Great Exhibition of the North: finest days out within the north-east | Travel

Paul Smith, lead singer, Maximo Park

I got here up the A19 from Teesside to Tyneside as a scholar and by no means left. Newcastle is a compact metropolis, and really manageable on foot. If you breach the town limits you’ll be able to stroll throughout the Town Moor to clear your head, an enormous open house that brackets the north of the town, with solely free-roaming cattle for company. If you want an unbiased substitute on your Greggs repair, Pink Lane Bakery supplies selfmade pasties, muffins and vegan treats. Across the street is the Amnesty Bookshop, which at all times has fascinating stock. For secondhand vinyl, attempt RPM and Beatdown Records. Culture-wise, take a look at the Cluny, a superb music venue; the Star & Shadow, a leftfield, volunteer-run cinema and event house; and Workplace Gallery in Gateshead, which hosts up-and-coming artists and the occasional “happening”.
• Maximo Park play the sold-out opening event on 22 June; Paul Smith DJs on the Parental Guidance Party at Sage Gateshead, 1 July, free,

Becky Unthank, singer, the Unthanks

Alnwick Castle.

Photograph: Alamy

If you’re strolling alongside the Tyne on the Newcastle facet, enterprise slightly additional and also you’ll discover the Ouseburn Valley. Kiln, a workshop/kitchen, is one among my favorite locations to hang around and eat scrumptious vegetarian meals; you’ll be able to see craftspeople making and firing pots by means of the glass wall. The Ouseburn is home to a great deal of nice music venues, pubs, galleries and artist studios, and proper within the centre you will discover Ouseburn Farm. I like to recommend the Cumberland Arms for a pint of native beer.
An hour north of Newcastle is Alnwick, a good looking city with a fortress and Barter Books. This treasure trove of secondhand books is housed in a Victorian railway station the place you’ll be able to cosy up by an open hearth in one of many outdated ready rooms with a cup of tea.
• The Unthanks play Folk on the Tyne, Sage Gateshead, 28 July, £19.60, and are a part of Aeons: a Sound Journey for Newcastle, alongside the River Tyne, 22 June-7 Sept, free however ticketed,

Shaun Allan, digital actuality knowledgeable from HedgeHog Lab

Mandarin ducks at Washington Wetland Centre.

Mandarin geese at Washington Wetland Centre. Photograph: Alamy

I’m actually wanting ahead to the River Brew Co improvement in Gateshead, a brand new delivery container neighborhood underneath the Tyne Bridge. It will embody a brewery and faucet room, an open-fire kitchen and a motorcycle retailer/espresso store/cocktail bar. For a whole distinction, I like to recommend the Victorian-era Saltwell Park, south of the city centre – I go to each different day. With seven miles of spotless seashore, Druridge Bay, close to Amble in Northumberland, is the place my household and I spent many a summer season’s day within the 1970s. It hasn’t modified a lot since. Another favorite of mine is Washington Wetland Centre close to Sunderland – with otters, flamingos and fluffy ducklings, it’s an incredible household time out.
• Rocket Reimagined is on the Discovery Museum, Newcastle, 22 June-9 Sept, free,

Sophie Connor, architect, Ryder Architecture

Dunstanburgh Castle.

Dunstanburgh Castle. Photograph: Alamy

If ever I really feel like escaping Newcastle for some contemporary sea air and a little bit of house, I like visiting Low Newton-by-the-Sea. This 18th-century fishing hamlet on the Northumberland coast is owned by the National Trust and has white-painted fishermen’s cottages set round a village inexperienced. There is a protracted sandy seashore with blue-green rockpools, and it’s a pretty stroll round Embleton Bay to Dunstanburgh Castle. Reward your self with conventional Craster kipper fishcakes and a pint of ale brewed on web site on the Ship Inn.
• Horse to Hyperloop: the Evolution of Design is at Cooper’s Studios, Newcastle, 22 June-9 Sept,

Gráinne Sweeney, visitor curator, Great North Museum

Howick Hall.

Howick Hall. Photograph: Alamy

The Northumberland coast has stunning seashores. One of my favorite is Sugar Sands close to Longhoughton. It is often abandoned and is nice for teenagers, birdwatchers and sea kayakers – take a picnic and a wetsuit. For coastal walks, I like the route from Budle Bay to Craster. There are views of the Holy Island of Lindisfarne and the trail takes you previous Bamburgh Castle, alongside sandy seashores akin to Beadnell Bay, subsequent to crystal-clear waters. Just south of Craster is Howick Hall , the ancestral seat of Earl Grey – you’ll be able to stroll to a different little seashore on the backside of the gardens.
• Which Way North is on the Great North Museum, Newcastle, 22 June-9 Sept, free,

Steve Mayes, Lego artist

Tynemouth Station Market.

