The Black Gate and The Castle Keep might sound like sets from the Lord of the Rings franchise, but they are in fact the last remaining structures of the castle that gives Newcastle its name. The site was originally home to a Norman “motte-and-bailey” construction built by Robert Curthouse, son of William the Conqueror. This was replaced by a stone keep and bailey during the 12th and 13th centuries, structures that were restored around 1812 and are still partially standing today. The Keep is now a Grade I-listed building and Scheduled Ancient Monument,and can be visited today.
Belsay Hall is a 1807 Regency style country house situated just outside of Newcastle, in Belsay. This Grade I listed building is built entirely in the Greek revival style, featuring iconic pillars within and without. Visitors can explore the Winter Garden Terraces and Quarry Garden, filled with delicate ferns, winter-flowering rhododendrons and other beautiful greenery to make for a spectacular visit any time of year. Within the grounds is Belsay Castle, a scheduled ancient monument constructed around 1370 by the Middleton family, who went on to own the estate for more than seven centuries. The site hosts regular “Hands on History” days and outdoor theatre.
The historical heart of Newcastle, Grainger Town features classical streets built by Richard Grainger between 1824 and 1841. Collectively home to Grainger Market, Grey’s Monument, Theatre Royal, Grey Street, Grainger Street and Clayton Street, Grainger Town is part of Newcastle’s Central Conservation Area, which serves to preserve the distinctive ‘Tyneside Classical’ architecture.