New walking tour blends Newcastle’s local heritage with craft beer
A Newcastle gallery is brewing up a new partnership that spotlights Newcastle’s cultural, independent craft beer scene.
The Biscuit Factory is teaming up with local beer aficionados Donald and Tania Stewart to offer a cultural walking tour of the Ouseburn and its local pubs and breweries, paired with lunch at the gallery’s in-house café.
The tour begins with lunch and cake at The Factory Kitchen, accompanied by one of the independent art, craft and design gallery’s specially branded craft beers, brewed by neighbouring Tyne Bank Brewery.
The group will then enjoy a leisurely walk into the heart of the Ouseburn valley, home to an alternative mix of pubs, artist studios, live music venues and the popular Victoria Tunnel, to explore its rich local history, dating back to the industrial revolution.
They will also visit a variety of pubs, breweries and tap rooms en route, enjoying a selection of unique and interesting beers; taking in some of the best views of the River Tyne at the end of the tour.
The experience is led by Donald and Tania, who have lived in Newcastle for 50 years and are keen craft beer enthusiasts. The pair have been running tours for three years, with locals and tourists alike booking up to explore the city’s local heritage and burgeoning craft beer offering.
Donald said: “We have been drinking in a variety of independent pubs in the Ouseburn for almost as long as we have lived in Newcastle. We delight in the relaxed atmosphere and the eclectic mix of people who frequent the pubs of the area. The choice of craft beers available is second to none and the pubs are staffed by helpful, knowledgeable and enthusiastic people.
“Over recent years, six craft breweries have sprung up in and around the area, from the very small to the medium sized. Sadly, we only have time to visit two of them on the tour.
“It gives us great pleasure to share this hidden gem with those who are new to Newcastle and might not stray out of the city centre to find it. As we walk, guests are often surprised to hear about the 19th century industrial past of the valley with its many and varied industries. We show how, in the last 20 years, this has transformed into a hub for many small creative and tech driven businesses, as well as craft pubs, breweries and gastro eateries.”
Kathryn Tye, business development manager at The Biscuit Factory, added: “We’re always keen to find ways to collaborate with other independents, especially those that champion the culture of our local area. Donald had been running these tours for quite some time and encouraging people to visit our gallery too, which we were thrilled about, so thought it only natural that we work together to get more people enjoying this unique corner of Newcastle.
“We think this new partnership is a perfect introduction to the Ouseburn, taking in some of the best the valley has to offer and hopefully supporting the small businesses that keep the area such an interesting and vibrant place to visit.”
The walking tour is available for groups of up to 12 people and lasts around three hours. Bookings are available Wednesday to Sunday between 2pm and 5pm, priced at £50 per person.