Wall Mile 55

Wall Mile 55 [HB 328]

The Wall leaves the eastern end of Walton and heads downhill, the ditch being clearly visible from the lane along which the National Trail passes (as does more than a little traffic, it should be noted, so care is advisable).

Ditch in the field

Ditch in the field

Before crossing Dovecote Bridge, we may look through the gate to our left and see an English Heritage sign for a section of consolidated curtain wall that was formerly visible here during the summer months (being covered with straw and buried during the winter). Unfortunately, despite these precautions, the soft red sandstone weathered badly and the section had to be permanently buried. It would have been the westernmost portion of consolidated curtain wall, but now it is not. We have to wait a while for that pleasure.

Reburied Wall

Reburied Wall

Crossing the bridge, the Trail originally followed the Wall across country, but for several years now there has been diversion in place that forces the murophiliac to stick to the road and risk the traffic for a while longer. Climbing from the valley, the road bends round to the left and, finally, a sign to the right directs us once more onto the course of the wall, still marked by hedgerows and fence lines. Following the Trail, before we get to the first stile, we pass the site of Milecastle 55.

Wall Mile 55 from the air

Wall Mile 55 from the air

Milecastle 55 (Low Wall) [HB 328; haiku]

The position of Milecastle 55 (Low Wall) was confirmed by excavation in 1900. An altar to Cocidius was found at Howgill in the 18th century, not far away, so may well have originated in the milecastle (as others have done).

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