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Stravaiging

Exploring Berwick

Ok, I am biased. I don't live far from this most northerly English town (although in another country) and have always had a soft spot for it. As with so many places, its once thriving main street (Marygate) is a sad shadow of its former self but there are many gems to be found.

First a smidgen of history -

Berwick Barracks

It was once Scotland's wealthiest royal burgh, then between 1296 and 1982 it changed hands between the kingdoms of Scotland and England no fewer than thirteen times. Its medieval walls were bolstered by the Tudors and again in the 1560s. The cost of the construction was the biggest single expense in the reign of Queen Elizabeth I. It continued to be an important military town; from 1721 infantrymen were housed in the first purpose built barracks in England.

 

And today you can...

... stroll along the now grassy ramparts, peer in at the Barracks (or visit - museums and a gallery), enjoy riverside walks, stride along the old quay walls, wander Pier Road to the beach, perhaps cross the Old Bridge (1634) into Tweedmouth while watching the swans, or take a river or sea boat trip.

map of Berwick

This stylish map forms part of a downloadable leaflet produced by VisitBerwick.com, I've added a thin red scribbly arrow to The Granary, off Bridge Street, where my workshops take place.

Frontage of Berrydin Books

Starting up the hill in Castlegate, there's Berrydin Books on one side of the road and the apparently nameless Danish Design/Drift Living on t'other. Both tempting to check out and possibly make a wee purchase (and there are more vintage/antique shops and at least one other secondhand bookshop in the twon). Pier Red here for refreshments. You can access the walls easily on either side of the Castle Gate itself or continue down the busy road.

Berwick Visitor Centre is just along Walkergate to your left (flags flying above its doorway). There's a little cafe and comfy seating and if you head upstairs you can watch a good wee film about the town, admire the Tweed 1000 tapestry and check out the scale model of the town. It has an old-fashioned feel, this historic building, but quaint is good!

Off Marygate on the right hand side West St and Eastern Lane lead down to The Maltings (theatre/cinema/cafe bar/visual arts) and more steeply on to Bridge Street. In West St you'll find Northern Soul Kitchen (a zero food waste initiative) and 'Interesting Books & Zines'.

window display at Drift Living

Wending your way down Marygate the road swings right down Hide Hill. Hotels here, Foxtons winebar & restaurant, and Limoncello restaurant on the corner of Silver Street. Detour along this little street to find Northern Edge coffee roastery and spacious stripped back coffee shop, or keep walking to reach Pier Road and the sea.

Northern Edge coffee shop

Hide Hill swings right again into Bridge Street. There is lots of interest packed into this short street which leads onto the Old Bridge.

There's Cook+Live+Dream full of every stylish and practical item you could possibly need (and a lovely dog called Betrys),

Tidekettle Paper where Lucy Baxendall handmakes paper and artists' books,

the Mule on Rouge for coffee, bagels and a certain style

The Green Shop for stacks of organic, fair trade desirable comestibles

and right opposite there you will find The Granary - a listed building with a greater lean than that tower in Pisa. It's a youth hostel with a good spacious cafe on the ground floor run by polite and friendly staff. Upstairs there is a gallery and a conference room. It's here that my workshops are running. The image shows the back of the building, whereas the main entrance is from the car park side.

rear view of The Granary

Continue along Bridge Street to find Jennie Howes spinning in her amazing Wool Studio full of her yarns, fibre blends and unique patterns. And there are two more galleries (the Irving and Arthouse), a further secondhand bookshop (Slightly Foxed), a micropub, deli/bar and three different restaurants!






Jennie's Wool Studio frontage

If you carry on across the bridge into Tweedmouth you will find the excellent Dockside Gallery too. It's on the Lowry Trail, as is The Granary. LS Lowry spent many years visiting Berwick, sketching and painting. He talked of buying a property here - The Lions House, after which these allotments are named. Gardening with a view of the sea!


Do search on Northumberland and specific Berwick websites for more to see and do.

Lions HOuse allotments

 

Aerial view of Berwick

Comments: 2 (Add)

liz lawrie on June 23 2022 at 19:22

Berwick needs you on their Tourist Board. Well done.

Maureen on June 20 2022 at 06:31

Now I'm even more envious of those able to come to your workshop. Thank you for the guided tour very interesting. Good luck.

bordertart

🪡
New stitched samples awaiting their turn under the lights…

Maybe tomorrow😉
Tart holding forth at this afternoon’s workshop @atbirkhillhousecic ☺️

This is such a welcoming and relaxing venue and I am delighted to be headed back in July to run Kantha sessions.

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Find out more about these and lots of inspiring workshops at www.atbirkhillhouse.co.uk
Stitchy Sunday - - - - -

🧵 Boro boxes back in stock
🪡 New Fat Quarter packs listed
💙 Off to run a Slow Stitchin’ Blues workshop this afternoon 🤗
💙Beauties
In the shop very soon🤞🏻
🧵One boro-style workshop space has opened up for Sunday (26th) in the Borders😳🪡

Grab it by following the workshop link @atbirkhillhousecic 

Boro bits as far as the eye can see here today. Busily making more #boroboxes for all those who missed out recently. They will be in the shop on Saturday sometime..🏃🏻‍♀️💙
A rainbow of possibilities 🤗

Just collected this morning, these will be transformed into joyful little stitchery works at a workshop in the Borders this summer.
Wednesday windowsill

Roses and Shadows edition🌹
💙
Shades of serenity, 
with a splash of joy
☀️

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