Hadrian's Wall, a Roman Fort and a visit to Hexham

Trip Start Jul 04, 2006
Trip End Jan 16, 2007

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Wednesday, November 22, 2006

November 21st Tuesday

Today we are off to visit Hadrian's Wall, which is a couple of hours drive north of York, just west of Newcastle, and as promised in the last blog I have a story about this. When my sister Evelyn and I came to England on a tour nearly 11 years ago now, we were supposed to visit Hadrian's Wall. However as many of you already know the driver pulled the bus up on the side of the road and the guide directed us to a hole in the fence and told us to look through the hole and we would see Hadrian's Wall. All we saw were a few insignificant rocks and that was all we got to see so I didn't really know anything about it. Now I know it was built commencing in AD122 by a guy named Hadrian (very original I know) to keep the Britons and the Normans apart. Parts of the wall have been torn down and the bricks used in other buildings, however large parts of the wall are still intact, and it is now being looked after by the Heritage society and is a huge tourist attraction. We got some great photos not only of a large section of the wall, but also of an old Roman Fort which was built along the wall for the troops. It was quite an experience to be able to walk on a wall that was built by man and has stood for nearly 2000 years.
We had intended to walk a 6 mile section of the wall that we had seen in a walking magazine we had bought while living in Belper, however due to traffic delays getting here we had not arrived at the wall until after 1.00pm which didn't leave us enough time to make it to the end to catch the last bus back. With it getting dark just after 4.30pm now, walking there and back was not an option, so we settled for a walk of a couple of miles out and back instead.
The weather was bitter, and few visitors stayed any longer than necessary, so by the time we had been out in the fort and along the wall for nearly three hours we were frozen. We quickly made it into the nearest town of Hexham and found a wonderful B&B that had a separate lounge room, kitchen, and a big bath tub. We visited the local supermarket and bought some chicken, salad, and rolls and ate in so as to enjoy the warmth and comfort of our rooms, and also to prepare for the drive tomorrow into Scotland.
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