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Hadrian’s Wall

The Hadrian’s Wall Adventure (Part 3) – Haydon Bridge, Chesters Fort & Museum, Brunton Turret and Corbridge Roman Town

By Adventures, Friends & Family, Happiness & Joy, Life, NatureNo Comments

My friend Simon and I went back up to Hadrian’s Wall to continue our adventure following the Wall from one side of the country to the other, stopping at various sites of interest along the way.

We started this adventure last year in Cumbria. You can read about and see photos from last year in the The Hadrian’s Wall Adventure Part 1 and Part 2.

The day was dry and sunny, but it did get colder in the late afternoon. So here’s where we went, along with photos:


Haydon Bridge.

Haydon Bridge
Haydon Bridge is a village with an old bridge (photoed left) across River South Tyne. The village is very quaint and worth a short visit. Haydon Bridge is now a walk way, but would have been used as a crossing for people, horsemen and carts. Essential Info:

  • Free parking is available on roads in the village.
  • Public Toilets are free to use and on both sides of the bridge.
  • The village has several pubs, a chemist, a chippy, a Tandoori restaurant and some guest houses.
  • Recommended for a short visit. The bridge is the only thing of note that we saw.

We decided to stop at Hexham next. Hexham is a bigger village than Haydon Bridge, with an Abbey. However as we drove around the town centre looking for parking, all signage said Parking Disc Required, but no signage gave instructions or directions on how to get a parking disc. It was a busy Saturday afternoon, with some event on at the Abbey, so we decided to give Hexham a miss.


Chesters Fort & Museum
Chesters Fort & Museum is magnificent and is a site maintained by English Heritage. It has loads to see and do including: the remains of a Fort and Bath House, a picnic area, spy holes that show where Hadrian’s Wall would have been (including across the North Tyne river), a brilliant museum full of stone works (statues, altars, depiction of Gods & Goddesses) and tools, weapons and jewellery, a gift shop, a tea room and toilets. The only downside to this fantastic attraction is that the cost of parking along with its reasonable admission price makes it an overall an expensive experience.

The signs dotted throughout the attraction are really informative and is probably the best example of signage throughout my entire Hadrian’s Wall Adventure adventure. For example, one sign read that about 500 horses and men would have been stationed at this Fort. The next sign read that a horse urinates and defecates 12KGS of waste a day. This was my Fact of the Day. Just think of all that waste, along with that of the humans.

Essential Info:

  • Remains of a Fort and Bath House.
  • Also includes a Museum, Picnic Area, Tea Room and Gift Shop.
  • Toilets available.
  • Highly Recommended.
  • Admission Price: £7.30 for an adult with gift aid (£6.60 without).
  • Opening Times: Vary throughout the year. View here.
  • Parking: Pay and Display at £3.00.

Here are photos from Chesters Fort & Museum:


Chesters Fort (1) – 500 Horsemen would have lived in this Fort.


Chesters Fort (2) – Remains of Stables.


Chesters Fort (3) – Entrance Gatehouse.


Chesters Fort (4) – Hadrian’s Wall will have run across the North Tyne river at this point. You can see the continuation of the Wall on the other side of the bank.


Chesters Fort (5) – The Roman Baths.


Chesters Fort (6) – The Roman Baths Porch.


Chesters Fort (7) – The Roman Baths.


Chesters Fort (8) – Presumably a trough for the horses to eat/drink from.


Chesters Fort (8) – The Roman Baths, a cold bath.


Chesters Fort (9) – The Roman Baths.


Chesters Fort (10) – The Roman Baths Steam Room.


Chesters Fort (11) – South East Angle Tower.


Chesters Fort (12) – Possibly a storage room or stronghold.


Chesters Fort (13) – A well in the main villa, which still had water in,


Chesters Fort (14) – Flooring.


Chesters Fort (15) – More flooring.


Chesters Museum (1) – The Clayton Museum was a brilliant museum full of stone works (statues, altars, depiction of Gods & Goddesses), as well as tools, weapons and jewellery.


Chesters Museum (2) – Entrance. Inside stone works lined each of the walls.


Chesters Museum (3) – A headless statue of Juno Regina (Queen Juno). Apparently Queen Juno was one of the most important deities in Roman Religion, known as the protector and special counsellor of the state.


Chesters Museum (4) – Various altars.

Then we drove through a village called Wall. After passing through Wall we saw signs for Brunton Turret.


Brunton Turret
Brunton Turret is remains of a Turret that would have been one of many along Hadrian’s Wall. It’s in a famers field and there is a designated Parking place at the side of the road. It is a quick site to visit that will take you all of 5 minutes to walk to and see. Photos are below.

Essential Info:

  • Remains of a Turret and some of Hadrian’s Wall, in a farmers field.
  • Free parking is in designated space at the side of the road.
  • Well signposted.

Brunton Turret (1) – Hadrian’s Wall.


Brunton Turret (2) – Where the soldiers would have been stationed.


Corbridge Roman Town – We chose not to go in, as it looked very similar to Chesters Fort & Museum which we had visited earlier in the day.

