Why the Tyne and Wear?
History and Heritage
The county of Tyne and Wear is rich in history - both in ancient times and in modern days. The location of this area on the north-east coast of the UK made it a perfect place for settlements from early ages. It is thought, for example, that Stone Age tribes settled in the Sunderland area. And, the town of Jarrow may be best remembered in recent centuries for its industrial bent but this was actually the home of the Venerable Bede in the 6-700s. It was also the place chosen by the Vikings in later decades as one of the first points of entry for a UK invasion. The area held out against the Vikings for many years. The later influences of the Romans in Tyne and Wear also spread across the county. Not only is this the site of the world famous Hadrian's Wall but there is also evidence of other significant Roman sites and settlements across the county including forts at Benwell, South Shields and Newcastle. Tyne and Wear developed many industries over the years including mining, ship building, fishing and various other related trades. For a period the coal mines in the area were responsible for supplying most of the coal to the country's capital London.
Activities and Attractions
With a host of attractions in the Tyne and Wear area there is something for everyone. Whether you’re visiting on your own, as a couple or with friends or family Tyne and Wear will keep you busy all day and into the early hours. If historical sightseeing is what you’re after look no further than the Victoria Tunnel, a preserved 19th century waggonway under the city from Town Moor to the Tyne to transport coal. Or venture further out into the country and visit Saint Paul’s Church in Jarrow, which has been a Christian place of worship for over 1300 years. If you’re looking for activities to keep the children busy but also get their brains engaged then a trip to the discovery museum or the life science centre and the perfect way to combine education and fun games for the family to work together on. If you’re looking to get out into the fresh air then you can take a trip to a range of sandy beaches along the Tyne and Wear even if the water is for the faint hearted. With a host of walking and cycling routes around the city and the nearby countryside you can keep active whilst also exploring the Tyne and Wear.
Food and Drink
With a range of pubs, bars and clubs serving a host of drinks there’s an atmosphere to suit every visitor in the Tyne and Wear. With many of the charming pubs having rooms why stay in a hotel when you can enjoy a pint of real ale knowing you’re room is only a few steps away. Or alternatively enjoy the famous Newcastle Brown Ale. With a plethora of restaurant serving home cooked and locally sourced meals you can try a few of these delicacies of the North East. Pan Haggerty, sounding like a character from a children’s book, is a combination of sliced potato, onion and cheddar cheese, or the legendary Saveloy Dip or if you’re looking for a new combination of sandwich why not try pease pudding? Soft, smooth and spreadable this paste made from split peas is the North’s marmite, you will either love it or hate it. With a host of food and drink markets you can have a real authentic taste of the North.
(Photo: ©VisitEngland/Louise Best)