Site Code. Site identification and address County, district and / or borough O.S. grid ref. Geology.

Project number. Fieldwork type. Site type. Date of fieldwork. Sponsor/client. Project manager. Project supervisor. Period

OAKLANDS13 Sedlescombe to Beauport Park

East Sussex TQ785176 to TQ787153 Many SNUFFLER1304 Geophysics

2012-2013 IHRG Robin Hodgkinson

Roman summary Project summary. (100 word max) Geophysics on the site of the industrial scale Roman iron working site at Oaklands Park, Sedlescombe and the Roman road leading south to Beauport Park.

Geophysics at Oaklands Park & the Roman Road South by David Staveley
Contents I. Project Background Introduction Acknowledgements Archaeological Background of the Iron Workings Archaeological Background of the Roman Road Geological and Topographical Background Geophysics Methodology Surveying at Oaklands Park Survey Area Positioning Area A Magnetometry Results Area A Magnetometry Results at +/- 60nT Area B Magnetometry Results Area C Magnetometry Results Area D Magnetometry Results Magnetometry Interpretation Earth Resistance Results Earth Resistance Interpretation GPR A at 10ns GPR A at 13ns GPR B at 10ns GPR B at 13ns GPR Interpretation Metal Detector Finds The Surrounding Landscape The Search for the Road to Beauport Park Introduction Gerald Brodribb Road Course Notes Luff's Farm Luff's Farm 2 Battle Barn Farm Norton's Farm Aldershaw Farm Discussion The Route To Westfield Discussion References



V. VI.

I. Project Background
Introduction This project is part of a larger project, looking at the Roman road network in Sussex and the major settlements along the way. Ivan Margary's Rochester to Hastings Roman road passes through Oaklands Park, though the southern part of this road remains relatively unexamined compared to other parts of the road system. In particular, the road leading south-east to Westfield from Oaklands Park was in some doubt. This project looks at both the road network in the area and the major iron-working site at Oaklands Park itself. Acknowledgements The author would like to thank landowners at Pestalozzi Childrens Village, Luff's Farm, Battle Barn Farm, Norton's Farm and Aldershaw for allowing work on their land. The author would also like to thank Robin Hodgkinson of IHRG for organising everything, Trish McLaughlin for her research in Battle Museum and all the people who helped with the geophysics surveys. Archaeological Background of the Iron Workings Relatively little is known of the iron-working site at Oaklands Park. It is noted as being one of the three great industrial scale sites in Sussex, based on estimated slag volume (Hodgkinson 2008 p.31). The other two being Footlands, at the northern end of Sedlescombe and Beauport Park to the south. The latter has been heavily excavated and the presence of CL:BR stamped tiles there tells us that the site was run by the Classis Britannica, or British Fleet. Unlike a modern navy, the fleet was involved in logistics and exploitation of resources, such as at industrial scale iron-working sites in the Weald, at sites like Beauport Park and Bardown. The iron workings were first mentioned by Lower (1849 p.174) where he describes Roman coins recovered from a slag heap, but the real understanding of the importance of the site came with the description (Straker 1931 p.329) of a 30 foot high pile of iron slag being removed for road making in the mid 19 th century. As well as Roman pottery and coins of Hadrian, he also records brick and tile, which suggests buildings on the site. Enigmatically, Cleere and Crossley (1985 p.305) mention a slag-metalled track under the Pestalozzi buildings at the unhelpfully vague location of TQ788173. Archaeological Background of the Roman Road The site is adjacent to a Roman road that runs from Durobrivae (Rochester) in the north, down to this area of the Weald (Margary 1965 p.208-228). Unlike most other Roman roads in Sussex, it is constructed of iron slag rather than flint, with a course that is more windy than normal for a Roman road, and an apparent lack of side ditches. It seems to be more of a track than a road, and the southern part at least may have been constructed by the Classis Britannica, who seem to have controlled a large iron-working estate separate from any tribal areas in Britannia (Cleere & Crossley 1985 p.67). The road passes through a Classis Britannica iron working site at Little Farningham near Cranbrook, Kent, followed by a Classis Britannica port at Bodiam, where the road crosses the river Rother (Lemon & Hill 1966 p.88). Though Margary then has the road passing to the east of one of the big three iron-working sites at Footlands, near Sedlescombe, roads

