Berwick upon Tweed
This historic border town changed hands between England and Scotland thirteen times before the Union of the Crowns in 1603 when upon the death of Elizabeth 1, James V1 of Scotland also became James 1 of England. An ancient port, Berwick is steeped historical interest from a barracks which dates from 1721, an Old Town Hall dating from 1610 which still displays the original gaol complete with condemned cell, to Holy Trinity Parish Church which is one of only two built during the rule of Oliver Cromwell and his Roundheads. The ancient ramparts, built in 1588, encircle the old town and provide a wonderful around the walls walk for the entire family. Slightly beyond these, the remains of the even earlier Edwardian walls can still be viewed in some areas.
At Berwick, the River Tweed, now spanned by three lovely bridges, flows into Tweedmouth Bay to mix with the North Sea. Viewed from Coxon's Tower on the old walls this presents quite a breathtaking sight all the way down the coast to the Holy Island of Lindisfarne.
This delightful, unspoilt, historic island lies a short drive to the south of the Town. The island is tidal and is accessed via a causeway which is covered by the North Sea at each high tide. Lindisfarne is internationally famous for it's religious heritage and the connection with Saint Aidan and Saint Cuthbert. It is often referred to as the Cradle of Christianity in Britain. Many people visiting the Island have commented on the serene inspirational atmosphere which they feel emanates from the area. When you cross the dramatic causeway to Holy Island, you journey into our spiritual heritage. Few places are as beautiful or have such special significance. The corpse of St. Cuthbert was found undecayed in 698AD, and this became one of the most sacred shrines in Christendom. For thirteen hundred years it has been a place of pilgrimage and still is today.
Further to the south of Lindisfarne, commanding the coastline is the magnificent imposing castle which dominates the village of Bamburgh. This dramatic fortress, has been used as a backdrop for many epic films and is a treasury of Northern history.
Further afield, Hadrian's Wall and Durham Castle and Cathedral are World Heritage Sites. That means they are places of enormous significance in World History. Northumbria is the only English Region outside London to have more than one World Heritage site.
O wide and winding river You bring, it seems to me
The glamour of the Lowlands As gift unto the sea
The clink of spur and stirrup,
The gleam of bit and lance,
The spoil of all the Border In riches of romance!
Beneath your silver burden The stars have heard you pass,
With Laughter o'er the pebbles, With love-words through the grass;
Now, welcomed by the sea winds And woven with the spray,
'Neath Berwick's time-worn ramparts You mix with Tweedmouth Bay