CHESTER’S famous Roman Legion are to march in a groundbreaking parade inside Rome’s Coliseum but need £1,500 in sponsorship to fund the trip.

The event, celebrating Rome’s Founding Day, takes place on April 20 and time is running out for Roman Tours Ltd’s Deva Victrix re-creation team to generate funds required to represent Chester.

Local businesses and residents have so-far helped to raise the majority of the £5,000 cost of the round trip, yet the non-profit organisation are desperate for one final push from Chester businesses and residents.

The Deva Victrix team, which consists wholly of unpaid enthusiasts, were selected to attend the parade alongside 1,000 other soldiers from amongst the best regarded re-enactment groups in Europe.

According to Paul Hartson of Roman Tours Ltd. it is due to the unique appeal offered by the Deva Victrix group that Italian event organisers looked to Chester: “Our costumes are unique, nowhere else in the world will you find a re-creation group with items based so closely on the genuine artefacts.”

“Our aim is to give back to the city. Four events will be put on this year free of charge. We are also taking a number of local people on the trip, including three students from Chester University’s Media Department.”

The group’s journey to Rome will take on a two-pronged objective with a visit to Lorrach, Chester’s German twin town, planned. A meet and greet with local dignitaries is due to take place before the residents of Lorrach celebrate their annual ‘Chester Day’ in early May.

Donations towards supporting Chester’s Roman army should be made in the name of The Roman Chester Event, set up by the late Jackie Leech (MBE) with the aim of ‘endorsing the quality of the history and heritage being presented in Chester every day.’

If you would like to sponsor the group contact Paul Hartson on 07941 530720 or e-mail