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Northumberland Coast | Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty
The Newsletter of the Northumberland Coast
Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty
September 2018

Welcome to the September edition of 'Coastal Views'.

The weather forecasters are predicting an 'Indian Summer' for the rest of September and on into October. It is going to stay mainly settled with long spells of sunshine and light winds. What a perfect opportunity for us to get out and enjoy the Northumberland Coast! You could even volunteer as a Coast Path Warden. 

We want people who regularly walk a section of trail or paths in their area to help us keep them open and easy to use. This includes cutting back vegetation, picking up litter, replacing way markers and other simple maintenance. Walkers will also be 'eyes and ears' on the coast, reporting more serious issues to the path officers at Northumberland County Council. There's more details in the article below. 

We also preparing for our Annual Forum at Ellingham Hall on 11th October, followed by our Celebration concert. It's free to attend and promises to be a great afternoon and/or evening. Make sure to book your place soon to avoid disappointment.  
Jeff Watson
Cllr Jeff Watson
Chair, Northumberland Coast AONB Partnership
Step forward to become a Coast Path Warden

Walkers on the Northumberland coast are being asked to become voluntary wardens to help maintain their favourite sections of the Northumberland Coast Path and other walking routes.

Through our volunteering initiative Coast Care, which is funded by the National Lottery, we are seeking walkers to step forward and help to look after the long distance path and to keep any eye on rights of way in their area.

Annual Forum and Celebration Concert
There are only two weeks to go until our Annual Forum and Celebration concert at Ellingham Hall

We're delighted to confirm our speakers for the afternoon forum: Robyn Brown from National Trust, Sarah Mukarjee from Defra and Jen Hall, a local resident from Seahouses. We've asked them to reflect on the role that protected landscapes have from their perspective, which is sure to be of interest to many of you. 

Our evening concert includes music written especially for our anniversary by Pipes and Fiddle, as well as poetry read by Katrina Porteous and creative writing students from the Duchess High School. Their singers will also be entertaining us. We will be awarding the Written Word competition winners with their prizes and hearing their amazing poetry and prose. So don't delay in booking your place on either or both events - it's all completely free!  
Spindlestone Heugh Archaeology
A second phase of archaeological investigation has been confirmed for the mysterious chapel site at Spindlestone Heugh, near Waren Mill. The dig will run week beginning Monday 8th October but may well extend for a day or two depending on weather conditions.

This phase of excavation follows on from the initial dig in June, where well-preserved remains of a rectangular whinstone building were uncovered on the site of where the Berwick Naturalist Society investigated remains of a possible medieval chapel and associated burials in 1924. A chapel at Spindlestone Heugh is known from historical accounts dating from the 14th and 16th centuries, but with a dedication to a 7th century Saint. The adjacent defended hilltop settlement is generally regarded as Iron Age in origin, but has curious internal partitions and annexes suggestive of later reoccupation, perhaps from the Dark Ages onwards.
Grey Plover
Grey Plovers breed on tundra and winter on shores further south. In Britain we usually see them in dull grey winter plumage rather than when they have a contrasting black face, throat and belly. But when they moult their black belly feathers they curiously retain black armpits. Like most plovers it stands very upright and tends to run and then suddenly stop to feed. It is generally seen in small numbers, although flocks can form when there is a high tide.
Photo credit: Tom Cadwallender
Agriculture Bill
The National Association of AONBs share Defra's ambition for the future of food, farming and the environment and agree that British farmers, growers and foresters play a vital role in protecting the countryside.

They look forward to working with AONB landowners to support this.
British Travel Awards
Northumberland has been nominated for the Best UK Holiday Destination at the British Travel Awards 2018.
Visit Northumberland are keen for you to put Northumberland on the map and help it become the No.1 Holiday Destination in the UK. Vote for Northumberland in the British Travel Awards via the button below
Visitor Guide
Our Visitor Guide will have a new look and feel for 2019 but rest assured, it will still be packed full of the vital information about the Northumberland Coast.
We've asked Offstone Publishing to come up with a refreshed design for us. If you'd like to advertise in the guide, contact Teresa Peters by following the link below.   
Migatory Bird Watch
In late autumn, tens of thousands of ducks, geese and wading birds arrive on the Northumberland coast to spend the winter. Many of these birds will have come from the Arctic Circle. These birds feed on the sand and mud flats that surround Holy Island and in Budle Bay. As the tide comes in, it pushes the birds closer to the shore and this is the best time to see them.
You can join two migatory bird watch events in October with Natural England - the first is on Thursday 4th October at Budle Bay, 1-3pm; the second is on Tuesday 16th October at Fenham-le-moor bird hide, 1-3pm. Ring Annie Ivison 01289 381470 to book your place 
Seahouses Cinema
The Hub Community Cinema has proved to be a very popular community asset supported by local residents and visitors to the seaside village. They offer a state of the art viewing experience showing the very latest films as well as a monthly Film Club for the cinema enthusiast.
Relax in one of their comfy chairs or adult bean bags, enjoy some freshly made popcorn, delicious locally made ice cream or a drink from the bar and sit back and enjoy the film! Films are usually shown fortnightly with a children's film in the afternoon and adult film in the evening. Private screenings for birthday parties or school groups can be arranged.
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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.

The Northumberland Coast AONB is part of the AONB Family - the UK's Landscapes for Life
Northumberland Coast | Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty
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