It is thought that this fort was built around AD 55 when the fortress of Legio II Augusta was established at Exeter/Isca, along with other forts at Okehampton and North Tawton which formed an outlying screen for the legion.
A possible fort was noted from the air at Bury Barton farm, Lapford (Devon) (SS 733071) by Professor St Joseph in 1975. Parching had revealed triple ditches forming part of the east side and the rounded NE angle of a presumed rectangular enclosure; the situation on a prominent spur beside the river Yeo was appropriate to such a fort and its occurrence on the line between Tiverton and North Tawton was suggestive. Examination on the ground with Professor S.S. Frere in 1980 quickly revealed most of the remainder of the circuit. The east side and the greater part of the north and south sides were not in doM.b.t, being marked by a massive rampart, except where it had been ploughed down at the NE angle, and on the south side by the hollow of the ditch-system as well. Only the west side remains uncertain, lying presumably for the most part under farm-buildings. The dimensions (measured to the rampart crests) are 105 m (N – S) by about 170 m (E – W), an area of some 1.8 ha (4½ acres). Excavations in 1983 – 5 have confirmed the identification as a fort, of Claudio-Neronian date. There is also a possible outer enclosure, of which the west and part of the south sides can be traced and the north side can be inferred; this has not yet been tested by excavation. If this were a military work too, it could hardly be less than 7 ha in area and could easity be more. The site commands views to north-west and south along reaches of the river Yeo, as well as north-east up the side valley of the Dalch. It lies 23 km west – south – west of Tiverton and 10 km from North Tawton.” (Maxwell & Wilson, 1987)
References for Bury Barton
- Air Reconnaissance in Roman Britain 1977-1984 by G.S. Maxwell & D.R. Wilson in Britannia xviii (1987) p.3.
Map References for Bury Barton
NGRef: SS7302 OSMap: LR191
Roman Roads near Bury Barton