|The site of Housesteads Roman Fort and Museum|
Due to its remote location, Housesteads, originally called Vercovicium, is the most well-preserved Roman Fort on Hadrian's Wall. It sits high on a hill on a break in the Whin Sill ridge near the very center of the wall (Castle Black, anyone?). Like all other Roman forts, this one was based on a standard design used throughout the Roman empire and included a barracks, granary, hospital, the commander's house, and the fort headquarters. This particular fort has the best preserved Roman latrines in all of Britain that still "flush" as designed. While all Roman forts had a decidedly Mediterranean style with central courtyards open to the sky, they made accommodations for the cool climate by designing radiant heating in the floors. Amazing! By the way, the 6-minute video housed in the small museum adjacent to the site is a must. It does a great job of succinctly describing how the fort was used and what it would have looked like when it was occupied by 800 Roman soldiers during it's heyday.
|The bases of columns are visible|
|The headquarters building in foreground with a view of the Northumbrian countryside in the background|
|Barracks once lined this avenue|
|Showing the design of radiant heated Roman floors.|
|The Roman latrine - wood bench seats would have lined the walls|