Home UK Map A-Z England Scotland Wales Articles Links About Us
Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on Google Bookmarks Share via e-mail Print

ARTICLE CONTENTS:


SECTION 1: Introduction

- Visiting Rome’s Northern Frontier

- Components of the Frontier


SECTION 2: History of the Wall

- Empire Without Limits

- A Frontier - but Where?

- Holding the Line


SECTION 3: The Wall east to west as it exists today

- South Shields to Benwell Hill (including Newcastle)

- Benwell Hill to Rudchester (including Heddon-on-the-Wall)

- Rudchester to Halton Chesters

- Halton Chesters to Chesters

- Chesters to Carrawburgh

- Carrawburgh to Housesteads

- Housesteads to Great Chesters (including Steel Rigg and Cawfields)

- Great Chesters to Birdoswald (including Walltown)

- Birdoswald to Castlesteads

- Castlesteads to Stanwix

- Stanwix to Burgh-by-Sands (including Carlisle)

- Burgh-by-Sands to Bowness-on-Solway

- Western Sea Defences

TRAVEL AND PARKING

The bulk of this length of this walk is in a rural area walking on grass/non-vehicular footpaths. There are dedicated pay and displays cars parks at Chesters and Carrowburgh.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION (Opens in new window)

On this section of the wall there is one staffed site. Click the links below for more information (links open in new window):

- Housesteads Roman Fort

- Hadrian’s Wall Path: Official National Trail

A grave was built into the line of the Wall. Perhaps someone who died during construction or due to fighting?

MILECASTLES

Milecastle 32: Not visible from the National Trail:

GETTING THERE


LAT/LONG

OS GRID REF

POSTCODE

Carrawburgh Roman Fort (Brocolitia)

55.0352N 2.2219W

NY 8591271213

N/A

Milecastle 32

55.0332N 2.2429W

NY 8457170996

N/A

Milecastle 33

55.0309N 2.2662W

NY 8308170741

N/A

Turret 33B

55.0291N 2.2811W

NY 8212970551

N/A

Milecastle 34


55.0288N 2.2878W

NY 8170170510

N/A

Milecastle 35

(Sewingshields)

55.0288N 2.2878W

NY 8170170510

N/A

Turret 35A

55.0248N 2.3130W

NY 8008370078

N/A

Milecastle 36

55.0179N 2.3186W

NY 7972669314

N/A

Milecastle 33:

Milecastle 34:

Milecastle 35:

RELATED SITES NEARBY (Opens in new window)

Milecastle 36:

Milecastle 36


Lat/Long:  55.0179N 2.3186W

Grid Ref:   NY 7972669314

Postcode: N/A

Milecastle 35 - Sewingshields


Lat/Long:  55.0288N 2.2878W

Grid Ref:   NY 8170170510

Postcode: N/A

Milecastle 34


Lat/Long:  55.0288N 2.2878W

Grid Ref:   NY 8170170510

Postcode: N/A

Milecastle 33


Lat/Long:  55.0309N 2.2662W

Grid Ref:   NY 8308170741

Postcode: N/A

Milecastle 32


Lat/Long:  55.0332N 2.2429W

Grid Ref:   NY 8457170996

Postcode: N/A

Articles > Hadrian’s Wall HADRIAN’S WALL: THE REAL ROUTE Part 11: Carrowburgh to Housesteads

Key: BLUE MARKER = Fort Location    RED MARKER = Known Milecastle/Milefort Location    GREEN MARKER = Point of Interest

THE WALL EAST TO WEST: CARRAWBURGH TO HOUSESTEADS


What Can Be Seen


This article takes you from Carrawburgh to Housesteads as the Wall aligns with the route of the Whin Sill. This is the heart of the ‘tourist’ section with all the components of the frontier visible at various stages including the most easterly stone remains of a Milecastle (35). This section covers Milecastles 32 to 36 and takes you to Housestead Roman Fort (eighth fort on the Wall). The National Trail follows the line of the Wall exactly at this stage.

