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Roman ruins pre-dating Hadrian's Wall


Vindolanda Show full screen Vindolanda

A solid slice of Roman history

In the 1930s, archaeologist Eric Bailey bought the house at Chesterholm where the museum is now located.

He was interested in excavating the site and his sons, Robin and Anthony, and grandson, Andrew Birley, have continued with his work.

Excavations are undertaken each summer, with some of the archaeological deposits at depths of six metres.

The conditions at these depths have preserved thousands of artefacts, such as wooden writing tablets, that normally disintegrate in the ground.

This has provided historians with an opportunity to gain a fuller understanding of Roman life – military and otherwise – on the northern frontier.

In 2010, the remains of what is thought to be a girl, aged 8-10, with her hands tied, were uncovered in a shallow pit in what was the barrack room. She is believed to have been murdered about 1,800 years ago.

Along with ongoing excavations (in season) and excavated remains, a full size replica of a section of Hadrian’s Wall in both stone and timber can be seen on the site.


Vindolanda in Northumberland National Park.

An exhibition of Roman helmets and clothing at Vindolanda.

Near Chesterholm. Admission charge. Car parking. Toilets. Cafe.

Visit for: A dose of the Roman frontier pre-dating Hadrian’s Wall itself. Vindolanda is still being excavated in the summer.

The amazing ruins include barracks and a bath house and there are replicas of a temple, shop and house.

The museum is full of Roman treasures including leather purses, tent pegs and jewellery. For more, click here.

Vindolanda in Northumberland National Park.

The museum and picnic area at Vindolanda.

Roman Army Museum

See Emperor Hadrian’s astonishing military vision brought to life at this award winning accessible museum.

Roman Army Museum display

Using modern technology, the interactive displays will transport you back nearly 2,000 years to Roman times for a truly memorable time travel experience. Highlights include the Edge of Empire real 3D movie, a Latin classroom with a holographic teacher and on display is the only surviving helmet crest from the Roman Empire!

Find out more by visiting their website –


Bardon Mill, Northumberland, NE47 7JN

Getting There

Car: From the A1, follow the A69 and look for the Vindolanda turn-off.

Bus: The Hadrian’s Wall Bus takes you to the fort. Click here for more details.

  • It is noted for the Vindolanda tablets, among the most important finds of military and private correspondence (written on wooden tablets) found anywhere in the Roman Empire.
  • There are 752 tablets housed at the British Museum and more are uncovered at Vindolanda all the time.
Point of Interest

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Planning in the National Park

Northumberland National Park Authority is the statutory Planning Authority for the area of the Northumberland National Park. View our planning pages here.

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