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Metropolitan Borough of South Tyneside

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Metropolitan Borough of South Tyneside

Borough of South Tyneside
Metropolitan borough
South Shields Town Hall
South Shields Town Hall

Coat of Arms of the Borough Council
Motto: Always Ready

South Tyneside within Tyne and Wear and England

Coordinates: 54°57′32″N 1°26′17″W / 54.959°N 1.438°W / 54.959; -1.438

Country United Kingdom
Constituency England
County Tyne and Wear
Settled ~160 AD
Established 1 April 1974
Admin HQ South Shields
Government
 • Type Leader and Cabinet
 • MPs Stephen Hepburn (L)
Emma Lewell-Buck (L)
Area
 • Total 24.88 sq mi (64.43 km2)
 • Land 24.87 sq mi (64.41 km2)
 • Water 0.008 sq mi (.02 km2)
Population (2001 Census)
 • Total 152,875
 • Estimate (Mid-year 2010) 153,700
 • Density 6,178/sq mi (2,385.5/km2)
 • Ethnicity
(2011 census)
95.1% White
1.7% South Asian [1]
Time zone Greenwich Mean Time (UTC+0)
 • Summer (DST) British Summer Time (UTC+1)
Website

South Tyneside is a metropolitan borough in Tyne and Wear in North East England.

It is bordered by four other boroughs - Newcastle upon Tyne and Gateshead to the west, Sunderland in the south, and North Tyneside to the north. The border county of Northumberland lies further north. The borough was formed on 1 April 1974 by the merger of the County Borough of South Shields along with the municipal borough of Jarrow and the urban districts of Boldon and Hebburn from County Durham.

South Tyneside forms part of the Tyneside conurbation, the sixth largest in the United Kingdom, with a geographical area of 64.43 km2 (24.88 sq mi) and an estimated population of 153,700 (Mid-year 2010). It is bordered to the east by the North Sea and to the north by the River Tyne. A Green Belt of 23.64 km2 (9.13 sq mi) is at its southern boundary.

The main administrative centre and largest town is South Shields. Other riverside towns are Jarrow and Hebburn, while the villages of Cleadon, Whitburn and The Boldons border the South Tyneside green belt which borders Wearside to the south at Sunderland.

South Tyneside is represented by two Members of Parliament with two constituencies at South Shields and Jarrow (which also serves Hebburn and the Urban Fringe villages).

History

Celts, Romans, Angles, Saxons, Jutes, Vikings, the early 20th century arrival of the Arabs and more recently the settling of people from the Commonwealth, notably the Indian sub-continent, and the European Union reflect the present-day culture of South Tyneside.

In South Shields (Latin 'Arbeia', Brythonic 'Caer Urfa'), excavations and a reconstructed fort are found at Arbeia (AD 160). This fort served as a garrison and an outpost of the Roman Empire, and is part of Hadrian's Wall World Heritage Site. The hospitality strip at Ocean Road is famed throughout the region for its Indian, Italian, Middle Eastern and Chinese cuisine. Mill Dam, with former Customs House (now a theatre, cinema and arts complex), cobbled lanes and Mission to Seafarers centre, stands tribute to the long and proud history of shipping in the town and the river Tyne.

Bede's World in Jarrow (Anglo Saxon 'Gyrwe') is dedicated to the life of the Venerable Bede, the 'Father of English History'. The nominated World Heritage Site is straddled by two rivers - the Tyne and the Don. There is a medieval monastery (St. Paul's Church, AD 681), an Anglo-Saxon farm with rare breed animals and buildings constructed in original materials from that period, and the Georgian Jarrow Hall. The Jarrow Crusade of 1936 was a key event in the town's history and the original banner carried by the marchers to London can be viewed at Jarrow Town Hall.

The local identification of South Shields people with Arabs, which is widespread in the region, may have originated from the placename Arbeia (which is apparently a Latinized version of an Aramaic term meaning "place of the Arabs"), but there has also been a fairly sizeable Arab community in South Shields since the 1890s. This is also one hypothesised explanation of the term "Sandancer" (derived from "sand dancer") for people born and brought up in South Shields.

Council

South Tyneside council is formed of 54 members, of which 49 are Labour, 3 UKIP, 1 Conservative, and 1 Independent.[2]

Twitter lawsuit

In May 2011 South Tyneside council took legal action against Twitter to try to discover the identity of a blogger who posted allegedly libellous statements.[3]

Three South Tyneside councillors and an official complained they were libelled in a blog called "Mr Monkey"

South Tyneside Council faced significant criticism from British media, who focused on the use of taxpayer money at a time of severe budget cuts across the government services throughout the country. The Council have said the amount spent on the case was around £75,000 (US$123,712 as of 31 May) or less,[5] while media reports indicate the true cost is closer to US$400,000.[6] As of 24 November 2011, the council had failed to identify who their critic was.[7]

Critics also pointed out the council itself would not be allowed to take any action against the parties as evidence the court action demonstrated a misuse of funds.[8]

Economy

Shipbuilding and repairing, coal mining and exports, and the chemical industries declined from the latter half of the 20th Century, resulting in mass unemployment. In more recent years, however, this trend has reversed and South Tyneside attracts new industries, most notably in the service sector. There is still a considerable manufacturing base of ship-repair and offshore services, engineering, electronics, clothing, furniture, paper products, timber and small precision engineering.

