Today started overcast and cleared to a cool cloudy day. Late start resulting in a boring drive up the M74 to Glasgow.
Yes, alright, we've been on the trail of castles and Roman ruins again but we bought the bulk tickets so we may as well use them. Today it was Carlisle Castle, Carlisle. This castle was built in the 12th century and the outer wall and some of the inner buildings remain built from the gray sandstone, Other parts use a red sandstone and show the extensive remodelling and extensions incorporates during the 13th and 14th centuries. Being so close to the Scottish border, the castle has played a major role in a lot of the historical episodes between Scotland and Britain.
The castle is in very good condition and a lot of the buildings inside the walls are from the 19th and 20th centuries. One of these holds Cumbria's Museum of Military Life. Another houses the Cumbria detachment of Army Cadets. Within the keep was an interesting series of display boards telling the story of the battles between Prince Charles Edward Stuart's Scottish Jacobites and the English over the control of the area and the castle.
After the castle we went back a few years in history to the Roman Occupation of Britain and the building of Hadrian's wall to keep the Scottish out. Building of the wall stretches across the country from the North Sea in the East to the Irish Sea in the West and is around 117.5 klms long. Commencing in 122AD, there were forts about every five miles and two turrets between forts. The wall was initially a combination of stone sections and some stone and earth sections. The stone and earth sections were later replaced to make the entire wall stone and was eventually completed about 6 years later. A lot of remains of the foundations are still visible but as usual, most of the upper stone has disappeared, most likely into other later buildings. We visited a site at Brampton, near Carlisle where there are quite long sections of the wall and turret foundations and at Birdoswald Farmhouse, there is substantial foundation remains of a fort.
With time getting tighter, we shortened the planned route from one of a scenic drive to a boring straight run up the M74. Starting with our drive into Scotland into the first village of Gretna/Gretna Green, Gretna Green is claimed to be the world's most popular wedding destination with wedding traditions going back to at least 1754 and is apparently known as a destination for runaway weddings.
From Gretna it was straight up to Glasgow and checked into the motel. Took a walk around the Quay and called it a night. Just got to this last line and the fire alarm has gone off. A false alarm apparently, I hope that doesn't happen again tonight when I'm asleep, being awake is bad enough.