BOWES

(Lavatris)

  Quality of Remains  
  Ease of Access
  Atmosphere & Setting

History & Occupation:

Although the only building inscriptions ever found at Lavatris belong to auxiliary units, it seems unlikely that they were responsible for the construction of the fort, as this was the province of the trained engineers of the Legions. Bowes was the home in the early to mid second century to a unit only identified in one inscription. This may refer to the 4th Cohort of Frisians, a unit which is otherwise unknown to us. By the end of the second century, the occupying unit was the part-mounted 1st Cohort of Thracians, who are attested on a number of inscriptions. As with so many forts the garrison in the late fourth century was a mere numerus (or company) of scouts.

Remains and Visit:

There is little to see of Lavatris on the ground. The medieval Bowes Castle and the church occupy the northern portion of the fort, and what is left lies under a platform visible from the castle grounds. A trip along the public footpath takes you into the fort itself and from the wall at the bottom, if you lean over and glance to the left, you can see a depression which is all there is to see of the extramural baths. There are traces of stonework here, but the site is on private land and not visitable.

Images:

West rampart South rampart
Baths
Baths
West rampart
South rampart
Baths
Baths