Tynemouth Station Market. Photograph: Alamy

I’d advocate a visit out to the coast at Tynemouth, eight miles east of Newcastle. The excessive avenue has an incredible vary of unbiased retailers, bars and eating places. The market within the Metro station at weekends is value a go to, not least for the fantastic thing about the station itself. Best of all, although, Tynemouth has Riley’s Fish Shack, down on the seashore at King Edward’s Bay. It serves the very best meals I’ve eaten wherever, and has an unimaginable ambiance – typically they have hearth pits and deckchairs out on the sand. Another seashore, Longsands, will get some good waves for those who fancy browsing. Up the Tyne slightly is North Shields; the Fish Quay space is effectively value a glance. Again, there are some nice unbiased bars and eating places, and dealing fishing vessels going out, which provides the place actual character. You can get nice offers on contemporary fish, too.
• The Lego Timeline of Northern Innovation is on the Mining Institute, Newcastle, 22 June-9 Sept,

Annie Rigby, inventive director, Unfolding Theatre

Weardale Railway.

Weardale Railway. Photograph: Alamy

The factor I like about residing in Newcastle is that you just don’t have to travel far to succeed in large, open areas. An amazing place to fill your lungs with air is the Weardale moors within the Pennines. It actually feels such as you’re 1,000,000 miles away from the town. I like wanting on the snow poles (there’s a Weardale ski membership) and imagining what it appears to be like like within the depths of winter. The heritage Weardale Railway runs from Witton-le-Wear to Stanhope, the place there are sensible walks. Or, for those who fancy taking within the views from a heated outside swimming pool, head to Stanhope Pool. The Lord Crewe Arms pub in Blanchland is difficult to beat for a pint and a few meals earlier than you head again to city (and even keep the evening).
• Multiverse Arcade is at a number of venues, Newcastle and Gateshead, 22 June-9 Sept, free,

Ednie Wilson, creativity improvement supervisor, St Mary’s Heritage Centre

Boathouse pub, Wylam.

Boathouse pub, Wylam. Photograph: Alamy

I’m going on mum-and-son dates as soon as per week – there are such a lot of pretty locations to discover within the villages round Gateshead and Newcastle. An actual favorite is Wylam, about 20 minutes from Newcastle by prepare. Visit Daniel Farm, which has animals together with llamas and Clydesdale horses, plus an incredible cafe and farm store. The Boathouse pub has sensible beers from the Hadrian Border Brewery and different north-eastern brewers. I just like the Feathers Inn in Hedley on the Hill, which has well-kept beer and beautiful meals. I like to recommend the sticky toffee pudding with native ice-cream.
• The Needle Points North is on at St Mary’s Heritage Centre, Gateshead, 23 June-9 Sept,

Philip Bernays, chief government, Theatre Royal

The Broad Chare pub.

The Broad Chare pub. Photograph: Christopher Thomond for the Guardian

There are some unbelievable locations to eat in Newcastle. I like to recommend the Broad Chare for correct pub meals: the menu modifications day by day however the pies are sensible, as are the scotch eggs and the pig’s ears. Dabbawal has nice Indian avenue meals, and Dat Bat is a craft beer bar serving the very best sourdough pizzas. Further afield, Finbarrs in Durham is a fine-dining restaurant with regional produce akin to Ribblesdale goat’s curd. At the highest finish, the Raby Hunt close to Darlington is the one two Michelin-starred restaurant within the north-east. The 15-course tasting menu is on one other planet – e book early and splash out on the wine flight for a special day (£115pp excluding wine).

For days out, we at all times take mates to Crook Hall and Gardens, a medieval corridor in Durham – it’s a nice place for a wander, and the tea store serves glorious sponge cake. Bradley Gardens within the Tyne Valley is a restored 18th-century walled backyard with some sensible retailers. Hexham Abbey has unimaginable medieval work, carvings and sculptures – I’m going weak on the knees for the Celtic crosses.

Northumberland is a good place for cyclists – you’ll be able to cycle all day alongside little lanes and hardly see a automobile. There are some glorious cyclists’ cafes, too – I like Capheaton Tea Rooms (weekends solely).
• Every Thing Every Time, by artist Naho Matsuda, is exterior Newcastle’s Theatre Royal, 22 June-9 Sept, free,

Abbey Stobbs and Allison Birt, each 17, Young Company, Northern Stage

Ernest cafe-bar, Ouseburn, Newcastle.

