Hadrian's Wall - Milecastle 49 - Harrow's Scar

Milecastle

Milecastle 49 (Harrows Scar) was a – Milecastle on Hadrian’s Wall. The mile fort stood on a cliff – known today as “Harrow’s Scar” – on the western edge of the Irthing Gorge. In 1939 a building inscription was found in the rubble. It is now in the Tullie House Museum in Carlisle. The fortification itself was made in 1953 by Ian Archibald Richmondexcavated. He uncovered the remains of one of the gates and the previous building, a wood-earth fortification. The latter measured 16.6 meters from north to south and 15.4 meters from east to west. Archaeological investigations carried out in 1967 on the west wall of the mile fort confirmed the results of Ian Richmond. The crew barracks inside could not be examined. The MK was probably surrounded by a double moat. It was built in stone in the 2nd century and measured 23 meters from north to south and 20 meters from east to west. Sections of the western and eastern part of the wall as well as remains of the interior buildings are still visible. An altar dedicated to the forest god Silvanus was also found near the fort (today in the collection of the Tullie House Museum).

The section of Hadrian’s Wall west of the Irthing River was initially closed with a peat wall; there was probably too little stone material in the area. It stretched from Harrow Scar to the south side of the east gate of Birdoswold Fort, then continued on the west side to the west gate. The peat wall was also replaced by a stone wall at the end of the second century AD. This 874-meter-long section was 2.2 meters wide on average and stood on a three-meter-wide foundation that was over a meter deep. The fort area is under the protection of the English Heritage.