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Antonine Wall

Frontier Defence (Roman)

Site Name Antonine Wall

Classification Frontier Defence (Roman)

Alternative Name(s) Beancross

Canmore ID 47868

Site Number NS97NW 46.09

NGR NS 9237 7957

Datum OSGB36 - NGR


Ordnance Survey licence number AC0000807262. All rights reserved.
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Administrative Areas

  • Council Falkirk
  • Parish Falkirk
  • Former Region Central
  • Former District Falkirk
  • Former County Stirlingshire


Watching Brief (1987)

NS97NW 46.09 AW formerly RRX 505 904 795 to 906 795.

A small excavation was undertaken on the line of the Antonine Wall in the field opposite to West Beancross Farm in order to establish with certainty the course of the Wall prior to the construction of the Laurieston Bypass. The Wall was found to be in good condition with the ditch 5m to the N. Unusually, the rampart superstructure was composed of clay cheeks with a turf core.

G B Bailey 1987

Watching Brief (1994)

NS97NW 46.03 924 795.

In September 1994 a four-day watching brief was carried out during the excavation of new drainage channels associated with the Laurieston by-pass at Beancross where these crossed the scheduled area associated with the Antonine Wall. Part of a post-medieval stone culvert was found running towards the Roman ditch. This would have taken effluent from Beancross village and deposited it in the ditch. A layer of peat running W to E delineated the northern edge of the upcast mound associated with the digging of that ditch. The deposits generally indicated the waterlogged nature of the area since the Roman period. No Roman levels were encountered.

Sponsor: Central Consultancy (CRC).

G B Bailey 1994e.

Publication Account (1995)

NS 924 796 In 1987, a 1.8m wide trench, dug on the site of the earlier work by Buchanan and Smith (Macdonald 1915), recorded the Wall base 4.3m wide and well preserved with both kerbs surviving. The Wall base lay some 0.35m below the present ground surface, preserving only 0.08m of the Roman levels above the stone base. The area above the core consisted of grey clay-loam containing from one to three distinct bands of red-brown soil, interpreted as the turf block structure of the rampart. This is only the second time that turfwork has been found in the core of the rampart in the 9 miles of the Wall E of Watling Lodge (Keppie 1974).

L J F Keppie, G B Bailey, A J Dunwell, J H McBrien and K Speller 1995

L J F Keppie 1974; G Macdonald 1915

Excavation (September 2020)

NS 9135 7953 In September 2020, a trench 8.1m long was placed across the line of the rampart of the Antonine Wall. The stone base was found to be 4.61m wide with a superstructure of laid turf flanked by clay-rich cheeks. On the berm was a defensive pit and on the S side a slot for a lean-to building.

Archive: Falkirk Museum

Funder: Falkirk Local History Society and University of Edinburgh (as part of the Earthen Empire Project (Leverhulme Trust))

Geoff Bailey − Falkirk Local History Society and

Edinburgh University

(Source: DES Vol 21)


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