On an important river crossing, the town is steeped in history. Corbridge is a peaceful, attractive Border village and stands high above the Tyne.

Corbridge, like Hexham, suffered severely during the Border unrest, not only from Scots incursions, but also at the hands of the reivers from upper Tynedale and Redesdale and elsewhere. Nearby, in the upper Tyne valley, and in Redesdale, lived the most active reiving families—the Robsons, Charltons, Potts and others. Their aggressive activities resulted in retaliatory raids not only from across the Border in Scotland, but also from other aggrieved neighbours who had suffered owing to family feuds. Tynedale was also a route favoured by invading armies in both directions and so the whole area was almost continuously involved in the turmoil and the whole population suffered.

Strongholds were built ranging from major works such as Wark and Aydon Castles down to the bastle, a kind of fortified home. 
Many of these defensive fortifications have disappeared entirely or exist only as ruins. 
Most of the destruction was due, not to warring parties, but in more peaceful times, the stonework being used as a convenient quarry. 
Roman works suffered particularly in this way as they have been there longer. Where Thirlwall Castle is, situated almost on the line of the Roman Wall, there is a huge tell tale gap in the wall.


Known as the Rising of the North, the Earls of Northumberland and

Westmorland and Derwentwater, were at the heart of the insurrection in support of catholic Mary, Queen of Scots. The rebels met near Sweetholm Lough, (Map ref: 80 940 825, between Bellingham and Kirkwhelpington) and raised the Jacobite flag. 

The backing they had hoped for was not forthcoming and Newcastle would not let them into the city. They plodded on into Scotland where, they hoped, support would be assured, but many of the Scots were reluctant to cross the Border into England. Meanwhile, Carlisle, to the west, fell, temporarily, to the rebels but they were eventually soundly defeated at Preston.

After the round up of the rebels, some were deported and others, including the Earl of Derwentwater, were taken to London and executed on Tower Hill.




Burnt by the Scots 1296, 1312 and 1346

Suffered severely in 1349 during the Black Death. The only inhabitants to survive were a few who camped in an open field called the Leazes north of the ground on high healthier situation.



Around and About


Nafferton Castle       Map reference: 88 073657 

On the west bank of Whittle Dene, just above where it is crossed by the Newcastle-Carlisle

Railway. The building of the castle had barely got started when a dispute arose regarding the legality of the castle. In those day permission had first to obtain from the king to ensure it would not be a threat to him. The castle was never finished.

Halton Castle 



Cocklaw Tower

Hadrian's Wall

Bywell Village