Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Wall Mile 10

As we continue down the hill through Throckley, passing the old reservoir, the berm pits continue beneath the road. Our environment is still suburban but housing is beginning to crowd us in. Here the survival of Hadrian's wall is always on a knife edge, the remains sparse and frequently heavily damaged when excavated. But it is still there and boldly continues to exert its influence on the landscape as we make for the terminus.

The Military Road is soon interrupted by a roundabout at the point where a major drove road from Scotland to England crossed it. Long used for taking stock south and across the Tyne by the ford at Newburn, in 1640 it saw a Scottish Covenanter army use it, leading to a skirmish by the river which became known as the Battle of Newburn (although it was less of a 'battle' and more of a 'flight' on the part of the English royalist forces). Was there another transhumance gateway through Hadrian's Wall here? We don't know, but such drove roads tend to be old.