itrod has evolved almost by accident. It all began in 2005 with a wooden hut, a fridge and a kettle.
Mike and Julie Nelson who live at Haytongate (situated on Hadrian’s Wall) began selling refreshments to walkers soon after Hadrian’s Wall National Trial opened in 2004. Customers help themselves to cold drinks and snacks and use the self-serve facilities (kettle!) to make hot drinks. Payment is made via the ‘honesty box’ in the shed.
Walkers from all over the world have enjoyed the facility and are often bewildered (and heartened) by the honesty box arrangement. The walls of the hut are adorned with messages of encouragement, advice, jokes, drawings and inner thoughts, some even in Latin!
In 2007 a range of Hadrian’s Wall t-shirts were introduced and soon became ‘must have’ souvenirs for Hadrian’s Wall walkers. The range was called itrod and the domain name www.itrod.co.uk was aquired.
Hadrian's Wall merchandise is sold to walkers from the itrod hut at Haytongate and via the itrod website.
In 2019 Gelt Gifts (which is run by Mike and operates from Haytonagte) decided to expand the itrod range of Hadrian’s Wall souvenirs and also to produce items for other UK Long Distance Walks and mountains. The new website was due to be launched in March 2020 but due to Covid restrictions and stock issues the launch was delayed to May 2022..
Chatting to walkers about their requirements we discovered that many walkers would like a personalised souvenir as a special reminder of their walk rather than just a standard item. As a result we now offer personalisation on may of our products. Customers like to include the dates of their walk and the names of the party or sometimes a slogan or phrase to describe the event. The word 'Blisters' seems to to be a regular inclusion!
We have introduced a few 'wooden products' which are made in our own workshop here in Lanercost and which are engraved using our new toy (laser engraving machine).
Our aim is to constantly expand and improve the choice of products. Much of the itrod range is produced at Haytongate so we can be fairly flexible regarding the introduction of new ideas. Do let us know if you have an idea of something you would buy and keep checking our website to see what's new.