The television programme Time Team, fronted by Tony Robinson, has helped to promote archaeology to the general public but gives a rather false impression that great discoveries come about in the span of a few days. One thing that Time Team has done however is to show the importance of Geophysical detection equipment which has proved enormous help to the archaeologist in indicating what lies below the surface of the ground.

The presentation by acclaimed archaeologist Mark Lewis centred on Geophys’ equipment’s role in the making of some remarkable new discoveries in the area of the important Roman town of Caerwent. Following mysterious indications of rocks found near Caerwent Church Mr Lewis enlisted the help of local residents in a’dig’ which brought up artefacts from as far back as Roman times right up the Edwardian era as well as indicating the presence of a hitherto unknown building.

Monmouthshire boasts some of the finest remains dating from the Roman occupation of Britain: Caerleon’s amphitheatre and its Roman baths as well as Caerwent with the most complete outer Roman town walls in the country. Yet, Mark Lewis’s presentation to the Blaenavon Local History Society November meeting, enhanced by some excellent images, reminded us of just how much is still to be revealed of the momentous Roman period which left such a mark on our lives.

Blaenavon Local History Society meets next on Thursday December 14th at 7pm in King Street Chapel Schoolroom. WE will have the annual seasonal quiz by Roger Bowen and Gwen Williams. All are welcome.