Hadrian’s Wall – Milecastle 42 – Melkridge
Roman Mile Castle in Hexham
Milecastle 42 (Cawfields) is a milecastle on Hadrian’s Wall. The mile fort is located on the ridge of the Cawfields Crags and is one of the most famous structures of this type on Hadrian’s Wall. The choice of location shows how uncompromisingly the distances between the individual mile forts were adhered to by the Roman engineers. Its north gate opens onto a steep slope that is impassable for carts and riders, although to the west there is a much more suitable passage (hole gap) just a few meters away. The mile fort measures 19 m × 15 m and covers an area of 0.03 hectares. Its ramparts are 2.4 m wide, but the rampart at this point is only 1.8 m wide. It was probably made according to the original plans built, during the construction of the wall section at Cawfields a more massive construction was probably omitted in order to accelerate the completion of the wall.
Some temporary marching camps are also known in the region north of Cawfields. One is directly north of the wall, four south of the vallum at Haltwhistle Burn , two more at Markham Cottage in the southwest, another in the southeast near Stanegate at Milestone House and two in the apron of the wall northwest at Burn Head and Chesters Pike. At Cawfields, some milestones could also be found along the Military Road. Two are now in the Chesters Museum, the third in situ south of the Mile Fort.
Visiting Hadrian’s Wall – Milecastle 42 – Melkridge