Blogmas: How To Have a Festive Day At Tynemouth Market
Some of the best news I heard recently, (not including the vaccine), was that despite being in tier 3 two of my favourite North East markets have been allowed to reopen again at weekends in the run up to Christmas. The quayside market is back on Saturdays and Sundays, and Tynemouth market is also back for both weekend days too. This is the one I went to last weekend, and we had a very nice morning in both the market and Tynemouth. So here’s how to have a festive day in Tynemouth in the run up to Christmas.
A highlight of weekends in Tynemouth it’s so good to see the market and all the local small business traders back on the platforms of Tynemouth Metro station again. Open both days every weekend except for Christmas weekend, from 9-3:30pm a visit this month will definitely get you in the festive spirit. At least there’s something we can do up north aside from yet another walk!
Now we can meet up to 6 people outside I met up with my mum and sister for a browse around on Sunday morning. We got there for 9am as we were keen to avoid the crowds, and we got parked on Tynemouth Front Street with no issues. At that time there were still parking paces nearer to the station itself too.
There are clearly signed entrances, equipped with hand sanitiser, and a one way system the whole way through with arrows to keep you right on your way round. The stalls have been spaced further apart, and they’ve considered the stalls where you can walk right the way around them with extra signs so you can browse everything on display.
Tynemouth Market Stalls worth stopping at
The first stalls we were met with when we entered were the big florist stalls, with Christmas wreaths and trees available to buy, or pre orders to collect. Instantly Christmassy!
There are a few more a bit further round as well, with lot’s of festive reds, pampas grass, berries and pine cones making up the colour schemes. I really liked this stall, (sorry I didn‘t get the name of the trader) who had a build your own wreath bar, with a sign that said it was basically like a pizza bar – you choose your own toppings. So you could choose what you wanted on your personal wreath and she would make it up for you there and then. What a good idea.
Rummaging at Tynemouth are a fabulous stall, they sell driftwood Christmas trees made from wood found all along the North East Coast, and they’re so different but look amazing. They’re £20 for a large or £15 for a medium sized one, and can be decorated however you like. They do have some suggestions with tree hanging figures, animals and gonks with Santa hats on.
There are a number of other homeware type stalls, specifically for Christmas with wall hangings, candles, ornaments and many other unique Christmas decorations. ‘It Seams Sew Shabby Chic’ are also set up with a range of cushions and throws that look very cosy too.
Local photographers and artists are also there in force, my favourite being Sophie Henderson who has a big stall filled with her Newcastle photography. It’s all absolutely gorgeous and if you’re buying multiple prints you get a better deal. We got three last Christmas for £40, that are currently hanging in our living room. Definitely check her out as she’s got some amazing work.
Rob Myers art and Canvas & Stone Arts UK are both there too with prints, canvases and photography all inspired by the North East. As well as wall imagery you can get smaller bits like coasters as well, all of which would make a lovely gift or a nice addition to your own home.
If you’re feeling peckish as you’re wandering round there are a lot of food stalls, selling everything from fruit and veg to bagels, cakes and bakes, Geordie bangers, scotch eggs, sausage rolls and sweet bags. There’s a coffee van as well which is a good way to stay warm.
A walk around the market is a lovely way to spend the morning, and there are many more general stalls than the few Christmassy ones I’ve mentioned here. It’s a dog friendly market as well so there’s always some characters, you’ll find Arthur by the sausage stall.
We left at about 10am and it was starting to get considerably busier, so if you’re wanting to avoid the crowds I would go early. It was a lot easier to see everything and not feel pushed along by the people behind you first thing. In general though it was well set up to be able to maintain distance, and stick to the one way system that was clearly signed.
Mini Christmas Market in the Church
Once you’ve been to the market in Tynemouth station, another little place to visit is the Church on Front Street. The shops in there have set up inside as a mini Christmas market, with more things to buy from the locals. The delicatessen is serving a big variety of cheeses, and they had bottles of St Mary’s gin, vodka and rum too. None of us had tried it before so we got some of the mini bottles to try – it was very nice later that night.
Again it’s dog friendly but it’s so small inside that only a handful of people could be in it really while keeping distance. We were the only ones at 10am when they opened but I’m sure they’ll be monitoring it as they get busier through the day.
A number of places are offering takeaway on Tynemouth Front Street, including Woods on the corner where I’ve had a few hot chocolates from recently, but I have to say they weren’t as tasty as the one I got from Gareth James Chocolatier on the corner on Sunday. I’d never had one from there before as I’m usually walking towards the coast but it was amazing, you could really taste the chocolate.
Just this week Allards have announced they’re opening their Tynemouth venue on Saturdays and Sundays from 9-5pm too. Previously they were just operating takeaway service in the afternoon and evening from their fish quay location but they’ll be serving breakfast butties, coffees and such like in the morning, then street style tapas and cocktails later on. Sounds amaxing!
Rene’s of Tynemouth are also serving takeaway drinks, and hot dogs, Dil & the Bear are doing the same with their own takeaway menu. I didn’t have one on this visit but if you’re going over lunch their sausage rolls are delicious. I’m also a big fan of Dibbley’s on Percy Park Road, they sell ice cream but also coffees and Christmas treats like gingerbread men.
Once it becomes an acceptable hour Lola Jeans are serving takeaway cocktails, so if you’re meeting friends order a couple and go for a walk with them.
The Wine Chambers is a great little shop to stock up on some specialists wines, beers and spirits for the festive season too.
Front Street in general is looking very festive with all the lights and the tree up in the park. Once you’ve got your takeaway go for a walk and admire some of the beautiful shop window festive displays. To The Moon & Back was my favourite.
If the weather allows, or if you’re appropriately dressed finish your day with a walk along the coast. Spot the Snowman part of the Walking with The Snowman trail ran by North Tyneside in front of the Priory, before walking along past King Edwards Bay and along to Longsands. If you have time go for a walk along the beach (another great hot chocolate can be found at Crusoes) as it will went and truly blow the cobwebs away.
And you have to admire the beautiful Christmas trees in the Grand Hotel bay windows. As it begins to get dark they look beautiful all lit up.
What better way to finish your festive day at Tynemouth market by picking up some pre ordered fish and chips to take home with you. Longsands has been open throughout and you can order online, but FINALLY Marshalls has reopened for takeaway on Saturdays and Sundays with a limited menu. You just can’t beat them.
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