Tyne & Wear

Places to visit, attractions, heritage and things of interest in or about Tyne and Wear, in North East England.

Ten of the best places to visit in North East England

Bamburgh Castle

Frankly, you’ll be spoiled for choice if you’re looking for things to see and do in North East England.  From dramatic, wild coast and countryside, to wildlife, castles, Roman remains, the simple grandeur of Durham and the culture and vibrancy of Newcastle upon Tyne, there is something for everyone.  To start you off, here is […]

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Arbeia upon Tyne

Arbeia, Roman, fort, South Shields

I’m driving through the terraced urban landscape of South Shields, in search of a Roman fort.  It is called Arbeia, a name believed to be a Latinised form of the Aramaic for ‘the place of the Arabs’, because the last known unit stationed there was a company of bargemen – possibly some kind of specialised

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Marsden Bay isn’t quite the Algarve

Marsden Rock, Marsden Bay, South Tyneside

The wind whips words away, yet the incessant piercing cries of thousands of seabirds all around Marsden Bay cut through every sound.  To the best of my knowledge, England’s north east coast between South Shields and Sunderland features in few guide books to Britain, whose writers seem to skip from the North Yorkshire Moors to

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Angel of the North, steel statue and daffodil

Statue, North East, England, Gormley

So there you are, trundling down (or up) the A1 by Newcastle/Gateshead and this gigantic, rust-coloured, figure flashes past your peripheral vision.  “Oh”, you think to yourself, in a wondering kind of way, “That can’t possibly be a very old aeroplane; it must be the Angel of the North.”  And you’d be one of about

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Washington’s medieval DNA

Washington Old Hall, nuttery

Here is Washington Old Hall – a pleasant, but fairly unremarkable looking, old manor house in the metropolitan county of Tyne and Wear (say ‘Wee-ah’).  Predominantly 17th century, it has pretty Jacobean-style formal gardens, an orchard and a nuttery.  Washington Old Hall is situated in the village of Washington, itself an oasis of charm, and

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Souter lighthouse

Souter Lighthouse, Tyne & Wear

I journeyed to Souter from Gateshead through seemingly endless housing estates.  The drive seemed curiously out of time, as though my car was in a bubble of the past, a mood somehow pricked at the first, innocent, exciting, sight of the sea.  Souter is easy to find; but you shouldn’t miss spotting a lighthouse, should

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Segedunum – the end of the Wall

Segedunum, Wallsend, shipbuildiing

What’s at the end of the wall?  The wall’s end?  Walls – solid boundaries designed to keep people in – or out.  There are famous walls, like the Berlin Wall, the Great Wall of China, the fantasy Wall in Game of Thrones or even the one that Shirley Valentine talks to (“Hello, wall.”).  In the

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Tyne Bridge

A business trip to Newcastle upon Tyne reminded me what an imposing, and quite beautiful, structure the Tyne Bridge is.  Designed by Mott, Hay and Anderson and partly modelled on the Sydney Harbour Bridge (aka ‘the coat hanger’), it is instantly recognisable all over the world.  Construction began in 1925 and the bridge was opened

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A bit about North East England

Angel of the North

To visit North East England is to enter the old kingdom of Northumbria, formed when Bernicia – which stretched way into what is now Scotland – unified with Deira to the south, between the Tees and the Humber.  North East England is bisected by the remains of Hadrian’s Wall (a world heritage site) through Northumberland

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