For the past 45 years I've visited a small hamlet in the Severn Valley
England ( OS ref:- Landranger sheet 138, 745865 ). I've not taken too much
notice of the archaeological significance of the area until recently as my
main purpose was to visit a late 16th C inn known as the Lion. (excellent
The Severn in this area has been allowed to revert to its' natural state (as
much as is possible in these times)and due to flooding near to the banks,
buildings which were hereuntobefore covered with overgrowth have been
displayed. I always thought that it was a copse!!!
I always knew that the hamlets' (relatively) recent growth was due to a
foundry, not surprising really due to its' closeness to Ironbridge,
Coalbrookdale, Bridgnorth, Jackfield etc., but I was very surprised this
evening to see just how much of this foundry still survives! Walls of over 2
metres surround the site (covered with ivy). All shop divides are still
standing to varying heights (ie 30cm to 2 metres), sadly large trees have
taken hold and are now destroying these divides!
The approach to the site is via an iron bridge fording a fast flowing stream
that serviced the works, again in rather bad repair but still able to allow
vehicular traffic to pass.
To give the relevant facts, I'll just list them instead of boring you all.
1. The Lion is the oldest building in the area. The present building was
erected as a cider house and dates from the late 1500's. It is built upon a
much earlier site possibly dating from Roman times (ie evidence of
cremations and later East West burials have been discovered to the rear of
the property. This development has not been placed in the public domain,
excavations were carried out in the 1960's)
2. A 14th C Butter Cross stands to the rear of the property approx 450m from
the Lion along a Greenway (this leads from the river up the hill towards
Alveley). Aerial shots show signs of what may possibly be a deserted
village, name unknown surrounding the cross.
3. The Foundry produced kitchenware, I had a conversation with a very
elderly person some years ago who stated that his ancestors worked on the
site, and that the Foundry was run on peat! Not coal or other combustibles
is this possible??? In Bewdley Museum there are pieces from this site and I
must say that they are of a quality that I've never seen the like of before.
They are identified as peat/iron produced
4.The river has for the past few hundred years had a ferry to cross between
the hamlet of Hampton Loade on the East bank and the hamlet of Hampton on
the West. The name of Loade refers to a ford, the next area upstream that I
can identify with such a feature is Viroconium (Wroxeter)which was
eventually bridged by the Romans during their occupation. Has anyone any
suggestions to add to this hypothesis? (I gladly welcome constructive
There is so much more about the site but I believe that I'm about to become
boring about it.
I'll be visiting the site again on 25th July when I hope to photograph as
much of the site as possible. If anyone is interested I'll gladly send
.jpg's along via email
Has anyone any further info on this site? Has it been written up? I'd hate
it to crumble to nothing without some sort of survey being carried out.
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