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Archaeologia Cantiana - Vol. 87   1972 page 121

Rochester East Gate, 1969. By A. C. Harrison, B.A., F.S.A.


In 1969 it was learned that the area of nos. 108 -122 High Street (N.G.R. TQ 744684) was to be cleared of buildings and converted into a car park. As the city wall was known to run through the site and it was thought probable that part of the East Gate itself might be found, an excavation was carried out between 11th August and 9th September by permission of the Rochester City Council, the landowners. Much help from the Town Clerk and City Surveyor of Rochester is gratefully acknowledged. As the time available for the excavation was limited, it was necessary to begin when the demolition of the premises was less than half completed and, in this connection, I must express my appreciation of the co-operation afforded by the demolition contractors, Messrs. Bennett Bros., of Gillingham. Financial assistance was provided by the then Ministry of Public Building and Works (now the Department of the Environment). The work of the excavation was carried out by members of the Lower Medway Archaeological Research Group, by the pupils of Sir Joseph Williamson's Mathematical School and the Rochester Grammar School for Girls, whose hard work made this excavation possible.
   The following year the demolition of the Mathematical School on the opposite side of the High Street made possible a limited amount of investigation, here also again by kind permission of the City authorities, and the results of these excavations are included in this paper.

The Excavations 1. Western Area
   (a) Roman. As the central area had been destroyed, archaeologically speaking, by a deep modern basement, and as the eastern part of the site was not yet cleared, excavation was begun at the west end, where it was thought remains of early habitation might be expected. This hope was disappointed as, except for an area of flint and ragstone cobbling found in Trench 6 at a depth of 5 ft. 6 in. to the south of the cellar of no. 110, no trace of any sort of building was found. It is perhaps possible to interpret this cobbling as a yard belonging to a

* The Department of the Environment contributed to the cost of printing this paper.

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