The City Council archaeologists carried out a watching brief at 7 Forest View (reference code SOU 1118). The work took place between May and November 2001 on behalf of Barron and Partners. The site lies within the bailey of Southampton Castle.
Medieval defences of Southampton Castle.
The site was located within the bailey of Southampton Castle, about 17m east of the west bailey wall (now part of the town wall). The wall stood on the original shore of the River Test. We found that there had been a large gap between the bailey wall and the high ground on which the Castle was built.
The 17m wide gap would have separated the Castle defences from the inner bailey, and would have meant the wall could be held by defenders even if attackers entered the Castle.
Late-Medieval and Post Medieval rubbish.
The gap had been used for the tipping of rubbish from at least the late-medieval throughout the post-medieval period until the laying out of formal gardens on the site in the early-19th century. The terrace of houses was built on this soft spot in the mid-19th century!
The rubbish, including some unusual pottery, perhaps relates to the use of the Castle, but we cannot be certain of this.
A full report can be consulted in the Special Collections section of Southampton Central Library in the Civic Centre.