Sunday, 18 September 2011

Chedworth Roman Villa

Just down the road from last week is Chedworth Roman villa, one of the largest Roman villas in Britain.


This one is in the care of the National Trust who have applied their usual heavy hand to it and as a consequence it has lost a lot of its ambience. Still it is neatly kept with concrete paths and trimmed grass and some nicely dumbed down signs....

Much of the site is currently closed for "redevelopment" and "improvement", these pictures are from a previous trip last year. According to their website they do seem to have now added a "Roman Retail Experience" whatever that means - I guess a shop selling souvenirs!

There are still some interesting areas - such as this domestic water shrine fed by a spring that never dries up. A small altar once stood at the far end and offerings to the guardians of the spring were made ( and still are judging by the number of coins in the pool)

Another interesting feature are the original Roman latrines. The NT couldn't resist adding a large coloured sign to interpret what they might have looked at in use. I've spared you that!

Leaving the rather sterile exterior, there is an on site museum which is much more interesting. Here are the statues and plaques of the household and other deities. Some are clearly carved and can be identified.  Others are fainter and have yet to be attributed. Some may be local God/esses whose names have been lost.

These alone make the trip worthwhile along with the reconstructive models showing the lay out of the villa and what it may have looked like.
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