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Rochester, Northumberland

Historical Description

Rochester, a village and a township in Elsdon parish, Northumberland. The village stands on Watling Street, near the river Reed, 5 miles NW of Otterburn, and 9 from Woodburn station on the North British railway; has a post, money order, and telegraph office, High Rochester; and occupies part of the site of the Roman Bremenium on the brow of a rugged eminence. Bremenium was a great Roman station and a stipendiary city, and has left extensive and interesting remains. The fortified area comprises about 6 acres, is still inclosed on two sides by three earthen works, has remains of an inner wall 7 feet thick, retains well-preserved masonry of the W gate and distinct traces of the street lines and their houses; was excavated in 1852 by order of the Duke of Northumberland, and yielded both then and previously a great number and variety of Roman relics. Two peel-towers, built out of Roman masonry, are within the area. The township bears the name of Rochester Ward, includes the village of Horsley and Birdhope Craig, and comprises 23,238 acres of land and 62 of water; population, 342. There is a parish council consisting of five members. Most of the land is moor and mountain. There is a Presbyterian church at Birdhope Craig. Horsley Church is 1½ mile from the village, and in 1883 an ecclesiastical parish was formed under the name of Horsley. See HORSLEY.

Transcribed from The Comprehensive Gazetteer of England & Wales, 1894-5


The following is a list of the administrative units in which this place was either wholly or partly included.

Ancient CountyNorthumberland 
Civil parishElsdon 
Poor Law unionBellingham 

Any dates in this table should be used as a guide only.

Directories & Gazetteers

We have transcribed the entry for Rochester from the following:

Land and Property

The Return of Owners of Land in 1873 for Northumberland is available to browse.


Online maps of Rochester are available from a number of sites:

Newspapers and Periodicals

The British Newspaper Archive have fully searchable digitised copies of the following newspapers related to Northumberland online:

RegionNorth East
Postal districtNE19
Post TownNewcastle Upon Tyne