The Skinburness mile fortlet forms part of the co-called 'Western Sea Defences', an extension of the Hadrianic curtain wall, which stretched from the westernmost Wall fort at Maia (Bowness on Solway) south-westwards along the Cumbrian coast possibly as far as Glannoventa (Ravenglass). Its purpose, presumably, was to guard against raids across the Solway Firth from potential enemies in Dumfries and Galloway. In 1866 a fragment of a small Roman altarstone was washed-up on the seashore at Skinburness and now resides in the British Museum:
|MATRIBVS PARCIS VITI VΛCI...|
"To the Mothers, the Fates, for the life of Vacus[?]..."
(RIB 881; text restored)