Rough Castle Fort is a Roman fort on the Antonine Wall. The wall was built around 143 AD and stretched from Bo'ness on the River Forth to Old Kilpatrick on the River Clyde. The fort is the best preserved of the 19 forts constructed along the length of the Wall. Built against the southern rear face of the Wall, the fort was defended by 6 metre thick turf ramparts and surrounded by defensive ditches. Gateways were provided through the main Wall to the north, and also through the walls on the other three sides of the fort. Causeways were then constructed across the main Antonine and secondary defensive ditches, affording easy access to and from the fort.

The fort was the second smallest on the Wall and had an area of about 4,000 square metres. The fort contained several substantial stone buildings, including a headquarters, the commander's house, barracks, a bath house and a granary. Although the original buildings have not survived, the foundations of these buildings were discovered during excavations in 1902 - 1903, 1932 and 1957 - 1961.

Inscriptions found on recovered artifacts indicate that the fort was the base for 480 men of the Cohors VI Nerviorum of Nervii, an infantry unit recruited from a north-eastern Gallic tribe. The military road on the south side of the Wall, which enabled transport between all forts, is still well defined and there is also a fine length of rampart and ditch still intact to the west.

A feature of the defences at the fort, discovered during the excavations, is a series of pits lying to the north west of the causeway across the Antonine ditch. These pits, known as 'lilias', would originally have contained sharpened stakes at the bottom. The lilias were positioned to help defend the vulnerable northern gateway through the Wall. Near the fort were a turf platform (beacon platform or signalling platform) and gravel pits for building of the military road. Interesting was that the bath house was built on an annexe. The fort was defended by Nervii and Flavius Betto was a commanding officer.

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User Reviews

Graeme Bryson (3 years ago)
Lovely walk and fascinating local history. Well sign posted and explained via various signs and info boards.
Julie Cully (3 years ago)
Really wasn't impressed. Needed more sound to light. Tree acrobat was awful and fell out of the tree and wasn't ready we got turned back. The actors were great but to far between. Sorry I went with great expectations and came away totally disappointed. A lot of money for not much.
Maria Martin (3 years ago)
Great walk as usual apart from meeting stupid "professional" dog walkers with 6/7 dogs, off leads and no control or call back! Should not be allowed!
william rogers (3 years ago)
Best location I've been on the Antonine wall,easy to understand how the wall,ditch and forts were put together. There's even man traps , pits in the ground with sharpened wooden stakes just a few steps North of the ditch. Standing on the causeway leading into the fort , you really get what this was all about, great view west for about a mile of the wall and ditch, and even the military way. P.S. the wooden stakes are now long gone.
Victor Bergh Alvergren (3 years ago)
Interesting remain from roman times. Not too much to see, the wall and the castle is gone but you can see the trench outside where the wall was - interesting! There are many signs pointing out where different places were.
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Featured Historic Landmarks, Sites & Buildings

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Glimmingehus

Glimmingehus is the best preserved medieval stronghold in Scandinavia. It was built 1499-1506, during an era when Scania formed a vital part of Denmark, and contains many defensive arrangements of the era, such as parapets, false doors and dead-end corridors, 'murder-holes' for pouring boiling pitch over the attackers, moats, drawbridges and various other forms of death traps to surprise trespassers and protect the nobles against peasant uprisings. The lower part of the castle's stone walls are 2.4 meters (94 inches) thick and the upper part 1.8 meters (71 inches).

Construction was started in 1499 by the Danish knight Jens Holgersen Ulfstand and stone-cutter-mason and architect Adam van Düren, a North German master who also worked on Lund Cathedral. Construction was completed in 1506.

Ulfstand was a councillor, nobleman and admiral serving under John I of Denmark and many objects have been uncovered during archeological excavations that demonstrate the extravagant lifestyle of the knight's family at Glimmingehus up until Ulfstand's death in 1523. Some of the most expensive objects for sale in Europe during this period, such as Venetian glass, painted glass from the Rhine district and Spanish ceramics have been found here. Evidence of the family's wealth can also be seen inside the stone fortress, where everyday comforts for the knight's family included hot air channels in the walls and bench seats in the window recesses. Although considered comfortable for its period, it has also been argued that Glimmingehus was an expression of "Knighthood nostalgia" and not considered opulent or progressive enough even to the knight's contemporaries and especially not to later generations of the Scanian nobility. Glimmingehus is thought to have served as a residential castle for only a few generations before being transformed into a storage facility for grain.

An order from Charles XI to the administrators of the Swedish dominion of Scania in 1676 to demolish the castle, in order to ensure that it would not fall into the hands of the Danish king during the Scanian War, could not be executed. A first attempt, in which 20 Scanian farmers were ordered to assist, proved unsuccessful. An additional force of 130 men were sent to Glimmingehus to execute the order in a second attempt. However, before they could carry out the order, a Danish-Dutch naval division arrived in Ystad, and the Swedes had to abandon the demolition attempts. Throughout the 18th century the castle was used as deposit for agricultural produce and in 1924 it was donated to the Swedish state. Today it is administered by the Swedish National Heritage Board.

On site there is a museum, medieval kitchen, shop and restaurant and coffee house. During summer time there are several guided tours daily. In local folklore, the castle is described as haunted by multiple ghosts and the tradition of storytelling inspired by the castle is continued in the summer events at the castle called "Strange stories and terrifying tales".