Binchester Roman Fort petition passes 2,000 signatures

A petition launched by Auckland Castle Trust has attracted more than 2,000 signatures.

The Roman fort near Bishop Auckland described as the “Pompeii of the North” has been put up for sale by Church Commissioners.

The trust are concerned that the future of the site could be compromised and opened the petition on 1st September urging the Commisioners not to sell the Binchester plots to separate bidders. Auckland Castle Trust have entered a bid of £2m for the site.

“We have been stunned by the deluge of support for our petition in such a short space of time,” said Dr Chris Ferguson, head curator at Auckland Castle.

“But it shows the level of love there is for Binchester as well as the anxiety surrounding the site’s future.

“Signatures have been pouring in from around the world and more names are being added all the time. It’s not just archaeologists and academics either who are signing the petition.

Listen: Dr Chris Ferguson from Auckland Castle

Ongoing excavations have uncovered historic finds at the settlement, including A bath house with seven foot high walls, painted plaster, its original floor, doorways and window openings and an inscribed altar dedication to the Roman Goddess Fortune the Home-bringer earlier this year.

Church Commissioners have stated that the fort is protected by law and no development work can take place there.

Interested parties have until 18th September to submit their tender for the plots. The petition is online at