Two new exhibitions at The Word

A leading North East cultural hub is starting the new decade with two new exhibitions.

The Word, National Centre for the Written Word, at South Shields, has unveiled a programme of events and activities for visitors of all ages for the coming weeks.

And along with the chance to take part in a variety of family friendly workshops and classes, there are two, free exhibitions to kick start 2020.

No Place Like Home and Poetry + Video will both open on Friday 17 January, with the former celebrating 100 years of council housing, through the stories and memories of South Tyneside residents.

Along with audio recordings there are digital and hard copies of historic tenants’ handbooks so visitors can learn about the advice given to council house tenants by the Council.

Poetry + Video, held in the venue’s Ground Floor Pod, is an hour-long touring programme of video poems from around the world.

Curated by Australian film-maker Marie Craven, it includes screen adaptations of page poetry, prose poetry, animations, poetic cinema, text-on-screen and spoken word.

Tania Robinson, Head of Culture, at The Word, National Centre for the Written Word, said the venue is “very excited” to be launching the 2020 programme with two new exhibitions.

“Poetry + Video portrays the great work of national and international film makers and writers and really relates to what The National Centre of the Written Word is about,” she said.

“No Place Like Home is a great showcase of the development of council housing over time and it’s fantastic to have had the involvement of local residents in the shaping of the exhibition.”

Other highlights of the 2020 programme include a last chance to explore The Word’s free Amazing Space exhibition, which closes on Sunday 23 February.

Celebrating 50 years since the first Moon landing, the exhibition delves into stories inspired by Space, with clips from classic science-fiction movies old and new, a Space-scene jigsaw, Space-themed music, costumes from Star Trek and Star Wars and more.

Space is also the topic of several activities scheduled for youngsters during the February half term.

On Saturday 15 February, at 11am and 1pm, Roustabout Theatre will be bringing their one-hour long touring performance of Luna to The Word, for the over fives and their families.

Featuring astronauts, lovelorn science teachers, werewolves and a special guest appearance by the Moon itself, supported by a talented cast of household objects, Luna is a rich feast of storytelling, music history and science.

Then, on Saturday 22 February, Kielder Observatory will be coming to The Word to take adults and young people over 12 on a journey through space and time, into the cosmos to unlock some of the mysteries our Universe has to offer.

Throughout half term week there will also be sessions covering everything from Mardi Gras themed crafts and Lego building to designing and laser cutting robot masks at FabLab @ The Word.

And, on Friday 21 February, The Word’s immersive StoryWorld space will be the backdrop for a series of Tales of Robot Adventures storytelling sessions, when children can listen to stories of robot adventures, sing songs, get crafty and play robot games.

There is a ticket charge for some events and activities and advance booking may be required. For more information and to book visit www.theworduk.org.