Friends of Saltwell Park

Click here to edit subtitle

Events programme

All events are open to Members of the Friends of Saltwell Park and Non-Members.
Most events take place in, or from, the Training Centre in Saltwell Park (near the Model Boat Club building on the south side of the lake)  and start at 10.30am (unless otherwise specified).  Events generally last an hour and a half, and there is no need to book unless otherwise specified.
For events in the Training Centre there is a charge of £1 Members / £2 Non Members which includes refreshments (served before the event starts so please arrive 15 minutes before the start time if you wish to join us for refreshments).
Please note, events listed below are all organised by Friends of Saltwell Park.  For information about other events in the Park - such as Fireworks, Food Market and Enchanted Parks - please visit Gateshead Council's website
Events 2019
Saturday 12 October 2019 10.30am
The Great and the Good of Gateshead
Thank you to Ian Daley for telling us about some of
the Great and Good of Gateshead.  We did not
realise there were so many!
Starting with the Venerable Bede's 
mention of Gateshead in 653 in his "History of the
Church in England" through a sample of famous
writers, glass manufacturers, railway loco builders,
sportsmen, suffragists, educators, rope makers,
philanthropists, engravers, musicians, mayors,
other industrialists...we reached the 20th Century
with still more to go.
We hope Ian will return to tell the rest of the story.
Saturday 9 November 10.30am
Prisoners of the British 
Bernard Hope returns to give us a fascinating
account of the confinement in Britain of German
Servicemen between 1939 and 1948.
Saturday 7 December 10.30am
Christmas at St Chad’s Church, Bensham
The Low Fell Ukes will be playing and singing
a wide range of songs celebrating Christmas.

Past Events

Heritage Open Days in Saltwell Park

Saltwell Recreation and Remembrance walk

Organised by Gateshead Local History Society

Sunday 15 September at 11.00am

with Peter Bladon (Friend of Saltwell Park)

and Anthea Lang

The walk starts at the Saltwell Park entrance opposite
the Little Theatre at 11.00am and lasts for one and a half hours
to two hours.  Good shoes (not soft) and clothes suitable for
British weather on the day should be worn

A look at how people are remembered in Saltwell Park
and in Saltwell Cemetery

Booking Details:
Pre-booking: Required.
Walk must be pre-booked because of limited numbers - by email only.
Booking Contact: Gateshead Local History Society.
Email: [email protected]

Heritage Open Days 2019 –  13 - 22 September

Heritage Open Days in Saltwell Park

2 Heritage Walks in Saltwell Park
lead by Ian Daley (Friend of Saltwell Park)
Meet at Tea Room, Saltwell Towers, Saltwell Park NE8 4SF

~Saturday 14th September 14.00
~Tuesday 17th September 13.00
A walk around Saltwell Park pointing out some
interesting facts about its history. 
Tours last 45 mins - 1 hour
Pre book walk - 0191 482 2695
  Saturday 7 September 10.30am
City Slickers and Country Yokels
Urban and suburban areas are increasingly popular
with beekeepers. In our countryside, intensive
agriculture is not always welcoming to honeybees,
whereas in towns and cities there is a surprising
amount of diverse food to be found. But where
exactly do our urban honeybees go?
Thank you Dr Rinke Vinkenoog for a fascinating 
talk - which plants we see bees on and what types
of pollen turn up in their honey is very different.

Some links to help those who want to help pollinators:
Rosy Bee Rosy has done 5 years of research !

There are quite a few books, but this has
bee experts contributions too:
Plants for Bees: A Guide to the Plants That Benefit the
Bees of the British Isles by Kirk, W. D. J., Howes, F. N. (2012) H

Tuesday 20 August 8-9.30pm
Bat Walk
Northumberland Bat Group guided us on this
popular event- bat detectors and infra red light
to see bats in the dark.  Great!



(look for the bandstand!) 1:00-3:30pm

(30 minute interval at 2:00pm)


18th August  - Low Fell Ukes

25th August  - Whickham Wind Band

Bring a blanket and a picnic, relax and

listen to free music from local bands!

