Wall Mile 61

Wall Mile 61 [HB 336–7]

Now a lane bordered by hedges is perhaps not the most inspiring way to experience a major Roman mural frontier, but it is pleasant countryside, few cars venture along here, and there are far worst places you could be than here, so let’s enjoy the experience. The ditch is spasmodically visible to our right as a depression, puddle, or just slightly different vegetation.

The point of departure: the Trail quits the Wall

The point of departure: the Trail quits the Wall

We are just beginning to get used to our stroll along a country lane, when the Trail suddenly has a tantrum and dives off to the south, driven by an urgent need to cling to the shores of the River Eden. At the point of the bifurcation, and immediately to our south, a series of temporary camps are known from aerial photography, possibly labour camps associated with the construction of the Wall, although they may equally be associated with the passage of troops along the Stanegate (which passes through Crosby-on-Eden, 1km to the south).

Heading westwards, abandoned by the Trail

Heading westwards, abandoned by the Trail

We, brave souls that we are, continue with our theme – which, if you recall, is Hadrian’s Wall – and plod straight on along the lane. Ultimately, we arrive at a sudden ninety-degree bend to the right. The Wall, of course, ploughs straight on and Milecastle 62 lies just beyond the hedge ahead of us.

Milecastle 62 (Walby East) [HB 337; haiku]

The site of Milecastle 62

The site of Milecastle 62 with Walby in the distance

Milecastle 62 was located by Maclauchlan at the point where the lane embarks upon its short detour to the north. In 1999, test excavations identified the heavily robbed remains of the long-axis milecastle, as well as its turf predecessor. There are no visible remains.