A new model of Chester’s Roman amphitheatre has this week been unveiled on site by Roman soldiers.
The 1:75 scale model, measuring 1.2metres by 1metre, depicts the amphitheatre as it would have appeared in Roman times. The model was conceived by Imagemakers Heritage Design and Consulting. The site interpretation work has been project managed by Chester Renaissance in partnership with Cheshire West and Chester Council’s Historic Environment team.
The new amphitheatre has been delicately modelled using the city archaeologists’ most current up-to-date knowledge about its original construction. It has been manufactured in cast bronze, and sits on top of a red sandstone plinth, and visitors will see where the amphitheatre stood in relation to the Roman fortress of Deva and the River Dee.
The Chester landscape during Roman occupation 2,000 years ago was very different to the one we see today. Prominent on the horizon was the amphitheatre, the biggest known amphitheatre in Britain. The arena seated around 7,000 spectators and it was a powerful symbol of supremacy on the edge of the Roman Empire.
Executive Member for Culture and Recreation, Councillor Stuart Parker, said: “This new model will help to show how the site could have looked 2,000 years ago.
“The amphitheatre is one of our key historic assets, which until now has been difficult to fully appreciate its scale and what it would have looked like.”
Councillor Samantha Dixon said: “The amphitheatre site has been transformed over the past two years following extensive archaeological investigations.
“The detailed model of the amphitheatre is the final part of the site interpretation that I’m sure will enhance the experience for visitors.”
Professor Steven Broomhead, Chairman of Chester Renaissance, said: “The new model is an excellent final part of the site interpretation. The amphitheatre is one of many key heritage projects Chester Renaissance is working on this year.”
Chester Roman Tours can be seen throughout the year, guiding visitors and school parties around the city.
Photo: David Flockton-Andrews, Councillor Stuart Parker and Gary Rodwell from Chester Roman Tours.