Caistor Roman Project Excavations, 23rd August 2023

The sun shone again for CBA East members’ third visit of the summer to the community excavations run by the Caistor Roman Project, Caistor St Edmunds, Norfolk.

This well organised dig has put two trenches in the North East part of the Roman town of Venta Icenorum, outside the late Roman walls but within an earlier enclosure ditch, and adjacent to a trackway leading to the Romano-British temple.

After a background introduction from Prof. Will Bowden we visited the trenches, which were were hives of activity with members of the Project engaged in digging, drawing, planning and photography, under the mentoring guidance of professional archaeologist Giles Emery.

The first trench was typically enigmatic, with large pits containing charcoal and kiln waste at one end, and a possible ditch emerging at the other end, separated by a metalled surface. There were copious sherds of greyware, with some samian pottery and a large chunk of a mortarium.

The second trench was enigmatic but appeared to contain the interior of a building. We also had the chance to view some spectacular Small Finds which included a brooch (missing its pin but otherwise complete), two coins in excellent condition, a fine glass vessel handle in the shape of a dolphin, a long copper-alloy ‘spoon’ or spatula, and several large sherds of possible Iron Age pottery (subject to analysis).

Of course, as always, some of the best finds came right at the end of the dig, after our visit! View the details (and some of our group) on the site blog at Excavation Blog – Summer 2023 – CRP23 Digblog ( Thanks are due to Mike Pinner for arranging the tour and showing us round the site.

Anyone who wishes to take part in future excavations at this fascinating Roman site can do so by joining the Caistor Roman Project at

Mike Pinner (CRP Chairman) has been invited to join the CBA East Committee