Under the Saracen's Head (St Nicolas Place, Kings Norton)
The Saracen's Head (now St Nicolas' Place) on The Green in Kings Norton is a 15th century timber-framed building which has become nationally famous through winning BBC TV 'Restoration' programme. As the first stage of the renovation work archaeological excavations took place in the courtyard, entrance passage and in front of the building.
The oldest objects found in the excavations were some pieces of Roman pottery. The oldest structure was a ditch, probably a 12th century property boundary, on the line of the north wall of the north range. The ditch had been filled in to construct timber buildings during the 13th century, over 200 years before the existing buildings were constructed. The remains of the timber buildings consisted of holes originally containing posts, and hollows and lines of stones on which timber beams had rested. There were also remains of cooking including a hearth made of roof tiles set on edge.
The site seems to have been abandoned between the end of the 13th century and the end of the 15th century, when the existing timber-framed building was constructed. The excavations revealed remains of a decorated tiled floor of this date within the north range and a cobbled surface in the courtyard.