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May 082013

   Home > Tyne & Wear > South Shields > Blog: Sound Waves 2013 At Bents Park South Shields

Sound Waves South Tyneside 2013

Sound Waves 2013 has confirmed McFly will headline the live concert at Bents Park, South Shields on Sunday 25th August 2013. McFly’s hits include Five Colours in Her Hair, All About You, Star Girl and Shine a Light. McFly are the first act to be officially announced with X Factor winner Joe McElderry also confirmed.

More big name acts are promised to be confirmed over the coming weeks. Tickets for Sound Waves 2013 are priced at £20 each and are available from The Customs House, South Shields in person, by telephone or online at Tickets can also be purchased via Ticketmaster here.

Bents Park in South Shields

Our bed and breakfast is on the same street as Bents Park (shown above, we are further up the street shown on the right edge of the photograph) so if you’re looking for hotel accommodation next to Bents Park in South Tyneside our bed and breakfast availability is here: online booking.

Apr 212013

   Home > Tyne & Wear > Sunderland > Blog: Sunderland Football Club Owner’s Seaburn Curry

Sunderland Football Club’s billionaire owner Ellis Short visited the Shagorika Indian restaurant on Queen’s Parade in Seaburn, Sunderland, SR6 8DA on Saturday night following Sunderland Football Club’s 1-0 victory earlier that day. The 52 year old American enjoyed a chicken mushuri at the restaurant and surprised it’s owner with a £1,800 tip after his meal.

A news report of the visit is in the video below…

Apr 032013

   Home > Tyne & Wear > Newcastle upon Tyne > Blog: Neptune National Centre for Subsea and Offshore Engineering

An “extreme” engineering centre is to be built in Newcastle upon Tyne to help develop subsea technology. The £7 million Neptune National Centre will be created on the River Tyne. Business Secretary Vince Cable unveiled the centre as part of a new oil and gas strategy and said “The UK’s oil and gas sector is crucial to the economy, so we’ve worked closely with the sector on today’s industrial strategy. But its future success relies on it being underpinned by the latest science and technology. This cutting-edge new facility will help put our academic community and industry at the centre of subsea and offshore engineering research. It will drive up skills and develop the innovations needed to fuel growth in the North Sea.”

The centre is to be built on the north bank of the river Tyne at Shepherd Offshore’s Neptune Energy Park. It is billed by Newcastle University, NE1 7RU, who are providing funds for the scheme, as a centrepiece for economic revival. Lead professor for the project Nick Wright said “The Neptune Centre will create a unique facility that will significantly enhance research capacity, not just at Newcastle University but in the UK as a whole, providing a focus for the development of both new technology and academic-industry relationships that underpin future growth.” The project is also supported by Newcastle City Council and includes plans for a hyperbaric chamber which will be capable of testing technology and materials at temperatures and pressures equivalent to those found at the deepest ocean depths.

Neptune Energy Park Tyneside

Newcastle University is to lead a national centre for subsea and offshore engineering as part of a major drive to develop new materials and technologies to explore the world’s oceans. The Neptune National Centre for Subsea and Offshore Engineering has been unveiled as a key part of the Government’s Oil and Gas Strategy. It will be the first of its kind in the UK, bringing together industry and academia to create a world-class engineering research facility. Developing technologies that can withstand one of the world’s harshest environments, the new centre will be at the forefront of our quest to harness the ocean’s potential as a source of food, energy and medicine.

Building on the region’s maritime heritage and Newcastle University’s world-leading expertise in marine engineering, the Neptune Centre will be developed on the north bank of the River Tyne on the Neptune Energy Park, a major redevelopment of the former Neptune shipyard. Neptune Energy Park is part of Shepherd Offshore, Nelson Road, Offshore Technology Park, Newcastle upon Tyne, NE6 3NL. It will be a centrepiece for the revival of this part of Tyneside, bringing with it jobs and investment. The Secretary of State said “The UK’s oil and gas sector is crucial to the economy, so we’ve worked closely with the sector on today’s industrial strategy. But its future success relies on it being underpinned by the latest science and technology. This cutting edge new facility will help put our academic community and industry at the centre of subsea and offshore engineering research. It will drive up skills and develop the innovations needed to fuel growth in the North Sea.”

