In 79 AD what is now England and Wales were firmly under the control of the Roman Empire, but the far North remained a problem.
The Emperor Vespasian decided that what is now Scotland should also be incorporated into the Roman Empire. Further to the North lived loose associations of clans known collectively as the Caledonians. The Roman Army tried to provoke them into battle by marching an army into the Highlands forcing a battle with the Caledonian leader Calgacus at a place called Mons Graupius. 30,000 Caledonians were killed, the surviving clansmen melted away into the hills, and were to remain fiercely resistant and independent.
By the time Hadrian became Emperor in 117 AD the Roman Empire had ceased to expand. Hadrian was concerned to consolidate his boundaries. He visited Britain in 122 AD, and ordered a wall to be built between the Solway Firth in the West and the River Tyne in the east "to separate Romans from Barbarians".
This fort was constructed as one of twelve in the frontier system known as Hadrian's Wall. The Roman name of Vercovicium means "The Place of the Fighters".