Vindolanda and the Roman Army Museum bring history alive. Vindolanda is a fascinating Roman fort and civilian settlement lying just to the south of Hadrian's Wall.
The Roman Army Museum lies adjacent to a Roman fort which has been given the Roman and post Roman names of Magna and Carvoran. In spite of the wealth of Roman inscriptions found at the site - more than any other wall fort has produced - little is known because the site has not been extensity excavated. Originally designed to safeguard an important junction of roads, it later became one of the Wall Forts of Hadrian’s Wall and was continuously in use until the early 5th century.
In April 1981 the Roman Army Museum opened its doors and in 1997, after a long mutual friendship, the Vindolanda Trust began to administer the site. The Roman Army Museum houses a unique collection of replicas and real artefacts (from Vindolanda's reserve collection) illustrating what life was like for the Roman soldiers stationed here on Rome's northern frontier.
The collection of replica Roman armour and weapons includes shields, swords, body armour, shoes and javelins. Also on display are replicas of two Roman standards, including an eagle standard, a Roman chariot, a Celtic chariot and a Roman wagon (reduced to ½ its full size). You can glimpse what life was like in the reconstructed barrack room and listen to Gaius tell you about his Roman storeroom. There are numerous other displays including information about the Emperor Hadrian and his life. There are also actual reconstructions of a temple, a shop, a dwelling and a small farm. On special occasions living history events are organised.