CONTINUE TO HOUSESTEADS >


Carrowburgh Roman Fort


The fort at Carrawburgh, known to the Romans as Brocolitia, was a late addition. The decision to move the garrison forts from the Stanegate to the line of the Wall was made relatively early on in the construction process and the Vallum, which was added shortly after the forts were completed, took them into account allowing sufficient space inside the military zone. Not so at Brocolitia where the fort was built over the Vallum. The fort was also unusual for not straddling the Wall; instead it was built entirely to the south. The reason for its construction is unknown although it is clear that Chesters and Housesteads were probably a little too far apart; especially as the latter was an infantry only unit. Take your time to explore the earthworks then the nearby Mithras Temple that served the garrison. From there follow the National Trail across the road and off to the west.

Mithras Temple at Brocolitia Roman Fort


Milecastle 32


The National Trail now spends sometime walking on a very pleasant path adjacent and to the north of Fighting Wall. This is excellent (and safe) but does mean the site of Milecastle 32 and some impressive stretches of Vallum are missed.

Fighting Ditch

Line of Wall heading west - Wall under road


Towards Sewingshields


Keep following the National Trail (if you took the road route backtrack a few hundred metres to a gate to re-join the official path). You will pass the site of Milecastle 33 (now just a few re-rolled masonry fragments) and Turret 33B. You’ll also see some impressive sections of Vallum across the road. Unfortunately these can’t be accessed from the National Trail. About half a mile later the road once again abandons the Wall and returns to the Vallum.


Sewingshields


After passing through Sewingshields wood, you now start to witness some very impressive vistas and can appreciate the perfect geography the Whin Sill offers for a north facing barrier. Milecastle 35 greets you almost immediately and, after the at best mere traces and hints of the original structure found in more easterly Milecastles, this one has complete foundations. Beyond Turret 35A also awaits. Keeping following the National Trail right through to Housesteads.

Looking west along the Whin Sill

Site of Milecastle 32

Fighting Ditch (near) and Vallum (far)

Line of Wall heading west

Fighting Ditch - looking west

Looking east

Vallum separates to follow low ground

Site of Milecastle 33


Housesteads Fort


Wander up to Housesteads fort, the ground to the left of the fort is the easiest.

Vallum (left) and line of Wall (under road)

Llooking back east at Brocolitia fort

Line of Wall - looking west

Milecastle 35 - Sewingshields

Heading west towards Housesteads

Brocolitia Roman Fort

Turret 33B

Towards Sewingshields

Fighting Ditch - looking east

Towards Milecastle 35 position

Turret 35A

HOUSESTEADS ROMAN FORT


Knag Burn Gate


With Housesteads now clearly in view, the next destination is obvious. But before you head to the fort, note the breach in the Wall before it reaches the parapets. This is Knag Burn gate and, along with Port Gate on Dere Street and a gate at Carlisle, was a rare non-military gate presumably added to support local trade routes.

Knag Burn Gate

Knag Burn Gate

REFERENCES / FURTHER READING

Breeze, D.J (2011). The Frontiers of Imperial Rome. Pen and Sword Books Ltd, Barnsley.


Burton, A (2010). Hadrian's Wall Path. Aurum Press Ltd, London.


Crow, J (1989). Housesteads Roman Fort. English Heritage, London.


English Heritage (2010). An Archaeological Map of Hadrian's Wall, 1:25,000 Scale. English Heritage, London.


Hodgson, N (2011). Chesters Roman Fort. English Heritage, London.


Moffat, A (2009). The Wall. Birlinn Ltd, Edinburgh.


Wilmott, T (2010). Birdoswald Roman Fort. English Heritage, London.


Bedoyere, G (2010). Roman Britain: A New History. Thames and Hudson Ltd, London.


Dando-Collins, S (2010). Legions of Rome. Quercus, London.


Hobbs, R and Jackson, R (2010). Roman Britain. British Museum Company Ltd, London.

© Copyright 2016 | Terms and Conditions (inc Cookie Policy) | Contact Us