Start Planning your Summer with Our Guide to Great Northumberland

*This is a paid collaboration with Great Northumberland

Have you heard of Great Northumberland? Northumberland County Council has put together a summer of fun with over 40 events across 56 days celebrating the arts, heritage and culture that Northumberland has to offer. If you're interested in hearing more, I highly recommend signing up to the FREE member's club here for exclusive access to competitions and events across the summer.

There are over 40 events to choose from (see the full list here) and many of the events are free of charge (see here for a full list of free events). Today I'm sharing my top 10 Great Northumberland event picks. If you fancy any of the events mentioned, make sure you pop them in your diary now.

Great Northumberland | Our Top 10 Events 

1 - Anya Gallacio at Lindisfarne Castle

I have such happy memories of visiting Lindisfarne Castle with the kids a few years ago. We managed to spot seals from the Castle rooftops and Holy Island really does have a unique magic all of it's own. Lindisfarne Castle has recently undergone an 18 month programme of restoration work and has reopened with a special Anya Gallaccio exhibition. Anya Gallaccio is a former Turner-prize nominated artist and the special exhibition is a once in a lifetime chance to experience the castle as never before. Due to the refurbishment, the castle's original collection has been temporarily removed the empty castle has been transformed into an immersive experience. I really can't wait to see what this is going to be like and it's the perfect reason to re-visit and see Lindisfarne in a new light.

Exhibition runs from 5 May  - 4 November 2018 and is included with regular National Trust admission. Check tide times before heading to Holy Island. Find out more here. 

2 - Kielder Art & Architecture

Kielder is one of our favourite places to properly switch off and connect with nature. The fact that it's in the middle of nowhere and has no phone signal really helps! Kielder Water & Forest Park has inspired an award-winning collection of art and architecture. There are over 20 pieces in total and this summer, visitors can join an experienced art curator and take a tour of the park's most well-known sculptures. I think this sounds like a fantastic opportunity to gain a unique insight into Kielder.

There are several tour dates throughout the Summer. Advance booking is essential (£10 pp or £25 per family). Find out more and book online here. 

3 - Summer Activities at Woodhorn 

We love visiting Woodhorn - it's a unique place to discover the history of Northumberland and there's lots of space for kids to run around. During the Northumberland Summer holidays, there will be a pop-up Ashington Group Hut where families are encouraged to create their own artwork based on The Ashington Paintings on display.

This event runs throughout the summer holidays and is included with regular Woodhorn admission/annual pass. Find out more here. 

4 - Cheeseburn Sculpture Gardens and Galleries

Cheeseburn is a place I've yet to visit in Northumberland and I'm going to make the effort to change this soon. The gardens and galleries will showcase work by emerging North East and International artists plus explore how new technology is interacting with traditional sculpture techniques. The Stables Gallery will also feature two special exhibitions, only available to view on specific dates.

This event runs from 30 June - 2 September with special exhibition dates in July, August and September (check here for details). Entry is completely free of charge (donations welcome) and refreshments are available.

5 - 50 Years of National Trust at Wallington Hall

We love Wallington Hall and have featured this Northumberland gem on our blog many times in the past. It's a fantastic place for families with woodland walks, den building areas, three play parks, nature hides, cycle trails and so much more. 2018 marks the 50th anniversary of National Trust opening Wallington Hall up to the public and there are a series of special events to mark the occasion. From the chance to look at future conservation plans to stepping inside a 60s room that time forgot, this is the chance to learn something new about this National Trust property.

Events are included with National Trust admission and run from 7 May - 4 November 2018. Find out more here. 

6 - Carnival Capers at Seaton Delaval Hall - pre-book your FREE tickets now

On 28 July, Seaton Delaval Hall is hosting a summer spectacular which will rival their eighteenth-century antics. Expect a whole host of activities from music, lively performances, street theatre, comedy, cabaret, roving performers and live music from North East favourites the Baghdaddies. Tickets are completely free but must be pre-booked in advance (there are various time slots available with performances repeated throughout the day). This really sounds like an event not to be missed!

Carnival Capers will take place on 28 July. Pre-book your free ticket and find out more here. 

7 - Shakespeare's Globe on Tour - 11 August

Who doesn't love a bit of Shakespeare? 8 actors are heading on tour this year and will perform either The Merchant of Venice, The Taming of the Shrew or Twelfth Night. The fate of the evening will be in the hands of the audience. This sounds like a fantastic chance to experience something a little different at Alnwick Playhouse.

Shakespeare's Globe on Tour visits Alnwick Playhouse on the evening of 11 August 2018. Find out more and buy tickets here. 

8 - Alnwick Alive! - 12 August 

Alnwick Market Place will spring to life with music, song, dance and spoken word with a strong Northumbrian focus on 12 August. This event is FREE of charge and the marketplace is going to be transformed into an open-air arena seating around 200 people. Expect a mix of amateur and professional performances throughout the day with traditional Northumbrian food being sold including Alnwick Stew and Singin' Hinnies.

Alnwick Alive! takes place in Alnwick Market Place on 12 August between 10:30am - 4:30pm. Performances are free to watch. Find out more here. 

9 - Northumbrian Music & Dance at Alnwick Garden - 22 July & 11 August 

This is a chance to explore the beauty of Alnwick Garden whilst learning about our region's music and dance. There will be the chance to take part in a family-friendly ceilidh, listen to Northumbrian small pipes, hear local musicians perform and more. The event is included with regular admission.

This event takes place on 22 July and 11 August. Find out more here.

10 - The Great Song of the North / Event Finale - 1 September 

Join a procession of 300 people along the Marygate in Berwick Town Centre from 4pm, before a community choir gathers in front of the town's Georgian Guildhall to perform traditional Northumbrian songs including a specially commissioned celebratory fanfare using the newly restored ceremonial fanfare trumpets. The event concludes with a gala tea in Guildhall and then a free (but ticketed) seated concert at The Maltings at 5:30pm which will include a performance of the specially commissioned ' The Great Song of the North'.

This event takes place in Berwick on 1 September. The event is free but ticketed. Find out more and book your ticket to the procession and/or performance here.

I really can't wait for summer to properly start. The first event we're heading to Cheeseburn on 30 June - make sure you check out my Instagram stories from the event!

For giveaways, news and offers, sign up to the FREE Great Northumberland Members Club here

Are you planning on attending any of the Great Northumberland events this year?

Please note, events can change. Please confirm details before setting off. 

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Start Planning your Summer with Our Guide to Great Northumberland


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