Cam’s historic remains of an incredible Roman bath will be preserved by property developer Bovis after residents’ campaign

Cam people and Dursley celebrate a huge triumph in what they thought was a long battle to preserve a Roman find in the area.

A Roman villa bath house was discovered on a Bovis Homes development site in Cam.

Locals were thrilled with the find, but disheartened that archaeologists believe the structure was not important enough to preserve it.

A petition has been launched, nearly 6,000 people have signed it, and it seems that popular power has won.

Yesterday afternoon a meeting took place between the managers to discuss the future of the site.

The story of the Roman find became national very quickly and Bovis Homes took note of the importance the site holds for the locals, confirming that they will now seek to preserve it within the development site.

Christie Mclean, 32 from Uley, started the petition.

She said: “The meeting was private between Councilor Jessica Tomblin, Bovis, Stroud District council, town planners.

“Jessica said the meeting went very well, that some positive steps had been taken.

“It was amazing that the community came together, so passionately, the councilors and council listened, supported the community and Bovis appreciated that.

It is now decided that the Roman Villa Bathhouse that was found on a Bovis Homes development site will now be preserved.

“It’s an incredible achievement.

“I don’t think Bovis Homes was meant to be ‘the enemy’, it just had to be persuaded and adjusted.

“This is fabulous news.”

The quick meeting was hosted by Cam West advisor Jessica Tomblin.

Councilor Jessica Tomblin (C, Cam West) said, “Preserving this piece of heritage is really important to Cam and the local community. I was delighted that I was able to bring the relevant people together so quickly and I want to thank Bovis Homes for responding so positively.

Bovis Homes is exploring options to preserve the area by working with local authorities.

A spokesperson for Bovis Homes said: “We are proactively engaging with local authorities and archaeological experts to explore the options available.

“These discussions are ongoing and following a productive meeting yesterday afternoon, they are progressing well.

“We believe we have a way to work with interested parties to preserve the villa and hope to be able to provide more details shortly.”

A spokeswoman for Stroud District Council said: ‘With the help of Stroud District Councilors, Cam Parish Council and Gloucestershire County Council Archeology, the Council’s Planning Department District of Stroud has engaged with the developer and his archaeologist and all are making positive progress in finding a way to preserve the villa on site.

“More details and discussion are needed on how this will be done and how it will impact the fit-out of the home, but all parties have a positive approach to finding a solution.

The inhabitants are delighted to learn that the villa of the Roman baths will be preserved.

“We are delighted to see the level of local interest and the value that local residents place on the historic environment.

“We therefore encourage the developer to work with us and the parish council on how the details of what has been found can be shared with local residents now and in the future.”

The Gloucestershire County Council heritage team are delighted that the area has been preserved.

Gloucestershire County Council Heritage Team Leader Toby Catchpole said: “We are delighted to hear that Bovis is seeking to preserve Cam’s Roman Villa.

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“There is clearly a strong public sense that this finding is important to the local community with a wider public interest, so it’s good that they have listened to this and are looking to make adjustments.”

The outcome of the meeting seems to be a well received outcome all around.

Councilor Paul Denney (L, Cam West) said: “This is great news and I want to thank all of the parties and organizations who have worked for a positive result. Looking to the future, we will have to work in great detail on how best to preserve the site for future generations. “

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