In 1926 when workmen were building a new roadway for the local council offices adjacent to Orpington railway station in Kent, they came across some the remains of a building. This was quickly identified as a Roman villa and some preliminary work was carried out before it was covered over. It was not until 1988 that the villa was actually excavated and investigated. Part of the remains was then preserved within a building and opened to the public.
The villa is thought to have to have been occupied between 140-400 AD and to have been the centre of a family farming estate. At its largest, the villa had around 20 rooms and parts of 10 of these can be seen in its current preserved state.