have since been found leading into the site from the north-east and out of the site to the south-east (Lemon 1950-51). Though these were interpreted as side roads to the main road at the time, there is actually no evidence for Margary's road section passing Footlands. In addition to this, the 'side road' leading south-east from Footlands is on the same alignment as Margary's 'main road' through Sedlescombe, further suggesting that the two are the same. For the moment, we must assume these side roads are actually the main road. The road exiting south-east from Footlands continues straight through on the course of Sedlescombe high street, crossing the river Brede at the point of the current river crossing. This is of course adjacent to the second of the big three sites at Oaklands Park, next to Pestalozzi. Margary, lacking further evidence for the course of the road, then has it climbing Chapel Hill and turning sharply east and following Cottage Lane down towards Westfield. The road system in the area seems to be more about connecting existing sites rather than going from A to B. This is suggested by the very winding nature of the roads, and the fact that the sites so linked would have needed to have been in operation to produce the material with which the roads were made. For this reason, Margary's road east to Westfield was called into question, as it would have made much more sense to continue south to Beauport Park, another Classis site. This is one of the things that we intended to look for. Margary himself considered a road running south, but dismissed it for the lack of an ancient road still in use, noting correctly that Paygate Road is modern (Margery 1965 p.228). Geological and Topographical Background The site of Oaklands Park ironworks sits on the southern edge of the River Brede, with the ground rising steeply to the south, onto the western end of an east-west ridge before dropping down again into a further valley containing a stream that feeds into the Brede. Climbing the hill from the Alluvium in the Brede flood plain, the geology goes through Clay Head, Ashdown Sands and finally Wadhurst Clay on the summit. Heading south to Beauport Park, the majority of the geology is Ashdown Sands and Mudstone. The water levels in the floodplain would have been higher during the 'Roman Warm'.

Digital Elevation Map

Geology Map Geophysics Methodology Grids were set out using a total station and recorded using an arbitrary grid, which can be re-established using resection points. Positioning information is displayed in a table for each survey, with the points referenced shown on the interpretation images. The geophysics surveys were undertaken using three instruments. Most of the survey work was magnetometry, using a Bartington GRAD601-2 fluxgate gradiometer, in 40 metre grids, walking along lines spaced 1 metre apart and recording 4 readings per metre. The data was processed using Snuffler geophysics software. Unless otherwise specified, destripe and interpolation filters applied. The resistivity survey was carried out using a TR Systems resistivity meter, using 20 metre grids. Despike, edge matching and interpolation filters were applied. The GPR data was collected using an UTSI Groundvue 3A GPR in 40x40m grids with lines spaced 50cm apart. The data was processed in ReflexW using dynamic correction, background removal, gain and bad pass filters.

II. Surveying at Oaklands Park
Survey Area The main iron-workings at Oaklands Park are at the edge of the floodplain of the river Brede at TQ785176. The area was scanned with the magnetometer to find the extent of the archaeology before the full survey commenced. The tree line at the north end of the field marks a sharp drop into the floodplain, just before the road into Pestalozzi, which is on the floodplain itself. Geophysics was undertaken in four survey areas.

The majority of the geophysics was done using magnetometry. These grids are shown using black dotted lines and black positioning marks, referenced in the positioning table below. Similarly, the earth resistance survey area is shown in blue and the ground penetrating radar survey area is shown in green. Core samples were taken at two points near Area D and are shown in red.

Positioning Position Area A RS1 RS2 G1 G2 G9 G10 G11 G12 G13 G14 Areas B & C TS3 TS4 G3 G4 G5 G6 Area D TS5 TS6 G7 G8 B1 B2 481.58 597.92 527.90 536.02 483.47 502.01 455.84 E side of W gatepost at entrance to field 529.23 W side of yellow topped S post of gate NE corner of field 497.15 536.44 509.51 539.00 501.49 552.88 500 500 500 500 440.51 N face of E gatepost of gate SW corner of field 465.52 S face of W gatepost of gate NW corner of field 460 500 515 583 551.37 610.89 540 540 540 540 600 600 540 540 379.15 C of SE face of NE gatepost of gate NW corner of field 649.97 C of south face of E gatepost of gate N centre of field 500 620 520 580 556 596 530 570 North East Description

Area A Magnetometry Results

Area A Magnetometry Results at +/- 60nT

Area B Magnetometry Results

Area C Magnetometry Results

Area D Magnetometry Results

Magnetometry Interpretation

Modern features are shown in red. Geology is shown in purple. Probable archaeology is shown in green, positive features only, with the strongest features shown as bright green. Possible archaeology is shown in light blue and water in dark blue. Labelled features are discussed further below. Feature A. This amorphous feature is quite substantial, and quite far away from any other archaeology. On the ground, it is associated with a platform on the hillside and is most likely a geological boundary. The geological map shows that the boundary between the lower Ashdown Sands and the higher Wadhurst Clay is 50 to the south, but that boundary remains a possible candidate. Feature B. This feature seems to be composed of a line of metal dipoles rather than being a cut. It may well be modern, but it's form suggests it is more than just random metal junk. Feature C. The paleochannel at the base of the valley that dominates the field can be clearly seen heading towards the existing stream in the north-east corner of the field. The channel may have been filled in to an extent in modern times.

