News

Beer and a book

Armstrong Ale

Jesmond Dene was gifted to the City of Newcastle upon Tyne by Victorian industrialist Lord Armstrong.

In a new biography, author Henrietta Heald tackles the thorny subject of William Armstrong. He might have bequested his valley garden to the people of Tyneside but his riches came from the arms trade. Armstrong’s company sold guns to whomever would buy them (including to both sides in the American Civil War).

Henrietta Heald’s book is a fascinating study of one of the 19th Century’s most powerful figures. Lord Armstrong entertained guests from around the world in Jesmond Dene.

William Armstrong book

William Armstrong: Magician of the North is a study of what made the man tick. Naturally, Jesmond Dene is mentioned copiously throughout the book.

The book is out in time for the bicentenary of Lord Armstrong’s birth. Special events will be commemorating the anniversary in November. And not just events: there’s a beer, too. Armstrong Ale has been produced by Wylam Brewery. The design on the front of the bottle is a reproduction of a spark photographed by Lord Armstrong. The beer is on sale at Cragside and Bamburgh Castle and can be sampled at some of the bicentenary celebration events.

Cragside, the first house to be lit by hydroelectricity, was built by Lord and Lady Armstrong. Bamburgh castle was a ruin before being renovated by Lord and Lady Armstrong. They lavished £1m on the restoration: Lord Armstrong was one of the richest men of the time.

Magician of the North book launch

ArmstrongHenriettaHeald

Jesmond Dene was gifted to the City of Newcastle upon Tyne by Victorian industrialist Lord Armstrong.

In a new biography, author Henrietta Heald tackles the thorny subject of William Armstrong. He might have bequested his garden to the people of Tyneside but his riches came from the arms trade. Armstrong sold guns to whomever would buy them; often to both sides in a conflict.

Henrietta Heald’s book is a fascinating study of one of the 19th Century’s most powerful figures. Lord Armstrong entertained guests from around the world in Jesmond Dene.

Learn more about this multi-faceted man at the launch of William Armstrong: Magician of the North

The launch will be held on Tuesday, 28th September, 6.30–8.30pm at Discovery Museum, Blandford Square, Newcastle upon Tyne NE1 4JA.

Henrietta Heald will introduce the book with the help of Dr Penny Smith, Principal Lecturer in Creative Writing at the University of Northumbria.

William Armstrong – A Spark of Inspiration exhibition is on at the Discovery Museum until 16th January 2011 and can be viewed before the event.

To reserve a free place at the book launch, contact Linda Grogan at linda.grogan@twmuseums.org.uk or call 0191 277 2274

New Ouseburn bridge is lifted into place

The Ouseburn has a new bridge. It was installed earlier today underneath Armstrong Bridge. It opens to the public later in the year.

The bridge was made by Allerton Steel Ltd of Northallerton and is already starting to rust, which is all part of the design. The red patina will echo the rust on the Angel of the North.


A whole load more pix from the installation of the bridge can be found on Flickr or, for a slide-show, click here or on the white arrow below:

Foundations in place for new bridge over the Ouseburn

The new pedestrian bridge over the Ouseburn is taking shape, with the bankside supports now in place. The bridge itself is being constructed in a metalworking factory on Tyneside and will be lowered into place soon.

The bridge will connect Benton Bank road with Coleman’s Field, with a footpath leading to Millfield House.


Fresh new look!

Jesmond Dene

This site has been uploaded with lots of fresh content and pix. The previous website for the Friends of Jesmond Dene was last updated in 2007 so a makeover was long overdue.

The site will be updated regularly. New content will be flagged up on our new Twitterfeed.

Go to our Flickr gallery for pictures of Jesmond Dene.

If you’re a Flickr member, become a member of this group and add your shots to the gallery.