Tour Hadrian's Wall Sites

This post reprises a private one-day tour of important sites connected with the 2nd century AD Hadrian's Wall in northern England.

Intrepid time traveller at milecastle near Birdoswald

First, we departed our lodgings in Henshaw near Vindolanda and embarked on a tour as follows:

A drive to the Roman Army Museum where we parked and then hiked east up on to a high ridge to view one of the best preserved sections of Hadrian’s Wall.

Hadrian’s Wall landscape

Turret on Hadrian’s Wall

Hadrian’s Wall

Hadrian’s Wall

Hadrian’s Wall

Next, we returned to the Army Museum which we visited. This was a well presented and informative experience.

Next, to the village of Gilsland which we used as a base to visit two sites: Poltross Burn Milecastle and Willowford Bridge Abutment. Latter is the eastern end of a Roman bridge which has been left stranded in a field owing to the River Irthing shifting course over the intervening 1800 years.

Poltross Burn Milecastle, Hadrian’s Wall

Willowford Bridge Abutment, Hadrian’s Wall

Next to Bewcastle, a hamlet which is home to the site of Roman (Hadrianic) fort located in a forward region about 7 miles north of the Wall. In the churchyard can be seen a 1400 year old (approx.) carved stone cross dating from the time when Northumbria was an independent kingdom during the Anglo-Saxon period. Later, a medieval castle was built on the site of the Roman fort using stone re-cycled from the fort.

Bewcastle Cross

Castle at Bewcastle, England

Next to Birdoswald, a large and well-known fort on the line of Hadrian’s Wall. from here we took the opportunity to walk east, along the line of the Wall to visit a milecastle.

Part of Birdoswald Roman Fort

Hadrian’s Wall at Birdoswald

Next, we drove about four miles west to Lanercost Priory which dates from the 12th century and was constructed using building stone recycled from Hadrian’s Wall.

Lanercost Priory

Lanercost Priory

Finally, we drove into Carlisle and our lodgings for the night.


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