Feature D. This feature is a large dipole which likely represents a single metal object of substantial size. It may be a large metal plate, used for crossing the stream, now buried with the filling in of the paleochannel. Such a plate has been seen at one point near the north-east entrance to the field. A smaller feature, not clearly metallic in nature, lies just to the north-west, but the relationship between the two is unclear. Feature E. The set of features marked as E may be old field of an unknown date boundaries that post-date the Roman period. The north-south linear feature in the middle of the field seems to cut through the Roman trackway heading south-east out of the main settlement, with an east-west trackway running perpendicular to this. The track-like feature at the north-east entrance to the field is on the same alignment, stopping at a boundary feature that is weak, but seems strongest as it crosses the paleochannel. The relationship is not entirely clear however, and some features may be Roman. Feature F. There are a number of track like features at the western end of the survey area. The northern tracks seem associated with the main settlement to the north-east. A small section of track to the south seems to be truncated by feature G. The largest, running roughly north-south at the western edge of the survey is more substantial, with a suggestion of slag metalling at the northern end. It curves, seemingly heading to the river crossing at the northern end and back towards Margary's course for the road at the south. It may be an alternative route for climbing the hill, or even the main one. Feature G. It is known that at some point, a large amount of hillside was removed with a digger in order to fill in another feature in the field, in order to make the field flatter. It is not known for definite where the earth was moved from or to, but guesses can be made. The area marked in yellow at G is a candidate for where the earth came from. Barring a few metal dipoles, the area is less noisy, with several ditch and track features seeming to end as the clean area begins. The earth may have been used to fill in the valley at Feature C. Archaeological features may have been lost in the process. Feature H. This area is one of the most important within the main settlement. It is encompassed by an enclosure abutting a track to the north. The enclosure is roughly 30m north to south and 55m east to west at its widest point. The main iron workings respect this enclosure, huddling around the edges on the western and northern sides. Nevertheless, there are features within the enclosure. To the western side is a mass of features that don't appear to be direct iron-working. To the east is a clear rectangular feature. Both of these are discussed further in the radar results. Feature I. In the far north-west of the field, the main track into the settlement can be seen. It seems to consist of a pair of linear features, but it is not clear if these are ditches or the edges of a slag metalled camber that has seen the top ploughed away. The feature gets a bit lost amongst the strong responses from the iron-workings, but it is reasonable to assume that it passes just to the north of feature J. After that, it seems to head towards the flood plain, with trackway L a separate feature. Feature J. Some of the strongest readings are in this area in the middle of the settlement. Seemingly arranged against a linear feature to the north, possibly track I. This may be either direct iron-workings, or a particularly dense area of slag waste.

Feature K. This large area of high magnetic readings is presumed to be the main slag bank. Straker (1931 p.329) records that the slag bank was 30 feet high, but the size of the settlement and the lack of space for it makes this estimate either an exaggeration or a misunderstanding. One possible explanation is that the slag was poured over the edge of the natural bank surrounding a flood plain, which would instantly have created a 15 foot slag bank with little effort, but only on one side. Feature L. This track seems to start around the iron workings at J before heading southeast towards the bottom of the river valley where it disappears. It's course is made less clear by the modern metal pipe crossing the field, and one of the ditches that make up feature F. The area of the stream bed (C) it is heading to is not as defined as in other areas, so there may have been a crossing of some sort. Past that, it heads towards the gap in feature B, but is otherwise undefined. This track may head to the ore pits at the top of the ridge. Feature M. A second enclosure within the settlement is somewhat larger than the first at H. Towards the west, this enclosure seems to keep out the densest readings for the ironworkings, in the same manner as at H. The south-west and south-east edges seem to be composed of a double linear feature, which tapers out at the eastern end. The archaeology within this enclosure is discussed further in the radar section of this report. Feature N. This area was surveyed in advance of construction of the extension to the car park in survey area D. Only alluvial and modern metal features are visible. Two geoarchaeological bores were taken at points marked B1 and B2 on the survey area plan. B1 showed deep alluvial layers down to 1.8m and topped by a peat layer whereas B2 showed solid geology that suggested that this area had been artificially flattened to the level of the surrounding floodplain. No archaeology was visible after the soil had been stripped for construction. Feature O. Immediately adjacent to the stream between survey areas B & C can be seen a number of strong features. Those to the west are the strongest and their strength makes the possibility that they represent gleying unlikely. If not archaeology, the linear to the east may be an old metal fence. A possible thin track feature heads through the tree in the middle of survey area C towards the main settlement.

