Caister St. Edmund: VENTA ICENORUM

Venta Icenorum – North Wall.
By Evelyn Simak, CC BY-SA 2.0,


  • Nr Norwich, Norfolk
  • OSGB – TG 231 035
  • Scheduled Monument


Roman fort, Civitas capital, wall, triple ditches.

Timber buildings found. Other buildings included a forum with a basilica and baths. East end of the fort produced a frigidarium during excavations.

The south gate passageway  measured 13ft long and 12ft wide and comprised of 7ft square guardrooms. The walls measured 3ft thick and the doors were 4ft wide. The city wall measured 10ft wide, resting on a plinth, overall measured 12ft wide and stood to a height of 17ft.


70                                Town formed after the repression of Boudicca’s revolt. Grid street plan laid out.

90-120                         c: Street at south gate possibly dates from

125                              c: Forum and basilica built.

140                              Before: Bathe built.

2nd C                            Two Roman Celtic temples existed on the site with possible earth defences.

2nd C                            Ditches filled in.

2nd-4th C                      Late to early: Baths and forum destroyed by fire.

200                              Town wall dates from, enclosing 34 acres.

270-290                       c: Forum rebuilt.

3rd C                            End: Baths and forum rebuilt. Fortifications rebuilt of flint and brick enclosing 35 acres, with a wall banked behind and the ditch in front. Walls had two different typed of bastions. The gate was at the southern end with an inturn in the wall. The gateway included a tower flanked by two guard chambers.

360                              Started to decay.

400                              Abandoned.

5th C                            Occupied.

7th-8th C                       Activity on site. Dating from: finds include pottery, coins and burials.

1923                            Excavated.

1929                            Excavated.

1930                            Excavated.

1931-1935                   Excavated.

1956                            Excavated.

1970                            Field Investigation.

1980                            Field Investigation.

1984                            Before: Owned by Mrs. F.H. Hawkins.

1984                            Acquired by the National Trust.

1989                            Excavated.

1990                            Scheduling revised.

1992                            Watching Brief.

1993                            Evaluated.

1993                            Geophysical Survey.

1994                            Evaluated and Watching Brief.

1994                            Geophysical Survey.

1995                            Geophysical Survey.

1996                            Geophysical Survey.

1997                            Geophysical Survey.

1997                            Watching Brief.

1999                            Geophysical Survey.

2001                            Geophysical Survey.

2011                            Scheduling area extended.

2016                            Geophysical Survey.

2018                            Scheduling area extended.



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