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11 Cool Events in the North East this August Bank Holiday Weekend

August 14, 2016 in Days Out 8

I get excited whenever my weekend is extended by a day thanks to a bank holiday, but even more so in August as the possibility of sunshine and summer events make me super giddy!

The next bank holiday weekend is just around the corner and there are loads of ways to make the most of your time in Geordieland. I’ve rounded up eleven of the coolest, quirkiest and most exciting events (I know ten would have been neater but I just couldn’t narrow it down).

Now all I have to do is try and squeeze as many as possible in to my three days off work!

South Shields Fake Festival – Sat 27 August 2016


Bents Park has been alive with music this summer and the Fake Festival promises to keep South Shields partying with world-class tributes to Kasabian, Blondie & The Stone Roses plusĀ four amazing local bands. The bands might be fake but the atmosphere definitely won’t be! It will be the second time the festival has taken place here and last year revellers gave it a big thumbs up! No need to worry about the weather either as the bands will perform in a huge marquee!

Blaydon Races Fun Day at Newcastle Racecourse – Mon 29 August 2016


A day at the races is usually something that’s enjoyed more by grown ups but the Blaydon Races Fun Day is perfect for families with children as there’s so much more than horse racing on offer! Kids can meet some of their favourite characters including Bumblebee from Transformers and Elsa from Frozen. There’ll be a funfair too, plus face painters, pony rides and cheerleaders. Parents will also beĀ delighted to hear that under 18’s go free!

North Sea Tall Ships Regatta – Fri 26 – Mon 29 August 2016

blyth tall ships

I’ve been excited about this spectacular event in Blyth ever since I heard about it a few months ago. In truth, it’s actually dozens of events taking place across four days and there really will be something for everyone. If the breathtaking sight of thirty of the world’s largest Tall Ships isn’t enough for you then you can also enjoyĀ live music, fairground rides, grand parades, seaside sculptures, local food and drink and fabulous fireworks! Something tells me that the North Sea Tall Ships Regatta will be creating special memories for many people this August bank holiday weekend.

Bula Bula Rooftop Cinema at Newcastle Castle – Fri 26 & Sat 27 August 2016

castle exterior

Imagine snugglingĀ up to watch a movie beneath theĀ stars on the roof of Newcastle Castle! Bula Bula gives you the chance to watch iconic movies in an iconic location with an audience of only 60 lucky film lovers for each screening! On Friday they are showing the classic thriller The Shining at 8pm and at the same time on Saturday, the last screening of the season will be Old Boy (subtitled). You can take your own booze to the events and the Ā£15 ticket price includes free popcorn and the use of cosyĀ blankets.Ā orĀ

Primal Scream Live from Times Square – Fri 26 August 2016

Times Square (in front of the Life Science Centre in Newcastle) has played host to some huge names in music recently. Fat Boy Slim celebrated his birthday by entertaining the crowds with one of his legendary DJ sets a few Fridays ago and I went along on a Saturday night to see Ocean Colour Scene perform one of my favourite 90’s albums, Moseley Shoals. The fantastic atmosphere is set to return when Glasgow’s finest, Primal Scream take to the outdoor stage on Friday 26 August. Super Furry Animals are supporting too! I can’t think of a better way to kick start the bank holiday weekend.

Northern Soul All-Dayer at Hoochie Coochie – Sun 28 August 2016


If you’ve still got any wear left in your dancing shoes by Sunday then get yourself to Hoochie Coochie for a full day of Northern Soul classics being spun by some of the North East’s finest DJ’s. Hoochie Coochie has a mighty reputation for its SOS (soul on Sunday) events but when it’s not a school night, even more soulies come out to play, making the atmosphere truly special. The music starts at 3pm and entrance is free. (If it at this point you are wondering what ‘what on Earth is Northern Soul?’ then look it up on YouTube immediately, you can thank me later!)

The Pitch at Sage Gateshead – Fri 26 August 2016


One of the North East’s most unique venues is hosting one of the weekend’s most unique events on Friday… The Pitch promises to be anĀ unusual, football themed fun day with a chance to play the beautiful game in a beautiful setting, for free!

