A ROMAN spindle is amongst the latest finds unearthed at an archaeological dig taking place in Rossett.

The dig is taking place after metal detectorists discovered Roman material in the area and a remote sensing survey then revealed the outline of a Roman villa.

This historically important site, which is the first of its kind in north east Wales, is thought to date from the early first century to the mid fourth century.

Archaeologists and volunteers have been busy seeing what they can unearth to discover more about life in this Roman settlement, which is around two thousand years old.

The dig is being conducted jointly by the University of Chester, Wrexham Museum and Archaeology Survey West, and will continue until September 25.

Amongst the latest finds was a spindle whorl, which was discovered by Brian Costello, who is a PhD student and visiting lecturer in archaeology at the University of Chester.

Important site

Mr Costello said he was delighted to have made the discovery, which would have been used as part of the cloth production process, before the use of spinning wheels.

He added: "The spindle whorl was a great find for so early on in the dig, signifying aspects of daily activities of the people living and working around the villa. Every day of the excavation reveals a better understanding of this important site in its context of north east Wales, as well as wider Roman Britain."

Mr Costello said the dig had also provided a unique opportunity for archaeology students.

He said: "As a visiting lecturer at the University of Chester, it is terrific to witness some of our undergraduates utilise their education and training in the excavation of the villa, where their skills are showcased by their excellent work on site."

Archaeologist and dig supervisor Chris Matthews has also shared a photo of walls being unearthed from a second trench on site.

The dig is being led by Mr Costello's university colleague, Dr Caroline Pudney, a lecturer in archaeology from the University of Chester, along with Steve Grenter from Wrexham Museum.

The Leader: Dr Caroline Pudney and Chris Matthews at the Rossett Roman villa dig site. Photo: Angela Ferguson Dr Caroline Pudney and Chris Matthews at the Rossett Roman villa dig site. Photo: Angela Ferguson

Finds unearthed so far also include fragments of pottery, bone and stone and a coin from the House of Constantine, which dates from 335-341 AD.

The dig team have been joined by a number of keen volunteers, including year six pupils from St Peter Primary School and pupils from Darland High School in Rossett.

The Leader: One of the walls of the Roman villa in Rossett. Photo: Angela FergusonOne of the walls of the Roman villa in Rossett. Photo: Angela Ferguson

Phil Hirst from the University of Chester is also working with Dr Pudney to produce regular video diaries from the dig.

In the first of these video diaries, archaeologist and project supervisor Chris Matthews shares his excitement at the discovery of the Roman villa, saying: "It's almost like a little bit of Italy in north Wales, isn't it?"

He also talks about the team's anticipation in terms of digging trench two, which he says could be a shrine, a mausoleum or even a garden feature.

An open day is taking place on site on Saturday, September 18. It is free but tickets must be booked. Site tours will also be available for pre-booked groups. For more information, visit https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/cloddfa-yr-orsedd-rhufeinaidd-diwrnod-agored-roman-rossett-dig-open-day-tickets-169994160109.

For more updates on the Roman Rossett dig, look out for the #RomanRossett or #YrOrseddRafeinig hashtags on Twitter and Instagram.