Brendan Foster

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Plaque: Brendan Foster
Location: Gateshead Quayside Millenium Bridge.

Brendan Foster CBE is a British former long-distance runner, and responsible for founding the Great North Run the UK’s biggest road race, and most subscribed half-marathon in the world. He remains one of Britain’s most popular athletes, due largely to his quiet and unassuming manner and his allegiance to his local club, the Gateshead Harriers, regardless of his many successes in the international arena.

During his career, Foster competed in three Olympic Games and broke two world records – the 2 mile and 3000m – as well as the 5000m UK record, the 1500m UK record and the 10000m European record. After winning gold in the 5000m at the 1974 European Championships, he returned to Britain a national hero, and was awarded the BBC Sports Personality of the year (1974). In 1976 Foster was also awarded an MBE (Member of the Order of the British Empire), for his services to sports.

Brendan Foster has worked for the BBC commentating on Athletics at every major event since 1983, and in 1981. Foster was awarded a CBE (Commander of the Order of the British Empire) in the Queen’s New Years Honors List (2008) for his services to sports broadcasting and sports.

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Sir Bobby Robson – Local Hero

Sir Bobby Robson CBE. Footballer, England and Newcastle United Manager. Inducted in the English Football Hall of Fame, 2003. Bobby Robson was Manager of Newcastle United from 1999-2004 and in 2005 was made an Honorary Freeman of Newcastle, which he described as being the proudest moment of his life.

In 2007, Robson was awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award at the BBC’s Sports Personality of the Year, and in 2009 UEFA awarded Robson the Emerald UEFA Order of Merit award, awarded to “”individuals who have dedicated their talents to the good of the game”. The award was presented to Sir Bobby at St James’ Park, prior to the Sir Bobby Robson Trophy match, and just five days before his death.

After retirement Sir Bobby worked hard towards a new goal, fighting cancer through his charity the Sir Bobby Robson Foundation.

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Sir Bobby Robson, Local Heroes Walk
Sir Bobby Robson, Local Heroes Walk

Julia Darling

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Plaque 19 of 20: Julia Darling
Location: Gateshead Quayside beneath the Sage.

Julia Darling moved to Newcastle upon Tyne in 1980 and began her writing career as a poet. Her first full-length collection of poems, Sudden Collapses in Public Places, was awarded a Poetry Book Society Recommendation. In September 2006, the Sudden Collapses in Public Places song cycle was performed at The Sage Gateshead to great acclaim.

In 1995 she published a book of short stories titled Bloodlines, many of which were broadcast on BBC Radio 4. Following this, her first novel, Crocodile Soup, was published in 1998. The novel went on to be published in Canada, Australia, Europe and the United States and was long-listed for the Orange Prize. Her second novel, The Taxi Driver’s Daughter, was long-listed for the Man Booker Prize and short-listed for the Encore Award.

Darling also worked on a number of arts and health projects, including with elderly people in residential homes for Equal Arts, and ran drama workshops for doctors and patients with the project ‘Operating Theatre’. Sadly, Darling died from breast cancer in 2005, aged just 48.

Wikipedia

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Lindisfarne

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Plaque 18 of 20: Lindisfarne
Location: Gateshead Quayside beneath the Sage.

Lindisfarne: British folk rock band from Newcastle upon Tyne, established in 1970. The original line-up comprised Alan Hull (vocals, guitar, piano), Ray Jackson (vocals, mandolin, harmonica), Simon Cowe (guitar, mandolin, banjo, keyboards), Rod Clements (bass guitar, violin) and Ray Laidlaw (drums).

Their second album, Fog on the Tyne (1971), began their commercial success, reaching No. 1 in the UK charts the following year. The extracted single Meet Me on the Corner, composed by Clements and sung by Jackson, reached No.5 in the UK and went on to win an Ivor Novello award.

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David Almond

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Plaque 17 of 20: David Almond
Location: Gateshead Quayside beneath the Sage.

