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Art installation at Housesteads Roman Fort in Northumberland
Photograph: English Heritage

This spectacular technicolour artwork has just popped up on Hadrian’s Wall

Housesteads Roman Fort in Northumberland has been glammed up to celebrate the wall’s 1,900th birthday

Ed Cunningham
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Ed Cunningham
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Take a trip up to a certain bit of Hadrian’s Wall this weekend and you’ll find a massive, spectacularly colourful surprise. Among the low, winding ruins and rolling hills is an enormous scaffolded structure covered in vibrant wooden panels and inspirational placards. Emblazoned with words like ‘hope’ and ‘flow’, it’s a pretty bold sight – to say the least.

The installation is part of the wall’s 1,900th anniversary celebrations and it’s designed to be a similar size and shape to a Roman gatehouse that stood on exactly the same spot more than 1,600 years ago. The piece is by artist Morag Myerscough and it’s called ‘The Future Belongs To What Was As Much As What Is’. 

Excitingly, the piece doesn’t just look fun: it also is fun. It’s an interactive artwork, with visitors able to climb the scaffolding all the way to the top. The idea is that you’ll be able to get the same views out over the wall and surrounding landscape that Roman centurions would’ve gotten nearly two millennia ago. Here are a few shots of the artwork.

Art installation at Housesteads Roman Fort in Northumberland
Photograph: English Heritage
Art installation at Housesteads Roman Fort in Northumberland
Photograph: English Heritage
Art installation at Housesteads Roman Fort in Northumberland
Photograph: English Heritage

If you fancy visiting the installation, it’ll be open from this Saturday (July 30) until October 30 at Housesteads Roman Fort in Northumberland. Adult tickets start from £10 – you can find out more and book here.

ICYMI: two of the world’s greatest places in 2022 are in the UK.

Plus: take a look at all the stunning nominees for this British architecture prize.

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