9th March 1941 - Bombs near Gosbecks Temple

Heard this morning that the loud bombs last night were “on Gosbecks” [the Romano-British Temple site], so went up there right away, only to find they were near not on. Fourteen fell in the Cheshunt Field, a few hundred yards from the Temple site, but without throwing up any antiquities, another in the big meadow right against Oliver’s Lane, another on the other side which does not seem to have gone off, and a last one right in the corner of the cottage garden, on the corner of Oliver’s Lane and Gosbecks Road. It dropped between a tool shed and a chicken run, upset the chicken run, but did not wake the people in the cottage, who were in bed. The chickens were found sitting on top of their shed.

While I was there a police car arrived, with a notice “Unexploded Bomb”, which was attached to a tree, and shortly afterwards a demolition party arrived, unrequired and 14 hours late. There was not even a pane of glass broken. A wonderful escape.

The site of the Romano-British Temple that was discovered at Gosbecks Farm in the 1930s is now open to the public as Gosbecks Archaeological Park. The Park is also the site of a Roman theatre, which would have held 5,000 spectators.

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