Newcastle City Guides Walking Tours

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Newcastle City Guides are a group of trained and qualified volunteers working in association with NewcastleGateshead Initiative. Our aim is to provide interesting and informative walks on the history and heritage of Newcastle, Gateshead and parts of North and South Tyneside.

Newcastle City Guides are delighted to support this exciting event. Several of our Heritage Walks and our Highlights Walks will provide historical links to the key themes of Art, Design and Innovation. Alongside a daily City Highlights walking tour running through the exhibition, the guides are putting on a range of ‘Inspired by’ tours detailed below. Check the Newcastle City Guides website for the full list of walking tours.

These walks look at specific locations and their history and heritage. Most walks are offered on a “just turn up” basis unless otherwise stated. All walks, visits and events last no more than two hours unless otherwise stated and are non-smoking.

Heads and Tales | Sunday 24 June | 14.30

Meet at Grey’s Monument. Finish at Westgate Road.

Have you ever sat on the top deck of a bus and wondered who the carved heads staring back at you are? There are many faces depicted on buildings in Newcastle and this walk takes us around town to find these heads and discover some of the tales behind them.

Shipcote and Shipley Art Gallery | Saturday 30 June | 11.00

Meet and finish at Shipley Art Gallery, Prince Consort Road (NE8 4JB).

Take a pleasant stroll around the Shipcote area of Gateshead and hear some fascinating history about pastures, parks and the civic centre that it nearly became. Includes a visit to the gallery to enjoy Mr Shipley’s generosity in providing an art gallery.

Rocket Man | Sunday 1 July | 14.30

Meet at Discovery Museum main entrance, Blandford Square. Finish at Half Moon Lane, Gateshead.

Celebrate the life and work of Robert Stephenson, the only son of George Stephenson, the ‘Father of Railways’. This walk gives an insight into the background of his family life, early career and the creation of impressive engineering structures that are still part of North East life today.

Thomas Bewick, Scratching the Surface | Wednesday 4 July | 19.00

Meet at Cardinal Hume statue, opposite Newcastle Central Station. Finish at St Nicholas’ Cathedral.

This walk celebrates Thomas Bewick, one of Tyneside’s most famous sons. It takes us from his arrival in Newcastle to begin his apprenticeship with Ralph Beilby and through Bewick’s Newcastle, where he lived and worked.

Classic Dobson | Wednesday 11 July | 19.00

Meet at Laing Art Gallery. Finish at Times Square.

Celebrating the best known buildings by John Dobson, this walk looks at Dobson’s own house, takes in Old Eldon Square to the Old Cattle Market via Grainger Town, and includes his masterpiece, Central Station.

Central Station and The Boiler Shop | Monday 16 July | 15.00

Meet at Cardinal Hume statue, opposite Newcastle Central Station. Finish at The Boiler Shop, Stephenson Works.

This walk takes a circular route in and around the magnificent Grade I Central Station with access to the world’s first locomotive works. The emphasis is on George and Robert Stephenson and the latest developments around the historic Stephenson Quarter.

Saltwell Park Stroll | Sunday 22 July | 14.30

Meet and finish at park entrance opposite Little Theatre, corner of Saltwell View and East Park Road, Gateshead.

Walk around this beautiful Victorian park discovering stories of past and present. Explore the oddities of Saltwell Towers and hear tales of the park’s oldest inhabitant and the story of the disappearing bandstands!

Dunston – Staithes, Steamers and Teemers | Thursday 26 July | 14.30

Meet at car park on Staithes Road, NE11 9DR opposite Dunston Excelsior WMC. Finish at Dunston Staithes.

A unique walk exploring the history of Dunston Staithes and the industry that would have been visible on both banks of the Tyne. The walk will take us onto the actual Staithes, one of Europe’s largest timber structures. Steep steps onto the Staithes – an alternative ramp will be open.

Grainger Town | Thursday 2 August | 14.30

Meet and finish at Grey’s Monument.

A walk that encompasses all that is beautiful in Newcastle’s classical architecture, from the curved lines of Grey Street and its majestic Theatre Royal to the imposing Grainger Market. Hear about Richard Grainger, the man who made it all possible.

Keep Your Feet Still Geordie Hinny | Sunday 5 August | 14.30

Meet at Chinese Arch, Stowell Street. Finish at Newcastle Central Station.

Music hall was one of the most popular forms of affordable entertainment in the Victorian period. Take a look at the places where the most popular stars of the time, including Joe Wilson, Geordie Ridley and Ned Corvan, played to packed houses and wowed people with their songs of local events and characters.

Newcastle Civic Centre | Tuesday 7 August | 19.00

Meet under the Council Chamber, Newcastle Civic Centre. Booking essential

A special visit on the Civic Centre’s 50th Birthday takes you behind the scenes. Walk the corridors of our Civic Centre, with a rare opportunity to climb the Carillon tower to look across the city. Please note that access to the Carillon tower is only possible by climbing a set of steep and uneven stairs.

Industry and Invention | Sunday 12 August | 14.30

Meet at Grey’s Monument. Finish at Exchange Buildings, Newcastle Quayside.

This walk looks at the role Newcastle played as industry and innovation flourished in the 19th century. Find out where Stephenson built locomotives, where Swan first demonstrated his electric light bulb and how Armstrong and Parsons established factories which eventually employed thousands of workers. The route takes a steady, but steep downhill route, which may make it difficult for people with limited mobility.

Railways and Riverside | Sunday 19 August | 14.30

Meet at west door of Sage Gateshead. Finish at Swing Bridge (Gateshead end).

Discover how early railways, industries and bridges have now been joined by modern art and find out just what Sage Gateshead’s car park was originally used for!


Venue: Various locations around NewcastleGateshead

Newcastle City Guides Walking Tours

Accessibility Information

Check individual tours for accessibility information. Newcastle and its surroundings have some steep slopes, steps and uneven surfaces. Where this is a problem it is noted in the walk description.