CHESTERS ROMAN FORT
 Chollerford, Hexham, Northumberland, NE46 4EU
Cilurnum or Cilurvum (Chesters) was a fort on Hadrian's Wall mentioned in the Notitia Dignitatum. It is now identified with the fort found at Chesters (also known as Walwick Chesters to distinguish it from other sites named
Chesters in the vicinity) near the village of 
WalwickNorthumberlandEngland. It was built in 123 AD, just after the wall's completion.

Cilurnum is considered to be the best preserved 
Roman cavalry fort along Hadrian's Wall. The site is now preserved by English Heritage as Chesters Roman Fort. There is a museum on the site, housing finds from the fort and elsewhere along the wall. By the river are the remains of the Roman Baths (see lower photos). These are one of the best preserved in Britain.


The site guarded a bridge, Chesters Bridge, carrying the Military Way Roman road behind the wall across the River North Tyne. Massive abutments survive of this bridge across the river from the fort. Cilurnum was a cavalry fort at its foundation, for retaliatory raids into barbarian areas north of the wall, then given over to infantry later.

The Roman bridge at Chesters was built in two phases; the first during the construction of the wall between 122 and 130AD, and the second in AD192 to carry the Military Road across the River Tyne. The first bridge was built under Hadrian and was carried on eight massive stone piers. The easternmost of these piers can still be seen today, albeit built into the second bridge’s stonework. The width of this remaining pier (10 Roman feet) suggests that the first bridge was designed with the soul intention of carrying the broad wall across the river.

The second bridge was much more substantial than its predecessor, and was designed to carry road traffic across its four elegant arches. It is thought that the second bridge was made of stone, although some archaeologists believe that it was based on wooden foundations.

Hadrian himself encouraged the "Cult of Disciplina" among legions stationed at the wall, and an early inscription on
an altar dedicated to Disciplina, found in 1978, indicates the earliest known military presence was a wing of cavalry, 
ala Augusta ob virtutem appellata ("named Augusta because of its valour").

Inscriptions have also been found showing the Cohors I Delmatarum, from present-day Bosnia-Herzegovina (Yugoslavia), and the Cohors I Vangionum from Upper Rhineland in Germany were also stationed here. Four large Roman columns, believed to come from Cilurnum, may be seen supporting the south aisle in the church of St Giles at Chollerton, a couple of miles upstream from the fort.

Chesters Fort remained occupied byRoman forces until they were pulled out of the province in the late fourth/early
fifth century (the end of Roman occupation of Britain is generally cited as AD 409). The site may have remained in
use even after this withdrawl: some evidence exists of continued occupation but whether this was limited to
locals or the remains of a garrison fending for themselves is unknown. Over the subsequent centuries the site was quarried for its stone and was plundered until it came into the ownership of John Clayton, an individual fascinated in Roman antiquity.


Entry Prices... Visit website for prices etc HERE


Parking... On site / pay machine, room for 60 cars, 4 disabled bays.


Slide show - 53 photographs taken at Chesters Roman Fort.
How to get to Chesters Roman Fort