Search

Highgate archaelogist believes historic remains could lie below former St Luke’s Hospital

PUBLISHED: 15:02 27 November 2012

St Luke's Hospital

St Luke's Hospital

Archant

A former archaeologist from Highgate believes medieval, Roman and even prehistoric remains could be under a former hospital for the mentally ill.

A Roman pot found in Highgate WoodA Roman pot found in Highgate Wood

St Luke’s Hospital in Woodside Avenue, Muswell Hill, operated from the mid-1920s but is set to be transformed into a housing estate.

Hanover Housing Trust, behind the development, has carried out its own report which says the area has no “archaeological assets”.

However, Michael Hammerson, of the Highgate Society, believes the site could be significant archaeologically because of its rich history.

“I consider their assessment to be completely inadequate. It suggests to me that they do not care whether there is any undiscovered archaeology on the site which could be destroyed in the development.

“Their comments suggest they appear to either be unaware of this evidence or have disregarded it.

“This could be dangerous and potentially expensive for them in the event that something is found.”

Records show that nearby Cherry Tree Wood was once part of the Hunting Park of the Bishops of London, dating back to the early 12th century.

At that time the bishops created a huge enclosed park called Great Hornsey Park.

“The land was owned by the church which needed to raise money for its huge running costs,” said Mr Hammerson.

“There would have been houses for the parkers, cottages for the farm workers, sawmills to process the timber from the woods, mills for the grain grown in the fields and accommodation for the hunting bishops and their important guests.

“A huge amount went on and must have left traces throughout the area.”

A spokesman for Hanover Housing Trust said: “Hanover has commissioned an archaeological assessment of the St Luke’s site which will be submitted with the planning application.

“The report says that the site does not contain any designated archaeological assets where there would be a presumption in favour of physical preservation in situ and against development.

“There are no previously recorded undesignated heritage assets of prehistoric or Roman date located within the site.”

Mr Hammerson will present his findings to Haringey Council after the application has been submitted.

* To find out more and to see sections of an original Roman kiln recovered in Highgate Wood, visit Bruce Castle Museum in Lordship Lane, Wood Green.

0 comments

Latest Hampstead & Highgate News Stories

13:30

Julia Findlater, deputy headteacher at Portland Place School, gives her top 10 tips for revision success.

12:48

St Anthony’s School for Girls held a special Mother’s Day breakfast to celebrate their loved ones and to raise money for their two chosen charities.

10:10

Camden Council has pledged to keep the subject of mental health at the forefront of the agenda in its bid to improve the wellbeing of young people living in the borough.

Yesterday, 12:18

The future of a family centre which is battling a lack of funding is closer to being secured after 127 children took part in a fun run.

Yesterday, 11:32

A mother-of-nine and her nephew became innocent victims of a “vendetta of violence” when they were shot dead in their own home in East Finchley, the Old Bailey has heard.

Yesterday, 11:20

The Whittington Hospital’s fertility centre is opening its own sperm bank and calling for men between 18 and 40 to donate.

Yesterday, 10:52

A man was subjected to a “disgraceful and prolonged” sexual assault on a busy Victoria Line train between Finsbury Park and King’s Cross.

Yesterday, 10:33

Fire crews tackled a blaze that tore through a three-storey terraced house in Kentish Town.

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Most read Hampstead & Highgate news

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Hampstead & Highgate Express
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now