La Roundele, Berwick-upon-Tweed
a lost southern broch?
Berwick-upon-Tweed, Southern broch, Iron age, Beach market, Edin's Hall, Atlantic roundhouse, Devil's Causeway, Circular building, Edward I
Berwick-upon-Tweed, Northumberland, England, UK
Iron Age, Medieval
A late 13th-century survey of Berwick-upon-Tweed includes an entry entitled ‘la Roundele’. It has not previously been interpreted satisfactorily but this paper shows it to have been a large circular site, in a secondary use by the time of the survey, at the head of the town’s early beachside marketplace. It is argued that the site’s shape, size and ability to survive in the changing townscape means that it originated in a substantial earlier structure – such as a broch or similar complex Atlantic roundhouse. The proposition accords with what is known of the early history of the Tweed estuary and southern brochs in general. Archaeological evidence for the structure may survive beneath later buildings.