Plans to Re-Roof Roman Fort Museum

PLANS were recently submitted for a new roof installation on the museum building at Segedunum Roman Fort & Museum in Wallsend, North Tyneside.

The original roof was targeted by thieves who stole copper and lead from it in June 2023. Scaffolding was erected to temporarily protect the Unesco World Heritage site.

The thieves then struck for a second time later that year, using the scaffold to gain access to the roof.

The robbers stripped the remaining valuable metals from cladding which was above the main museum entrance and shop.

It left the roof exposed to the harsh winter weather and water ingress, threatening precious 2000-year-old Roman artifacts housed in the museum.

Roman Fort Museum Re-Roof

Now plans have been lodged with North Tyneside Council to re-roof Segedunum Roman Fort and Museum. The planned work follows a £499,000 grant from Arts Council England.

The plans are for show stripping back to the existing flat roof deck, preserving the vapour control layer if possible. A new tapered roof system will be installed to upgrade the drainage system integrating existing penetrations and a roofbox system will house plant. The roof will be covered with an IKO system. Parapet walls will be raised in height and walkways will be demarcated for safe maintenance. An existing decorative balustrade will be reinstated.

A spokesperson for North Tyneside Council, said: “The planning application is for changes to the museum buildings at Segedunum, which form part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site. This includes replacing metal cladding that was stolen from above the central entrance and shop with materials that have no scrap value to deter future thefts.”

Segedunum means ‘strong fort’ and the roman stronghold was built aroiound AD124. It marks the end of the 73 mile-long Hadrian’s Wall and housed around 600 Roman soldiers. Their job was to protect the border from raids from the north. The ancient fort was occupied for about 300 years.

Now, as a tourist site visited by over a million people since 2000, the Museum buildings include a landmark 135 foot viewing tower. From the tower, the fort’s location can be viewed, overlooking the River Tyne to the east and the Wall to the west.

Segedunum became a scheduled ancient monument in 1982 and a World Heritage Site in 1987.

>> Read about more re-roofing projects in the news

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