Although North Eastern people are often referred to as 'Geordies', this is only correct for people who live/were born in Newcastle. The Geordie dialect is unique, and can seem incomprehensible to Southerners - books have been written as guides.
The North East does have a few claims to fame. The Lindisfarne Gospels
were made there, which predated the King James Version by seven centuries. The North East played major roles in the shipbuilding and railway industries, one of its most famous residents being George Stephenson
who built the Rocket
. It also proved valuable as a source of coal, and many of the 'pit villages' where miners and their families lived are now popular suburbs.
Major towns or cities:
Famous people from the North East:
- Newcastle-upon-Tyne: Often abbreviated to 'Newcastle' when there's little danger of it being confused with Newcastle-under-Lyme. Home of Newcastle United. Newcastle University is famous for its research into biology. The city's airport is the main air link between the North East and the South. Newcastle is on one side of the Tyne, and is linked to Gateshead by numerous bridges, including the famous Tyne Bridge, Transporter Bridge and Millennium Eye. Although Port of Tyne is actually located in North and South Shields, it's often considered Newcastle's port and is the region's main sea link with mainland Europe.
- Gateshead (pronounced 'gayts-hedd'): Just across the water from Newcastle, Gateshead is a major transport hub. Attempts to lump it and the city across the river into one and name it 'Newcastle Gateshead' are usually not welcomed by the people. The Metrocentre shopping complex is located on the outskirts, as is the Angel of the North. The car park used in a famous scene from the Michael Caine film Get Carter dominates the skyline. It's also home to various attractions on the Tyne.
- Durham (pronounced 'doo-ram' or 'duh-rum'): The 'capital' city of the eponymous county, though small, Durham is a hugely important site to scholars, being the home of Durham Cathedral, the prestigious Durham University, two other colleges and numerous private schools. At one point in history Durham was the only other part of the United Kingdom legally permitted to print money, and certain Church authorities, known as the Prince Bishops, were given power equivalent to kings.
- Sunderland: Coastal city and home of Sunderland AFC. Sunderland and Newcastle football clubs rivals, and anyone who labels all North Eastern people 'Geordies' would be advised not to if they visit Sunderland. Also home to the University of Sunderland.
Famous fictional people from the North East:
- George Stephenson, the 'Father of Railways'.
- Tony Blair, former British Prime Minister.
- Catherine Cookson, author.
- Ant And Dec, TV presenting duo.
- Andy Capp, newspaper comic strip character.
- Lewis, partner of Inspector Morse in the TV adaptation.