A canny well-kept secret!

This week has seen us walking along the Durham and Northumberland
coastline which has been glorious. The Durham coast is rapidly
recovering from the abuse of the mining industry. For decades
refuse from the pits were just tipped onto the beaches.

Blast Beach

The last example of this to be seen is at Blast beach where there is a good six feet of black slag and discoloured pools being eaten away at a rapid rate of knots

Yukky pools at Blast beach

But, further south and north beaches are clear and populated by
locals and just a few tourists enjoying the spectacular scenery and
less than packed seaside. The surf was rolling and there were surfers
performing. Those who head off to queue in airports for other
countries or even who head off down the A1 or M1 for holiday are
really missing a treat.

Spectacular county Durham

The Northumberland coastline is longer than the Durham coast and holds even more delights and history.

A young walker - Abigail

Another walker joined us for part of the way. young Abigail brought her pet lamb Barbara with her carried on her shoulders!

On the stretch between Newbiggin and Amble Peter Main (who walked with us) told us the tale of Cresswell Tower. This was the home of the Cresswell family in the 14thand 15thcenturies, but now, only the medieval tower remains.  The woods round about are said to be haunted by the ghosts of Vikings, but the real ghost story is associated with the beautiful daughter of the Cresswell family.  She fell in love with a Danish prince, which was unfortunate as the Danes were at war with England at the time.  Her brothers were furious when she announced plans for the wedding and they paid some locals to kill the prince.  A large crowd gathered by the tower in anticipation of the wedding and the bride waited at the top of the tower to see her bridegroom arrive.  A horse was spotted in the distance, but when it got closer it was seen to be dragging the dead prince behind it. The bride lost all will to live and died shortly afterwards of a broken heart.  It is said that
her ghostly form can sometimes be seen gazing out to sea from the top
of the tower.

Whether it has been the temperatures or whether it is the natural
curiosity and openness of the people in this part of the country, we
seem to have met and chatted with more and more people as the walk is
progressing. Several people seem to think we have got lost and off
the normal route – whereas others are amazed to think they have
caught us ‘mid-walk’ as it were! “Are you really walking so far?”

So ‘Hi! And thank you’ to

those raising funds for deaf children by dressing in fancy dress near
Whitburn, Joan and Wilf from Whitburn, Pauline, Steve and Barry,
Chittinda in the corner shop in Sunderland, Paula and Grace met near
Blackhall Rocks, Ian and Louise, Corinne and Mike who were cycling,
Frances from South Shields, Charlie,Dorothy, Judith and Ann at the
Rattler pub in South Shields,  all at St Mary Magdalene church in
Mitford especially the children Naomi, Bryony, Thea, Zoe, Sam,
Frankie, Eve, Annabel and Dan, to Sean and Linda, to Pete, Susannah
and Abigail who put us up and fed us(!), Jennie and Phil from Whitley
Bay, Cath and Mandy met near St mary’s Lighthouse, Marion and Eddie
and Peter and Lorraine met near Seaton Sluice and Elias who does a
wonderful job in the park at Blyth. Linda at Blyth, Gary the cycling
fireman who showed us the right path, Leanne and Andrea met at
Cambois, who also helped us find the way, Lindsey and Mark at
Newbiggin caravan park and not forgetting Helen at Newbiggin whose
husband has done Land’s End to John o’Groats in an ‘invalid car!’

Week 14 Statistics

Scrabble:  Nancy 1   John 1

Trig Points  0

Kissing Gates  8

En route donations  £692.07 (which includes a very
generous £400 donation from a great couple and  a wonderful £228.92 from St Mary Magdalene church in Mitford)

Mileage  86 miles

Newcastle Brown Ale    2 pints

Bedlington terriers spotted 4


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