Earth Resistance Results

Earth Resistance Interpretation

Magnetometry features are shown as green shading. High resistance features are shown as light blue shading. Low resistance features are shown as dark blue shading. The resistance plot did not correspond well with the magnetometry and is most likely due to local changes in the ground water rather than any indication of archaeology. The low resistance area may have a slight link link to the enclosure, broadly defining the area outside it, but this is tenuous. The high resistance areas are most associated with the ironworking areas, but again there is no clear link with the magnetometry. Either the soil conditions were not right for earth resistance at the time, or the archaeology is too deep for earth resistance to pick up.

GPR A at 10ns

GPR A at 13ns

GPR B at 10ns

GPR B at 13ns

GPR Interpretation

Conditions were good for the GPR survey. The ground was dry and the grass was short. Two overlapping squares on 40x40m each were surveyed east to west with half metre line spacing. In the above interpretation, different feature types are shown in different colours over the background of the positive magnetometer features in green. Light blue features are dense and solid features. Purple features are pit or cut features, distinguished because their footprint lower down is smaller than at the top. Dark blue features are more slight solid features or piles of material distinguished because their footprint lower down is greater than higher up. Red lines are modern land drains. These don't show on the magnetometry as they are likely to be plastic rather than terracotta. The features visible on the radar are described in greater detail below. Feature A. Unlike most of the other features, the majority of this feature, apart from the triangular shaped part, does not show on the magnetometry results. Before the GPR was undertaken, it was thought that feature N and the Y shaped feature to the east of it made up part of the enclosure here, but that now seems to not be the case. As it doesn't show on the magnetometry results, the linear part is likely to be constructed of a material such as flint. It doesn't appear to be very deep, so if it is a wall feature, it is not very strong.

Feature B. This vague mass of somewhat denser material does not reveal the form of any structure. It appears to be about 30cm in height and spread quite widely. It may be a pile of rubbish, perhaps even demolition material from the building at C. There is also a mass of readings on the magnetometry, but these are not particularly strong, apart from a point at the eastern end of the mass of features. Feature C. This is clearly a building. On the magnetometry, it is 7x14m, with a further outer wall to the north and a central support. On the radar, the outer wall and the western wall do not show, but the other walls and the central support do. The missing features may be due to later robbing. The remaining walls appear to be about 80-100cm wide and 60cm deep. As the walls show on the magnetometry, the foundations are not likely to be just the usual flint. There is likely to be slag mixed into the foundations. The function of the building is not clear from its outline. Feature D. This slight ditch feature makes up the northern and eastern part of the boundary of the enclosure in which features B and C sit. Their presence on both the magnetometry and GPR indicate that it has at least partially filled with slag. There seems to be two linear features along part of the northern edge, but only the northern one shows on the magnetometry results. Feature E. The central feature here shows on the magnetometry as a particularly strong feature and on the GPR and very dense material in a roughly square feature 3x3m wide and 40cm in depth, tapering somewhat at the top. It is most likely part of the primary iron workings. The dark blue area around it is a less dense mass of material piles around the central feature. Feature F. This is a very large pit feature with a depth of about a metre. It is quite strong on the magnetometry results, so it is likely to contain a lot of slag. Feature G. This is part of the trackway passing between the two enclosures. The track is not the same all along its length. It is only at this point that it seems to be metalled with iron slag, which shows strongly on the magnetometry and as dense material on the GPR on the same footprint. Feature H. This slight linear feature marks the edge of the northern enclosure. It is not clear all the way along its length, being disturbed somewhat by pit feature F. This boundary shows possibly as a double ditched feature on the magnetometry, but only the western linear shows as a dense feature on the GPR. There is a slight indication that the eastern linear on the magnetometry shows as less dense material as a cut into feature M. The eastern edge of the enclosure that shows on the magnetometry does not show on the GPR. Feature I. This dense area of material, mostly slag, is either part of the enclosure feature H or something respecting its boundary. It is 20cm down and 60cm in height. Feature J. This small feature, is a 2.5m diameter round feature which is roughly 30cm in height. It is very strong on both the GPR and radar, making it likely to be a primary ironworking feature like E and N. Feature K. Though it appears to be one feature, this is actually in two parts. The first part, to the south, is a L shaped with a slight depth. It is not particularly strong on the magnetometry. It is up against the second part, which is a circular feature, 1.2m in

diameter, with a hole in the middle. Whilst all of the other features disappear by 1.5m down from the surface, this circular feature can be seen in the same shape over 3m down, at the bottom of the recorded profile. It is most likely a stone built well. Feature L. A mass of reasonable strong readings on the magnetometry results show up as being part of a single large pit on the GPR results. The pit is roughly 70cm in depth. Feature M. This area shows as having a fairly strong response on the magnetometry and as a slightly dense pile of material on the GPR. It is higher on the eastern side than the west, as if it is piled up in the corner of the enclosure. Feature N. This feature shows very strongly on the magnetometry and the GPR results, making it most likely some form of primary iron-working structure. It is roughly 6 metres long east to west and four metres wide north to south and 40cm in height. The eastern end is higher than the western end, with the smaller eastern end going from 30-70cm down and the larger western end 40-80cm down. Metal Detector Finds There were only two metal detector finds from the site, both from the area of the building on the southern edge of the settlement. The first was a large iron square headed Roman construction nail. The second was a Roman lead 'steelyard weight', pictured below. It has lost a small amount from the broken apex loop, and the remainder is 506g, which is just over 1.5 libra.

