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Newburn lies six miles west of Newcastle upon Tyne and was prominent in the early days of the railways. The waggonway connecting the villages to west and east, Wylam and Lemington, was built about 1748. Local men George Stephenson, Timothy Hackworth and William Hedley were pioneers in the harnessing of steam power for colliery haulage. Until 1822 when John Spencer acquired a mill to grind files on the Dewley Burn, employment was mainly for fishermen, keelmen and colliers. Spencers Steel Works rapidly extended to cover much of Newburn and as demand increased for railways and other booming industries Newburn families enjoyed a relatively high standard of living until 1918. The slump after World War 1 had a shattering effect on areas dependent on heavy industry and the Newburn community never really recovered from the closure of the steel works between 1924 and 1926.

In the 1986 Newcastle upon Tyne Household Survey, Newburn was found to be a "small ward with stable population". If people move house half of them stay in the ward itself. The area manages to retain a "village" atmosphere in what is predominantly an industrial environment. Many of the old industrial areas have now been landscaped and reverted to green space. On the edge of the city on the north bank of the river Tyne, Newburn has a country feel to it. The riverside park is a popular destination. There is a leisure centre, water sports on the river, while the riverside route to Wylam is busy with walkers and cyclists.

Click here for a map of the location of Newburn on

Updated Dec 2017