Martin Papworth – National Trust Archaeologist
Wednesday 22nd September 2021 at 7.30pm
FRESHFORD VILLAGE MEMORIAL HALL
Surviving texts from Ancient Rome describe sumptuous gardens surrounding villas which were the source of the English designed landscape ideal. We’ve got mosaics, painted plaster etc. copied from Rome, so why not landscapes? They’re less easy to see but Chedworth seems a good candidate.
It is one of a group of villas surrounding Roman Corinium (Cirencester). The country seats of the rich, built to impress. Chedworth is perched at the head of a narrow valley sloping down to the River Coln. The National Trust owns the villa ruins which were purchased for the charity in 1924 when the Stowell Park Estate was sold. All the land around the Roman mansion was once part of the villa estate so we wanted to know more about its setting.
During a live dig at Chedworth Roman Villa in 2014, a team of National Trust archaeologists unearthed Roman mosaics which haven’t been seen for at least 150 years.
The new archaeological excavations of the North Wing at Chedworth Roman Villa are surprising and delighting not just the visitors but the archaeologists themselves, as this new mosaic of a grand Roman reception room, which no-one knew existed, has been discovered, National Trust archaeologist, Dr Martin Papworth, directed the excavations.
Members free. Visitors £3.00. Everyone welcome