As English Tourism Week unfolds and World Heritage Day approaches the much talked about HW1900 festival announces a new batch of exciting events including a 1900th Beer, a Roman Camp Enactment, Adventure Quests and an After Dark Festival.
With activities celebrating life on the Wall from Roman times to the present day, this yearlong festival promises to whisk you back in time and celebrate 1900 years since the building of Hadrian’s Wall and this Easter is no exception.
A packed and ever-growing year-long programme is unfolding each month, with a diverse offer that’s been developed by communities, attractions, and organisations along the Wall.
Highlights for March & April include a Roman Beer launched by Twice Brewed at Newcastle Beer Festival using similar ingredients to what would have been available 1900 years ago; step into history every day of the Easter Holidays with family Adventure Quests at Chester’s Roman Fort and Birdoswald Roman Fort; a Roman Camp at Vindolanda with the Eighth Legion; and a not to be missed exhibition The Edwardian Discovery of Coria at Corbridge Roman Town, which tells the stories of the local labourers who worked hard to uncover the remains of the most northerly Town in Roman Britain during excavations between 1906 and 1914.
Also on offer is an immersive audio experience from BBC Radio 3’s After Dark Festival at Sage Gateshead, with five different podcasts recorded by award-winning composer and sound artist Rob Mackay at five locations where remains of Hadrian’s Wall can be found in Newcastle. Visitors are encouraged to visit those locations and listen to the rich audio landscape complemented by the words of writers and poets as they respond to the sounds of Tyne. Sticking with the night theme is the Northumberland Dark Skies exhibition at The Sill: National Landscape Discovery Centre– this free family focussed exhibition includes a gallery of night-time landscape photography, displays on what to see in the night sky and how to conserve our dark skies, complete with hands-on activities and a showcase of telescopes and meteorites.
Hadrian’s Wall 1900 Festival launched on Hadrian’s birthday on Monday 24 January 2022, and the yearlong programme will culminate with Saturnalia on 17-23 December 2022. Individuals, groups, venues and organisations along the length of the wall are being encouraged to get involved and be part of this incredible year by visiting https://1900.hadrianswallcountry.co.uk/ and submitting their own activities to the programme!
Jane, Lady Gibson, Chair of Hadrian’s Wall Partnership said: “It is fantastic to be able to welcome visitors to Hadrian’s Wall this Easter as we celebrate this world-renowned heritage site. It’s even more special that there are so many different activities on offer that will appeal to so many people. This Spring snapshot of upcoming activity is reflective of what is to come throughout the year and we urge everyone to keep checking the website as we add more events”
The HW1900 Festival programme to date is available to view at https://1900.hadrianswallcountry.co.uk/
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Hadrian’s Wall 1900 will celebrate the 1900th anniversary of the beginning of the construction of Hadrian’s Wall. It will commemorate 1900 years of history of the UNESCO World Heritage Site (WHS), recognised locally, nationally, and internationally, as a cultural and historical asset of Outstanding Universal Value to humanity.
Throughout 2022, a programme of events and activity which celebrates 1900 years will be presented by local societies, interest groups, community and arts organisations, creatives, local authorities, visitor attractions, venues and individuals. This will be across the length of the Hadrian’s Wall Frontiers of the Roman Empire UNESCO World Heritage Site, from Wallsend to Ravenglass (73 miles/118km of Wall, and 140 miles/215km in total).
From community events to high profile arts commissions, Hadrian’s Wall 1900 will provide opportunities for everyone to celebrate and find their connection to the World Heritage Site whether it be Roman history, dark skies, the natural environment, cultural diversity, food, music, the arts and more. Over 1m people live and work in the regions of Hadrian’s Wall WHS, the majority within the North of Tyne Combined Authority Area.
Hadrian’s Wall 1900 is a huge opportunity to unleash the recognised economic potential of Hadrian’s Wall’s cultural and heritage capital, and to spring back stronger after Covid-19.
The Festival will be made up of activity presented by local societies, interest groups community organisations, arts organisations, local creatives, local authorities, visitor attractions, venues, and individuals.
Hadrian’s Wall 1900 is coordinated by the Hadrian’s Wall Partnership in collaboration with local organisations, communities and individuals.
The Hadrian’s Wall Partnership is a voluntary body made up of organisations responsible for the UNESCO World Heritage Site status of Hadrian’s Wall.
Find out more about the partnership here.
Hadrian’s Wall Country is the brand used by the Hadrian’s Wall Partnership to promote the World Heritage Site to visitors. The brand was introduced in 2002 by the Hadrian’s Wall Tourism Partnership and conveys and reinforces values that encourage visitors, linking the World Heritage Site to the rural and urban landscape through which it runs.
The 150-mile Hadrian’s Wall frontier area runs from the western Roman coastal defences at Ravenglass, through Whitehaven, Workington and Maryport to Bowness-on-Solway, along Hadrian’s Wall through Carlisle and Hexham to Newcastle, Wallsend and South Shields. Along the wall there were around 80 milecastles and 160 turrets, a ditch to the north and the great defensive vallum earthwork to the south. 2022 is the 35th anniversary of the inscription of Hadrian’s Wall on the UNESCO World Heritage List, one of the first World Heritage Sites to be created in the UK. Today the Hadrian’s Wall frontier is part of the transnational World Heritage Site – Frontiers of the Roman Empire – which includes the Antonine Wall in Scotland and the roman defences across Europe from the Dutch coast to the mouth of the Danube . This represents the borderline of the Roman Empire at its furthest extent in the 2nd century AD. It stretched from the west coast of northern Britain through Europe to the Black Sea and from there to the Red Sea and across North Africa to the Atlantic coast
Visit the Hadrian’s Wall Country website here