Before the transmission of the first ‘live’ Time Team television programme on 23 August 1997, the existence of a Roman villa near Chalkhill Barn in the parish of Turkdean, 12 miles north-east of Cirencester and 2 miles from the Fosse Way, was hardly known to the archaeological community (FIG. 1). That a Roman building did exist in this location had, however, been suspected for a number of years by the landowner, the late Mr Wilf Mustoe. Distinctive linear parchmarks suggestive of buildings had been clearly visible at ground level in the grass pasture each dry summer, and in 1976 Mr Mustoe made a measured sketch plan of them on the back of an envelope. Subsequently the sketch was drawn up into a scale plan entitled ‘Roman villa’ by Simon Goddard, a relation. There was little knowledge of the site outside of Mr Mustoe's family until it was independently ‘discovered’ by local archaeologist Roger Box in August 1996 whilst fortuitously flying over the site in a helicopter. In the evening light Mr Box instantly recognised the parchmarks of an unmistakable Roman villa and took a series of photographs (FIG. 2). Mr Box showed his photographs to Mr Mustoe, and with his agreement wrote to Time Team suggesting that this would be an excellent site for a television programme. Arrangements were duly set in place and the evidence of the cropmarks was confirmed by a trial geophysical survey in March 1997.