The indoor concourse will be transformed in to a 5-a-side football pitchĀ and Newcastle United Foundation coaches will be on hand to provide expert tuition. Don’t worry though, The Sage has not forgotten it’s musical roots, talentedĀ musicians from Sage Gateshead will beĀ coming up with chants toĀ be sung proudly from the venueā€™s balconies. There will also be drama fromĀ Unfolding TheatreĀ and football themed graffiti artĀ outside in the Arches. Thereā€™s no need to sign up in advance ā€“Ā just turn up and play!

Freedom Of ā€™76 Punk Weekender at Tyneside Cinema – Fri 26 – Sun 28 August 2016


This year isĀ the 40th anniversary of the formation of the Sex Pistols and the birth of punk. So the Tyneside Cinema (my favourite cinema EVER!) has dedicated the bank holiday weekend to celebrating the influence of punk on cinema. There’ll be aĀ short series ofĀ events, curated by artistĀ Graham Dolphin, including gigs, films and exhibitions.

Border Reiver Archers HaveAGo Archery at Brocksbushes – Sat 27 August 2016


I recently had a wonderful family day out at Brocksbushes Fruit Farm (read about it HERE), it’s a fabulous fruit farm where you can pick your own and the Farm Shop and Tea Rooms are also well worth a visit. Now I have another reason to visit thanks to the members of Northumberland’s archery team who will be giving visitors the chance to practice their skills when they bring their equipment to the farm for a fun afternoon on the Saturday of the bank holiday weekend.

The Happenings at Wylam Brewery – Fri 26 – Sun 28Ā August 2016

I am actually kicking myself that I have still not enjoyed a pint of Wylam Beer from the Brewery’s new home at the Palace of Arts in Exhibition Park, I mean, just look at it, the venue is stunning! Well, this bank holiday weekend I have the perfect opportunity as The Happenings returns for a three dayĀ celebration of craft beer, street food & live music. The line up hasn’t been announced yet but I’m sure there’ll be some awesome local bands on the bill.

Moscow State Circus at the Town Moor – Weds 24 – Tues 30 August 2016


When the circus comes to Toon I can’t help but feel curious about what’s going on inside the huge big top on the Town Moor. The Moscow State Circus features fearless daredevils and amazing acrobats that I always think must have the most interesting life stories. I’d love to spend a day with them behind the scenes, but I’ll make do with a ticket to the show instead!

As you can tell, it’s going to be an action packed August bank holiday in Geordieland! I’d love to hear what you’re planning to get up to, will you be attending any of these events or do you know of anything else happening in the North East?

UPDATE: I’ve only gone and found a 12th event for you… Summer Storeys is backĀ on Barrack Road for theĀ bank holiday weekend, you can read about my visit to the launch here:Ā

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Sam |North East Family Fun

Fab Round Up of events Rachel – I’m heading to the Tall Ships Regatta on Saturday night (without the kids – hello bar!!) but don’t have any other real plans for the rest of the weekend yet – I’ll be popping back to this post in a week or so x

Northern Niche Sharon
7 years ago

I’m going to share this on Northern Niche, Rachel — it’s a great list.


[…] just found out that Summer Storeys is returning to the Toon for the bank holiday weekend. So I think I’m going to have to re-name my last blog post to TWELVE Cool Events in the North […]

tim magill
7 years ago

Agree with previous postings – great listing!

Ravi Roshan Jaiswal
7 years ago

Hi Rachel, Wow.. this is really hilarious. Each one looks great and fantastic way to fun and enjoy there. The event which I like most from the above cool events is the Moscow state Circus, guess that will be better. The venue of North East which is incredible in look is The Pitch at Sage Gateshead. It looks perfect and designed very well in my view. Thanks for highlighting the cool events of North East, got to learn a lot on that. Also, Bula Bula Rooftop Cinema at Newcastle Castle is wonderful in look and I wish to visit this… Read more »

6 years ago

Wow I had no idea there was so many events on! This is great list šŸ™‚ I’ll have to check out Brocksbushes Fruit Farm it sounds like a great day out šŸ™‚


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