Although I ended a walk at Housesteads and started a walk at Housesteads, I did not manage to find time for a proper walk round the fort and the museum. Here are some old photos, some taken on a visit with Gareth in 2013. It is an English Heritage managed site and National Trust members get in free as well. As I am a Life Member of both EH and NT I think they should pay me to visit. It should be noted that it is a steep uphill walk from the car park, which is on the Military Road, though the disabled can drive up to the museum.
As you walk up, you pass through the Vicus and cultivation terraces. The fort itself is aligned east/west, on the north side is a steep drop, and the south side of the wall is hardly flat either. Here is a model.
There are some statues and altars in the museum at Chesters, more in the Great North Museum in Newcastle – both blogged. This museum has the relief of three deities, the Genii Cucullati, each wearing a long, hooded cloak, the birrus Britannicus, found in a temple at the civil settlement.
Vercovicium means “hilly place” or “place of the effective fighters” – I go for the first. The Wall was built first, along with a turret, the fort is slightly later. It covers an area of about 5 acres. We know that in the third century a thousand men of the First Cohort of Tungrians were stationed here, and various other legions also left their mark. I won’t try and work out every bit of the fort.
Here are a couple of the rather impressive gates.
The room which always fascinates the youngsters, and I remember being fascinated by it several decades ago, is the toilet block.
There are lots of lovely walls at this fort, and the Wall itself. Have an explore, and let the cobwebs be blown away.