Monument record BSE 272 - Athenaeum Toilet Block, Bury St Edmunds, (Medieval vaulted cellar and jettied building frontage)

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Excavation identified post-medieval features, a medieval stone vaulted cellar and a late 15th century timber framed jettied building frontage.


Grid reference Centred TL 8552 6411 (9m by 18m)
Map sheet TL86SE


Type and Period (6)

Full Description

2006: The Athenaeum in Bury St Edmunds was created in the 18th century and onwards from an amalgamation of earlier structures. Excavation to a maximum sample depth of up to 0.8m behind it during redevelopment of the toilet block revealed post-medieval and medieval features. Lengths of brick, flint and tile rubble walling revealed in the trenches indicated the presence of post-medieval structures and soil layers, including two wells. Interventions were not deep enough to penetrate medieval archaeology, although earlier deposits were identified. However, the building work exposed a timber framed jettied building frontage and this, along with evidence of an earlier stone vaulted cellar, was recorded. This gives evidence for the character of buildings which lined a former medieval lane or courtyard in the area now beneath the Athenaeum, depicted on Warren's map of 1747. These structures were probably an early encroachment onto the space of Angel Hill. The date of the archaeological assemblage is consistent with the change in use of the site in the late 18th or early 19th century and the animal bone, clay pipe, glass vessels and ceramics probably represents consumption related to the role of the buildings as an Assembly rooms (S1).

Sources/Archives (1)

  • <S1> Unpublished document: Duffy, J.. 2009. Archaeological Excavation Report, Athenaeum Toilet Block, The Athenaeum, Bury St Edmunds, BSE 272.

Finds (11)

Protected Status/Designation

  • None recorded

Related Monuments/Buildings (0)

Related Events/Activities (2)

Record last edited

Jan 21 2020 12:05PM

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