Situated just off a road intersection near the centre of Leicester you will find a small enclosed area that preserves the Jewry Wall.
Two thousand years ago, Leicester was an important settlement for the Corieltavi, a native British tribe who occupied the area. Following the Roman conquest of AD 43 the town was called Ratae Corieltavorum. It became a thriving centre for the next 400 years.
A grid of streets was laid out for the Roman town. In the 2nd century the town’s public buildings included the forum, basilica, market hall, and public baths, which were completed by about AD 160.
Medieval builders demolished the rest of the baths in order to reuse the stone, leaving only one fragment, the Jewry Wall, upstanding. The wall had by that time become the west wall of the church of St Nicholas, built during the Anglo-Saxon period.
Above: The Jewry Wall is a substantial ruined wall of 2nd-century Roman masonry, with two large archways.
Above: The Jewry Wall formed the west wall of a public building in Ratae Corieltauvorum (Roman Leicester), alongside public baths, the foundations of which were excavated in the 1930s
Above: An artists impression of the original building on this site