What lies beneath Lichfield?

A very quick post to say that there is an archaeological investigation taking place at the Friary Outer car park. You can read a little more here at the project redevelopment website http://www2.lichfielddc.gov.uk/friaryouter/2012/05/02/friary-outer-archaeology-investigations/. It says they will be posting updates should anything be found.

I passed by last night and the dig has revealed what looks like the foundations of at least one building, including steps, a cellar and what could be a tiled floor.* I’m having a look at some old maps to see what used to occupy that site.

Unfortunately & unusally for me I didn’t have my camera or even my phone with me to take a photo. I’ll try and get one later but if you’ve got 10 minutes to spare on this dull bank holiday Monday, go and have a look and see it for yourself before it’s hidden from view once more. It’s intriguing to think how much history must lie beneath us, revealed to us from time to time by either by accident or design, or even nature (moles are particularly good at this apparently!)

* disclaimer – this is what it looked like to my untrained eyes. It could be something completely different!

Edit: Keep an eye on Annette Rubery’s blog as unlike me, Annette had the good sense to take a camera and will be posting some photos later! It’s here –  http://www.annetterubery.co.uk/

Edit part 2: This of course isn’t the first archaeological investigation in the Sandford St area. The Staffordshire Heritage gateway contains information about the previous discoveries near here for example,  a possible section of the ditch thought to have formed part of Lichfield’s medieval defences, remains of a house dating to around the C14th , tanning pits from the C16th to C17th, a possible post-medieval iron working complex and of course discoveries relating to the Friary complex.

Source:

Staffordshire Historic Environment Record, accessed via the Heritage Gateway

 

10 thoughts on “What lies beneath Lichfield?

  1. Got some photos last night and have also been looking at old maps; hope to put them up on my blog in a bit. That did look like a tiled floor, and the cellar looked older than the other bits. Very interesting!

    • Cheers Ian. So I wonder what they have found that isn’t of any significance. I mean obviously they’ve found some steps & tiles but do they consider it run of the mill so not of interest? Mind you I get excited if I find a shard of pottery ;)

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  4. Probably part of the old friary complex that existed there, though there were some old Victorian houses around there which were knocked down when the road widening occurred and the clock tower moved to its present site

    • Hi David,
      At the risk of being spectacularly wrong, from what I saw last night and Annette’s photos I would say at present it looks like a victorian house. However, as you point out the site is incredibly near to the Friary complex and previous archaeological investigations near to that area have turned up finds relating to this and the medieval town & its industry, so who knows what might be discovered! Cheers,
      Kate

  5. The first picture on Annettes website looks near to where the old pub was before the Swan Road was bulit. It maybe the foundations of the Turk’s Head pub. I think I have some vague recollections of the area. This road was also one of the main roads in Lichfield leading out to the south I think. There were some other hidden old pubs in Lichfield or coaching inn’s. I would be interested to know what lies below the current layer of excavations though???

  6. Pingback: Lichfield’s Friary Outer Development Uncovers 18th Century Pub | Lichfield Live

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