I was born in Berwick-upon-Tweed and I grew up living opposite Holy Island, where my parents still live. I have lived in the North East all my life, apart from a stint in London while studying at Royal Central School of Speech and Drama. I’ve now settled in Ryton, Gateshead, but still refer to Northumberland as home.
The best thing about living and working in the North East is the people. I meet folk from all walks of life in my job. Practically everybody will greet me with a smile and a willingness to help out however they can. We graft in the North East, but there is a spirit of generosity that goes alongside, which I love.
My favourite area of the North East is any section of the Northumberland Coastline. Pick any beach from Craster to Bamburgh, Spittal, Druridge Bay or Ross Beach. Whatever time of year, you can’t fail to be blown over by the sheer beauty of this relatively undiscovered coastline
My favourite place to spend some quality leisure time in the North East – obviously – is the Live Theatre! If you haven’t yet been, you really must. Live Theatre has an international reputation as a new writing theatre, as well as producing and presenting new plays. Come along, have a different night out, and you will be warmly welcomed – we also have a very good and well-stocked bar.
The attraction the North East should be proudest of is potentially happening this summer. NewcastleGateshead will host Great Exhibition of the North, set to be the biggest event in England in 2018. Showcasing world-class art, culture, design and innovation from the North, there will be something for everyone.
The best view in the North East is from the middle of the Millennium Bridge looking back up the Tyne to all the other bridges. I particularly like the lights and river reflections at dusk. It’s my new route home and don’t think I’ll ever tire of this view.
My ‘hidden gem’ in the North East is Fausto Coffee on Roker Beach in Sunderland. Cracking coffee, cracking cakes, stunning views over the shore and the pier and very welcome after a walk along the beach.