Originally from Lancashire, Simon Young moved to Corbridge in the heart of Northumberland from London with his wife, Vicky, in 1991. Now living near Slaley, he trained and worked as a fashion designer in London and the North East of England before starting the home accessories concept store and mail order business, RE, based in Corbridge in 2003.
What is it about Northumberland that appeals to you?:
It’s GORGEOUS! We came up here on holiday in the 1980’s and just fell in love with Northumberland and hatched a plan to find work up here and relocate.
I love the wild, untamed moorland of north Northumberland and the fabulous unspoilt coastline, the spectacular castles and stately homes, not to mention Hadrian’s Wall – where else could you get all that on your doorstep yet still be in easy reach of city life when you need it?
What’s your favourite Northumberland beauty spot?:
There are so many it’s a difficult question to answer, but I love the isolation of the beach at Boulmer and further north at Embleton in winter.
Tell us about your favourite walk?:
Up on to the edge of the moors at Blanchland past Penny Pie House, down to Townhead and along the river to end with a beer at the Lord Crewe Arms.
The list of places to visit is endless. But some are more special than others. A trip to this region wouldn’t be complete without….:
Over the years we’ve had lots of family and friends visiting so we trek across Northumberland frequently. Some of our favourites are a walk along Hadrian’s Wall at Steel Rigg, a visit to the coast at Boulmer or Craster – walking from the harbour to Newton. A bit of culture at the Baltic and Sage in Gateshead, a visit to Kielder (outside midgey season) and of course a trip to RE in Corbridge!
Is locally produced Northumbrian food the best?:
Yes – we love locally produced meat, veg and dairy. There are fewer food miles and you know the conditions that the animals are kept in and that the food is produced under. We especially like North Acomb Farm Shop for meat and the Fish Quay at North Shields for fish and shellfish.
Do you have a preferred place to eat out in the county and why?:
We like The Feathers Inn at Hedley-on-the-Hill near Stocksfield – a great menu with a map on the reverse showing where everything is from so you know it’s local, and the Manor House Inn at Carterway Heads on the A6. Again, great local food.
Northumbrians are renowned for the warm welcome they offer holidaymakers and day trippers alike. What do you think is the secret ingredient for this friendliness?:
Space and time. There’s enough room for visitors without the county becoming spoilt and overcrowded and people have time for each other up here – what’s more friendly than giving someone else your time?
Coast or country?
Your favourite historical site?
Belsay Hall, Castle and Gardens. I love the fact that it has been restored so far and no further. The quarry gardens are spectacular and they have some innovative exhibitions.
And the best road to take a leisurely and scenic drive along?
Through Blanchland and over the tops to Stanhope and then on to Weardale or alternatively to Allenheads, Sparty Lea and Allendale.
What would be your perfect day out in Northumberland?
Breakfast at Capheaton, drive to the coast for a bracing walk along the shore, a scenic route home -maybe via Rothbury – then supper near home at the Feathers Inn or The Manor House.
Category: Northumberland Best Kept Secrets