England

Game of Thrones bid to boost Hadrian's Wall visits

Walkers breach the wall Image copyright Sky/HBO
Image caption Game of Thrones is due to return for its eighth season in April

Heritage bosses hope the popularity of Game of Thrones will inspire more people to visit Hadrian's Wall.

They say since the popular TV show started in 2011 visitors have asked about similarities between its giant ice wall and the Roman Wall.

Author George RR Martin has said he came up with his creation while visiting Hadrian's Wall.

Watchers on the Wall will be stationed along the wall to answer questions about it and Game of Thrones.

Image copyright ENGLISH HERITAGE
Image caption The Watchers reference the Night's Watch guardsmen from Game of Thrones

The watchers, who are all Game of Thrones fans and English Heritage staff, will wear black cloaks and carry shields, with the designs based on the four main houses in the TV show.

They are a reference to the Night's Watch guardsmen - a military order which guards the wall, which stretches 100 leagues (300 miles) along the northern border of seven kingdoms and is made of solid ice.

English Heritage said other similarities were the oath taken by the Night's Watch, forbidding them to marry or to father children, similar to what was originally expected of the Roman soldiers.

All in the Game:

Game of Thrones is HBO's most popular ever TV series.

It has won multiple Emmy awards and drawn tens of millions of viewers worldwide.

The show is based on George RR Martin's A Song of Fire and Ice novels.

Fans of his books been waiting for about eight years for The Winds of Winter, the sixth book in the epic series that began with A Game of Thrones in 1996.

A trailer for season eight was released in January, the first glimpse of new material since 2017.

Hadrian's Wall was built to guard the north-west frontier of the Roman Empire and runs 73 miles (117km) between Wallsend in North Tyneside and Bowness on Solway in Cumbria.

The watchers will be able to answer questions about Hadrian's Wall and also about Game of Thrones, particularly how the Roman Wall inspired Martin's books.

An English Heritage spokeswoman said: "We would love it if the story and programme inspired more people to come and see the wall for themselves."

The watchers will be at Birdoswald Roman Fort, in Cumbria, and Corbridge Roman Town, Housesteads Roman Fort and Chesters Roman Fort, all in Northumberland, from this week until the final series, which starts in April, and ends later this year.

Millions of fans are desperate to discover who will finally sit on the Iron Throne, and rule the fantasy land of Westeros.

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