Type: Minor Settlement, Lead Mine, Mine
The settlement at Machen in East Glamorgan, lies on the opposite (southern) bank of the Rhymney from the modern village. Situated in the hills four miles to the east of the fort at Caerphilly, the settlement was probably dependent on the local Lead Mines. The lead ore had a reasonable silver content, which made the mine a valuable asset apart from its considerable contribution towards the Roman plumbing industry. Thus, at first, the operation was likely under the control of the military and administrated from one of the forts nearby, possibly later being tendered out to a local company, based perhaps in the settlement at Machen.
There are no known Roman roads in the immediate vicinity of the settlement.
There were several Roman fortifications in the area; as well as the auxiliary fort at Caerphilly four miles to the west, the legionary fortress of Legio II Augusta was just seven miles to the east at ISCA (Caerleon), and the Saxon Shore Fort at Cardiff was a mere eight miles to the south. The occupation periods of these surrounding military establishments probably did not coincide, and they possibly succeeded each other in the sequence listed here.