Corbridge Roman Site & Chesters Roman Fort
Corbridge & Chollerford
Hadrians Wall

Corbridge Roman Site
As a nice mothers day trip we decided to head north in search of Hadrians Wall... Now even though I am a Northerner I'm ashamed to say I haven't had a lot to do with Hadrians Wall as such I sort of thought (niavely) that we would happen upon a large wall, maybe in a field, with a big sign pointing to it saying 'welcome to Hadrians Wall' but that wasn't what happened at all...
First port of call for the day was Corbridge Roman Site which is just on the outskirts of the pretty town of Corbridge. (A town requiring further exploration!) The Roman site was apparently a thriving garrison town in its hayday, situated on the main roman road of Dere Street. Today the site includes the remains of foundations of buildings and some impressive remnants of columns & the hypocaust underfloor heating system that the romans favoured so much. It does make you think they must of been pretty cold in  the depths of a harsh northern winter in their little skirts, so no wonder they invented underfloor heating!
We had our first ourdoor picnic of 2012 here with beautiful scenery all around us, including the gorgeous Beaufort Castle which is sadly (for me) privately owned and not open to the public. The children greatly enjoyed running around and exploring the remains, enjoying the glorous sunshine and they enjoyed looking for the lions in the little onsite museum. After a few hours of explorations we decided to head off in search of 'the wall'... we did happen to see a short length of wall, in a field, with a sign post, but unfortunatly there was no handy parking place, so we drove past and carried on until we came across Chesters Roman Fort.

Chesters Roman Fort
First of all I would like to say thankyou to the lovely man at Chesters Fort (I'm sorry I didnt get your name but you know who you are!) It would seem my beloved English Heritage membership cards had expired in Februrary and me like a total divvy had forgotten to pick the new ones up! D'oh! Obviously my cards still scan as I am indeed a fully paid up member but I was mortally embarrased by the whole ordeal, but the lovely man organised some temporary cards for me, very kind indeed.
I was very impressed by Chesters Roman Fort. Its a surprisingly large site, with all the parts individually fenced off and everything is sort of low down so it seems you climb into each section. Even though its 2000years since the garrison was here I really got a feel for the place & it was easy to imagine Roman soldiers going about their daily buisness. Its a very pretty riverside location with some parts of Hadrians Wall tantalisingly visible on the opposite river bank but I saw no easy way to reach there so it remained frustratingly unexplored. I even managed to 'spot' some oystercatchers in the river from the handy veiwing platform. There is a nice little victorian museum housing a lot of stone work & interesting artifacts that have been found on site.
We did pass another part of 'the wall' on our homeward journey so our next Hadrians Wall adventure will start at Brunton Turret but this time we'll be armed with a proper map & more of an idea where we're actually going!!

Both Corbridge Roman Site and Chesters Roman Fort are English Heritage owned so free entry for members but there's an admission charge for non-members. Both have plenty of parking although there is a charge at Chesters Roman Fort however you do get refunded if you're a member.
All content words & photographs are copyright ©Ange Graham (the vintage-pirate) and may not be reproduced.

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