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The Newsletter of the Northumberland Coast
Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty
June 2017
Dear ,

As the new chair of the Northumberland Coast AONB Partnership it gives me great pleasure to write this foreword. The Partnership fulfils a vital function in conserving and enhancing the area but their work also achieves more. The Coast Care Initiative is now underway following the appointment of Tim Morton as Coordinator. This project will increase capacity to look after the landscape by effectively 'match making' volunteers with volunteering opportunities and co-ordinating effort so that, collectively, local people, communities and visitors are able to contribute to the management of their amazing natural and cultural heritage. I look forward to helping the project progress and am particularly keen to see the re-establishment of the Young Rangers Programme.    

My predecessor, John Woodman, achieved a lot for the Partnership and I'd like to close by adding my thanks for his dedication during that time.

Jeffrey G Watson
Chair, Northumberland Coast AONB Partnership
AONB Partnership Chairman - Jeff Watson
Jeff has been a County Councillor for Amble West with Warkworth, Acklington and Guyzance for the past ten years, before which he was a District Councillor. He has sat on the AONB Partnership for eight years as a County Council representative. 

Jeff has been the chair of Warkworth Parish Council for five years. He has also recently been appointed to the Warkworth Harbour Commissioners. 

Jeff has lived and worked in the area for 25 years. Now retired, he devotes his time to council and voluntary work.

A full list of the Partnership members is available on the AONB website. 
Introducing Tim Morton - Coast Care Coordinator 
My background is horticulture, but I've also spent a lot of years managing community engagement programmes to help people compost at home, reduce food waste, volunteer and become more resource efficient. I've managed a number of social enterprises for people with learning disabilities and problems with mental health, and most recently I have been running a project for The National Trust to help young people become passionate about the environment. In between this I managed to fit in some stints in front of the camera for The Beechgrove Garden on BBC2, presenting items about environmentally friendly gardening.

I fell in love with the north east when I did my degree in Newcastle many years ago, and to have the chance to work on the stunning north Northumberland coast is a dream come true for me. I'm passionate about helping people volunteer, to learn new things and to really have a chance to make a positive contribution to their local environment. Coast Care will do all that and more. When I tell people what I do and where I work they are always envious, which I think is a good sign I have an amazing job!

Read more about the Coast Care Project here
Berwickshire and Northumberland Marine Nature Partnership

The shallow sea, shores and estuaries of Berwickshire and Northumberland coast are home to some of the most spectacular marine life in world, recognised by a wide range of marine nature conservation designations. The Berwickshire and Northumberland Marine Nature Partnership is a collaboration of more than 20 Scottish and English organisations responsible for coordinating management for all ten inshore marine designated areas found between Fast Castle Head in Scotland, and the River Tyne in England.

The partnership employs a project officer to assist it in its work. The latest holder of this post is Nick Brodin, who took up his role in March this year. Nick will be working with the partnership to deliver a range of activities, including a public events programme and the creation of new website which will act as a repository of information about the local marine environment.  

Find out more: xbordercurrents 
Howick Film Nights and Festival

The next film night in Howick Village Hall will be on Friday 7th July at 7pm, with a showing of 'The Eagle Huntress'. 

The village hall serves Howick and the wider community, offering a varied programme of activities and events. They hope to stage the 1st Howick International Film Festival, which will take place over the weekend beginning 13th October, showing four critically acclaimed world and UK films.

The purpose of the festival is to raise awareness of the film nights, increase audience numbers, raise funds to cover future projector repair and maintenance costs and, of course, give the rare opportunity to see locally some of the greatest films ever made on the big screen.

If any local businesses are interested in sponsoring a film, further details are available from John Roper on 01665 576413.  

Howick Village Hall
Catch the Bus Week - 3rd - 9th July

Catch the Bus Week 2017 is a campaign aimed at increasing awareness of the benefits of taking the bus, particularly to encourage people who don't normally take the bus to give it a try.

There are lots of exciting ways you can get involved: 
  • Run your own Catch the Bus Week promotion, event or competition 
  •  Promote Catch the Bus Week 2017 via your own channels – through twitter, Facebook, blogs and newsletters – and don't forget to use the campaign hashtag #CTBW 
  • Challenge people in your community to switch one car journey to a bus journey during the campaign 
Throughout next week, Arriva North East are offering a day's travel for just £1 to celebrate Catch the Bus Week.   

A collection of new journey planners are now available to make bus travel easier for visitors to the north Northumberland Coast. The planners have been designed to give visitors all of the information they need to easily explore the area without having to use their car. 

Catch the Bus Week
Arriva North East
Is this St Aidan's First Church on Holy Island?

Archaeologists have made exciting new discoveries which may well have turned a long-held belief about Holy Island on its head.

Many in academic and ecclesiastical circles have long maintained that the close linear arrangement of the Parish Church of St Mary's with the Priory church is evidence of the original locations of the two Anglo-Saxon churches on the Island. 

Until this summer, the assumption has been that the original Anglo-Saxon churches stood down in the shelter a high rocky ridge known as of the Heugh in the area now occupied by the Parish Church and the Priory.

But excavations during the last four weeks up on the Heugh suggest a very different configuration. The excavation has revealed the stone foundations of a small rectangular building with a chancel type configuration at the east end.

The crude and unmortared walls, very simple window arches and positioning of a possible alter stone all suggest an early date which has led to speculation that this is a church building which could date from the seventh century. 

You can read more about this exciting discovery on our blog
Landscapes for Life Conference 2017
The Landscapes for Life Conference will take place in Winchester on 18th and 19th July. The clarion call from 2017's Landscapes for Life Conference (#L4L2017) is "Do Different". Join us for two days of "Leading, Sharing, Learning, Inspiring" with the UK's outstanding landscapes. 
Guided Walks
There's still time to join us on our series of guided walks along the Northumberland Coast Path. The next stage is from Warkworth to Craster on Wednesday 5th July. Booking is essential 
Northumberland Coast
Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty
The Northumberland Coast AONB was designated in 1958 and covers 39 miles of coast from Berwick to the Coquet estuary. Within this stretch of coastline is some of the most dramatic coastal scenery in the country.

The Northumberland Coast AONB Partnership is responsible for making sure that this landscape is conserved and enhanced now and for future generations.
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Contact Us:
Northumberland Coast
AONB Partnership
c/o County Hall
NE61 2EF
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Telephone: 01670 620306
The Northumberland Coast AONB is part of the AONB Family - the UK's Landscapes for Life
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