Blyth Media Group 2015 Events in Review

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19/2/2016 by 
4.94 of 16 votes

Large crowds gathered on the quayside to welcome the sailing vessel Haabet into port. A fair was organised to make the most of the event.

The 101 year-old tall ship Haabet was purchased from Denmark and made a journey to her new home of Blyth across the North Sea. The ship was purchased with a grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund to be re-fitted in order to recreate a journey made by Capt William Smith in 1819 to Antarctica in a major community project. It will play a starring role in the forthcoming Tall Ships Festival.

Blyth Battery, the military and local heritage museum, held their annual “Blyth Battery Goes to War” event. Re-enactments, with plenty of pyrotechnics, and displays of military vehicles and weapons make this a popular and well-attended event.

Meggie’s Burn playing fields was the venue for the annual Kite Festival. This colourful weekend festival was attended by experts from as far afield as Holland and Belgium.


Punch Drunk Comedy held the sixth of their monthly comedy events. The movement has received a lot of good press and the gigs are now rapidly sold out.

The 2nd annual Northumberland Live! festival was held on the Links. A large stage was constructed which played host to ten acts, headlined by Toploader and Doctor and the Medics. The all-day event was completely free and attracted a crowd of thousands. A talent contest was held ahead of the event which gave local artists the chance to be selected to perform on the big stage.

The huge tall ship Stavros S Niarchos sailed into port and held an open day ahead of next year's Tall Ships Festival.

Author Debbie Taylor was invited to Blyth Library to talk about her work. This was one of many regular events such as this at the library.


The whole of Blyth was taken over for a weekend by the annual Maritime Festival and Town Fair. A funfair was set out on the market place from Friday to Sunday while the quayside was the location for the finish of the inaugural Yachting Plate race between Amble and Blyth, a rowing club skiff race, live music stage and a grand parade of sail. Street performers and craft stalls also added to the spectacle.

Blyth Battery, The Keel Row Shopping Centre and Active Northumberland’s sporting and fitness centres held their usual variety of activities for young people during the summer holidays.

The Blyth Town Team became the Blyth Development Trust. This will allow them to build on the work they have already undertaken, which resulted in a third place award in the British High Street Awards Coastal Communities section.


The No1 Michael Jackson tribute act played at the Mecca Bingo Hall and Nightclub.

The Wallaw a former art-deco cinema now a Weatherspoon’s Bar and Restaurant was the recipient of the prestigious CAMRA design award.

The Blyth Rugby Club held their annual Beer and Cider festival over the bank holiday weekend, with lots of family activities thrown in for good measure.


Possibly the largest and greatest event in Blyth’s history happened this summer when the finish of stage 4 of the Tour of Britain cycle race was held on Waterloo Road. The stage was held between Edinburgh and Blyth passing through the picturesque Northumberland countryside and historic towns. Vast crowds filled the market place throughout the day and reported a fantastic atmosphere. They were entertained by a large screen, on which the race was broadcast live, a velodrome and a bed push event. Shops and cafes decorated their premises for the event in county-coloured painted old cycles. 


Blyth Battery held another annual weekend event to coincide with national Heritage Open Days initiative. It featured the usual displays, tours and re-enactments, and also live musical entertainment from tribute acts to the stars of the wartime period, such as George Formby.

The RNLI staged their fundraising Family Funday down on the quayside where they have premises and a shop. This has also become an annual event.

St Cuthbert’s Church hall was opened to the public for the Heritage Open Days weekend and staged an exhibition about Blyth’s most famous former resident strongman Willie Carr. 
The historic HY Tyne III lightship moored in South Harbour and used as the clubhouse for the Royal Northumberland Yacht Club was also open to the public.

Blyth Olympic Legacy events were held in the market place. These had all the usual fun things to-take-part-in for all the family, and a funfair, but with an emphasis on sporting activities, such as an inflatable sporting arena.

Ridley Park won the best park in Northumbria in Bloom awards.


Showaddywaddy played to a packed audience at the Phoenix Theatre. One of many top acts and theatre
performances, amateur and professional, hosted weekly. The theatre had been awarded the Queen’s Medal for Voluntary Service earlier in the year.


The quayside was once again full to capacity with up to 15,000 people enjoying the annual Fireworks and Lighting spectacular.




Other photographs courtesy of Linda Wilson and Doug Rutter




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