Saltwell Victorian Park

Who lives in a house like this?

Another hidden treasure in the North East is Saltwell Victorian park in Gateshead. Originally called the People’s Park it was opened in 1876 to provide a peaceful oasis for the public in what was then a heavy industrial environment..
Fly away on Saltwell Airways!!

In Victorian times, concern for the health of people living in urban areas led to the development of the public park movement and Gateshead Corporation bought the park outright from owner William Wailes who was one of the 19th Century’s most noted stained glass designers. He designed and built Saltwell Towers, the fairytale mansion in the middle of the park for his own use. These days it  a jolly visitor centre and cafe featuring stain glass works by more modern artists. Another interesting fact about the park is that  From 1982 to 1993 the Children’s play area of the park featured a retired Vickers Viscount 701 Aeroplane (made in Newcastle at Vickers Engineering) which had been modified, cutting its wings short and which  included an escape slide for Children to play on for a small fee. It was branded ‘Saltwell Airways’ and is still remembered fondly by those growing up in the 80’s. Of course once the health and safety brigade came to prominence it’s days were numbered, shame really I’d have loved a go in that. After a recent multi million pound facelift the park is proving as popular today as ever with all manner of things going on down in the woods today.

Not that we’re desperate..

Last weekend was ‘Wonders of the World’ where families pitch up and select from a great pile of wood, then buy nails and hire hammers nails and make their own sculpture creations. Everyone was gleefully getting stuck in, some with more success than others and there were probably quite a few sore thumbs by the end of the day.

 Get An Accidental English Tourist delivered by email

Concentrate concentrate!
Who’s got the instructions?

Come and sculpture your family!

Bridge over troubled turf
Dinosaur from the plankassic era
This flower tastes a bit woody