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Posterngate

Posterngate

Posterngate, the Roman gateway to southern Lincoln, lies underneath the city’s modern streets

Fifteen feet beneath the hustle and bustle of everyday Lincoln lies a hidden vault - and a gateway to the city’s long-forgotten past.

Once a busy entrance to the ancient Roman city, Posterngate is now separated from view by an unassuming door, fifteen feet of earth and 1,500 years of history, but descend a short flight of stairs and you’ll be treading in the footsteps of the city’s founders.

Built around 100 years before the ancient empire left Britain, the 4th century gateway lay undisturbed until 1973.

Merchants and traders would have used it for easy access to the River Witham, which in Roman times was lapping close to the wall. It would have been a hectic waterway; a major shipping lane to the inland port that’s today called Brayford Pool.

And with the city at the crossroads of Roman Britain’s major highways, Posterngate would have been at the economic heart of Lincoln.

Now, to help protect the rare find, Posterngate is open just a few times a year. But when it is, the site offers visitors a unique glimpse into ancient city life.

Visit and step back in time

Posterngate’s importance puts it high on the list of Lincoln’s finest historical treasures. But it happens to be the hardest to find!

It’s deep below modern ground level, underneath the Royal Bank of Scotland on Bank Street. Inside, you’ll see preserved sections of the Roman walls, the remains of a turret, the gateway itself, and the original flagstone floor, which still bears the scars of use.

The site is open just a few times a year but, when it is, it’s only £1 to enter and free for under-fives.

The ticket price includes a guided tour by a local expert and the chance to take photographs. There are also information boards and displays for you to find out more about Lincoln during Roman times.

Artists impression of Posterngate

Posterngate: This artist’s impression shows how Posterngate would’ve looked in its Roman heyday

Opening dates for 2016

  • Friday, 6 March
  • Saturday, 11 June
  • Friday, 2 September

There are half hourly tours with a talk from an expert plus a chance to take pictures and see the displays running from 10am to 3.30pm every half hour, £1 for adults, free for children.

Places are limited to 20 a tour, but there’s no need to book. Just turn up on the day. You’ll see a sign on Bank Street pointing the way.

Group tours and school visits are also available. These are priced at £35 per party and are capped at 20 people. Group bookings are subject to availability of staff.

Contact us

Posterngate is underground, accessed via a narrow stairway and has no disabled accessed. For these reasons, we cannot recommend a visit if you do not like enclosed spaces, are unsteady on your feet, or struggle with flights of stairs.

Posterngate
Underneath Royal Bank of Scotland
Bank Street
Lincoln, LN2 1DQ

To make group bookings or other enquiries, call The Collection Museum on 01522 552121 or email investigate@lincolnshire.gov.uk

Roman life at Posterngate

Roman life at Posterngate. Source: Erik Grigg.

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Last updated: 14 July 2016

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