Dunston Staiths – July 2019

On a wet day in July Sophie and I went to the outdoor market held once a month on Dunston Staiths.   The History Bit  The Staiths are believed to be the largest timber structure in Europe, maybe the world, but who knows?  It is also a Grade II listed scheduled monument and is owned by registered charity Tyne and Wear Building Preservation Trust (TWBPT).  The structure is made of North American pitch pine timber, no longer available, from the once unlimited forest. Most of the timber used was 20 metres long, 14 inches deep and 14 inches wide. The total weight…

Killingworth Boat Lake ~ February 2019

In 1964, a 15 acre lake was created to help drain the ground for Killingworth New Town, and almost straight away a boating clubhouse was built which is alongside a public car park. Several different groups still use this clubhouse and more use the lake and park, which is run by North Tyneside Council.  A bunch of retired chaps interested in building, racing and sailing model boats formed a sailing group, which is now affiliated to the MYA (Model Yacht Association). Sophie and I stopped off here on our way back from somewhere as I knew there were swans on the…

Frontline – Part 6 – June 2018

These are some more photo’s of re-enactors taking part in WW2 and their vehicles. I loved this next chap, thought he really looked like he’d stepped out of a movie and this lady was spot on with her costume and hair do   mustn’t forget the Germans!   channelling Clive Owen?             This vehicle is (acccording to Phil, who knows these things) a Hanomag SDKFZ 251 Ausf C. Called “Magda” she is a half-track armoured fighting vehicle built on an OT-810 chassis, badged to the Panzergrenadier Divison Großdeutschland. Designed and built by the Hanomag company…

Fraggle Report~ Herrington Country Park~ March 2018~ part 1

  Last weekend, Sophie and I got together and this time went off to Herrington Country Park. It sounded promising on the website- an adventure play area, skate boarding, Nordic walking, model boat sailing in the lake and a variety of sculptures that celebrate the heritage of the area.  Wasn’t sure if Nordic Walking involved Viking re-enactment groups having a stroll, but according to Wiki it’s walking with poles, a bit like ski-ing without snow. Anyhow it all sounded very interesting so off we went. The History Bit Back in the days when England had industries the North East was a…

Fraggle Report~ Druridge Bay ~ February 2018~ Part 1

After our encounter with the Giant Spoon and the Alien Sophie and I got back in the car and headed off to Druridge Bay and the country park there. The History Bit Druridge Bay is a 7 miles long bay on the coast of Northumberland. During World War II, defences were constructed around Druridge Bay as part of the anti-invasion preparations. The defences included scaffolding barriers and anti-tank blocks overlooked by pillboxes; and behind these were minefields and an anti-tank ditch. Between the hamlets of Druridge and Cresswell, anti-glider ditches were dug and there is still a brick-built decoy control there…

Camel Parade~South Shields~ Dec 2017~ part 1

2017 saw the 4th year that the Camel Parade has been an event in South Shields, Sophie and I went for the first time last year a few photo’s of which I posted HERE, so this year we made a return trip knowing what to expect.  It involves 3 camels with their handlers and riders dressed up as wise men, parading the length of Ocean Road, which is quite a long old road, followed by stilt walkers and a drum group called Sparks! It’s been controversial as the animal rights group PETA, who I have a lot of time for…

Rising Sun Country Park ~ Nov 2017 ~ Part 3

Part 1,  Part 2,   We’ll finish up walking the last leg of our trek around the park today, there were not many leaves left on the trees so it was nice to come across some pops of yellow   but mostly it was grey and brown   I’m not sure what this next thing is, maybe stocks for naughty giants? even when the leaves have gone, and there are no bright little flowers to photograph, there are always some interesting shapes and textures to find, and reflections in puddles and that’s the end of our visit to the Rising…

Fraggle Report~ Tees Cottage Pump Station~June 2017~Part 1

A couple of weekends ago Sophie and I had a long day out visiting the pumping station at Tees Cottage in the morning, and Hardwick Hall Country Park in the afternoon.  I’ll leave the park for a later pos and start with the pumping station. The History Bit Tees Cottage Pumping Station is a Victorian waterworks in Darlington in the North East of England which began supplying water to Darlington in 1849. It is a Scheduled Ancient Monument with two completely original pumping engines in full working order. These are displayed running under their pumping load on about four weekends…

Bamburgh Castle~part 2

Part 1 I was quite impressed with all the cannons They should be OK when the next boatloads of Vikings come 🙂 Built on the site of the medieval Great Hall, the King’s Hall is a Victorian masterpiece. Its magnificent false hammer beam ceiling is made with teak from Thailand, then called Siam. The King of Siam, a good friend of Lord Armstrong who visited Bamburgh, is said to have helped carve some of the intricate designs. The King’s Hall was to be the castle’s main social reception and banqueting room. Lord Armstrong built a minstrel’s gallery where the musicians…