: Newcastle International
: Newcastle to Holland and Norway
: M6 Jct 40
: Seaham, Durham Heritage Coast
: Westgate village
: Daddry Shield
: The Hare & Hounds (pub), Westgate
Westgate lies within the Wear Valley which is part of the Pennines designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty; perfect for mountain biking, bird watching, riding, painting, photography and even skiing. There are lots of things to see locally - museums, mines, castles, gardens, railways, historic cities, Hadrian’s Wall 30 minutes to the north and the spectacular High Force Falls 30 minutes to the south. Only 15 miles further up the Pennines is the market town of Alston, sitting 1300 feet above sea level, and the starting point for the South Tyne Railway. The market towns of Barnard Castle, Hexham (with its racecourse and Abbey), Newcastle and Durham are all within 30 miles. The village itself has a riverside pub and small shop, playground and public tennis court, The surrounding area is renowned for its wildlife and Slitt Wood with its burbling and gushing beck (a 5 minute walk from the house) is a Site of Special Scientific Interest and bloomin lovely to walk up through. The brooding Hamsterley Forest is 20 minutes by car and is perfect for walks, biking and picnics.
Other Activities: canoeing, orienteering,
Golf: 6 Golf courses within an hours drive, both 9 and 18 hole. visit a golf website for details:
There's even left some clubs to borrow in the house!
Ski: It was on ski Sunday for goodness sake, and you can't get much better than that!
It is called Swinhope Moor (01388 527527; skiweardale.co.uk), which began in 1963 and is run by the Weardale Ski Club, comprising 14 volunteers. These include a fireman who works at the club in his spare time and a retired mechanic. They're up there in the summer cutting the rushes, and in the winter manning the two button lifts and the piste basher. There are seven pisted runs, off-piste slopes and a gully with jumps and ledges. They were awarded the 'Recreational Club of the Year Award' by Snow Sport England at an awards ceremony last month.
I have also skied up on the county border with Northumberland. Minus 3, purple wax, and the skis and wax, plus boots are all available in the loft (size 10 large). 2 sets of everything. Snow reports available at:
http://www.skiweardale.com/Snow%20Reports.html plus http://www.snow-forecast.com/resorts/Swinhope/6day/mid and a blog spot at skiweardale.blogspot.com
Have a look at the pub opposite; they do great food and it only takes 30 seconds to walk there!
The arboretum to visit is in Durham: http://www.eastdurham.ac.uk/1419/view_page.php?section=5&category=19&page=53