III. The Surrounding Landscape
This part of the report concerns the immediate landscape around the iron-working site. The annotated image below is colour coded as follows. Light blue is the floodplain. Dark blue for rivers or streams. Brown for modern occupation. Yellow for roads. Green for trees or hedges. Pink for geophysics survey areas. Bright red for large pits. Dark red for groups of small pits. Dashed black lines for Roman or other ancient roads or tracks.

A-D) These are survey areas A-D in the main survey above. E-F) These are two Luff's Farm surveys in the Roads to Beauport Park section below.

G) Whilst scanning the area with the magnetometer for likely archaeological features to fully survey, this area was found to have a lot of high readings. As the survey started, the cause of this was found to be a large number of metal tent pegs and other metal detritus left from when the area was used for camping. No convincing archaeological features can be seen amongst the debris.

H) The first driveway on Chapel Hill curves towards a house whose owners say that during the construction of the driveway, large timbers could be seen below. Nothing more is know about these timbers unfortunately. Their preservation may be due to either being relatively modern, or preserved by the floodplain. There is the possibility that these are part of a Roman or label bridge across the River Brede. I) The flood plain of the River Brede is important in itself. It can be guessed that the Romans had a wooden bridge across it, perhaps seen at H. It can also be guessed that if there was a port, then it would be downstream of any bridge structure. The road to Pestalozzi is at the edge of the floodplain, just under the bank, so it is likely that any port lies under there. The cores taken at D show that there is considerable depth of alluvium close to the bank, making a port a reasonable assumption.

J) This trackway, first previously noted by WIRG (Hodgkinson 2001 p.5), was a possible candidate for a Roman trackway heading along the ridge. It survives as an agger between TQ79111736 and TQ79261738 before continuing as a terraceway via TQ79381739 and TQ79621746 before eventually joining Cottage Lane further to the east. Scanning with the magnetometer revealed some higher readings, but a quick excavation found only gravel rather than the expected slag surface and is most likely not Roman in origin. The track was eventually found to exist on the 1778 Yeakell & Gardner map as a precursor to Cottage Lane. At its western end, it turns sharply to the south where the southern entrance to Pestalozzi now runs. The track was most likely moved as it allowed the main house at Oaklands Park to be overlooked, leaving the western entrance as the way to the house.

K) Before the western track to Beauport Park was found, it was supposed that such a track might cross the top of the hill after climbing it rather than turning to the east. No such track was found when scanning with the magnetometer, but there was one feature on interest, located at K. On the western side of a dry stream valley, a large area of high readings was encountered. This was not simply metal junk. It was not fully surveyed, but it remains possible that this is some sort of bloomery feature. L) Investigating Margary's route for the road up the hill, the field here was scanned for remains. As the road meanders here, it was hoped that the road surface would be revealed on the inside of the curve, but nothing was found. It may be that any road climbing the hill, if indeed it does so, is further to the east. M) It is recorded that at TQ788173, a slag road was discovered, presumably during the construction of Pestalozzi (Cleere & Crossley 1985 p.305). The track heading south-east from the settlement heads in roughly the right direction for this, though its path is unclear towards the eastern end of the main survey. This may be part of the track heading up to ore pits at the top of the hill. This may be an alternative route for the Roman road to Westfield. N) This shallow depression, recorded by WIRG (Hodgkinson 2001 p.5) may be archaeological in nature, but no significant readings were found when scanning with the magnetometer. O) This is a steep sided valley which still carries a trickle of water. At the southern end of the marked feature, the valley in the field has been filled in and the water redirected. P) This feature area is actually two large ore pits either side of an east-west track. Its date is unknown, but may well be Roman. The group of much smaller pits to the east are of a different construction and may well be of a different date.

