Excavations at Preston Street, Exeter 1976-77 (Exeter archive site 60)

Exeter City Council, Cotswold Archaeology, 2015

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Exeter City Council, Cotswold Archaeology (2015) Excavations at Preston Street, Exeter 1976-77 (Exeter archive site 60) [data-set]. York: Archaeology Data Service [distributor] https://doi.org/10.5284/1035197

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Excavations at Preston Street, Exeter 1976-77 (Exeter archive site 60)

Throughout December 1976 and at various times throughout 1977, the Exeter Museums Archaeological Field Unit undertook excavations at the site of the Ford Signs works at 16 Preston Street in advance of new housing.

The site fronted Preston Street and was adjacent to Little Rack Street at SX 91899234

Excavation took place within the standing buildings formerly owned by the Ford Signs Company at 16 Preston Street. The need to excavate clear of the standing walls resulted in a number of isolated excavation areas that corresponded to internal room sizes of various dimensions.

Remains of the post-medieval, the medieval and the Roman civil periods were recorded overlying the Roman military deposits. Damage to the Roman military levels was severe, so much so that no clear building plan emerged. The post-trench of a timber building and other activity associated with the Roman military period at Exeter (c AD 55/60 - c 75/80) were identified. The timber building is suspected to have been a barrack within the praetentura of the Roman legionary fortress. The Roman military levels were first encountered at about 29.5 metres above Ordnance Datum.

The fragmentary remains of at least two Roman military timber buildings within the area of the legionary fortress were represented by post-trenches observed at the Preston Street site. Two pits that were thought to be military in date, one Claudio-Neronian and one Flavian, were located in a position that would place them perhaps in the space between the back walls of a pair of barracks assuming that a full cohort-block had occupied the area.