Arbeia Roman Fort

Building South Shields Tyne And Wear

Arbeia Roman Fort

Building In South Shields, Tyne And Wear

A reconstruction of a gatehouse and buildings on the original foundations of the Roman buildings.

  Add To Bucket List   I Have Visited This Place

Get 2 points if you have visited this place. Already visted by 12 VIPs.

Login to the VIP area to add places to your bucket list, mark them as visited and more importantly see where you rank on the league table.

A roman walks into a bar, holds up 2 fingers and says “I'll have 5 beers!”

Once you're finished tittering, let us introduce to you to the Arbeia Roman Fort in South Shields. Situated in the middle of a housing estate and only a five minute walk from the seafront, it is the most extensively excavated Roman military supply base in the Empire.

You might be thinking this is in pretty good shape for someone that is nearly 2,000 years old, and you would be right, as this is actually just a reconstruction of what the West Gate would have looked like. There aren't many places in the country where you can see buildings like this brought to life.

The original Arbeia fort was built in AD160 by the Sixth Legion and as it was right next to the North Sea, then it was perfect for offloading supplies from the large ships for distribution inland and also there to protect the main sea route to Hadrian's Wall.

There was a headquarters in the middle, two granaries down the sides and a Commanding Officer's house with barracks and workshops in the quadrants. The first garrison stationed here contained 500 cavalry recruited from what is now modern day Hungary.

Between AD 222 and AD 235 an additional seven new granaries were added and remained occupied throughout the rest of third and fourth, until the romans left Britain in the 5th century.

It was rumoured that the fort continued to be occupied and was the birthplace of the Northumbrian King Oswin. However without the expertise of the Romans looking after the place, it fell into disrepair.

In the 1870s the site was first excavated and then 100 years later in 1970 all modern buildings were cleared from the site. Following that in 1986, the West Gate, barracks and Commanding Officer's house have been reconstructed on their original foundations to showcase what it would have looked like back in the day. This is pretty much what you see now.

If you're wondering where the name Arbeia came from, it's Latin for 'place of the Arabs' and relates to the regiments in South Shields being recruited from the middle east.

It is managed by Tyne and Wear Museums and is free entry. There is also a museum to visit and you can climb to the top of the West Gate.

Where Is Arbeia Roman Fort

Where Is It?

What three words

Lat / Long
55.00411, -1.431974
Show Place On Google Maps

Where To Park?

There is off street parking near to the fort.

Simon Hawkins

Place contributed by Simon Hawkins

Thanks for checking out this place on the Fabulous North! I do enjoy a wander out in to the countryside trying to find hidden gems that not many people know about. You can't beat a rogue Pele tower up a remote hill or a mysterious stone circle or a stunning waterfall secluded in a forest.

More Places In South Shields

Find more fabulous places in South Shields, Tyne And Wear and if you know of a place we haven't listed, then let us know.
Whitburn Arch
Standing Stone South Shields Tyne And Wear

A small rock arch off the coast in South Shields near Souter Lighthouse.

Dolly Peel Statue
Statue South Shields Tyne And Wear

A statue to local heroine Dolly Peel, a smuggler, fighter against the pressgang and eventually nurse.

South Marine Park
Landscape South Shields Tyne And Wear

A Victorian Public Park on South Shields seafront that is part of a 4km chain of parks.

More Buildings

So this building wasn't enough and you want more? Don't worry we have you covered.
Penshaw Monument
Building Sunderland Tyne And Wear

A memorial in the style of an ancient Greek temple on Penshaw Hill owned by the National Trust.

Gunpowder House
Building Seahouses Northumberland

A small stone building used to store the explosives during the construction of the seahouses pier and harbour.

Dove Marine
Building Cullercoats Tyne And Wear

A research and teaching laboratory which formed part of the School of Marine Science and Technology at Newcastle University. It is now part of the larger School of Natural and Environmental Sciences.

Fabulous North On Facebook
Find Us On Facebook

We post all our new places daily on our Facebook Groups page, so join the group today and be notified when we add a new place.

Share this Place!