IV. The Search for the Road to Beauport Park
Introduction After the main survey of the iron workings, we had yet to survey Luff's Farm, and started to look for the road south that we expected to find as an alternative to Margary's course for the road going to Westfield along Chapel Hill/Cottage Lane. Our beginning theory was that it went up Chapel Hill as before, but then carried on south rather than turning sharply east. With this in mind, we scanned with the magnetometer across a large field to the south of the turning (TQ784171). There was no sign of a road crossing as expected, but there was a very large magnetic anomaly in the side of a dry valley (approx TQ78491695), which we didn't investigate further. Given its location in the side of the valley, one possibility is that it is a bloomery. Gerald Brodribb Gerald Brodribb is most famous for excavating the bath house at Beauport Park. What is less well known, as he never published anything about it, was that he also excavated a number of sections across a slag metalled Roman road heading NNW out of Beauport Park. This was one of the reasons for suspecting that there may have been a road between Oaklands Park and Beauport Park. It was only after we had started to search for this road using geophysics that Trish started to properly look at his notebooks in Battle Museum. It seems that Gerald had already found the majority of the road we had been looking for, though his notes were rather sketchy. He had looked at this road both in the 1960's and the 1990's, and there is a difference in approach between the two periods. Whilst earlier he had mostly used a metal spike to probe for a metalled surface, he later turned to dowsing. It is not clear how effective this was, but he seems to have the course of the road broadly correct. References to sites in Brodribb's notes will be discussed along with each individual site. Road Course Notes A) Oaklands Park. The road here can be seen amongst the iron workings leading west B) Geophysics Survey, Luffs Farm 1 C) Geophysics Survey, Luffs Farm 2 D) The road here follows Crazy Lane, which is a sunken lane in the part that follows the Roman road. This would have been the old road into Sedlescombe, with Paygate Road being more recent. E) Geophysics Survey, Battle Barn Farm F) Gerald Brodribb has the course of the road turning slightly in front of the club house of the golf course, but this has not been confirmed. G) Geophysics Survey, Norton's Farm H) The presumed course of the road here is merely extensions of the confirmed sections at G and I. The turn here would be as the road reaches the crest of the hill after climbing from the valley floor to the north. I) Geophysics Survey, Aldershaw Farm J) The short section of road shown here was excavated by Gerald Brodribb, leading north out of Beauport Park K) Beauport Park

Luff's Farm 1 As there was the possibility that the dry ground to the west of Chapel Hill at Luff's Farm (TQ78291749) contained an extension of the iron workings seen to the east, we decided to survey this area. Initial scanning produced some high readings arranged in a linear fashion, and our initial thoughts were of some sort of utility such as an electrical cable. The geology on Luff's Farm is a mixture of clay head lower down the hill and Ashdown Sands higher up.

Luff's Farm Results

Position North G1 G2 RS1 RS2 620 460

East 500 500


493.85 531.11 SW corner of S gatepost of gate E edge of field 534.57 530.18 NW corner of fence post at N end of fence, E edge of field Positioning

Luffs Farm Interpretation Modern features are shown in red, archaeological in green and uncertain in purple. The approximate location of the Roman water line is a light blue shading and Margary's course for the Roman road is shown as a dashed line. While no further settlement was found, we had unwittingly stumbled on part of the road we had been searching for. There was what appeared to be a pair of tracks, which headed towards a similar pair in the main settlement to the east. What is unclear is whether this really is a pair of tracks, or just a larger single track which has had the top of the camber removed by ploughing. In support of the former, the track in the main settlement is also a pair, and these would be buried in deep enough colluvium to avoid the plough. Also, at the southern end of the Luff's Farm survey, the two tracks seem to meet just before disappearing under the hedgeline. The purple feature may be part of the northern track, or a piece of modern junk. After the outside track disappears into the hedge, it doesn't seem to make a definitive appearance to the north, which also supports the idea of two separate tracks. Of course, there is a slight hill here, so a land slip may be the cause of disappearing and merging tracks.

Also shown on the map is 'Timber'. This is a point where the occupants of the large house set back from the road say they had found some large timbers when work was done on their driveway. Details are slight unfortunately, but there is the possibility that they have found timbers associated with either a bridge or port, possibly even Roman. Their driveway exits near where Paygate Road and Chapel Hill meet The course of the track, first to the west, before turning south, may seem strange at first. The obvious reason for this course is to avoid the worst of the hill be skirting around the bottom of it. Luff's Farm 2 From the northern end of Luff's Farm, it was clear that the road headed broadly along the hedgeline between the two fields east of Paygate Road. This hedgeline also represents a drop of about 2 metres from the field above to the east, down to the field below to the west. A significant lynchet. Scanning around both fields, a broad scatter of high readings was found in the south-east corner of the western field (TQ78231715). It didn't seem coherent enough to make a road, but we decided to survey the area anyway.