David Almond: Known throughout the world as one of the most exciting and innovative children’s authors writing today. He is the author of Skellig, Kit’s Wilderness, My Name is Mina, The Savage, The Boy Who Swam With Piranhas, and many other novels, stories and plays. His work is set in the North East and draws on Northern language, landscape, character and history. It is translated into over 40 languages, and is widely adapted for stage and screen. David also broadcasts regularly for BBC Radio 3 and 4. Forthcoming works include two novels, a short story collection, and an opera libretto.

Wikipedia
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Sting

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Plaque 16 of 20: Sting
Location: Gateshead Quayside beneath the Sage.

Sting: English musician, singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, activist, actor and philanthropist, born in 1951. As a solo musician and member of the Police, Sting has received 16 Grammy Awards for his work, receiving his first Grammy for Best Rock Instrumental Performance in 1981, three Brit Awards – winning Best British Male in 1994, a Golden Globe, an Emmy Award, and several Oscar nominations for Best Original Song. Sting was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as a member of the Police and as a solo artist is a member of the Songwriters Hall of Fame.

Wikipedia

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Kathryn Tickell

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Plaque 15 of 20: Kathryn Tickell
Location: Gateshead Quayside opposite All Saints.

Kathryn Tickell is an English musician born in 1967. Playing the Northumbrian smallpipes and fiddle, she has recorded over a dozen albums, and has toured widely. In 2013 she won the prestigious “”Musician of the Year”” in BBC Radio 2’s Folk Awards.

Kathryn Tickell has worked with a wide range of musicians from all genres and styles including Evelyn Glennie, John Surman, Andy Sheppard, The Penguin Café Orchestra, Sir Peter Maxwell Davies and Sting.

In 1997 Kathryn founded the “”Young Musicians’ Fund””, which is managed by The Community Foundation. To date some £98,000 has been raised to help young people in the North East to realise their musical potential. Kathryn is very involved with initiatives to use historical culture to support regional regeneration.

Wikipedia

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Stephen Miller

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Plaque 14 of 20: Stephen Miller
Location: Gateshead Quayside opposite All Saints.

Stephen Miller. Born and raised in Cramlington, Northumberland, Stephen Miller is a British athlete who competes in the fields of Paralympic club and discus throwing.

In the 1996 Atlanta Paralympics, Miller became Britain’s youngest ever track and field Olympic and Paralympic gold medallist. Miller has won 25 international medals throughout his career and held the world record for club throw from 1997-2008.

Miller won gold and bronze at the Sydney Paralympics in 2000, another gold at Athens 2004 to complete a hattrick of Paralympic golds in the club throw. He went on to win silver at the 2008 Summer Paralympics in Beijing. As of 2013, Miller has represented Great Britain for over 15 years, competing in 5 Paralympic Games, 5 World Championships and 3 European Championships and winning 25 international medals, including 3 gold Paralympic medals.

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Sister Winifred Laver

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Plaque 13 of 20: Sister Winifred Laver
Location: Gateshead Quayside, underneath the Tyne Bridge.

Sister Winifred Laver. Established the Vine Street Mission and dedicated her life to helping the poor of Gateshead. Sister Winifred received both an MBE and the Freedom of the Borough of Gateshead. Sister Winifred is often heralded as one of Gateshead’s unsung heroes. She had a long and happy relationship with the people of Gateshead, and became a familiar figure on the streets around the Teams area.

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Peter Higgs

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Plaque 12 of 20: Peter Higgs
Location: Gateshead side just past Swing Bridge.

he 2013 Nobel Prize winner for Physics was born in Elswick, Newcastle upon Tyne in 1929. His father was a BBC sound engineer, and as a result of childhood asthma, together with the family moving around because of his father’s job and later World War II, he missed some early schooling and was taught at home. He attended Cotham Grammar School , near Bristol, where he was inspired by the work of one of Paul Dirac, a founder of the field of quantum mechanics.

He became a Senior Research Fellow at the University of Edinburgh between 1954-56, then held several posts at Imperial College London and University College London. He returned to the University of Edinburgh in 1960 as Lecturer at the Tait Institute of Mathematical Physics. He was promoted to Reader in 1970, became a Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh in 1983, was awarded the Rutherford Medal and Prize in 1984 and became a Fellow of the Institute of Physics in 1991. Retired in 1996, he became Emeritus Professor at the University of Edinburgh, in 2008 receiving an Honorary Fellowship from Swansea University for work in particle physics.

