NOSTALGIA: Cirencester’s rich Roman history

nostalgia cirencesters rich roman history - NOSTALGIA: Cirencester’s rich Roman history
nostalgia cirencesters rich roman history 1 - NOSTALGIA: Cirencester’s rich Roman history

Cirencester has certainly seen its share of demolitions over the years, not least of which were the Roman buildings that exist mainly today by way of fragments in the Corinium museum.

When I was a teenager there were frequent excavations of Roman remains or digs as we called them.

I helped out on some of them during the holidays.

It was interesting work – unpaid of course, but there was a sense of excitement that went with it; delving into the ground knowing that our ancient forebears had once been there and might have left something to be found.

And many valuable things were found in the digs around Cirencester back in the 1960s to which our excellent museum pays testament, attracting many thousands of visitors each year, especially schoolchildren.

Like most Cirencester kids, I was exposed to Cirencester’s rich Roman history from an early age.

It was all around us; the bull ring amphitheatre, the bits of the Roman wall at the City Bank and the Abbey Grounds; the fragments of architecture such as the base of a broken column opposite the police station in the Forum.

There were frequent trips to the museum to which we walked to in a line from Lewis Lane.

I remember very well being taken there by my teacher Miss Phillips who explained things so well and inspired a love of history in me that has remained with me ever since.

Vera Phillips also taught me how to sew, but that’s a story for another day.

In the 1960s and 70s the Roman remains in Cirencester were contemporaneously added to when buildings and bridges were knocked down and roads built where there was once the elysian fields of childhood memory.

Who can forget the Beeches Humpty Dumps or the avenue of wood that lined the road from the Golden Farm to the stone bridge over the Churn?

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