Chester’s Roman wall collapses after digging work

Chester’s Roman wall collapses after digging work

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The council said it was taking the collapse “very seriously”

Part of Chester’s historic city walls have collapsed after digging work by developers.

Cheshire West and Chester Council said a section of the wall fell on Thursday evening, causing development to be suspended.

“Early indications appear to show that earth was removed from the bottom of the city walls,” a spokesman said.

The collapse took place behind Newgate Street near to the walkway leading from the Grosvenor Shopping Centre.

A council spokesman said: “A section of Chester’s city walls collapsed last night after excavations being carried out by a private developer, working alongside the historic structure, compromised the integrity of the ancient monument.

“The removal of too much earth exposed a section of bare foundations.”

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The wall collapsed on Thursday

Councillor Karen Shore, deputy leader and cabinet member for environment, highways and strategic transport, said the council was taking the collapse “very seriously” and would ensure a thorough investigation was carried out.

“I am thankful that no-one has been hurt as a result of this collapse and our priority will continue to be public safety,” she said.

Chester’s Walls

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  • Chester’s first fortifications date back to Roman times – about 74 to 75 AD
  • Nothing is known about the walls’ condition between the end of the Roman occupation in the late Fourth Century and the refounding of Chester as an Anglo-Saxon burgh in 907
  • The walls were extended when a castle was built following the Norman Conquest in the 11th Century
  • Their last military use was during the English Civil war when the city was under siege by Oliver Cromwell’s forces

Source: Chester: A History – Simon Ward

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