Please note this is organised by

Gateshead Council not by

Friends of Saltwell Park

If you would like to see more live music  in
Gateshead Parks,
Tweet #liveparkmusic to @GMBCouncil
Saturday 10 August 2019 10.30am
Heritage Walk
Despite rain before and after we joined Ian Daley
to discover the heritage of the Park. 
Thank you Ian for an informative and enjoyable
Love Parks Week 2019 – 12th - 21st July
FoSP in partnership with Gateshead Council
Join Us in July:
Sunday 14th & Wednesday 17th
For a display and sailing of Model Boats –
next to the lake 10am – 4pm
Tuesday 16th
Health Walk - stroll around the Park –
meet at North doors of the Towers 11am - 12noon
Wednesday 17th
Bird Walk - learn more about birds in the Park -
meet at North doors of the Towers 10am – 11am
Wednesday 17th
Park Practical Task morning – help with some gardening in Park -
meet at North doors of the Towers 10:30am – 12:30pm
Wednesday 17th
Heritage Walk - learn more about the heritage in the Park -
meet at North doors of the Towers 1pm – 2:30pm
All events are free
Saturday 6 July 2019
History of the Tyneside Cinema
Thank you Margaret Dodds for telling
us about the history of the
Tyneside Cinema which opened in 1937
and is the last surviving news theatre
still operating as a cinema.
Saturday 8th June 2019
Amanda Cuskin joined us with volunteer John
to tell us about Bowes Railway and the
Heritage Trail Challenge.  Watch out for further
information about how you can obtain your
Heritage Trail Passport and collect stamps
when you complete a trail.  Thank you Amanda,
history on our doorstep.  Hope Friends visit.
Sunday 12th May 2019 - Bird Walk
Michael Turner lead us around the Park looking
and listening for birds that live in the Park all year 
round or are just passing through. 
Lots of birds seen and heard ... including 5 cygnets
which made their first appearance today!
Weather perfect too.  Thank you Michael for 
a lovely walk and for sharing your knowledge.
Wednesday 24th April 2019- AGM
All welcome.  Join us from 6.45pm for refreshments
before the meeting starts at 7pm.
Saturday 13th April 2019 - Lit & Phil
The Literary & Philosophical Society was formed
in 1793 and its historic library is Newcastle's
must-see visitor attraction. 
Lit & Phil guide Pat Lowery gave us a fascinating
 insight into its history and hidden treasures.
Saturday 9th March 2019 - Honest Graft
We entered a world of tree grafting adventures with
 Tyneside Beekeeper's Association - diverse,
weird and wonderful!  We discovered the benefits of tree
grafting both to us and pollination insects. 

After the talk the Tyneside Beekeeper's Association
ran a grafting workshop at the Training Centre
in Saltwell Park, with tools provided.
Thank you Alistair Robinson from
Honest Graft.

Saturday 9th February 2019 - Land of Oak & Iron
Karen Daglish joined us to speak about the
Land of Oak & Iron, an area that was once home to a
world-leading iron and steel industry and is now an
area of natural beauty.
Thank you Karen, very significant history right on
our doorstep.

Saturday 12th January 2019 - History of the Clippy Mat

An excellent talk and demonstration by Jo Wilson on rag

mats, known locally as Clippy Mats, that were a common

sight in most working class homes in the North East until 

the 20th century.  Today the craft is being preserved by

local groupsAfter the talk and demonstration we were

able to have a go ourselves. 

Saturday 8th December 2018
Christmas at St Chad's Church, Bensham
Seasonal fayre and songs from Sharon Durrant's
Urban Chorus choir.  Thank you to all who
contributed to this event to make it so special.
Saturday 10th November 2019 - End of the First World War
Germany 1918: Armistice and Aftermath
As we commemorate the 100th anniversary of the
end of the First World War, Ian McArdle from the
Lit & Phil returned and gave us another fascinating talk.

This talk recounted from the German point of view the

major events from the offensive in March, 1918 leading

up to the Armistice on November 11th. The talk then

continued by examining some of the reactions of the

defeated troops and their bitter return to a deeply

unstable and dangerous homeland.

A most informative and moving talk, thank you Ian.

Displays in Shipley Art Gallery Lounge:

Saltwell Park Game "The Keeper" &

"Six Honest Servants"

Please visit the Shipley Art Gallery and see

results of our art work with Dingy Butterflies

over the summer.

Exhibition opens on Saturday 15th September

to 27th October 2019.  There will be talks by the

artists who undertook these projects on 6th

and 13th October.

