About the site
Silchester Roman Town is one of the best preserved Roman towns in Britain. It is one of the very few that has had continuous occupation since the Iron Age. The principal ruins are the third century town walls of which an impressive, almost entire circuit still exists. They front an earlier second century rampart with an outer ditch. You can also see the massive Iron Age outer defences alongside the car park.
The ampitheatre is an important feature where you can visit the seating bank and the theatre. It is an evocative place where you can imagine the gladiators, wild beast fights and the public executions that used to happen here. You can also visit the medieval church of St Mary, the fabric of which is 12th century. Fragments of a Norman font show that the church dates from much earlier. There are also some well preserved fourteenth century wall paintings. Archaeological finds from the site can be seen in Reading Museum, including the magnificent Silchester eagle.
Images can be seen on the University of Reading’s Silchester website.
The stonework of the Roman walls supports a number of interesting lichen species. Other plants found on the walls include rustyback fern 'Ceterach offcinarum', rue-leaved saxifrage 'Saxifrage tridactylites' and navelwort 'Umbilicus rupestris'. The small teasel is also found nearby.
Please help us to protect the natural environment by leaving no trace of your visit and taking any litter home.
Silchester Roman Town is owned by Hampshire County Council and is managed by their Countryside Service.
English Heritage are the guardians of the wall and amphitheatre which is owned by the Englefield Estate.
The path that leads from the car park to the drove and on to the church is a gravel surface.
Access around the walls can be uneven and, when wet, slippery under foot.
Dog walkers are welcome. Please keep your dog close to you at all times and clean up after them.
History and research information for teachers
English Heritage - Silchester Roman City Walls and amphitheatre