High Wycombe Roman Villa


Site of a Roman villa C2nd-C4th with Mosaic Floor and Baths. Ebbs fleet flints and sherds of beaker pottery found.

In 1722-4, a mosaic floor was discovered by workmen of the Abbey estate, although no extended excavation was done. Rediscovered in 1863 when the villa was partly explored by E J Payne (see plan). Further excavations at SU 873923 under Francis Colmer in 1932 and later, were confined to areas already dug by Payne, but were unpublished and the present location of any finds from these excavations and the earlier ones is unknown.

The site was excavated in 1954 and four structures belonging to a Roman villa complex were discovered (see plan) comprising a medium sized house of double corridor type; a detached bathhouse; a boundary wall with gate and gatehouse and an outbuilding of uncertain purpose. The villa was laid out about AD 150-170 and the baths extensively modified in the early 4th century. The economic basis of the villa is obscure and so is its ultimate fate. No evidence of destruction was found and the latest securly dateable object was a worn coin of AD 320-4. Finds are divided between High Wycombe and Aylesbury Museums. The site was completely destroyed in 1855-6
by the construction of a swimming bath. (2-3)

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