A brief history of Gloucester’s Civic Buildings (aka “You have no authority here!”) Display 1 of 19
Roman Colonia Nervia Glevensium
Courtesy Phil Moss GlosArch https://www.glosarch.org.uk
Roman troops of the XXth Legion established a large fortress on what was to become Gloucester around 66AD. About 30 years later, the legionaries moved on into South Wales and the fortress was designated a colonia by the Emperor Nerva, being known as COLONIA NERVIANA GLEVENSIS. These were self-governing Roman towns set up to settle ex-soldiers who received grants of land inside and outside the city as part of their retirement package. Administration was by a town council (curia), led by elected magistrates, who were responsible for settling local disputes, undertaking civic works, and collecting taxes from the population, passing the monies on to the state. The curia administered the colonia from the first civic building in Gloucester’s history, the Basilica, which was built on the site of the old legionary headquarters building in the centre of the town, on the south side of the forum or town square. From finds of stamped roof tiles, we know the curia was called REI PUBLICAE GLEVENSIUM (literally ‘Republic of Glevum’, abbreviated to ‘RPG’) and it governed the city for over 300 years, erecting public buildings including the forum, temples and bath houses and provided services such as piped water, drains and sewers.