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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

This section starts in central Carlisle which is well served by car parks albeit most pay and display. The rest of the walk is largely on footpaths with little parking.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION (Opens in new window)

On this section of the wall there is one staffed site - Carlisle Castle - although this has little Roman evidence visible. Nevertheless information can be accessed at (link opens in new window):

- Carlisle Castle (site of Luguvalium Roman Fort)

- Hadrian’s Wall Path: Official National Trail

The River Eden provides a natural barrier in front of the Wall for much of this section. The Carlisle bridge over the Eden has long been lost.

MILECASTLES

Milecastle 66: Located on Stanwix side of River Eden:

GETTING THERE


LAT/LONG

OS GRID REF

POSTCODE

Stanwix Roman Fort (Uxelodunum)

54.9044N 2.9349W

NY 4015057029

CA3 9AL

Milecastle 66

54.9020N 2.9420W

NY 3969356766

CA3 9NB

Carlisle Legionary Fort

(Luguvalium)

54.8958N 2.9400W

NY 3981356077

CA3 8UZ

Milecastle 67

(Est Position)

54.9021N 2.9789W

NY 3732456809

N/A

Milecastle 68

(Est Position)


54.9111N 2.9849W

NY 3695457821

CA5 6DS

Milecastle 69

(Est Position)


54.9153N 3.0038W

NY 3575358307

CA5 6DJ


Milecastle 70

(Beaumont)

(Est Position)

54.9229N 3.0144W

NY 3508659166

CA5 6EF

Milecastle 71

54.9234N 3.0337W

NY 3384759240

N/A

Milecastle 67

Milecastle 68

Milecastle 69

Milecastle 70

Milecastle 71:

Milecastle 71


Lat/Long:  54.9234N 3.0337W

Grid Ref:   NY 3384759240

Postcode: N/A

Milecastle 68 (Estimated Position Only)


Lat/Long:  54.9111N 2.9849W

Grid Ref:   NY 3695457821

Postcode: CA5 6DS

Milecastle 66


Lat/Long:  54.9020N 2.9420W

Grid Ref:   NY 3969356766

Postcode: CA3 9NB

Milecastle 67 (Estimated Position Only)


Lat/Long:  54.9021N 2.9789W

Grid Ref:   NY 3732456809

Postcode: N/A

Milecastle 69 (Estimated Position Only)


Lat/Long:  54.9153N 3.0038W

Grid Ref:   NY 3575358307

Postcode: CA5 6DJ

Milecastle 70 (Estimated Position Only)


Lat/Long:  54.9229N 3.0144W

Grid Ref:   NY 3508659166

Postcode: CA5 6EF

Articles > Hadrian’s Wall HADRIAN’S WALL: THE REAL ROUTE Part 16: Stanwix to Burgh-by-Sands (including Carlisle)

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

THE WALL EAST TO WEST: STANWIX TO BURGH-BY-SANDS


What Can Be Seen


This article takes you from Stanwix in Carlisle through to the site of the Roman fort at Burgh-by-Sands. Scant remains of the frontier are visible and confirmed locations of many of the Milecastles and turrets evade us. This section takes you through Milecastles 66 to 71 and offers a nice walk along a part of the River Eden heading out towards the Solway coast. You’ll rejoin the National Trail at Eden bridge.

CONTINUE TO BURGH-BY-SANDS >


Stanwix Roman Fort


Stanwix (Uxelodunum) started life as a small fort on the turf and timber Wall around AD 122. It was rebuilt in stone around AD 160 concurrent with the rebuilding of the western section of the Wall following the abandonment of the Antonine Wall. Shortly afterwards it was re-rolled into a cavalry fort (garrisoning by Ala Petriana - the largest cavalry force in Britannia) and was substantially rebuilt. Originally positioned solely to the south of the Wall, it was extended northwards to straddle the Wall enabling three out of its four exits to reach the north. Enclosing an area of almost 10 acres, compared with just 5 at Housesteads or Chesters for example, it was the largest fort on the Wall and was clearly seen as a pivotal point. This makes some sense, although positioned around the sixty-fifth Roman mile (out of eighty) from the start at Wallsend, the greater threat was perceived in the west from the Novantae and Selgovae tribes of Dumfries and Galloway. Furthermore the frontier fortifications of the continued for at least a further 25 miles beyond the western terminus at Bowness-on-Solway. Not much remains today either than some faint earthworks in St Michael's church.


River Eden


For a little under two miles the line of the Wall followed the banks of the Eden with the river providing a substitute for the Fighting Ditch. Milecastles 67 and 68 are estimated to have been situated on this stretch although no evidence has been found.

Marking the site of Luguvalium in style!

Wall cut across Railway

Line of Wall (River to left)

Wall climbs onto bank

Carlisle aqueduct - where the Wall joins and then follows the river

Estimated position of Milecastle 69

Wall ran atop of this bank

Estimated Milecastle 70 position

River Eden

Estimated position for Milecastle 67

Wall cut across Park

Line of Wall heading west

Burgh-by-Sands and line of Wall


Carlisle Legionary Fort


The Wall at this stage is buried under modern housing with no particular street following the line. Accordingly follow Brampton Road round towards Eden Bridge - a crossing that will enable you to re-join the National Trail. But before you do note the Cricket Ground just before the bridge - on the far side, on the banks of the River Eden, was Milecastle 66 and immediately beyond that was the third and final bridge of the Wall. Nothing remains of either today. Cross Eden Bridge, enter the park on your right and make your way to Carlisle Castle. Less than one-quarter of a mile from Stanwix, this was the site of a second Roman fort, a legionary base known as Luguvalium. This fort was built by a vexillation of the Ninth Legion (Legio IX Hispana) and pre-dated Stanwix by over forty years. Once the Wall was built and especially after Stanwix was enlarged, its role became logistical and it probably served as the ‘Corbridge of the west’. The Roman remains are buried deep under the medieval castle and the main road outside - with no expense spared the council has erected a wooden post to mark the spot.

Wall cut through this industrial estate


Kirkadrews-on-Eden


At Grinsdale, where the River Eden’s meandering path turns it back east, the Wall diverted and made for Kirkadrews-on-Eden and then onto Beaumont. Follow the National Trail which matches the line of the Wall. Milecastle 69 would have been on this path but again no evidence has enabled their locations to be confirmed.

Line of Wall through Beaumont

St Michael’s Church - site of Burgh-by-Sands Roman Fort

Site of the Legionary fortress at Carlisle


Back to the Eden


The Wall now briefly re-connects with the River Eden and it was probably here that Milecastle 70 was located.

Stanwix Roman Fort - South View

Low earthwork remains of Stanwix Roman Fort at St Michael’s church

Approximate bridging point of the Wall over the River Eden

Wall situated on top of bank

Line of Wall through Walby


Beaumont


The Wall now turns west again and now broadly takes the shortest route towards the Solway coast. Passing through Beaumont it then ran via Milecastle 71 to Burgh-upon-Sands.


Burgh-by-Sands


Crossing the field from the Milecastle 71 position, you enter the small village of Burgh-by-Sands. Head towards St Michael’s church which sits on top of the site of the Roman fort built there.


Back to the Wall


Re-trace your steps back to Eden bridge and pickup the National Trail that follows the route of the River through a sweeping loop. The Wall went slightly more directly. Bridging across at the Eden 500 metres upstream from the current road bridge it took the shortest route to the river bank on the other side of the loop. Today it cuts across a Railway track and then an industrial site with no public access. Take the longer route of the National Trail keeping the river on your right. When you reach Carlisle aqueduct you are at the point where the Wall joined the river.

Milecastle 71 position

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.

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