Chesters (Cilurno) Roman Fort

Picture of Chesters Roman Site

Grid Reference:
Owned by
English Heritage
28 March - 30 September 10am-6pm daily
1 October - 1 November 10am-5pm daily
Winter 10am-4pm Sat & Sun only
Public Transport
AD122 bus
Car Park
English Heritage car park
Toilets, Shop, Museum

Chesters has a well preserved fort and a good museum which houses many of the finds from the fort. It also has one of the best preserved bath houses. The bath house here is the one used as a model for the reconstruction at Wallsend.

Chesters has several very interesting features, one of these is an underground vault. Most forts would have had one of these located underneath one of the rooms in the headquarter block. The probably accounted for an old local legend that a Roman cavalry regiment had occupied Chesters with their stables underground. In fact the vault would have been the strong room of the fort.

The legend is partly correct as the garrison was a purely cavalry regiment, one of the few on the wall. Only seven cavalry units are known to have garrisoned Hadrian's wall, with only four forts (Stanwix, Chesters, Halton Chesters and Benwell) having entirely cavalry units. The area around Chesters would have been good cavalry country and the Romans seemed to like to keep cavalry units near the main routes into Scotland (Portgate near Corbridge and at Carlisle).

Picture of Bridge Abuttment at Chesters Roman Fort

Near here are the remains of the Roman bridge abutment for their bridge across the North Tyne. To reach these go out of the site and turn right, then head back to the roundabout by the 'George' hotel, cross the bridge over the river and take the stile on the right. Walk along this path for a few hundred yards and you will find the Roman bridge abutment is directly opposite the bath house at Chester Roman fort.

Picture of Brunton turret

There is also a good section of wall and a turret on the other side of the river at Brunton. To get to this take the first road on the right after the bridge (to Acomb and Hexham). The stretch of wall is by the first layby. There is no public footpath between this and the bridge abutment.