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CASTLESHAW Yorkshire, England.

Roman military site in the W Riding, 20.8 km NE of Manchester and approximately midway between the auxiliary fort there (Mamucium) and that at Slack. Set at a height of ca. 270 m, it helped to guard the road between the legionary fortresses of York (Eboracum) and Chester (Deva) where it crossed the Pennine hills. Excavation has identified two successive sites.

The first was an auxiliary fort of ca. 1 ha, probably founded by Agricola ca. A.D. 80. Defended by an earth bank and ditches, its internal buildings were of timber; the garrison is not known, and after a brief occupation the site was abandoned. The second was a fortlet of ca. 0.2 ha, established within the earlier fort except on the S where the ramparts coincided. Probably built soon after A.D. 100, it was also defended by an earth bank and ditch, and the internal buildings were again of timber with the exception of a small stone bath. It is thought to have served as a small outpost of the fort at Slack, manned by troops from there (a stamped tile of Cohors IV of ?Breuci was recovered from the Castleshaw bath house). Occupation ceased ca. A.D. 120 when the line of communication was moved to an easier route over Blackstone Edge, 8 km N.


BIBLIOGRAPHY

F. A. Bruton, Excavations of the Roman Forts at Castleshaw: First Interim Report (1908); Second Interim Report (1911); Trans. Lancs. and Cheshire Ant. Soc. 40 (1922-23) 154; 67 (1957) 118; 71 (1961) 163.

F. H. THOMPSON

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