Corbridge Roman Town
Corbridge Roman Town is another Roman Town, maintained by English Heritage. We opted not to visit this site, as it looked very similar to Chesters Fort & Museum. Essential Info:

  • Remains of a Roman Town.
  • Also includes a Museum, Picnic Area and Gift Shop.
  • Toilets available.
  • Admission Price: £7.20 for an adult with gift aid (£6.50 without).
  • Opening Times: Vary throughout the year. View here.
  • Free Parking on site.

Next year Simon and I plan to visit Newcastle to complete our tour across Hadrian’s Wall from one side of the country to the other.

Blog soon,



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Some Plans for 2017

By Adventures, Friends & Family, Happiness & Joy, LifeNo Comments

I was ill for the first few weeks of January. At one point, I took to my bed for three days. As a result, I haven’t finished deciding on or writing up my goals and new experiences for 2017.

But I have started making plans. So far my plans include:

  • A Big Birthday Bash for Chrys. Still do most of the planning and organising for. Still to source of suitable present.
  • Finish my tour along Hadrian’s Wall (along with ancient sites of interest) with Simon. Date set. Still to plan in more detail.
  • My Birthday. Still to sort. My birthday is on a Sunday this year.
  • Kay & Alex’s Wedding. Hotel booked. Still to buy a new suit and source of suitable present.
  • An adventure to see Stonehenge, Glastonbury and Amesbury over two days with Simon. Dates set and hotel booked. Further planning needed.
  • A visit to Sheffield Botanical Gardens with Simon. Date set.
  • To see Despicable Me 3 with Steve or Neil, Rhianne & Ethan.
  • To see Sister Act with mum. I got tickets off mum for Christmas.
  • To Celebrate Samhain. Still to arrange.

Take care,



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A Review of Goals & New Experiences for 2016

By Books & Authors, Happiness & Joy, Life, ThinkingNo Comments
goals-and-adventures-large Goals for throughout the year:
Unticked Box Read & Review at least 20 books.
I have read 19 books this year and reviewed 17 of them. The two books that I have not reviewed yet, will be reviewed in January 2017. See my Book List 2016 for a list books that I’ve read this year, along with links to reviews I’ve written for each book.

Unticked Box Watch & Review 6 films.
I can remember watching at least 5 films this year, they include: The Giver, Star Wars: The Force Awakens, The Good Dinosaur, Star Trek Beyond and Absolutely Fabulous: The Movie. However I’ve not done a review of a single film this year.

Tick Box Bullet Point To create more time for creative projects.
I am more than happy with my creative output this year. I’ve reduced my working hours, so that I can still afford to live, but so that I have more time for creative projects. I have also been careful about how I use the limited time and energy I have to get the most out of it. This combination of working less and using my time and energy better has significantly increased my creative output.

Tick Box Bullet Point To complete 2 creative projects.
I’ve completed 12 creative projects this year. This is a massive achievement when compared with my creative output in previous years. For more details of my creative projects see: 11 Creative Projects That I Never Intended To Do… This Year and The Finished Project (candle making project).

Tick Box Bullet Point To get up-to-date with my financial obligations and continue to reduce the balance on my debts.
I am up-to-date on my mortgage and other household bills. I have continued to reduce the balance on my debts. I have paid monies back to family that I owed monies to.

Unticked Box Save up for and buy a new rug and corner sofa for the living room.
I still need to do this. The sofa is getting in desperate need of replacement. Both of these will be goals for 2017.

Unticked Box To give up smoking.
I’m still working on this on a semi regular basis.

Monthly Goals

Tick Box Bullet Point Start a new creative project.
I published my latest short story Soulmates, here is an excerpt:

I also wrote two blog posts that I’d been thinking about and planning to write for at least the last few years: 5 Wise Quotes from Albus Dumbledore and A Tale Of Overcoming Adversity.

Unticked Box Take it easy.
This didn’t really happen. This year has was exceptionally busy. Most of time due to circumstances beyond my control.

Tick Box Bullet Point See Mary Poppins with Mum, etc.
Done. I blogged about it here: Mary Poppins Live at The Palace Theatre, Manchester: Marvellous, Magical and Magnificent.

Unticked Box Treat yourself to a reiki treatment.
I haven’t had a single reiki treatment this year. At the start of the year it was due to lack of money. Towards the end of the year it has been due to my Reiki Pracitioner changing where she works.

Unticked Box See a sunrise.
This has been a goal for the last few years. I think I need to take a day of annual leave off work to experience this next year. So this will be a goal/new experience for 2017.

Tick Box Bullet Point Celebrate your 30th in style, including a night out in Newcastle and a family meal.
I didn’t manage the night out in Newcastle, but did do the family meal which was wonderful. I blogged about the family meal here: My Thirtieth Birthday.

Tick Box Bullet Point Visit Chester Zoo Islands Exhibit.
I actually did this in May, as part of my birthday celebrations. See A Day Trip to Chester Zoo.
Tick Box Bullet PointStart a new creative project.
One weekend in June I wrote, edited and then published an article on The History of the National Health Service (NHS). It was a creative project that I have been thinking about for sometime and I was proud of myself because I had finally done it.

