Heddon-on-the-Wall is a village in Northumberland, England, located on Hadrian's Wall. Heddon-on-the-Wall is roughly 9 miles (14 km) west of the centre of Newcastle upon Tyne, and just outside Throckley. The place-name 'Heddon' means 'hill where heather grew'.


The place-name ' Heddon on the Wall' is first attested in the Pipe Rolls for 1175, where it appears as Hedun. It appears as Heddun in 1262 and as Hedon super murum ('Heddon above the wall') in 1242. The name comes from the Old English hæth-dūn, meaning 'hill where heather grew'.
The name should not be confused with that of East Heddon and West Heddon, where the name means 'Hidda's pasture'

A Roman milecastle ('Milecastle 12') was located at the site of the present-day village, under what is now Town Farm, but no traces of it are currently visible. Prior to the 1960s, Heddon-on-the-Wall was a small village with an economy based strongly on traditional industry including farming and coal mining.

Large-scale coal mining close to the village began in the late 1950s with the opening of the Bays Leap, a 120 hectares (300 acres) opencast mine site located a short distance north of Heddon-on-the-Wall. The site supported seven coal seams at its peak, and evidence was found of earlier mine shafts. Bays Leap closed in 1966. Urban development west of Newcastle saw the village expand substantially during the 1960s.

Heddon-on-the-Wall grew up around Hexham Road, which until 1973 was the main road from Newcastle to Hexham. The new A69 road bypasses Heddon-on-the-Wall en route from Newcastle to Carlisle, also passing Hexham. Heddon-on-the-Wall benefits from its proximity to the A69 but is more popular with retired people rather than commuters due to its lack of a railway station, from which its close neighbour Wylam benefits. A railway station on the Scotswood, Newburn and Wylam Railway was opened in the village in 1881, but closed in 1958.

Heddon-on-the-Wall came to prominence when it was revealed in February 2001 that the 2001 outbreak of Foot-and-mouth disease originated from a farm in the village. This severely affected Heddon-on-the-Wall's primary industry which is agriculture. Over the years however other industries have existed in Heddon-on-the-Wall. These include salmon fishing in the River Tyne, coal mining, the quarrying of sandstone and limestone, and brick making. Wylam Brewery was established at South Houghton Farm in 2000 before moving to Newcastle in 2016. A number of blacksmiths were in the village until recent times. In the seventies there was a perfumery manufacturing business.

Culture and facilities

Heddon-on-the-Wall attracts tourists passing through on tours of Hadrian’s Wall. Heddon-on-the-Wall is located on the Hadrian's Wall Path, and contains the longest section of unbroken wall at its original and planned width, now known as Broad Wall. Later sections were not built to the full width to save time and money.

St Andrew's Church is located opposite the Swan Inn and parts of it are Saxon dating back to 680 AD. It was originally consecrated in 630AD. The oldest parts of St Andrew's are still visible in some of the walls of the chancel behind the choir stalls. The original stone structure was built using recycled stone from Hadrian’s Wall. Before St Andrew's church was built it is believed[by whom?] that the site was used for pagan ceremonies, so the hilltop location may always have been of religious significance.

Heddon-on-the-Wall has two public houses, The Three Tuns and The Swan Inn.

Based in East Heddon is The Selman Park Sports Field where "Heddon St. Andrews F.C." senior football team call home. A Heddon St. Andrews football team has existed in Heddon-on-the-Wall since 1999 Founded by Gordon Stewart and Peter Carr. Originally a 5 a side team and in 2009 Richard Adams started the Senior team the village has today. They currently play in the Hexham District league. Founded in 2009 as no senior football team existed for the ageing youth to progress their football. Heddon St. Andrews F.C. football team in its current form is the longest running football team in the village celebrating its 10th year in 2019. Heddon St. Andrews F.C. now play under the name Heddon F.C. taking the name of the original football team that played in the village for many years.

Also on the adjacent site at East Heddon is the Victrix Park Sports Field founded in 2020, which is home to local club "Heddon United FC". Founded on 1 June 2017 by Club Chairman Liam Duffy, the Heddon United FC's main promotion is on Junior grassroots football with opportunities for players as young as 5 years old through to 16 years old. Since inception, due to popularity, Heddon United FC has developed ten-fold to the point of being considered the largest grassroots club in the Northumberland-Tynedale district. At the start of the 2020/21 season, Heddon United FC ventured into Senior grassroots football with the establishment of a First Team, Reserves squad and Under 23's. Ahead of the 2021/22 season, Heddon United FC proposed the formation of a Senior Women's squad - a first for the Tynedale area.

Description courtesy of Wikipedia.

12th April 2010

The Library.

Heddon Methodist Church.

The Heddon Womens Institute.

Heddon WI was founded in 1917 and was the first WI in Northumberland. The first meeting in that year was held at Heddon Hall, the home of Lady Wise, who was elected president. Lady Knott of Close House was elected vice-president and Mrs Anne Jordan became the secretary.

Source: Heddon History.

The Swan Inn.

Entrance to Heddon Common.

Heddon War Memorial.

The war memorial in Heddon-on-the-Wall is located in Memorial Park. The memorial cross was unveiled on the 11th of November 1922, by Sir Loftus Bruce. It commemorates 16 local servicemen who died in the First World War. The cost of the memorial was raised by public subscription, on land donated by Sir James Knott, and the foundations were donated by the Throckley Coal Company. The village pond was drained so that the site could be used for the memorial. Later the memorial was further dedicated to 6 local servicemen lost in the Second World War. The village has an unusual tradition of dressing the memorial.

Grade 2 listed. Source: Co-Curate.

Towne Gate.

The Three Tuns, Hexham Road.

Heddon Welfare Field.

The Tyne Valley from Heddon.

Around the village.

More Information:
See my other photos around Heddon-on-the-Wall:

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