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History

During their occupation of Britain, in 79 A.D. the Romans established a fortification at a strategic location overlooking the banks of the Rivers Irwell and Medlock in the Northwest of England. The hill that they built upon resembeld a breast and so the fort was called Mamucium, now called Manchester (originating from the Roman word for fort - chester - and the Celtic word for mother/breast - mamma).

A road left the North gate of the fort, with one of it's branches (now the A56) passing through what is now the centre of Prestwich (though it is not known if any dwellings, farms etc existed at this time) on it's way to Bremetenacum, now called Ribchester, to the Northwest.

To west of this road, possibly overlooking a ford across the River Irwell, a camp was built at Rainsough (orignating from Ranshowe - Ran being either the name of a Saxon chief or a derivation of the Saxon word ram meaning theft - howe meaning hill) . Following the road directly across Kersal Moor until we reach the line of Bury Old Road, we find our selves at a place called Low Castor, or Castle Hill. This is possibly the site of a second Roman camp in symmetry along the line of the Roman road, and bearing in mind the local landscape these camps would have made a defensive line protecting the North of Mamucium.

The Romans abandoned Mamucium around 411 A.D. but left traces behind them, not least of which was a stash of coins discovered where the Roman road runs along side the A56 in Sedgley Park, and some pottery found at Rainsough.

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