Charterhouse Amphitheatre


An amphitheatre stood west of the settlement. It is the only one in England to exist at a lead mine and is additional evidence of the importance of Mendip lead to the Romans. It measures 32m x 24.4m and the banks for the seating survive 4.5m above the arena. It was probably a place of entertainment for the soldiers at the Roman fort which was established here.

The earth work was excavated in 1909 by St.George Gray  who established two entrances (E-W). He found flints and a  fragment of Samian ware found by  on the old ground surface beneath the vallum suggests a Roman date for the amphitheatre. No features characteristic of an amphitheatre: from this he concluded a Roman earthwork. A trial trench   in 1938, failed to reveal any evidence of an internal ditch. These records were destroyed in 1940, but gave rise to the idea of a post-Roman date. It was thought that the distribution of sherds and flints throughout the earthwork might represent a scraped-up surface yield.

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