From the Tyne to the Solway, Anton Hodge takes us on a geographical and historical tour of the Roman Wall area, which is highly informative, yet at the same time, irreverent and hilarious. Packed with accessible stories and histories, whether picked up from archaeology or through more dubious drunken chats in the local pubs, during the week-long walk, there are encounters with music-loving cows, amorous and less-amorous dogs, other walkers, imaginary B&B owners, Roman soldiers, foot and mouth disease, the Border Reivers and many more, including the strawberry lip balm!
Whether you have walked the Wall, are planning to, are interested in the history of northern England, or simply like to sit down with a book that will leave you smiling and crying at the same time, this is an entertaining account of 2,000 years of history.
To read extracts from The Great Wall of Britain, click here
Anton Hodge is an interesting and knowledgeable travelling companion - a sort of Alfred Wainwright meets Simon Schama with some Bill Bryson genes thrown in for a laugh. His account of his walk along Hadrian's Wall is full of amusing observations of the characters around him as well as fascinating historical facts, not just from Roman times but covering the wall's entire existence.
Vivienne Crow, Editor of Cumbria Outdoors (The Cumberland News)
As a Scot born and raised, Anton Hodge is perhaps the sort of person Hadrian's Wall was built to keep out but he did not let that stop him walking the full length of Britain's newest national trail from Wallsend on the North Sea to the Solway. This book is a mainly lighthearted diary of the experience and the people he met along the way.
Anton Hodge's first book, The Great Wall of Britain, is a personal diary of a walking journey along Hadrian's Wall intermingled with 2000 years of interesting historical facts about the wall and the geography of the area through which it passes.
As the author journeys from the Tyne to the Solway he lets us in on his little secrets - his fear of dogs, his blistering boots, and a music loving cow - with funny tales of his travails along the way. English Heritage's strawberry lip balm has never been used so creatively before. His stories of bad beer, dubious pubs, and a backward bus ride make you chuckle. Characters pleasant and unpleasant add an authentic note of the eccentricity of the country's people.
If you haven't seen the wall, you will want to make the journey after reading Hodge's book. Even if you have visited or walked the wall, you will discover it in a new way. This informative, interesting, and lighthearted book is written in the manner of Two Degrees West and Around Ireland with a Fridge.
Anton Hodge's Edinburgh University degree in Latin and Ancient History clearly shows in the well researched and presented historical facts as they relate to his journey.
Paperback; 135 pages illustrated with 28 black and white photographs by the author.
ISBN 978-1-904524-24-3 RRP £10, now £5 direct from this site
Kindle version now also available from Amazon