Ernest cafe-bar, Ouseburn, Newcastle. Photograph: Steven Aitchison

In a metropolis as bustling as Newcastle, my favorite factor is to flee to the seaside – go the Pulp Fiction cafe in Whitley Bay for a smoothie and benefit from the contemporary sea air. AS
The Freshly Squeezed open mic evening at Ernest cafe-bar within the Ouseburn on a Thursday evening is a chill place to be. It’s full of scholars and sometimes gospel singers all gathered right into a again room with a disco ball, low lighting, bean baggage and benches. You’ll hear a mixture of godawful singing, stunning harmonies and mint poetry. If you’re taking the mic, you even get a free drink! AB
• Where Do We Stand, a part of Self-build Utopias, is at Northern Stage, Newcastle, 27 Aug-2 Sept, free,

Ed Carter, musician

Longstone lighthouse, Farne Islands.

Longstone lighthouse, Farne Islands. Photograph: Getty Images

My high advice for a day journey has to be heading north to Seahouses, and taking a ship to see the resident puffins on the Farne Islands. Witnessing these unimaginable birds take to the skies is sufficient to persuade anybody that they need to the truth is be flightless (additional evidenced by the very fact they stay in burrows, which they timeshare with the native rabbits). As effectively as puffins, seals, guillemots and arctic terns, you can even see the lighthouse from which 22-year-old Grace Darling and her father undertook a legendary lifeboat rescue in 1838.

To the south of the Tyne you’ll be able to go to the picture-postcard Souter Lighthouse at Lizard Point in Marsden – the primary lighthouse within the world to be constructed particularly to deal with an electrical lamp. Then around the break day with a drink in Marsden Grotto, a bar in a cave on the backside of a close-by cliff, which was seemingly first inhabited by a person generally known as Jack the Blaster. However, my grandfather usually complained about as soon as having been caught within the elevate there in 1941, so accomplish that at your individual danger.
• Bridges is at Sage Gateshead, 22 June- 9 Sept, free,

David Eagle, singer, the Young’Uns

Steetley pier, Headland beach, Hartlepool.

Steetley pier, Headland seashore, Hartlepool. Photograph: Alamy

Hartlepool Headland is a very magical place. It’s the oldest a part of Hartlepool with a lot heritage – you’ll be able to go to St Hilda’s church, constructed within the 12th century on the location of the saint’s seventh-century monastery. Sandwell Gate is the one surviving gateway within the 14th-century city partitions – it’s a stunning sheltered space to face and look out to sea. The Heugh Battery was used to defend the city from German bombardment in December 1914, when 130 folks had been killed; it’s now a museum. Great pubs embody the Harbour of Refuge, AKA the Pot House, and the Cosmopolitan Hotel, which additionally has 5 rooms. Don’t miss Verrill’s Fish Shop, the very best chippy on the town – Frasier’s Kelsey Grammer is an everyday (his spouse is from Hartlepool).
• The Young’Uns play Folk on the Tyne with the Unthanks and the Wilsons, Sage Gateshead, 28 July, £19.60,

Linda Conlon, chief government, Life

Durham Castle.

Durham Castle. Photograph: University of Durham

In Notes on a Small Island, Bill Bryson described Durham as “perfect” – and it’s exhausting to disagree. It’s a compact and exquisite metropolis that’s simple to discover on foot. Highlights embody the breathtaking cathedral and chateau, which collectively are a world heritage web site. Have a wander across the quaint cobbled streets – there are many little retailers, boutiques and cafes to discover. The Mugwump on Saddler Street has been a must-visit store because the 1960s and is nice for selecting up uncommon presents, playing cards and garments. The market corridor is a superbly restored Victorian indoor house the place unbiased merchants promote antiques and native produce. Take the three-mile riverside stroll, a round path flanked by the cathedral and chateau (and a favorite stroll for my cockapoo Bertie).
• Robots: Then and Now is on the Life Science Centre, Newcastle, till 2 Dec, £15,

Holli Keeble, chief government, Tyneside Cinema

The gardens at Seaton Delaval Hal.

The gardens at Seaton Delaval Hall. Photograph: PA

We have some fabulous National Trust properties within the north-east. The finest for households are the just lately restored Seaton Delaval Hall (don’t miss the fabulous Pillars of Dawn exhibition there with Canadian artist Kelly Richardson, to 15 July); Wallington close to Morpeth, which has an journey playground in a “wild” wooden; and Gibside within the Derwent Valley, which holds open-air theatre performances within the walled backyard over the summer season.
• The Remake a Take film path is on the Tyneside Cinema and different venues, 22 June-9 Sept, free,

• The Great Exhibition of the North (22 June-9 September) is the largest event in England this 12 months. The three-month programme of gigs, exhibitions, exhibits and workshops is designed to have a good time the area’s artists, designers and inventors,

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