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The Antonine Wall is one of Scotland's greatest historical landmarks - yet it is for most of its length almost imvisible. 

To remedy this great efforts have been made at various points to creating informative and celebratory features. Within West Dunbartonshire, this has - so far - been limited, but ideas have been mooted over the years. 

At Old Kilpatrick a sculptured wall replicating a distance stone and with informative signage has been erected next to the canal. But almost immediately the "wall" disappears beneath the warehouses across the road. There was actually a very large Roman fort here that encompassed what is now a modern neighbourhood. index.asp?pageid=715705

Then we have Golden Hill where local history enthusiasts marked out the fort and had it seeded with wildflower. The Council then mowed up to that layout until the vegetation, flowers and grass, clearly showed the fort layout. A very effective and environmentally responsible result. In recent the upkeep and undisciplined mowing has led to its deterioration. index.asp?pageid=715704

You can walk most of the Antonine Wall within West Dunbartonshire until you come to the East Dunbartonshire section. The Wall actually crosses everal local authority areas.

  • We really need proper signage.
  • We need suitable parking at Old Kilpatrick where Station Road passes under the A82. This is the best point from which to head east along the Wall on foot. The small space once used for cars is currently badly eroded. 
  • ​We need good signage and way markers. it would be quite easy to include QR codes that can be scanned on a phone for more detailed information. 
  • And we need art work and monuments that celebrate this important historical feature. 

Other local authorities have met the challenge, to differing degrees. An idea that could be initiated within West Dunbartonshire and extended across the full length of the Wall is to create larger than life steel silhouettes of Romans and local people of the time. This is a project that could be done one at a time, yet could eventually become one of the largest art installations anywhere. Such figures would in themselves become features to seek out while also informing those seeing them of those who manned the Wall and who lived along its length. They would encourage visitors and school children to seek out and reach as many as possible. 

Such sculptures are easier and cheaper to manufacture than those in the round and would also be robust enough to withstand wear and tear and even vandalism. 

These figures on a similar scale and form as suggested above are in Glasgow. They depict Jimmy Reid, Tom Weir and James Watt. They have been manufactured from laser cut corten steel. While the sign alongside them has been vandalised, the figures have not. Argyle Street west of the M8 : https://w3w.co/mass.jobs.strict

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