Chester Amphitheatre

Chester's amphitheatre lay outside the south-east corner of the legionary fortress, on a bluff overlooking the River Dee. Its main entrances faced north and south, with smaller entrances facing east and west. In between each of these entrances were two doorways giving access to a corridor running around the outside of the building and staircases leading up to the seats.

No-one knew that Chester had an amphitheatre until 1929, when a large curved wall appeared while an underground boiler room was being built onto the south side of Dee House. A local schoolmaster, W. J. Williams, was the first to recognise what this meant. In the early 1930s parts of the western entrance, the outer wall, the arena walls and the arena itself were discovered.

However, In 1926 Chester Corporation had put forward proposals to straighten the road between the New Gate and St John's church. This would have cut straight across the centre of the amphitheatre. There were many angry protests and the dispute reached the national newspapers. Eventually there was a change of heart, and it was agreed that the new road would curve round to the north of the monument


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