The project will be part-funded through the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE) from the Catalyst Fund and matched with funding from Newcastle University and the private sector. Supported by Newcastle City Council, plans include the building of a unique hyperbaric chamber and environmental test facilities which will be capable of testing technologies and materials at temperatures and pressures equivalent to those found at the very deepest ocean depths. Project lead Professor Nick Wright who is Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Research and Innovation at Newcastle University, said “The Neptune Centre will create a unique facility that will significantly enhance research capacity, not just at Newcastle University but in the UK as a whole – providing a focus for the development of both new technology and academic-industry relationships that underpin future growth. Newcastle University has a long tradition of applied engineering research focussed on the marine sector – reflecting the history and tradition of both the University and the North East region. This new national centre will act as a place for industry and academia to interact, providing crucial infrastructure for emerging research opportunities. It will also provide a unique training ground for highly skilled graduates, addressing key skill shortages currently faced by UK industry.”

David Sweeney, HEFCE Director, Research, Innovation and Skills, said “HEFCE investment, combined with contributions from the university and the private sector, will enable this important research centre to be created. It will make a significant long-term impact not only on research, but also on skills and the economy.” Professor David Delpy, Chief Executive of the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) said “Newcastle University has a fine track record of engineering research which EPSRC is proud to have supported. “This pedigree means the work at the new Neptune Centre will build on existing expertise and capability to achieve critical mass in areas that EPSRC has identified as strategically important to the UK, specifically the need for fault tolerant electronics and distributed computing in difficult and extreme environments. We are confident that research at the centre will have impact within academia and industry and that collaborative work with other institutions will bring even wider benefits.”

Iain Gray, Chief Executive, Technology Strategy Board said “The Technology Strategy Board is delighted to see that the Neptune Centre is being established in the North East, and are sure that it will make a significant and valuable contribution to the UK’s sub-sea engineering know-how and capacity. We look forward to working with the Centre and helping to support the businesses who engage with the innovative programmes it aims to deliver.” The Neptune Centre already has the backing of leading UK companies through the Subsea North-East Consortium including Shepherd Offshore, BEL Valves and SMD. Richard Dodd, Director of BEL Valves which is part of the British Engines Group, said the investment would further boost the North East’s reputation as a world leader in subsea and offshore engineering. “This partnership between Newcastle University and companies such as BEL Valves is a major opportunity for the region. It will allow us to grow our capabilities and skills base to keep us at the forefront of this highly specialised field of engineering.”

Director of Shepherd Offshore, Offshore Technology Park, Rendle Road, Walker, Newcastle upon Tyne, NE6 3NH Charles Shepherd said: “This is a fantastic development for the new energy park. We welcome Newcastle University onto the site and look forward to working with them in this world-leading research and development facility.” Andrew Hodgson, Vice Chair of the North East Local Enterprise Partnership and Chair of Subsea NE, said “The subsea sector is a vital part of the economic regeneration within the North East of England. There are a significant number of technology-led world leading enterprises in the region and this centre will provide a significant capability to generate new and exciting collaborative projects. Our vision remains to make the North East the recognised centre for subsea technologies on an international scale.”

You can see a video about Shepherd Offshore’s Services here. The transcript is below…

Shepherd Offshore is a world-class offshore marine services organisation specialising in the sub-sea oil and gas and offshore renewable sectors. The group have been successfully serving industry and the local community for almost 100 years from our headquarters in Newcastle upon Tyne. As the largest private landowner on the river Tyne, Shepherd Offshore has been responsible for the creation of a world-class hub to meet the needs of the offshore marine industries worldwide. Specialists in land regeneration and the provisional facilities for world-class manufacturing, research and development and training. Shepherd Offshore works with the government and industry to generate benefit and deliver value to major clients and their associated supply chains. The group alone and operate two major supply bases – The Offshore Technology Park and Neptune Energy Park. Both facilities exceed international standards ensuring safe, secure and cost-effective benefits to our clients.

