) and Dawson Turner Additional Manuscripts. References given by R.R. Clarke (NCM).

It is possible that this might have been a Roman pharos (lighthouse), and connected to the Saxon Shore Fort system (forts at Brancaster, Caister on Sea and Burgh Castle), with the reused Roman tile and stone at the church (NHER 10419) originating from this site. The Roman grey stone in the church is not found at Burgh Castle, so it must come from an alternative source in the area (S9).

Monument Types

  • EARTHWORK (Roman - 43 AD to 409 AD)
  • ROUND HOUSE (DOMESTIC) (Roman - 43 AD to 409 AD)
  • DOVECOTE (Medieval - 1066 AD to 1539 AD)
  • WINDMILL (Medieval - 1066 AD to 1539 AD)

Associated Finds

  • COIN (Roman - 43 AD to 409 AD)
  • COIN (Roman - 43 AD to 409 AD)
  • FIGURINE (Roman - 43 AD to 409 AD)
  • POT (Roman - 43 AD to 409 AD)
  • CEREMONIAL OBJECT (Medieval - 1066 AD to 1539 AD)

Protected Status - none

Sources and further reading

---Record Card: Ordnance Survey Staff. 1933-1979?. Ordnance Survey Record Cards. TG 40 SW M; TG 40 SW 6.
---Record Card: NAU Staff. 1974-1988. Norfolk Archaeological Index Primary Record Card.
---Record Card: Clarke, R. R. and NCM Staff. 1933-1973. Norwich Castle Museum Record Card - Roman. Reedham.
<S1>Unpublished Document: Gay, D. Guide to Reedham.
<S2>Monograph: 1901. The Victoria History of Norfolk. The Victoria History of the Counties of England. Vol 1. pp 298, 305.
<S3>Article in Serial: Woodward, S. 1831. A descriptive Outline of the Roman remains in Norfolk, by Samuel Woodward, Esq., in a Letter to Hudson Gurney, esq. V.P., F.R.S., accompanied by a Map of the County. Archaeologia. Vol XXIII pp 358-373. p 364.
<S4>Article in Serial: Chester, G. J.. 1855. A Brief Sketch of the Antiquities of the Valleys of the Waveney and Yare. Norfolk Archaeology. Vol IV pp 310-316. p 315.
<S5>Article in Serial: Fox, G. E. 1889. Roman Norfolk. The Archaeological Journal. Vol XLVI pp 331-367. p 363.
<S6>Article in Serial: Fox, G. E. 1900. Roman Suffolk. The Archaeological Journal. Vol LVII pp 89-165. p 127.
<S7>Publication: Wright, H.. 1864. [unknown]. p 165.
<S8>Publication: Rye, W. 1920. Roman Camps and Remains in Norfolk. p 49.
<S9>Publication: Gurney, D.. 2002. Outposts of the Roman Empire. A Guide to Norfolk's Roman Forts at Burgh Castle, Caister-on-Sea and Brancaster..

Related records - none

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