"As I walk through the Quay I see the sea, I see life in the raw, cold ice wind blowing and smells of a sea salt fish and trawler engine sounds of the North.
Seagull hovers and swoops but not for fish rather the chips of a young girl who’s icy blue watery eyes reflect the winters sun."
On the south bank of the River Tyne there is a Roman Fort which was first excavated in the 1870's en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arbeia In the 1970's further excavation took place. This was the coastal supply base for the construction of the Roman Emperor Hadrians Wall www.english-heritage.org.uk/daysout/hadrianswall/ which begins or ends on the North side of the river at Wallsend, the wall stretched from Carlisle in the west to Wallsend in the east, approximately 80 miles.
I often walk around this site thinking about what the area would have looked like without the houses or modern buildings. I live in this area south of the Tyne, it has a population of about 150,000. One activity which has never changed is fishing, this would have taken place on the coast probably by local inhabitants who probably also worked for the Roman's or those from other parts of Europe who were in the Roman army.
On the north side of the river is a place called North Shields Fish Quay which is where the fisherman leave for far off grounds, their work has been restricted by quotas enforced by Europe, which is good in one sense that it allows the fish numbers to recover. The main fish caught are Cod and Haddock and served all over Tyneside, it is sold from the fish quay to small business, restaurants and hoteliers.
Tyneside was probably as far north as the Romans got from Rome, although there was a grass wall found which stretched from just south of Edinburgh in Scotland to somewhere south east of Glasgow as the Romans tried to push the northern tribes back towards the Highlands.
I always wonder if the weather was warmer then
Before the mines and the shipyards
I always wonder what would have happened if the Romans had never left
Between the 5th and 6th Century AD
I always wonder what would have happened if Christianity hadn't arrived in Jarrow with St Bede, and St Cuthbert who preached in the Lindisfarne Islands off the Northumberland coast
My ancestors had never come over from Ireland for the work and the craic
I always wonder what would have come of me if I wasn't so lucky to have been born in a place with so much rich history
surrouded by people who fought for their freedom
I always wonder
I always will
Image Credit » My own image