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A little step back in time...
Beamish in general
Member Name: bumblebee11
Beamish in general
Date: 18/09/11, updated on 19/09/11 (40 review reads)
Advantages: Great family day out.
Believe it or not the first time I ever went to Beamish was when I was 18 years old but it was only when I went back this year that I was truly able to appreciate it for what it was, a wonderful open air museum that shows you what life was like back in the 1800s and 1900s. For me who is absolutely fascinated with history I found it a lovely family day out.
I went with my brother, sister in law and their two children, luckily for us we already had yearly passes so we were able to jump the queue that stretched right out of the door and up the stairs.
When coming through the main entrance you are greeted with a long winding pathway that leads to a roadside where trams and old buses run every 20 minutes that will take you to a variety of places throughout Beamish.
Pockerley Waggonway/Old Hall~~~~~~~
Getting on the tram the first destination you come too is the Old Hall which was apparently already there before Beamish was constructed and showed you what life was like in the 1800s for the house is surrounded by beautiful gardens and was originally built to house the squire, his family and their servants. I found this area a bit boring there wasn't much to do but look about the house and kids did get a bit restless but the items within the house were interesting and I enjoyed looking about, we did not manage to get to go on the train.
Next on the map was the town and to be honest this is my favourite place in the whole of Beamish, resembling a mini Edwardian town it is home to a sweet shop (complete with authentic sweets), a dentist, a old style shop, the bank with vault, a pub (which is always important) and places to eat as well, although these are extremely expensive so I find it's better to bring a pack lunch with you and eat it within the park in the town where in the bandstand a band plays.
A little farther up for the children is a set of shuggy boats and a carousel that cost £1.50 per person but the kids loved them and we were lucky not to hit a queue when we had a go.
As we continued our journey we found ourselves within the pit village which showed us what life was like in the early 1900s, the first place we came to was the old school house that had 4 classrooms in that we all loved and showed us how school was years ago which we all had to smile about especially at the old photo hidden in one of the draws.
We skipped out the church and headed for the small pitmans cottages across the way that each housed 4 staff and showed us 4 different crafts for the early 1900s that included making bread, and making rugs out of old rags which is the one I found the most interesting.
Also in the village was an old style pit which you could actually go down, I found this quite claustrophobic as it was so small I really don't know how people managed to work down there for 12 hours a day! but the guides were informative and give a good insight to pit life, I don't know if I could of lived like that though!
Across from the pit village was home farm which was a small area complete with a variety of animals including cows, horses, chickens and a random sheep dog that kept popping up once in a while. I was not to fond of this area as the horse were kept in very small pens and looked quite unhappy and everything just seemed so tiny. I didn't stay very long as the smell was a bit overpowering but that might be because it was a hot day.
Back at the entrance you can find a souvenir shop so you can find all the treasures from the day and it's quite reasonably priced as well, I found myself buying more than I intended to.
You can find Beamish near Durham and is well sign posted from the A1M Junction 63 but you can get there via a few different methods, you can drive which the postcode is DH9 ORG, there is a bus that goes straight to gates of Beamish (No 8 they run every 30 minutes) and you can catch that from Sunderland Interchange bus station. You can get the train to Newcastle Central Station and from there the No 28/28A (runs every 30 minutes) will take you straight to the gates of Beamish. Also if your coming from Durham city centre the No 128 provides a direct link which again runs every 30 minutes.
The Final Word~~~~~~
This is a wonderful day out for all the family and there is plenty to do because before we knew it, it was almost closing time. It costs about £15.00 for an adult and £10.00 for a child but that is a yearly pass so you do get your money's worth out of the ticket, although having said that it can get boring keep going as once you've seen it there's not much else to do.
I would definitely go for a trip though if you haven't been already it's wonderful.
Summary: Great Family Day out!!