At one time, Tyneside built 25% of the world's ships. South Tyneside College specialises in maritime training and attracts students from around the world.

Tourism is also an important and growing industry.

Places of interest

South Shields town centre offers high street shopping with a regular market and museum & art gallery. Arbeia Roman Fort Museum offers a reconstructed Roman fort at the Lawe Top. The seafront offers the traditional British seaside experience - fairground, parks, boating lake and miniature steam railway, amusements and arcades, hotels, bed and breakfasts, caravan and camping sites, restaurants, amphitheatre, outdoor live entertainment, promenades, Groyne lighthouse and the mile-long South Pier. On the coast road to Whitburn, Marsden Rock, a limestone sea stack colonised by sea birds, is a longstanding tourist attraction. Less famous is the nearby Souter Lighthouse, the first in the world to be generated by electricity, and the secluded Jackie's Beach is a welcome change from the busier beaches of Marsden. Much of the coastal scenery in this area was until two decades ago dominated by the spoil heaps and pithead winding gear of the collieries, but those are now gone and the area's natural beauty has been restored.

The Customs House Arts Centre,situated in the Mill Dam conservation area hosts theatre,cinema, art gallery and restaurant and is open 363 days a year.

Bede's World, the Tyne Pedestrian Tunnel, the refurbished Viking Shopping Centre, and J Barbour factory outlet at Jarrow are also of interest.

Westoe, Harton, Cleadon, East Boldon, Monkton and Whitburn are typical suburban villages offering traditional pubs, building styles and small shopping boutiques. There is a cricket ground at Whitburn village and another 2 located in Westoe.

Hebburn riverside is surprisingly green and open with views to the busy shipyards across-river at Wallsend.

South Shields Sailing Club, Temple Park Leisure Centre, Gypsies Green and Monkton Stadium, Hebburn Swimming Pool, national and local cycle routes, open areas and parks are the main outdoor recreational areas. The Great North Run is the world's biggest half marathon which takes place every September/October, starting in Newcastle and finishing on The Leas in South Shields.

In summer there is a festival with opening street parade, street and stage entertainment and an open-top tour bus connecting various places of interest.

Environment

The physical environment varies greatly in a small area: from industrial areas like Port of Tyne to business parks at Monkton and Boldon; traditional 'back to back' terraces to suburban housing; the River Tyne to the harbour, river entrance and open sea at Littlehaven; Marsden Quarry to the Great North Forest.

EcoCentre at Hebburn is a building constructed from recycled materials, self-reliant in power generation by means of its own wind turbine and is efficient in waste management.

The weather is variable and typical of a Maritime Climate.

Transport

The A194(M), A19 and other trunk roads link South Tyneside to the national road network. The Tyne and Wear Metro is a light rail system connecting the area with the rest of the Tyne and Wear conurbation, including Sunderland and Newcastle Central Station and Newcastle International Airport. The Tyne Road and Pedestrian Tunnels traverse the river between Jarrow and Howdon. A pedestrian ferry also serves the towns of North and South Shields. The Port of Tyne situated at Tyne Dock is a growing terminal handling large volumes of freight, including exports from the Nissan car plant in Washington.

People

Well-known South Tynesiders include author Dame Catherine Cookson, former three times Prime Minister of New Zealand Sir William Fox, actress Dame Flora Robson, Monty Python actor Eric Idle, Hollywood director Ridley Scott, waxed jacket inventor J Barbour and athlete Steve Cram. Author Lewis Carroll was inspired to write 'Alice's Adventures in Wonderland' and 'Through the Looking-Glass' by local residents he met when staying in Whitburn. Singer Joe McElderry who won the 2009 X Factor also comes from the area as well as two members of 2011 X Factor winners Little Mix, Jade Thirlwall and Perrie Edwards. South Shields is the only town to have two X Factor winners from its area. Ginger of British rock heroes The Wildhearts is from South Shields. New to the scene comedian, Chris Ramsey is also from South Shields.

Twinned cities

South Tyneside is twinned with Épinay-sur-Seine, France; Noisy-le-Sec, France; and Wuppertal, Germany

Climate

Climate in this area has mild dfferences between highs and lows, and there is adequate rainfall year round. The Köppen Climate Classification subtype for this climate is "Cfb" (Marine West Coast Climate/Oceanic climate).[9]

Climate data for South Tyneside, UK
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °C (°F) 7
(45)
8
(46)
9
(48)
10
(50)
13
(55)
15
(59)
18
(64)
18
(64)
16
(61)
13
(55)
9
(48)
7
(45)
11.9
(53.3)
Average low °C (°F) 3
(37)
3
(37)
4
(39)
5
(41)
8
(46)
10
(50)
13
(55)
13
(55)
10
(50)
8
(46)
5
(41)
3
(37)
7.1
(44.5)
Precipitation mm (inches) 33
(1.3)
33
(1.3)
30
(1.2)
43
(1.7)
48
(1.9)
43
(1.7)
38
(1.5)
48
(1.9)
48
(1.9)
53
(2.1)
53
(2.1)
50
(2)
520
(20.6)
Avg. precipitation days 13 13 15 15 12 14 11 11 13 15 15 15 162
Source: Weatherbase [10]

References

External links

  • South Tyneside Council and Community website
  • South Tyneside Youth Orchestra Official Web Site featuring Concert Dates, a List of Members, and all About STYO.
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