An exciting discovery, of national importance – that’s the verdict from a University of Hull academic on the latest archaeological survey of Petuaria – the Roman name for the East Yorkshire town, Brough.
A geophysical survey using ground penetrating radar (GPR) at the town has detected the outline of a series of previously undiscovered buildings and streets.
The discovery was part of a project called “Petuaria ReVisited” in Brough – known as Petuaria in Roman times. Petuaria is thought to be the tribal centre of the Parisi, the people who lived in Roman East Yorkshire.
Lead Archaeologist of the “Petuaria ReVisited” project, Dr Peter Halkon, Senior Lecturer in Archaeology, University of Hull, said:
“Although Roman activity has been known on the site for many years, especially through small scale excavation since the 1930s, with discoveries including a Roman fort and walled enclosure, and more recent developer funded digs, this is the first time anything like a true plan of the town and its buildings has been found. This new work has focused on the Burrs Playing field at the centre of the modern town.
“This is an exciting discovery of national significance. The GPR results are amazing, revealing some imposing Roman buildings and many other structures. Although much work is needed to thoroughly understand the survey results, what we have seen already will change our opinion of this site completely and provide important new evidence to our understanding of Roman Britain.”
Penetrating to a depth of around 2 metres, the GPR survey by David Staveley, a computer programmer, part-time Geophysicist and author of Snuffler, freeware geophysics software, showed the whole development of the core of the Roman site. Scanning down from the markings of the modern football pitch, through rubble deposits, the changing outlines of Roman stone built structures were revealed.
These include the later Roman wall and ditches, a large building around a courtyard and many smaller buildings along a regular street pattern.