We had a lovely stay at the Red Well Inn, in Barnard Castle. Room exquisitely decorated and a nice pub.
May well return here some day, as there is Barnard Castle and the ruin of Egglestone Abbey nearby.
And the Bowes museum... Yes, may well return here some day!
On our last day in the UK I wanted to have a look at 'The Angel of the North'; it was on our way to Newcastle anyway.
A remarkable work of art, in my opinion.
It stands on a hill on the southern edge of Low Fell, overlooking the A1 and A167 roads into Tyneside,
and the East Coast Main Line rail route, south of the site of Team Colliery.
|The Angel of the North
is a contemporary sculpture, designed by Sir Antony Gormley, located near Gateshead in Tyne and Wear, England.
Work began on the project in 1994 and cost £800,000. Most of the project funding was provided by the National Lottery. The Angel was finished on 16 February 1998.
Due to its exposed location, the sculpture was built to withstand winds of over 100 mph (160 km/h). Thus, foundations containing 600 tonnes of concrete anchor the sculpture to rock 70 feet (21 m) below. The sculpture was built at Hartlepool Steel Fabrications Ltd using COR-TEN weather-resistant steel. It was made in three parts-with the body weighing 100 tonnes and two wings weighing 50 tonnes each-then brought to its site by road. It took five hours for the body to be transported from its construction site in Hartlepool, up the A19 road to the site.
The Angel aroused some controversy in British newspapers, at first, including a 'Gateshead stop the statue-' campaign, while local councillor Martin Callanan was especially strong in his opposition.
However, it has since been considered to be a landmark for North East England and has been listed by one organisation as an 'Icon of England'.
It has often been used in film and television to represent Tyneside, as are other local landmarks such as the Tyne Bridge and the Gateshead Millennium Bridge.
It has its feet firmly secured, deep into the ground, to withstand the windforces.
Completed in 1998, it is a steel sculpture, 20 metres tall, with wings measuring 54 metres across.
The wings do not stand straight sideways, but are angled 3.5 degrees forward; Gormley did this to
create "a sense of embrace".
We still had time before our sailing from of the docks of Newcastle-upon-Tyne and decided we could have a look in nearby Tynemouth. A spot of lunch with a refreshment would do. And wouldn't you believe it, they have a castle there!
Tynemouth Castle is located on a rocky headland (known as Pen Bal Crag), overlooking Tynemouth Pier.
The moated castle-towers, gatehouse and keep are combined with the ruins of the Benedictine priory where early kings of Northumbria were buried.
The coat of arms of the town of Tynemouth still includes three crowns commemorating the tradition that the Priory had been the burial place for three kings.
Little is known of the early history of the site. Some Roman stones have been found there, but there is no definite evidence that it was occupied by the Romans.
The Priory was founded early in the 7th century.
In 651 Oswin, King of Deira was murdered by the soldiers of King Oswiu of Bernicia, and subsequently his body was brought to Tynemouth for burial. He became St Oswin and his burial place became a shrine visited by pilgrims. He was the first of the three kings buried at Tynemouth.
In 792 Osred II, who had been king of Northumbria from 789 to 790 and then deposed, was murdered. He also was buried at Tynemouth Priory. Osred was the second of the three kings buried at Tynemouth.
The third king to be buried at Tynemouth was Malcolm III, King of Scotland, who was killed at the Battle of Alnwick in 1093.
This is the same Malcolm who appears in Shakespeare's Macbeth. [Wikipedia]
In 800 the Danes plundered Tynemouth Priory and afterwards the monks strengthened the fortifications sufficiently to prevent the Danes from succeeding when they attacked again in 832.
However, in 865 the church and monastery were destroyed by the Danes.
At the same time, the nuns of St. Hilda, who had come there for safety, were massacred...
The priory was again plundered by the Danes in 870. The priory was destroyed by the Danes in 875.
In 1110 a new church was completed on the site.
In 1093 Malcolm III of Scotland invaded England and was killed at Alnwick by Robert de Mowbray.
Malcolm's body was buried at Tynemouth Priory for a time, but it is believed that he was subsequently reburied in Dunfermline Abbey, in Scotland.
In 1095 Robert de Mowbray took refuge in Tynemouth Castle, after rebelling against William II.
William besieged the castle and captured it after two months. Mowbray escaped to Bamburgh Castle, but subsequently returned to Tynemouth. The castle was re-taken and Mowbray was dragged from there and imprisoned for life for treason... [Wikipedia]
One final lunch, and a good pint, before boarding DFDS Seaways, homeward bound.
|I am a fan of Bill Bryson's books and in his 2015 'The Road to Little Dribbling' I came across many of my subjects of fascination but also the frustrations I encountered during this trip.
What I would like to quote is why I keep returning to Britain, for the simple reason there is so much to see and absorb...
Here's Mr Bryson "..say some numbers.
Britain has 450.000 listed buildings 20.000 scheduled ancient monuments, 26 World Heritage Sites, 1.624 registered parks and gardens (that is, gardens and parks of historic significance), 600.000 known archeological sites (and more being found every day; more being lost, too), 3.500 historic cemeteries, 70.000war memorials, 4.000 sites of special scientific interest, 18.500 medieval churches, and 2.500 museums containing 170 million objects."
Nobody says it better than Bill Bryson (including his acrid and caustic observations)!