EYO4485 - St Mary's Church Bishophill Junior




Location Bishophill Junior
Grid reference SE 6000 5147 (point)
Map sheet SE65SW
Unitary Authority City of York, North Yorkshire



York Archaeological Trust





Between 17th March and 13th April 2010 York Archaeological Trust undertook a watching brief at St Mary’s Church, Bishophill Junior, York. The objective was to record any deposits, features or buried structures of archaeological interest exposed during works at the church. Much of the work was structural and within the church and was observed and recorded separately from the works reported on here. This report mainly concerns the archaeology exposed during the excavation of a trench for a new foul water outflow from a new toilet area within the church but the results from a short stretch of trench dug for a new electric cable are also described. All of the trenches were generally 0.3 to 0.5m wide and between c.0.6m deep adjacent to the church and c.3.3m deep in the road outside the churchyard. There are some significant findings from this watching brief, mainly associated with the trench dug in the roadway to locate the sewer. Context 1001, at the base of the trench, contained significant quantities of sandstone roofing tile. Due to its depth this may be Roman in date and derived from the collapse of the roofs of buildings, suggesting that the main Roman sequence will be below this deposit, that is at a depth greater than 3.2m BGL. This is of interest since in the vicinity of Trinity Lane Roman structures have been discovered a little over a metre down and may indicate the presence of another Roman terrace in addition to the one already documented in the Fetter Lane / Bishophill Senior area, but further work in this area would be needed to confirm or clarify this. It was not possible to ascertain whether the skull seen in the side of the trench belonged to an intact burial, and the skull was left in-situ, but the soil in which it rested did appear to be graveyard-type soil and it therefore seems to confirm that the extent of St Mary’s graveyard was greater in the past than at present as suggested by historic maps of the area and a recent watching brief at the former St Mary’s Church Hall, where moderate quantities of disarticulated human bone were recorded. Within the existing graveyard no intact burials were encountered although moderate amounts of human bone were recovered and reburied. Nothing of great archaeological significance was noted from the trenches within the graveyard, although the electric cable trench did produce evidence that the path from the south door did take a different route at some time in the past.

Sources/Archives (2)

  • --- Unpublished document: YAT. 2010. St Mary's Church Bishophill Junior. L...reports/1071...
  • --- Unassigned: NMR. NMR data.

Related Monuments/Buildings (1)

  • Church of St Mary Bishophill Junior (Building)

Child/subsequent Site Events/Activities (2)

  • St Mary's Church Bishophill Junior: Roman (Ref: 2010/47)
  • St Mary's Church Bishophill Junior- medieval (Ref: 2010/47)

Record last edited

May 12 2020 8:32AM


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