Now people who know me, or have been reading my blog for a while might have an inkling that I love Hadrian’s wall. I’m a Romanist through and through, particularly the Roman antics round the North East. You can ask me anything about Arbeia and Segedunum Roman forts and I can probably tell you. So it was fantastic to see that to mark the 1600th anniversary of the demise of the Roman empire (now define demise or end… but thats a whole different matter) the people in the know decided to illuminate the wall.
It was a beautiful day for it, clear blue skies. It was fantastic to be up at the wall for sunset. Truly stunning. Normally you go early in the morning and are done by tea time and miss the spectacle of the sunset. We went with the Haltwhistle walking group, enjoyed a really pleasant walk past some very interesting lime Kilns and a brick works (industrial archaeology is in my blood too from my Geevor days) to a perfect vantage point, a view of 16 of the cell lighting points. It was really good. You can see our photos on flickr here
It was a success and I thoroughly enjoyed the evening, however, it wasn’t really what I expected; it wasn’t as big or as bright as I thought it would be. A few of the lights were lit before they were meant to, and there were obviously technical problems, so there were big gaps where lights should have been. And the headlights from the snaking line of cars along the military road were brighter then the lights along the wall. Nevertheless, it was beautiful to see a landscape that I love in a completely different light. I hope they do it again in the future and learn from this time round.