Illuminating the past – Enhancing the present – Inspiring the future
Site of Roman villa This photograph was taken in 2010. You are looking from Copt Point (where there is a pitch and putt course) over to Folkestone’s East Cliff and East Wear Bay below. This area is also known as the Warren. This place is important because of its history. There is a Roman villa buried on the cliff top and even older remains as well. It is also a Site of Special Scientific Interest because ot its wildlife and geology. People go fossil hunting on the beach.
East Wear Bay and its cliff top are places where people live, work and play.
Folkestone's East Cliff This photograph was taken in 2010. It shows Folkestone’s East Cliff in the winter time.
Dog walking Dogs of all shapes and sizes get their exercise along the East Cliff.
Tennis on the East Cliff People get their exercise and enjoy playing tennis and bowls on the East Cliff.
Kiddy play area There is a kiddy play area on the grassy East Cliff top.
The pitch and putt course at Copt Point The pitch and putt course at Copt Point is very popular in the summer time.
Wear Bay Road This house is in Wear Bay Road. People living there have a great view over the East Cliff and English Channel. On a clear day they can see France.
East Cliff Pavilion This photograph of the East Cliff Pavilion was taken in 2010. You can compare it to the pictures taken of the same place in the 1930s. You could find out what happens at the Pavilion now.
Aerial photograph of the East Cliff This aerial photograph of the East Cliff and East Wear Bay area was taken in 1950. There were not many houses along Wear Bay Road then.
You can see where the Roman villa is, on the cliff top. In 1950 the villa was open for visitors to look around.
East Cliff Pavilion This photograph was taken in the 1930s. It shows the East Cliff Pavilion which was a tearoom then. Lots of people liked to spend time around there.
Folkestone's East Cliff We think this photograph of the East Cliff was taken in the 1930s. Look at how the lady and little girl are dressed. When you look at an old photo, the clothes people wore are a useful clue to working out the time it was taken.
You can see Martello Tower No. 3 at Copt Point. The tower is much older.
Folkestone's East Cliff We think this photograph of the East Cliff was taken in the 1930s. Look at how many people there are! I like the little girl’s doll’s pram. See what else you can spot in the picture.
East Cliff with Martello Tower No. 3 We are not sure when this painting was done. It shows East Cliff with Martello Tower No. 3 in the distance. The small squares on the slope look like allotments. Maybe you could work out what is on this slope now. The house with the red roof is no longer there.
Martello Tower No. 3 This tower at East Cliff was built in the nineteenth century. It is called Martello Tower No. 3. The flag gives you a clue where to find this tower.
At the beginning of the nineteenth Britain was at war with France. Towers were built along our coasts in Kent and Sussex because people thought we would be invaded by Napoleon’s French army. Each tower had a cannon on top.
Maybe you could find Martello Tower No. 1 and Martello Tower No. 2 at East Cliff.
Since the nineteenth centure the towers have become unusual places to live in or visit.
Aerial photograph of the Roman villa An aerial photograph of the Roman villa at Folkestone’s East Cliff excavated in 1924. In Roman times the villa would have been built well back from the cliff edge. But by 1924 the cliff face had eroded so much that the villa was now at the cliff edge and had begun to fall onto the beach below. In 2010 and 2011 archaeologists are at the site again to rescue more ancient remains before they are lost forever.
The orange line shows where we think the cliff edge is in 2010.
Reconstruction of the Roman villa This is a reconstruction of the Roman villa found at Folkestone’s East Cliff. Archaeologists excavated the villa site in 1924, 1989 and are going there again in 2010 and 2011 to find more remains from Roman and Iron Age times. See how big the villa is compared to the smaller modern house.
The villa had lots of rooms and was built with stone, clay bricks and tiles. It had under-floor heating and running water – luxuries in Roman times. Some of the rooms had mosaics and decorated walls. The villa had a wonderful sea view across the English Channel to France.
What kind of people would have lived in a place like this?
Plan of the Roman villa at Folkestone’s East Cliff A plan of the Roman villa at Folkestone’s East Cliff excavated in 1924. Archaeologists draw, photograph and write notes about their discoveries. They call this recording.
Why do you think it is important to record the evidence?
Key to the plan of the Roman villa at Folkestone’s East Cliff Key to the plan of the Roman villa at Folkestone’s East Cliff excavated in 1924. Look at the rooms there were and how many. What does this tell us about the person or people who owned the villa? Can you think of any modern buildings with rooms like this?
1924 excavation at at Folkestone’s East Cliff In 1924, lots of people came to see the Roman villa at Folkestone’s East Cliff when it was being excavated. There were articles in the newspapers in England and France. In the Daily Express the reporter wrote this!
“Folkestone has become the scene of an archaeological boom such as no fashionable watering-place has ever before experienced. Gaily attired girls, escorted by youths in flannels, sedate, elderly professional men, and enthusiastic schoolboys jostle in the queue awaiting admission”.
Mr Samuel Edward Winbolt These people excavated the Roman villa at Folkestone’s East Cliff in 1924.
The man in the middle was a school teacher and an archaeologist. His name was Mr Samuel Edward Winbolt. His daughter, Rosalind, is in the picture. She was 18 years old when she took part in the dig.
Rosalind Winbolt This is Rosalind Winbolt. She helped to excavate the Roman villa at Folkestone’s East Cliff in 1924. Her dad was in charge of the excavations. The next year he wrote a book about their discoveries called Roman Folkestone.

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