Shepherd Offshore’s riverside facilities, situated on over 100 acres of land, include 1,500 meters of key frontage with heavy load out capability and deep water access. The 250 tonne static overhead crane is the largest of its kind on the East coast of the UK. Our work force, operating in our state of the art facilities, enable clients to move product to its destination safely and on time. We also provide essential support services including sea fastening, fabrication, heavy lift handling and engineering solutions at our Offshore Technology Park. Major clients trust our experience and with over 80 vessel mobilisations annually our track record speaks for itself.

Shepherd Offshore are serious about health and safety and it’s key to everything we do. Clients rely on us to operate safely, our commitment to safety is second to none. The continuing availability of this expertise has already attracted some of the largest, most ambitious and most technologically innovative enterprises in the world and Shepherd Offshore are positioned to welcome even more. The group is committed to long-term strategic growth of the river Tyne in creating a fully integrated hub to meet the needs of the offshore sector in the North sea and beyond. Shepherd Offshore continues to invest in the regeneration of riverside lands to create the conditions for additional world-class manufacturing and supply operations. Shepherd Offshore’s commitment to the regeneration of the river Tyne is unrivalled. Clients put their trust in us time and again because they recognise that our highly skilled work force can deliver products and solutions to projects anywhere in the world.

Shepherd Offshore is a major presence in the industrial heartland of North East England. Alongside our world-class position in the offshore arena we also offer extensive high quality office space, substantial warehousing and other support capabilities across our North Tyne and Scottish facilities. Our property portfolio includes a number of unique developments providing for corporate hospitality and the film and TV industry. The combination of Shepherd Offshore’s support for manufacturing infrastructure, our people, facilities and location with immediate deep water access to the North sea has positioned us as a major player in the offshore renewables market. The world’s largest offshore wind turbine blades have been manufactured at Shepherd Offshore’s Neptune Renewable Energy Park. The group is uniquely placed to work in partnership with clients to develop the bespoke manufacturing and supply infrastructure that is the basis of sustained commercial success. The long-term strategic vision for Shepherd Offshore is to build on the success of creating a world-class hub for manufacturing services and training within the oil and gas, sub sea and renewable industries.

If you are looking for bed and breakfast accommodation for your visit to Shepherd Offshore’s Nepture Energy Park in Newcastle upon Tyne then please see our availability and online booking page. Room information including photographs can be found on the bedrooms page of our website.

Apr 022013

   Home > Tyne & Wear > South Shields > Haven Point

Haven Point Swimming Pool & Leisure Centre Pier Parade NE33 2RL

The opening of a new show piece £16m swimming pool in South Tyneside has been delayed by three months. Haven Point, Pier Parade, South Shields, NE33 2RL was set to be completed and opened to the public next month, but council chiefs have confirmed it is now set to be finished in August. It says last years wet summer weather and the recent cold snap has caused problems with the construction process.

A spokesman for South Tyneside Council said: “The main contractor, Graham Construction, recently rejected a small section of tiles laid in the deck area around the pool, as the workmanship by a subcontractor did not meet the high standards we have set for Haven Point. This was a routine quality assurance exercise, and not something that would cause a major delay. We can confirm that the three pools at Haven Point were all leak-tested in accordance with industry standards several months ago. There have been no problems with leaks, and in all three cases, the tanks proved their integrity. Two of the pools have since been tiled, while the third is awaiting tiling, and there have been no problems with the tiling or grouting within the pools.”

Haven Point, which had its name revealed by Paralympic Gold medallist Josef Craig last month, will feature an eight-lane, 25 metre competition pool, an 18-metre learner pool with adjustable floors, and leisure areas with flumes, sprays, bubble pools and water play. Work started on the site in September 2010, when the former Majestic and Quasar Laser buildings were demolished. Originally, it was reported that the development was due to be open in 2012, but this was later put back to the spring of this year. A source said: “I know instructors who were keen to start classes at the new pool, but they were told that they would have to wait quite a while. There were reports that the pool was leaking. That’s what quite a lot of people believe, as it seems to be taking forever for it to open.”

