Consisting of an earth rampart, ditch and Military Road - all of which ran for 37 miles between Bo’ness and Old Kilpatrick - the Wall served as Rome’s Northernmost frontier for two decades. Although less famous than Hadrian’s Wall, its design was more sophisticated and clearly incorporated the lessons identified from building and maintaining the southern frontier.
Shortly after Antoninus Pius became Emperor in AD 138, Roman military forces swept into Scotland reclaiming territory abandoned fifty years earlier and marking an end of years of retrenchment, rather than expansion, of the Empire. On the narrowest neck of land on the British Isles, between the Firth of Forth and the Clyde, a new frontier was built - the Antonine Wall.
The Antonine Wall is a hidden gem and a 'must see' for anyone interested in the Romans. Much of the frontier has been destroyed for the Roman engineers were just too efficient. When the Canal, Railway and Motorway builders arrived they could not better their second century counterparts and followed a similar route to their destination destroying much of the heritage as did the house builders attempting to meet the needs of the expanding nineteenth and twentieth century populations. Nevertheless segments of the frontier remain and walking the line the visitor cannot help but be impressed as it darts between summits, towers above the Carron and Kelvin valleys and overlooks the approaches from the Campsie Fells and Kilsyth Hills.