London has a very rich and varied cultural history. Since the days of the Romans, London has been a busy, thriving town, important as a port because of its position on the River Thames, and capital of the Roman province known as Britannia. After the Romans left, the Anglo-Saxons moved in, and by the 11th century, London was the largest town in England. Westminster Abbey dominated the capital, and throughout the Middle Ages and up to the present day, the area in an around Westminster has long been at the centre of the history of England.
It should come as no surprise then that building firms all over the capital unearth new sites of historic interest all the time, and the site of our new purpose built premises is no exception.
It is the law that if archaeological remains are disturbed while a building project is being undertaken, an archaeological survey commissioned.
Previous archaeological reviews of neighbouring sites had revealed finds of an incredibly rich and varied historical interest. Prehistoric tools from the Mesolithic era, Roman pottery, and evidence of life from the late and post medieval periods, all the way through the 18th and 19th century have been found in abundance in the surrounding area.
Work was stopped and a trench dug to the north of our site, and the excavation revealed some very interesting finds. Archaeologists found a yellow stock brick wall dating from the 19th century, an 18th century brick-lined domestic waste pit full of artefacts from the era, an 18th century brick-lined well, and an 18th century barrel well. The finds were interesting and of local importance, but they were deemed not archaeologically important enough to halt building altogether.
Despite the finds not being of national importance, they do help re-establish the findings of previous excavations. This area of London has a really extensive and diverse past, and we are very proud to be following in the footsteps of so many people throughout history, and who knows? Maybe we will add some of our own.