Luff's Farm 2 Results

Position North East G1 G2 RS1 RS2 420 500 500 500


283.53 533.85 S edge of fencepost, first fencepost into field from west end of fenceline, northern fence 507.49 491.23 SW corner of S gatepost of gate SE corner of field Positioning

Luff's Farm 2 Interpretation It is clear that road has been ploughed out at this point, which is not surprising given the height difference between the two fields. The debris from this is visible as a broadly messy area (green shading), with one coherent mass of the road surface still visible in the southeast corner of the survey area (green). A further feature visible on the western side of the survey area (in purple) is most likely geological, but there is a possibility that it is archaeological. A metal detector detector survey in the area turned up no finds, but did find some of the iron slag from which the road was made. The expected course of the road is

shown as a dashed line. The highest point that road would have crossed on this hill is just to the south of the survey area. From there, it continued south down Crazy Lane, which is a sunken road. Nothing was found Brodribb's notes about Luff's farm, one of the nearby residents remember him visiting to 'walk along the Roman road', so it was clear he knew about it. He may have seen iron slag in the field whilst it was still under plough. While we were carrying out the second Luff's Farm survey, a nearby resident brought us a piece of glassware to look at (pictured below). It turned out to be a Roman strap handled vessel, in perfect condition apart from the concretions on the surface. This was most likely from a roadside cemetery, and would perhaps have contained perfume (Rudling pers comm.)

Roman Glass Vessel

Battle Barn Farm The Roman road continues down Crazy Lane, exiting slightly to the east of the current course of the road and crosses the A21, where we pick it up with our next survey at Battle Barn Farm (TQ78241670). The A21 is the lowest point travelled by the road after its descent down Crazy Lane, as the ground starts to rise to the south. Gerald Brodribb had previously mentioned that the road headed up Crazy Lane, so he was probably aware of the road at this point. Further to this, an Ordnance Survey record card, apparently penned by E. Curwen, mentioned “A few cinders found here” at TQ78221657, which is shown on the interpretation. From here, Brodribb has the road going through the Club House of Sedlescombe Golf Course, with a turn of about 7 degrees at around TQ78381607 to continue on to our next survey, at Norton's Farm.

Battle Barn Farm Results Position North G1 G2 RS1 RS2 500 500 East 500 420 Description

540.11 371.53 S edge of E gatepost of gate NW corner of field 489.61 374.36 Edge of TP pointing into field of second TP up road Positioning

Battle Barn Farm Interpretation The course of the road is shown as a dashed line. Modern features are shown in red, the road surface in the survey is shown in light green, a section of the road found by scanning and recorded using the total station is shown in dark green. As with the first survey at Luff's Farm, there isn't one complete surface showing for the road. Again it looks as if the top of the camber is missing, with only the sides remaining. On the south-east, not only is part of the road missing, having been removed at some point, but most of the eastern side has had a portion slip eastwards. One side of the road was scanned for further to the south. Thinking we had the road surface as a whole, we only recorded one side of the road. It is most likely that it is the eastern side. This scanned area showed that the road turned to the south-east, into the woodland. The road in this area may seem to curve a lot, but on the ground, it can be seen to be avoiding the hill rising to the west. The 'Cinder' marked is the position given by Curwen, but the correct position for his find is most likely slightly to the east.

Norton's Farm Continuing from Battle Barn Farm and through Sedlescombe Gold Course, the next survey is at Norton's Farm (TQ78611560). The land here slopes down towards the stream before climbing the other side. Brodribb's notes here are somewhat confused. He has the correct course for the road as we have found it, but he has that stopping at the stream. He also gives two additional tracks coming in from the north-east, which he has joining near the pylon (black black on the southern end of the interpretation) before continuing south to Beauport Park. Neither of these additional tracks show on the geophysics. The confusion may have arisen due to the local geology, Ashdown Sands, which at this point contain a number of blocks of iron rich sandstone, which show on the results as a magnetically messy area, at least up the slope where the underlying geology is not buried by Colluvium.. Brodribb's probing most likely found some of this geology, leading him to believe there were additional tracks.

Norton's Farm Results

Position North G1 G2 RS1 RS2 580 460

East 540 540


607.48 501.21 567.98 688.04

SE of metal gatepost, east side of gate, N edge of field S edge of W gatepost of gate NE of field Positioning

Norton's Farm Interpretation Modern features are in red. The road surface is shown in green, which again is ploughed away in the centre of the camber. The road survives better further down the hill, having been completely ploughed away in some areas up slope. The dashed line represents the course of the road. The curve in the road is due to the approach to the stream, as the Romans often seem to cross water head on. Across the stream, the road climbs the hill and makes a turn to the south to head towards Beauport Park. The exact point of the turn is conjectural, based upon the heading from the survey to the south, at Aldershaw Farm.

