Many sites of ancient Roman ruins lie frozen in time. Not in the time of the Romans, but at the time when they were excavated decades ago. Fortunately others have active excavations that continue to expand our knowledge of the Roman world.
Six years ago I made a quick visit to Hadrian’s Wall and saw both Housesteads Roman Fort and Vindolanda. When I visited them again last autumn, I found that Housesteads hadn’t changed at all but Vindolanda’s exposed remains had expanded considerably.
Other sites in Britain that are also experiencing a renaissance of excavation:
- In Norfolk archaeologists are digging for three weeks this summer at the site of Venta Icenorum at Caistor-St-Edmund. When I visited this site four years ago, all that was visible were its earth covered walls. The excavations are open to the public until September 3, 2011 with a Family Day on Sunday, August 28th.
- Archaeologists have been digging at Caerleon in Wales over the last year and have discovered the second known port of Roman Britain (the first one being in London). Here is a link to an article about this remarkable find that also includes a video with reconstructions of all of Caerleon’s Roman remains including the fort, amphitheatre and baths: http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk/2011/aug/23/archaeologists-discover-roman-port-wales