Roman Forts and Milecastles
Cumbria’s Lake District may be famous for its stunning scenery, mountains and glistening lakes, but thousands of visitors also flock to see the Roman Ruins.
Lake District attractions include a wealth of historical and cultural sites.
Remains of a 2nd century Roman fort are situated at the head of Lake Windermere in Ambleside. Galava Roman Fort was built during Emperor Hadrian’s reign to guard the road from Ravenglass, these impressive remains include the granary foundations and the commandant’s house.
At Pike Hill, Banks, you will find well-preserved remains of a turret used by Roman soldiers defending Hadrian’s Wall. Sections of the wall still stand on either sides of the turret.
The Roman Fort along Hadrian’s Wall at Gilsland, is one of the most beautiful. Surrounded by north Pennines scenery, this fort attracts historians from far and wide.
Hardknott was established in the early 2nd century AD and extensive, well preserved foundations reveal a commandant’s house, barracks, a parade ground and bath house. The spectacular location is in an exposed position below the summit of Hardknott Pass.
Hare Hill, near Banks village, is a short section of Hadrian’s Wall which stands at a height of almost 9 feet. The core of the wall is original but later re-facing has been done on the exterior surfaces.
A Roman milecastle on the western side of the River Irthing gorge is part of a well-preserved section of Hadrian’s Wall, stretching for over a mile across the east Cumbrian hills. Harrow’s Scar is connected to Birdoswald Roman Fort, one of the most important forts of its kind along the wall.
A pair of turrets that formed part of the Hadrian’s Wall defences, Leahill Turret was built around 122AD and is approximately 13.5 feet by 14.5 feet across.
The turret is constructed independently of the wall (i.e. it is not built into the wall itself, but stands beside it as a freestanding structure).
Poltross is one of the best preserved milecastles along Hadrian's Wall. The interior is 21.5 metres by 18.5 metres in size. Within the milecastle are remains of an oven, and a section of a stair leading up to the ramparts of the Wall.
Remains of a Roman bath house associated with the fort of Glannaventa can be found in Ravenglass. Though there is little to see of the fort, plenty of the bath house remains to explore. The walls stand to over 12 feet in height, making the bath house one of the tallest surviving Roman sites in northern England.
Whether you are looking for Lake District attractions, or somewhere special to stay, you will be spoilt for choice in the Lake District.