Bath Newseum has made its final trip to the rescue archaeology underway beside the River Avon at Broad Quay in Bath – an area due to be reshaped as part of a flood alleviation programme and also opened up – and renamed Bath Quays – as a sector for commercial regeneration.
It also happens to be where the ordinary working folk of Bath both lived and earned a wage in an area often prone to flooding and considered a notorious slum of crowded tenements.
Members of Wessex Archaeology have been allowed in to record what is left of that once buried and forgotten environment before it is all swept away as the river bank is remodelled.
With just weeks to go it seems the archaeologists have left the best to last. Not only have they been uncovering the remains of a bath house in which the the people who lived in overcrowded tenements both washed themselves and did their laundry but they have also confirmed finding part of a defensive wall and ditch shown as a spur off the city walls on an early 18th century maps of Bath.
Here’s what Cai Mason – Senior Project Officer at this site for Wessex Archaeology – had to say when Bath Newseum went down to collect another ‘tale from the riverbank’.
The discovery of the defensive wall and ditch – plus the footbridge across it – is something B&NES should consider keeping and not sweeping away.
This is an important relic that should be marked in someway. I will ask for a comment.