On 8 October 2013, Peter Higgs and Francois Englert shared the 2013 Nobel Prize in Physics “”for the theoretical discovery of a mechanism that contributes to our understanding of the origin of mass of subatomic particles, and which recently was confirmed through the discovery of the predicted fundamental particle, by the ATLAS and CMS experiments at CERN’s Large Hadron Collider””. Higgs did not know he had won the prize until a woman congratulated him in the street!

Wikipedia

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Edward Cowen

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Plaque 11 of 20: Edward Cowen
Location: Gateshead side of Swing Bridge.

Alderman Edward Cohen JP (Ned). A pitman, campaigner & author, who improved the rights and working conditions of miners in North East England forever. Cowen’s memoirs are recorded in two books, ‘Of Mining Life and Aal its Ways’, and ‘A Life Worth Living?’ – the life of a miner in the North East of England in the 20th century.

Filled with dry humour and wit, the Memoirs tell a story of the dark days of mining when strikes and stoppages were commonplace due to the antics of overzealous colliery officials.
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Basil Hume

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Plaque 10 of 20: Basil Hume
Location: Newcastle side of Swing Bridge.

Cardinal Basil Hume OSB, OM. Archbishop of Westminster (1976-1999) – an inspirational church leader.

A statue of Cardinal Hume (2002) in his Benedictine monk’s habit wearing a cardinal’s skull cap and the cross of St. Cuthbert is to be found outside St Mary’s Cathedral just opposite Central Station. The statue is set in a garden that reflects his love of the holy landscape of Northumbria and of the Northern Saints and stands on a sandstone platform in the shape of Holy Island (Lindisfarne).

There is also a blue plaque outside the Cardinal’s birth place in Ellison Place, near the University of Northumbria, in Newcastle

Wikipedia


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Robson Green

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Plaque 9 of 20: Robson Green
Location: Newcastle Quayside, between Tyne Bridge and Swing Bridge.

Robson Green. Actor, television presenter & champion of North East based film production. Rose to fame in ‘Soldier Soldier’.

At 17, Robson began his career as a Draughtsman at shipbuilders, Swan Hunter, where he worked for three years. He had always wanted to be an actor and didn’t care much for this 9 – 5 lifestyle. Realising it was now or never, Robson decided to abandon his shipbuilding career and began training at the Live Theatre in Newcastle, where he was taken on by Artistic Director, Max Roberts.

While at Live Theatre, Robson’s credits included: Your Home in the West, Come Snow Come Blow, The Long Line, Scrap, Kiddars Luck and In Blackberry Time, before taking his first screen role as hospital Porter Jimmy Powell in Casualty, and rising to fame in 1991 as Fusilier Dave Tucker in Soldier, Soldier.

Robson is a passionate advocate for the North East and in 1997 co-founded Coastal Productions a North East based production company with the aim of making feature films and TV dramas in the region and supporting local young people who want to get into the industry. It has grown into a strong independent company, with production and co-production credits including Take Me, Blind Ambition, Touching Evil series 3, Rhinoceros, Hereafter, six series’ of Wire in the Blood, and Place of Execution.

Wikipedia

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Sir John Burn

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Plaque 8 of 20: Professor Sir John Burn OBE
Location: Newcastle Quayside, opposite the Hilton Hotel.

Professor John Burn was born on 6 February 1952 and educated at Teesdale Grammar School and later at Newcastle University Medical School. A consultant clinical geneticist for 30 years, he is currently Professor of Clinical Genetics at Newcastle University. Professor Burn received a knighthood for services to medicine and healthcare in 2010.

Professor Burn led the study that demonstrated the use of aspirin in reducing the risk of colorectal and other cancers in persons with Lynch syndrome, and leads an international consortium investigating chemoprevention in persons with hereditary non-polyposis colon cancer. He conceived and helped bring about the Centre for Life in Newcastle, which was opened by the Queen in 2000. In addition to housing the region’s Fertility and Genetics services, the Centre attracts a quarter of a million paying visitors to its science centre and provides practical science education to 40,000 school children per annum.

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