Roman Walls Walk
Take eight intrepid staff and volunteers from YAC and the CBA, add in Roman tunics, helmets, spears, shields, swords, a standard and a replica Roman trumpet and you have a crack Roman unit, otherwise known as a
contubernium, ready to conquer six laps of York’s City Walls in aid of the Dig Deep for YAC campaign! And conquer it we did on Wednesday 1st February!
Setting off at first light (well eight o’clock) on a chilly but clear morning we entered York’s City Walls at Bootham Bar without any resistance from the locals. In fact those driving past in their cars were more inclined to offer friendly, if bemused, waves! We had a long way to go to cover the distance a Roman soldier walked in a day but we were up for the challenge. With a rallying call on our trumpet we marched our first lap and soon realised just how fit Roman soldiers were. Our helmets, shields and spears grew heavier on each lap and our trumpet calls became less impressive as the day wore on. We certainly needed our Roman army rations of oat cakes and dried fruit to keep our aching muscles moving.
By lap three we had met many people and spread the word of the Dig Deep for YAC campaign aimed at saving the fantastic UK-wide network of YAC Branches for young people up to the age of seventeen. Our Dig Deep for YAC banner, in the form of a Roman standard, was held aloft above the walls for the passing traffic to see and the occasional toots of car horns spurred us on. Many tourists will be returning home with interesting photos of their day out on York’s walls and their Roman encounter. Though to answer one person’s question, no, we don’t do this every day but we certainly now admire those Roman soldiers who did!
So, with a clattering of swords, a triumphant trumpet call and cheers from well wishers we completed our sixth lap at 5pm. With weary legs, aching necks (those helmets are heavy!) and a distinct aroma we gathered for our final march back to YAC HQ safe in the knowledge that we had faced and met our Roman challenge. In the process we had raised awareness of the great work YAC does, been filmed and photographed and continued to raise much needed funds to save YAC’s Branches. It was worth it!
If you haven’t yet added your support to our Dig Deep for YAC campaign you can still do so by texting YACR12 followed by the amount you want to give to 70070. Please help us reach our target, we Romans salute you!
You can find a set of photos from the walk on our image gallery, and video from the walk below: