Round The World and other travels

A frequent flyer's collection of trip diaries

July 2011: Beamish

Beamish Open Air Museum has been in existence since 1972 and I first became aware of it in the early 1980s; yet despite living less than 160 miles away from its County Durham location, it took until July 2011 for me to get around to paying it a visit. The museum is dedicated to preserving aspects of both urban and rural life in the north-east of England in the early 20th century. Features include a town's high street, two railways, a colliery and a farm. The site is huge and, funding permitted, appears to offer much scope for potential future expansion; meanwhile, the current exhibition areas are linked by vintage trams and buses.

I spent over five hours on-site without becoming in any way bored or weary. Despite it being the middle of summer, the weather was most unpromising, but managed to remain grudgingly cooperative for most of my time there.

ABOVE: Entrance to Beamish Open Air Museum

Angel of the North

The short journey from Beamish to Gateshead took me past the Angel of the North, the huge steel sculpture that has overlooked major routes into Tyneside since 1998.

Linked report from same trip: Northumberland

Based at: Holiday Inn Washington and Hilton Newcastle-Gateshead