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Berwick Upon Tweed Area Guide

Overlooking Berwick-Upon-Tweed Image courtesy of Flickr user Raymondo166

Just two and a half miles south of the Scottish border, Berwick upon Tweed is a charming Georgian market town in the county of Northumberland. Once the focal point of a border war between England and Scotland, the dramatic Italian style town walls were built by the English to keep the invading Scots out, and were the most expensive building project of the Elizabethan era. The only surviving walls of their kind, these days they offer a vantage point from which to view the River Tweed, Royal Border Viaduct Bridge and out toward the holy island of Lindisfarne. The Royal Border bridge is one of three bridges connecting Berwick upon Tweed with Tweedmouth on the south side of the river.

Historically a thriving trading town for salmon and wool, notable architecture in the town includes a number of handsome pink sandstone houses, slate and red-tiled rooftops as well as defence ramparts and barrack buildings.

Situated around an hour by car from Edinburgh, Berwick upon Tweed has a bohemian feel that attracts artists and tourists alike and is largely considered to be one of the prettiest towns in the region. The town also hosts an annual music and media arts festival.

Demographics

With a total population of approximately 12,000 people, the service sector is a major source of employment in Berwick upon Tweed with around 60% of people working in shops, hotels and catering, financial services, and health care. About 13% is in manufacturing, 10% in agriculture, and 8% in construction.

The town is within commutable distance of Newcastle and is fast becoming a dormitory town for workers there.

Education

Schools in the area operate on a three tier system, with Berwick upon Tweed having 11 first schools including Berwick St Mary C of E School, Holy Trinity C of E School, Spittal Community School, Tweedmouth Prior Park, and Tweedmouth West.

Secondary or middle school education is provided by Tweedmouth School and Berwick Middle School, the largest middle school in the area offering education for pupils aged nine years to 13 years. Pupils can access further secondary provision across the border in nearby Eyemouth. Berwick Academy has around 800 pupils aged 13 to 18 years and specialises in sport, the arts, educational visits and outdoor education as well as offering a sixth form.

Longridge Towers School is a coeducational independent day and boarding school for children aged from four years to 18 years old. Northumberland College offers further education and Northumberland University and the University of Edinburgh are the nearest facilities for higher education.

Transport

Berwick upon Tweed is served by the A1 which runs the length of the country, providing access between London and Edinburgh. The A69 and A66 connect to the M6 and the A19 provides an alternative route from the south, linking the Port of Tyne to Northumberland.

Berwick upon Tweed railway station offers connections to the south as far as London King's Cross and to Aberdeen in the north. Regular bus services run from the town to Newcastle and surrounding towns and villages.

Closest airports include Newcastle International Airport and Durham Tees Valley International Airport.

Amenities and Shopping

Town centre shopping in Berwick upon Tweed is focused around Mary Gate and the High Street which boast a selection of local independent stores and national retailers. A twice-weekly market is held on Wednesdays and Saturdays, and a farmers market is held on the last Sunday of every month.

The town offers plenty of places to eat and drink from fine dining to restaurants, pubs, cafés, delis and takeaways, with fresh fish dishes a speciality.

The town has a thriving arts and culture scene, with the Maltings Theatre and Arts Centre offering regular performances, and the Berwick Museum and Art Gallery being amongst the galleries in Berwick. Annual events include the Berwick Bounds and Border Marches that celebrate the town boundaries; there is also the Berwick Food Festival which is held every September. Berwick Film and Media Arts Festival is hosted at various venues across the town including Maltings Theatre and Arts Centre, The Gymnasium Gallery at Berwick Barracks, The Barrels Ale House and the Prison Cells in the Town Hall.

Whilst every effort has been taken to ensure the above information is up to date, some inaccuracies may occur. If you notice any inaccuracies please contact editor@primelocation.com

All information was correct at time of publication and is provided in good faith.