Tick Box Bullet PointSpend time in nature. Go for walks in places of natural beauty.
I visited Astley Hall Park with my friend Simon. I would have liked to spend more time in nature during July, but the variable weather influenced what I was able to do.
Tick Box Bullet Point Visit a botanical gardens.
I visited Southport Botanic Gardens (Churchtown) with Simon in August.

Tick Box Bullet Point Visit a castle, one that you haven’t been to before.
Okay, technically I didn’t visit a new castle this year. But I did do a tour of acient sites along Hadrian’s Wall with Simon. See The Hadrian’s Wall Adventure (Part 1) and The Hadrian’s Wall Adventure (Part 2). A goal/new experience for 2017 will be the finishing off of The Hadrian’s Wall Adventure, meaning that Simon and I will have followed the wall from one end of the country to the other.

Tick Box Bullet Point Read in the horror genre. Maybe some Stephen King.
I read Under The Dome by Stephen King, which I reviewed here. I also read The Stand by Stephen King, which I reviewed here. Although I’m not sure that either of them was in the horror genre, I’ve ticked it off as completed.

Tick Box Bullet Point Celebrate Samhain.
Celebrated Samhain in style with my friends Simon & Chrys. Great food, drink, fire, music and company.

Tick Box Bullet Point Take it easy.
I tried to do the bare-minimum in November. This was probably why there were only a few blog posts in November.

Unticked Box Bring people together to celebrate Yule.
Yule fell on a Wednesday, which made it difficult to arrange a get together. Perhaps I will put this on future goals when it lands on a weekend.

This year I’ve completed 14 of 22 goals/new experiences for 2016. That’s over half and not at all bad when you consider the 12 creative projects I’ve completed this year, along with how busy the year has been otherwise.

Blog soon,


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Places that I’ve Visited this Year

By Adventures, Friends & Family, Happiness & Joy, Life, Nature, ThinkingNo Comments

As the dark, cold, winter nights draw in and signal the end of the year I’ve took some time out to reflect on the places that I’ve visited this year.


Birdozwald Roman Fort – Photo Opportunities, especially on the outside of the fort.

In May my good friend Simon and I did the first half of our tour along Hadrian’s Wall.

We started at the Cumbria end of the Wall and worked our way along, stopping at several historical sites along the way. In one day managed to enter Northumberland, stopping at Walltown Quarry and Vindoland Roman Fort & Museum.

If you want to see exactly where we went, along with photos and essential info for each place see The Hadrian’s Wall Adventure Part 1 and The Hadrian’s Wall Adventure Part 2.

Next year we are having another day out, starting at Vindoland Roman Fort & Museum and working our way along to the end of Hadrian’s Wall.


The Elephants.

As part of my birthday celebrations I invited family and friends to spend the day with me at Chester Zoo. I really wanted to see the Islands Exhibit.

Unfortunately not many people could make it on the day to share the experience. The Islands Exhibit was also rather disappointing.

But the well-established exhibits were great. My favourites were: the Elephants enclosure, the Butterfly house, the Giraffes, the Chimps, the Flamingos, the Lions, the speckled Bear and the Black Rhinos.


Astley Hall Park/Grounds (3)

In July Simon and I set out to one of our faviourate places – Rivington. But unknown to us, there was some sort of cycling event and with many roads closed we couldn’t work out how to actually get there.

So instead Simon directed me to Astley Hall Park. It was a place that I had never been to before and is beautiful.

We had a walk around the park, stopping to take photos. Then we had coffee and cake in the on-site cafe.

I have wanted to visit a botanical gardens for sometime now. I wanted to meander inside a giant glass greenhouse full of exotic plants and trees. I even put it as a goal for 2016. So I did a Google search looking for my nearest botanical gardens, found Southport Botanic Gardens (Churchtown) and dragged Simon along.

It wasn’t exactly what I had in mind. No giant glass greenhouse. But the weather was sunny and warm and in its own way it was totally charming. The small park was filled with trees from across the world. I just wish there had been some sort of guide to what species the trees were and where in the world they had come from.

There was an unexpected aviary and a small yet delightful Victorian gardens. There was another cafe, so of course we stopped for coffee and cake.


The Victorian Garden (1).

York is known for its iconic Abbey and shopping. It’s a place that I had never been to until this year.

Simon and I visited York and Knaresborough. York is architecturally splendid and has building from various times in its long history. We did visit The Shambles, but didn’t really buy much.

Probably the greatest thing about our visit is the fun we had together. We talked and laughed lots. Here are two photos of me being silly (click on any image for full size):


Me racing on a wooden sheep.


My arrival at Knaresborough Castle.


York Abbey (from a distance).

So these are the places that I’ve visited this year. I think it’s time to start planning for 2017.

Blog soon,


I aim for posts on this blog to be informative, educational and entertaining. If you have found this post useful or enjoyable, please consider making a contribution by Paypal:

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