Archaeologists who set out to put up a safety fence at Rochester’s medieval castle have unexpectedly uncovered a Roman city wall. The team had “barely taken the turf off when they unearthed a solid mass of stone masonry”, Medway Council said.Castle archaeologist Graham Keevill called it “a very important discovery”.He said: “We don’t have many Roman city walls surviving in England. To get an unexpected one like this is fantastic. It is also a perfect example.”
Shakespeare spoke for many when Titania, the queen of the fairies in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, delivered the line: “The quaint mazes in the wanton green, for lack of tread are indistinguishable.” The unveiling yesterday of one the few surviving turf mazes, after refurbishment, shows that the Tudors’ tricky problem of keeping the grass labyrinths of England in pristine condition is still an issue.
Julian’s Bower, the 11-metre-wide medieval labyrinth in the Lincolnshire countryside, had been so heavily used by visitors treading its twisty path for the past 40 years that it was closed for three months to allow it to be recovered with fresh turf. The work was carried out on the scheduled (legally protected) ancient monument, with help from English Heritage. The new grass is the same as that used at Premiership football grounds.