A council spokesman added: “Haven Point is shaping up well and expected to open in August rather than May. Both the wet summer last year and the recent cold snap have created problems for the construction process. We would prefer not to have a delay, but the key point is that the borough will soon have a superb new £16m swimming and leisure facility at a time when other authorities are closing similar services.”

The new state of the art facility when completed will feature… a 25 metre, eight lane competition pool and 18 metre by 8 metre teaching pool, both with adjustable floors for added flexibility; leisure waters with flumes, sprays, bubble pools and water play; a sauna and steam room; an 80 station gym; two dance studios; fitness testing and consultation rooms. A range of facilities for non-swimmers including a new visitor information centre, coffee lounge and cafe, an outdoor terrace and amphitheatre, two multi-purpose rooms and a roof top viewing gallery to enjoy the stunning seafront views.

For more Haven Point South Shields related posts on our blog click here: Haven Point. For more leisure centre related blog posts click here: leisure centre. For more swimming pool related blog posts click here: swimming pool. For more South Shields related blog posts click here: South Shields.

If you’re looking for hotel accommodation near Haven Point on Pier Parade in South Shields our bed and breakfast availability is here: online booking. Room information including photographs can be found on the bedrooms page of our website.

Mar 292013

   Home > Tyne & Wear > Blog: A-Levels At Newcastle College

Newcastle College Newcastle upon Tyne NE4 7SA

A rival is looking to take advantage of South Tyneside College’s decision to scrap A-level courses. Newcastle Sixth Form College, Rye Hill Campus, Scotswood Road, Newcastle upon Tyne, NE4 7SA is opening a new £22m centre in September. College principal Steve Gibson said: “Young people in South Tyneside may have some concerns about the options available to them to study A-levels, but I would urge them not to worry. We are keen to ensure all young people get the chance to study the subjects they want, and we’re getting lots of requests from students from across Tyneside to come and talk to tutors at Newcastle Sixth Form College and have a look around our new building. We offer around 40 different A-levels and have world-class facilities to help students learn. We are in the centre of Newcastle, so we are just a short Metro ride away from South Tyneside. Students do not have to travel far to pursue the future they want.”

The South Shields Gazette revealed this week that South Tyneside College would no longer be offering A-level qualifications from September. Instead, it will focus on vocational training, which it says will provide the ‘best possible’ career route into university and work. About 90 students and 17 lecturers are affected by the changes. School-leavers who have applied to study AS-levels at the college from September will be offered vocational alternatives. Existing students going into their second year will be allowed to complete their studies at the college, in St George’s Avenue, South Shields.

The Universities and Colleges Union (UCU) said it will fight to avoid compulsory redundancies. Jon Bryan, UCU regional support official, said: “The thing we are most concerned about is the extent to which the college is going to redeploy staff. The key thing for us is going to be pressurising the college as much as possible to redeploy people into alternative posts. They are closing the intake for this year, but following through with the second year. That will be helpful in terms of some people maintaining their employment.”

Staff will also need to be retrained to deliver vocational courses, he added, although some already teach them. “If we are lucky, we may be able to avoid compulsory redundancies,” said Mr Bryan. “That will clearly be our focus.” There are two school sixth forms in South Tyneside – Harton Technology College in Lisle Road, South Shields, NE34 6DL and St Joseph’s RC Comprehensive School in Mill Road, Hebburn, NE31 2ET – teaching approximately 270 A-Level students in total. Whitburn C of E Academy in Nicholas Avenue, Whitburn, Sunderland, SR6 7EX has been granted permission to open a sixth form from September 2014, but plans are in the very early stages.

A South Tyneside College spokesman said: “There are numerous other providers of A-levels within South Tyneside and we are working to ensure no young person is left without that local provision. “We strongly believe the many and varied courses we provide are best suited to meet the needs of young people and employers in an ever more competitive employment market. We remain committed to helping those who have applied to start AS-level courses with us in September to find routes on to vocational courses or into alternative provision elsewhere in South Tyneside. We understand they may be disappointed at not taking those courses with us and we are offering them every possible support.”

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