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  Photo Gallery . . . on the Welsh Row finds

Waterlogged Deposits Project (updated)

THANKS to replacement work on gas pipes in Welsh Row, Roman and Medieval roads came to light in August 2007. Earthworks Archaeology were keeping a watching brief on the work being carried out by contractors May Gurney in the hope that such finds might emerge.

   These pictures, supplied to Nantwich Museum by Earthworks Archaeology, feature the Roman trackway and the Medieval timber causeway. A piece of Roman pottery and some discarded fragments of salt barrels from the town's Medieval salt works can also be seen.

   The roman trackway was lying at a depth of around 2.5 metres under Welsh Row and at a different alignment - around 45 degrees offset - to the present road. 

   Samples of the finds are being subjected to tree-ring dating. Early results show the Medieval causeway dates from the second half of the 13th century.    

   Mike Leah (now Cheshire East Council's Development Control Archaeologist) said unearthing the Roman and Medieval finds in Welsh Row had not been responsible for the delay in completing the road works. He was quoted in The Nantwich Chronicle of September 12.

lOur thanks to Earthworks Archaeology for the pictures and details.

The timbers in the Roman trackway can be seen (above) at the bottom of one of the trenches. Earthworks Archaeology spokesman, Will Walker, said the track seemed to be close to the natural ground and may not have been raised on a causeway. There were indications that the track superseded, or was contemporary with, a pebbled surface.

   Impressions of pebbles can be seen in the timber, as in the example above. The groove in the section of trackway is the unfortunate result of it being hit by a digger's scoop. 

Part of the Medieval timber       Colin Sharratt, Afon Bognar and Leigh Dodd of Earthworks

causeway in a trench                 Archaeology removing a small section of the Roman

(foreground of picture).              trackway for analysis.

Part of the Medieval causeway removed for

tree-ring dating.                                           

Recording the discarded salt barrel    fragments in a trench in Wych House Bank.

A piece of Roman pottery (in a gloved hand)  found on top of the trackway.

Part of the Roman trackway recovered from the trench.











This sketch of the Roman trackway is based on a drawing of the site of the excavations in Kingsley Fields in 2002.

   It shows how the Roman trackway was heading for Welsh Row at a slight angle across the excavation site.

   The sketch is the copyright of Peter Connolly.

The gas pipes being laid over Welsh Row bridge in 1903.       Nantwich Museum picture.







Two views of the road work which led to the discovery of the Roman and Medieval history of the town.                                                                                           Pictures: John Brough


NOTICE: The trench pictures are the copyright of Earthworks Archaeology of Ewloe in Flintshire and must not be reprinted without their express permission. (The Museum is happy for Webmasters to include a link to this page on their website).     

New project for town's waterlogged deposits

(Contact details updated)

IN the Spring 2008 edition of Cheshire Archaeology News (then a Cheshire County Council publication), Mark Leah, now Development Control Archaeologist for Cheshire East Council, referred to the finding of the Roman road.

   He wrote: "A common feature underlying much of the historic town (of Nantwich) is a deep, waterlogged, organic deposit. It is now clear that this material is the result of human activity and it appears to be a wholly post-Roman phenomenon.

   "In an attempt to understand more about these waterlogged deposits, Cheshire County Council and English Heritage have set up the Nantwich Waterlogged Deposits Project, with work being carried out by SLR Consulting Ltd. Cores have been taken across the town to establish the precise extent and depths of the deposits at different locations.

   "(The project) will produce a strategy to provide archaeologists, planners and developers with information on the archaeological implications of future developments in Nantwich in order to ensure the survival of the town's archaeology through sympathetic construction methods."

   Mark Leah can be contacted on 01244 973289 or by e-mail on


l YOU can have your name added to the Cheshire Archaeology News mailing list by contacting Dr Jill Collens, Project Manager Archaeology Planning Advisory Service, Cheshire Shared Services, Backford Hall, Backford, Chester CH1 6PZ; telephone 01244 973204; or e-mail: