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Be inspired every day with Living North
clockwise starting top left: spring wreath demonstration, a honey bee on a purple flower, fish and chips in a takeaway box, red art gallery room Clockwise from top left; Living North LIVE, Unsplash, Quayside Whitby, Shipley Art Gallery
What's on
May 2023
Reading time 4 Minutes

A good weekend is important as it ends one week well, while starting the next the right way!

From a late-night culture crawl to a charity walk in the Wolds, and fun at Living North LIVE at Newcastle Racecourse, we've picked out the best things to do this weekend.
a women demonstrating how to make a wreath infant of a neon sign which reads Living North Living North LIVE

Must visit…

It's here! Living North LIVE is in Newcastle this weekend, from 19th–21st May, and it’s the North East’s leading homes, gardens, shopping, food and lifestyle event. Join us at Newcastle Racecourse for stylish shopping, chef demonstrations, expert talks and tastings as LIVE brings you inspiring ideas for your home and garden, great gifts, delicious food and unique accessories that you won’t find anywhere else. This year we have even more exciting things to look forward to, from workshops where you can make your own clay plant pot to a masterclass with Charlotte Tilbury’s expert makeup artists, as well as our popular chef demonstrations and lots more in the LIVE Lounge. Don’t worry if you haven’t got tickets – you can buy them on the door on the day. 


Opening in 1744, York Theatre Royal has obviously seen a lot in its time, and you’re invited to discover all of the venue’s hidden secrets this weekend. From Roman soldiers to medieval monks and Georgian high society, this site has been important to the people of York for millennia and now you can take a closer look. During this fascinating backstage tour, visitors can take a deep dive into the theatre’s unique history. Find out how their resident ghost, The Grey Lady, came into existence, and why you must never whistle on stage! The tour also includes a freshly-made cream tea to finish.

Out late…

Back for a 15th year, The Late Shows return this Friday and Saturday. The free late-night culture crawl – featuring art studios, galleries, museums and heritage venues – includes more than 40 cultural venues across Newcastle and Gateshead. Events taking place range from taster tours of Newcastle Cathedral’s Lantern Tower to live dance performances at Dance City, as well as quilting and weaving demonstrations at Shipley Art Gallery. There will also be a number of foodie venues taking part with live music and canapés at Hotel du Vin, a local art showcase and pizza at Gingerino’s Kitchen, and a selection of sculpture, painting, prints, cards and gifts on sale at Full Circle Brew Co.

Cutting edge exhibition…

This weekend head to Weston Park Museum for cutting edge exhibition Hair: Untold Stories which untangles the possibilities of hair as both a renewable fibre and as a sense of identity. From jewellery and dresses to environmental protection, the exhibition highlights the qualities of hair as a material but also explores our complex relationship with it by weaving together the work of artists, film makers and designers with a range of objects and archive material. Read our interview with exhibitions and displays curator Lucy Cooper here to find out more.

Hear the buzz…

It’s World Bee Day on Saturday 20th May and what better time to learn more about these buzzy, fuzzy insects? From the coffee you drink in the morning to the cotton pads you use before bed, there are a number of everyday things we couldn’t do without bees and this is why it’s so important we protect them. Living North caught up with Gateshead-based The Travelling Bee Company to find out more about how important bees really are to our ecosystem, plus what we can do to help protect them, and you can read the interview here. You can also have a chat with The Travelling Bee Co. team in person (and shop their honey) at their stand at Living North LIVE this weekend.

fish and chips in a takeaway box on a wooden table in front of the harbour Quayside Fish and Chips, Whitby

Raise money…

York’s St Leonard’s Hospice is an independent charity providing specialist palliative care and support for local people with life-limiting illnesses, and this weekend you can help support them by taking part in the Wolds Walk. Starting in the picturesque East Yorkshire village of Warter, choose from two glorious walks (of 12 or 18 miles) to raise money for this worthwhile cause. Both routes have a climb before walking over rolling countryside and entering Lavender Dale so be prepared to walk across varied terrain, but the St Leonard’s Hospice team of volunteers will ensure you have a memorable day with drinks, refreshments and plenty of encouragement.

To the circus…

Searching for a thrilling day out for all the family? Look no further! Planet Circus is fast emerging as one of the leading names in circus entertainment and this weekend you can see their show-stopping performance at The Sands in Durham. Combining traditional circus entertainment with a modern twist, during this two-hour production expect to see everything from foot juggling to a wheel act and swinging trapeze skills. For stunt-lovers, The Globe Of Speed will have you on the edge of your seat as the incredible team of Freestyle Motocross Cyclists ride around the sphere, hitting speeds of 70mph right above your head!

Fish fest…

The Whitby Fish & Ships Festival takes place this Saturday and Sunday, and the two-day event will shine a light on the industries, businesses and traditions that have grown around the town’s fishing heritage, and which continue to thrive today. Food and music lie at the heart of the festival, including a packed itinerary of chef demonstrations in the Seafood Kitchen Marquee and three venues for live music throughout the weekend. Alongside the songs and food, Whitby Museum will be running a family-friendly Treasure Trail throughout the weekend, Whitby’s shipbuilder, Parkol Marine, will be offering guided tours of its boatbuilding yard, and the traditional skills of pot making, net mending and crab and lobster dressing will be on show throughout the weekend in the Fish Craft Tent.

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