Low Borrowbridge Roman Fort

Hadrianic Auxiliary Fort (117 to 138) and Vicus

The Low Borrowbridge fort and its civilian settlement (or vicus) of Roman date, situated on a spur formed by the River Lune and Barrow Beck and contained within three separate areas of protection. The fort is aligned roughly north-south and is parallelogram-shaped in plan measuring approximately 140m by 105m. The fort is surrounded by a rampart and multiple ditches which are partially preserved as earthworks. The majority of the rampart stands to a height of 1.5m and is clearly visible on all but the south side. The rampart is mainly visible as an earthen bank but partial excavation has shown the defences to include sandstone, limestone and slate walling, the remains of which survive beneath the turf. On the north side there is a double ditch with traces of a counterscarp whilst on the west and south sides there are double ditches with an average width of 7m and with feint traces of additional ditches, especially in the south west corner. There is no clear earthwork remains of a ditch on the east side, however, there are outworks in the form of a 1m high and 2m wide earthen bank which runs above the River Lune parallel to the east side of the fort at a distance of 50m before turning to join the main ditch system at the north east corner of the fort. The ditches and ramparts on the west side of the fort are interrupted by a 1.8m wide single portal gateway with the stone foundations of the gateway protruding through the turf.
To the south of the fort are the remains of its civilian settlement, which are preserved as cropmarks and below ground archaeological deposits, the most significant of which include a bath house built in two phases and a cemetery, both of which were used during the 2nd to 3rd centuries AD. Several excavations have demonstrated the significant extent of archaeological remains related to both the fort and its vicus.
Excavations in 1950 indicated that the fort was occupied during much of the Roman occupation of Britain with evidence of multiple episodes of destruction and reconstruction. The lower parts of the rampart and wall are understood to be dated to the Hadrianic period whilst the upper parts date to the Severan period.

RIB 756 - Fragmentary funerary inscription

… 20 years ..


This figure, recollected by one of the workmen who made the discovery, referred presumably to the age or years of service of the soldier commemorated.

References for Low Borrowbridge

  • The Roman Inscriptions of Britain by R.G. Collingwood and R.P. Wright (Oxford 1965). 

Map References for Low Borrowbridge

NGRef: NY6001 OSMap: LR91

Roman Roads near Low Borrowbridge

N (18) to Brocavvm S (17) to Calacvm (Burrow in Lonsdale, Lancashire) Probable road: SW (10) to Alavana (Watercrook, Cumbria)

Sites near Low Borrowbridge Roman Fort