Day 20: Washington – Newcastle – Cramlington

Today, Marcha a Glasgow crossed one of the most striking Roman monuments in the UK: Hadrian’s Wall. It is Thursday 21st October and we’re getting ever closer to the Scottish border.

The legendary Hadrian’s Wall crosses the island of Great Britain from coast to coast and finishes in Wallsend on the River Tyne. It was built by the Roman Empire in an attempt to keep the Picts out, but was not hugely successful. Today our march reached the symbolic distance of 400 miles (over 650 km). This distance has taken its toll and two of our group are resting up (one with shin splint and one with nightmarish blisters), but hope to rejoin the walkers again soon.

High Level Bridge, Newcastre

After crossing the High Level Bridge, a notable work of engineering, over the river Tyne we walked through the streets of Newcastle. This city bears witness to its industrial past: we passed statues commemorating its ship building history and later on in the day scaled pit heaps that have now been relandscaped into pleasant natural areas for dog walking.

In Newcastle we were received by XR Newcastle’s samba band who led us up to Market Square for a welcome address by the North of Tyne Mayor Jamie Driscoll and other speakers from various environmental groups. We spoke to the mayor about the need to reduce traffic in the city as the current model based on cheap fuel’s days are numbered. We must urgently transition towards a more sustainable city model.

Carlos Buj talked to Jamie Driscoll about the climate crisis and the urgent need for more sustainable transport
Photo: Ian Burns

Tomorrow the march will reach Alnwick, home to a famous castle where parts of Harry Potter were filmed. If only the famous young magician could wave his wand and magic us up some politicians who are less obsessed with money and their own private benefit. If only it were that easy. 

Written by: José Luis Martínez

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