Hadrian's Wall

1900 years of Hadrian's Wall

In 2022 we celebrated 1900 years of the beginning of the construction of Hadrian’s Wall. Recognised locally, nationally, and internationally, as a cultural and historical asset of Outstanding Universal Value to humanity.

As part of the festival, we marked the occasion with a series of special events at Chesters and Birdoswald and a new exhibition at Corbridge Roman Town. We are also working with the National Lottery Heritage Fund to help local communities celebrate the anniversary. 

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Frontier Voices

Frontier Voices is an arts-based creative exploration of perceptions of Hadrian’s Wall. Diverse groups of participants and communities along the Wall came together to celebrate 1900 years of Hadrian’s Wall, sharing experiences and creating art. Click here to find out more about the project. At Birdoswald Roman Fort, artist Karen MacDougall held four poetry workshops. Dr Frances McIntosh and Helen Klimm from English Heritage, alongisde volunteers who shared their thoughts on the wall and what inspires them. You can see and read their poems at Birdoswald now.

Visit Birdoswald Roman Fort


Walltown Quarry, Greenhead, Brampton CA8 7HF

APERTURA by Ed Carter, Nicky Kirk and Tony Broomhead is an interactive sonic sculpture in the picturesque setting of Walltown Country Park.

The sculpture is made up of 1900 copper chimes, creating an evolving soundscape in the ever-changing breeze and inviting audiences to experience a constantly changing, interactive spectacle of shimmering light and sound. The sculpture will be on display until 16 October. Find out more about APERTURA here.

APERTURA has been commissioned by Northumberland County Council on behalf of the Hadrian’s Wall Partnership for Hadrian’s Wall 1900 Festival. It is funded by the North of Tyne Combined Authority.

Art Installation at Housesteads

The Future Belongs to What Was As Much As What Is

From Saturday 30 July till Sunday 30 October 2022, Housesteads Roman Fort looked a little different. An art installation on the site of the original gatehouse was created as part of the Hadrian’s Wall 1900th anniversary celebrations. 

Visitors were able to go inside the artwork and climb the stairs to the first floor to experience a view that hadn’t been seen since the Roman garrison kept watch here 1600 years ago!

The installation was dismantled at the beginning of November and the painted panels were given to members of the local community who had helped create the art work. 

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To celebrate 1900 years of Hadrian’s Wall, Chesters had a new exhibition which displayed nearly two millenia of keepsakes, including one of the Wall’s earliest souvenirs, the Rudge Cup. Made around 130AD, the Rudge Cup is a small bronze bowl with the names of five forts inscribed on it and an illustration of the wall. It is thought to have been made for a high-ranking soldier or civil official who was stationed on the Wall.

The Rudge Cup joined a host of keepsakes from the Wall, including a large replica bust of Hadrian, a piece of the wooden fort at Carlisle and a tin filled with scavenged fragments, which were discovered on a visit to Chesters in 1891, according to the handwritten note attached to it.

The exhibition came to an end on 30 October 2022.

Extraordinary Exploration at Corbridge Roman Town

Extraordinary Exploration; The Edwardian discovery of Coria showcased dozens of photographs of the local labourers who worked at Corbridge over nine years. These inexperienced excavators helped uncover remains of extraordinary quality and international renown, including the Corbridge Lion, but have remained anonymous for over 100 years. Now, following new research, we have been able to name 11 men and hope that the exhibition and the newly colourised photographs will lead to more men being identified. 

The exhibition came to an end on 30 October 2022, but you can find out more about the research and excavators by clicking the link below.

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Hadrian’s Wall 1900 Community Grants

The National Lottery Heritage Fund (NLHF) has awarded English Heritage, on behalf of the Hadrian’s Wall Partnership, a grant which will help local communities get involved in Hadrian’s Wall 1900 Festival. £70,000 will be made available in Community Grants to go directly to organisations and groups along the length of Hadrian’s Wall to mark the festival through events, initiatives and activities. An application process will open towards the end of April when details will be available on the Hadrian’s Wall 1900 website.

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