Aldershaw Farm After climbing the valley side and turning south, we pick up the road again at Aldershaw (TQ78671521), following the stream on the final part of its journey south to Beauport Park. There are no more significant alignment changes after this point until the outskirts of Beauport Park itself is reached. Unfortunately, the grid placing here was not ideal, so only half of the road is represented in the results. In addition to the geophysics survey, probing revealed a consistently solid surface slightly further to the north. A small test excavation revealed a mixture of the local sandstone geology and bloomery slag, in line with the course of the road shown by the survey. Due to Brodribb's confusion regarding the course of the road at Norton's Farm, he did not pick up this particular alignment, thinking it was on the other side of the stream.

Aldershaw Farm Results

Position North G1 G2 RS1 RS2 500 420

East 500 500


615.66 500.83 E corner of wooden building, NW corner of field 605.77 495.72 S corner of wooden building, NW corner of field Positioning

Aldershaw Farm Interpretation The road surface is shown in green. Modern features are shown in red. The purple feature is most likely geological. The expected course of the road is shown as a dashed line. Discussion The slag construction, lack of side ditches and winding course is consistent with the tracks found around Footlands (Lemon 1950) and Bodiam (Staveley 2010). Unlike a traditional Roman Road, such as Stane Street, the builders are much more conscious of the terrain, avoiding steep climbs wherever possible. It is clear that these tracks were built by a completely different agency to that of other Roman roads. This is most likely to be the Classis Britannica, whose ownership of this area has been attributed as an iron-working estate. Whilst this particular track no doubt ends at Beauport Park, there may be further tracks in the network. Crowhurst Park, to the south-west of Beauport Park is also an industrial scale site, and a further track may head in that direction. Whilst the alignments given for the areas not surveyed are not perfect, the course is broadly correct, and mostly matches what Brodribb had found in his investigations. The width of the road is generally about 9 to 10 metres wide, which is comparable with the Sussex Greensand Way.

The Route to Westfield If the route continues south to Beauport Park, where does that leave Margary's route to Westfield? Unlike other parts of the road network in Sussex, he never excavated that part of the road, his only evidence being two 'aggers' and a 'hollow' (Margary 1965 p.229). There are problems with discounting the route completely. Firstly, the route starting at the iron workings in Oaklands Park and leading south actually crosses and is perpendicular to the route from the north, as it crosses the River Brede. This would suggest that the route ends at Oaklands Park, and the road south is a separate route. This is not necessarily a problem if the network in this area is merely designed to link significant sites rather than provide a continuous route, but this anomaly must be taken into consideration. It may be that the south-east track out of the settlement continues to Westfield, which would be a much more reasonable incline than straight up the hill. Secondly, Brodribb found some evidence of the route. In his diary entry for 28/01/66, he mentions a visit to Church Place Farm, Westfield (TQ811150), where he finds a line of slag in line with the Oaklands Park to Westfield road. As for the north-south road through Westfield, Brodribb spent some time from 1964 to 1965 excavating a section of the road in Little Hides Wood (TQ816144) which he describes as being made of iron slag and 36 feet (11 metres) wide (Entry dated 19/09/65), which is slightly wider than the Sussex Greensand Way and the Oaklands Park to Beauport Park road. Examination of these roads is definitely warranted, but is beyond the scope of the current project and will be examined at a later date.

V. Discussion
The main site was not as extensive as expected. This may have been due to a misrepresentation of the slag bank as previously discussed. Nevertheless, this is definitely an industrial scale site. The presence of probably masonry building on site raises not only the possibility that it was run by the Classis, but gives the opportunity to prove it, were that building to have a roof made of CL:BR stamped tiles. The sites presence on the River Brede also makes it a strong possibility that it was a port, most likely serving all of the other industrial sites in the area, namely Beauport, Crowhurst, Footlands and Chitcombe. Most of the iron produced at these sites would have left the area from both here and the port at Bodiam. The river, plus roads leading in three directions would have made the site at Oaklands Park an important transport hub as well as an industrial site.

VII. References
Brodribb, G. The Road Network in the Habitation Area at Beauport Park Unpublished MS in Battle Museum Cleere & Crossley The Iron Industry of the Weald, Leicester University Press 1985 Hodgkinson, J. Oaklands Romano-British ironworking site, Westfield, Wealden Iron, 2nd Ser. No. 21, 2001 Hodgkinson, J. The Wealden Iron Industry, The History Press 2008 Lemon, C.H. Fieldwork During The Season 1951 Battle & Dist. HS Trans, 1950-51 Lemon & Hill The Romano-British Site at Bodiam, Sussex Archaeological Collections Vol. 104 1966 Lower, M.A. Historical and Archaeological Notices of the Iron Works of the County of Sussex, Sussex Archaeological Collections Vol. 2 1849 Margary, I. Roman Ways in the Weald, Phoenix House, Third Edition 1965 Staveley, D. A Geophysical Survey of the Roman Road between Bodiam and Sandhurst Cross, Grey List Report, 2010 Straker, E. Wealden Iron, 1931