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Fine on the Tyne
Member Name: alirigby
Date: 07/05/02, updated on 07/05/02 (2805 review reads)
Advantages: Historical, Pretty, Good beaches
Disadvantages: Not a lot of shops
The village is a designated conservation area, which is defined as a "..townscape with special architectural or historic interest, the character or appearance of which it is desirable to preserve or enhance."
There are a number of features in the village which give it this status: historic ruins of the castle & priory, a Medieval street pattern, the 18th Century architecture on Front Street, Percy Gardens an striking crescent, Collingwood monument and all the 18/19th century buildings in the area.
Attractions in Tynemouth
There is a lovely, long sandy beach at Tynemouth, appropriately named Long Sands (it’s around 1500m long). It’s very popular in the summer (despite the North Sea being blooming freezing all year round!). During the summer lifeguards are stationed here and designated swimming areas are marked out, it’s also very clean as dogs are not allowed on the beach between April and September and it’s cleaned regularly. It’s also popular with surfers – who needs Bondi Beach!?
There are some rocks at the Cullercoats end of the beach which are good for rock-pooling.
There is also Short Sands beach, which is in King Edward’s bay, just North of the Priory; I like this beach as it’s sheltered and sandy (there is a very steep walk down to it though).
The Priory can be dated back to around 600AD, it has been rebuilt many times and was in use until the 19th century although it lies in ruins now. Three kings are buried here: King Oswin (651), King Osric (792), King Malcolm of Scotland (1093) and it’s absolutely steeped in history. It is maintained by English Heritage and there are often events held here such as pageants and re-enactments of battles. The Priory stands on the headland at the end of
Front street and is the most prominent feature in Tynemouth.
There are great views of the river and coast from the Priory.
Opening Times : 1st April to 31 October daily (10am to 6pm)
1st November to 30th March Wed-Sun (10am-4pm)
Admission: adults £1.50, children .80p (at last check)
The ruins of the castle lie between the Priory and the mainland, it is in an good defensive position and was maintained and used as a fortification until as recently as 1956; there are still First World War cannons which you can explore.
Tynemouth Station is not only where the Metro stops, it’s a stunning example of Victorian Station architecture which has been substantially restored to is original splendour. It was made a grade II listed building in 1978 and is looked after by the Friends of Tynemouth Station. As well as being a building of architectural and historical interest, it is also the base for the markets hich take place on Saturdays and Sundays.
Other Things to do:
There’s the aquarium along the seafront; personally I found this very expensive for what it was – it’s not a particularly good aquarium.
There’s a diving shop on Front Street which also offers courses; bit cold for my liking, but it seems to be popular.
There’s also a Sailing club, which I haven’t visited but they seem welcoming to new members.
You can hire surf boards from the surf shop on the sea front (above Long Sands).
There’s also a really pathetic mini-golf on the sea-front; it used to be good when I was little with windmills and obstacles, now it’s just round concrete holes with no obstacles other than the course itself!
Tynemouth also has a nice little park, opposite the sea front; there’s a small boating lake here where you can hire pedaloes which is quite good fun.
You can also walk down to the Collingwood Monument, which can be seen from the
Priory, and along to North Shields fish quay for some fish & chips and a pint (lovely on a summers day).
Facilities in Tynemouth:
The main shopping street is called Front Street and there’s a good range of shops and services in the village; Walter Wilsons (a small grocery store), a newsagents, a bakery, a deli, a few off licenses, a small library, Lloyds and Barclays bank, a post office and a number of gift and specialist shops.
Eating and Drinking
You can get great Fish & Chips from Marshalls on Front Street – my favourite!
There are several restaurants including a couple of pizzerias, a Tandoori, a Chinese and Sidney’s Restaurant which is a small, awarded restaurant serving a variety of food.
There are a number of pubs in the village which has quite a good nightlife considering its size.
There are a number of places to stay; the Park Hotel near to the aquarium is 3 star as is the Grand Hotel nearer to the village on the sea front. There are also many hotels and B&Bs in Whitely Bay, just a short distance away.
There is a Metro station in Tynemouth which connects to Newcastle, Sunderland and many other places in North Tyneside. Metros tend to run every 10 minutes.
You can get buses as well which will also take you along the seafront (the 306 runs into Newcastle).
Claims to fame!
Tynemouth was where Supergran was filmed if any of you remember that! It has also been the location for many other tv and film productions. Some other cringy ‘fame’ links, I have discovered are that most of The Lindisfarne rock band live here and hang out in the pubs as well as some girl who was in Grange hill, and some guy who was a rent boy on The Bill..!!!!
Thanks for reading, hope you visit someday J