Hadrian’s Wall

Sistertius Hadrian from the Wall.

Sistertius Hadrian from the Wall.

In 2004 summer the head of my femur (left side, fovea capitas) was dying and rattling around in the socket. It was very difficult to walk. I cancelled a trip to the English Midlands and instead visited Hexham, a small town in northern England. From Hexam a bus ran along a great part of the wall. At the time, the government was threatening to discontinue the bus. The English Heritage people actively sought signatures on petitions to continue the bus. Today (July 20, 2015) I see the bus is still in service. The pin is a representation of sestertius of Hadrian found in the River Tyne at Newcastle. From the collection of the Society of Antiquaries of Newcastle upon Tyne and the Great North Museum: Hancock

Hadrian’s Wall Path National Trail the long-distance footpath spanning 84 miles of glorious walking through rugged moorland, rolling fields and dynamic urban landscape.

And if 84 miles sounds a little daunting, then never fear, it’s positively encouraged not to walk the whole lot. Circular walks and shorter trails have been devised to cater

Map showing location across England of Hadrian's Wall

Map showing location across England of Hadrian’s Wall

for all abilities and take in many of the great sites and sights along the way. There is even a baggage collection service.

Hadrian’s Wall Country has its very own countryside code. Every Footstep Counts really does mean what it says. Almost everywhere you tread is archaeologically important; earthworks and masonry may be visible, but equally well may lie buried alongside the path. Obviously, don’t walk on the Wall itself – and please don’t walk in single file (like sheep!), but rather side-by-side. It all helps to preserve the site for the future.

Hadrian’s Wall (Latin: Vallum Aelium), also called the Roman Wall, Picts;’ Wall, or Vallum Hadriani in Latin, was a defensive fortification in the Roman province of Britannia, begun in 122 AD during the rule of emperor Hadrian. It ran between the River Tyne and the Solway Firth on the North Sea. It had a stone base and a stone wall. There were milecastles with two turrets in between. There was a fort about every five miles. From north to south the wall comprised a ditch, wall, military way and vallum (another ditch with adjoining mounds). The milecastles were staffed with static garrisons, whereas the forts had fighting garrisons of infantry and cavalry. In addition to the wall’s defensive military role, its gates were used as customs posts.

A significant portion of the wall still stands and can be followed on foot along the Hadrian’s Wall Path. It is the most popular tourist attraction in Northern England and was designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1987.

Location: 05-F4

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