More details will follow but look in the Council

News too.

Saturday 13th October 2018
Life in the 1930s / 40s / 50s

Andrew Clark, local author, encouraged us to
discuss what life was like during these years,
with memories of the Park in those times. What
a great discussion!  New stories for Andrew
too. Thank you very much Andrew - especially
from those who still remember their old
Co-op Divi number!

Those Northern Lights, So Pretty
Dingy Butterflies.  Venues across
Bensham & Saltwell, Gateshead - including
Saltwell Park
Sunday 9 September 2018 10.30am - 12 noon
Meet at Gate 1 (LittleTheatre entrance).
Be one of the first to try out the newly
created "The Keeper" game.

For more information email:

Please note the Friends of Saltwell Park are
not organising these events but we are
supporting them.  If you would like to help us
to do this then please
Saturday 8th September 2018 - Open Meeting
Every one came to hear about what is going
on in the Park and tell us about their
experiences and concerns in the Park. 
This time we also asked those present for
help with making all the things we do happen. 
If everyone does a little bit to help then we
can make big things happen!  Some of you
already do a lot.  However, if you have yet
to volunteer for something and you feel 
you can help us then please let us know by 

Wednesday 15th August 2018-  Workshop

Dingy Butterflies

Toby Lloyd -Workshop

10am - 1pm Training Centre.

Toby Lloyd (August 2018) 
Saturday 11th August 2018 - Chase Park
Peter Craig, Friends of Chase Park in Whickham,
told us about Chase Park and the process the
Friends of Chase Park (FoCP) went through with
Heritage Lottery Funding.  They have taken on
so much responsibility for their park, they are
inspiring.  FoCP is very different to FoSP but we 
can learn a lot from each other.
Sunday 15th July is Love Parks Day in Saltwell Park

Sunday 15th July 2018 - Community Open Day 11am-4pm
Following the success of last year we are pleased to be
able to tell you this event is to run again. 

Saturday 14th July 2018 - Bees in Parks
Barbara Keating, Tyneside Bee Keepers, helped us
learn about Honey Bees with the most wonderful
installation and question and answer session.
If you missed it it will be in the Training
Centre tomorrow at the Community Open Day.

Saturday 9th June 2018
The Great Exhibition of the North is coming:
22 June to 9 September
It's the biggest Exhibition in England.

Carol Bell, Director of the Great Exhibition of the North
gave us an excellend overview of this free summer
long programme of amazing exhibits, live performances,
displays of innovation, new artworks and unforgettable
For more information about GETNorth 2018
or click here.

Click here to edit text

Sunday 13th May 2018 - Bird Walk 9.30am start

Thank you to Michael Turner for leading us around
the Park looking and listening for birds which live
in the Park or are passing through. 
Quite quiet in the Park after the heavy rain but
some bird activity seen and bird song heard and
lots of ducklings.
Wednesday 25th April 2018 - AGM
7.00pm Training Centre
All welcome.  Join us from 6.30pm for refreshments
before the meeting starts at 7.00pm
Saturday 14th April 2018
Joseph Shipley

Thank you to Ian Daley who provided a very interesting
illustrated talk about Joseph Shipley and
the Shipley Art Gallery.  Another of our local heroes.
Saturday 10th March 2018 - Friends of Jesmond Dene
Thank you to 2 enthusiastic Friends of Jesmond Dene
who told us about the history of the Dene and the
their activities.  Many similarities to Friends of
Saltwell Park, lots to learn!


(Cuppa with a Copper)


Friday 9th March 2018, between11am – 12noon at

Saltwell Towers.

Join PC Nicola Smith to discuss your concerns about

activities in the Park and hear about what the Friends

of Saltwell Park are doing to help make the Park more

safe and secure. All welcome.
Saturday 10th February 2018 - Penshaw Monument
Bernard Hope gave us a fascinating account
of John George Lambton and Penshaw Monument.
Thank you - and we hope Bernard will return
next year as we see he has new talks to offer.
If you would like to see a full list of Bernard's
talks please visit his website.
Saturday 13th January 2018 - Family History Workshop
Thank you to Yvonne Kennedy and team for helping
us discover how to research our family trees.   
WiFi was provided for this event, and the event was
sponsored by Allay Claims Ltd.