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    21 Life Struggles Of Living In South Tyneside

    For those who are below the banks of the Tyne and Newcastle, but not quite in Sunderland, it's a bit of a different world.

    1. Explaining why you're not technically a Geordie, but still sort of are.

    Flickr: stevewilde

    You can cling to technicalities of the ever expanding definition of the term "Geordie", as you technically are. Besides, they'll only assume you're from Sunderland if you explain it any further.

    2. Travelling on the Tyne and Wear Metro with an irate Geordie driver shouting at some kids and the remnants of a McDonald's on the seat next to you.

    Flickr: ed_webster

    Still, it gets you from A to Bede – if not, the replacement bus service will.

    3. Deciding which Greggs is the one for you.

    In South Shields 1 Greggs just isn't enough!

    OK, so this isn't there anymore, but it happened. It really happened. It was there for a while too, and, to be honest, it was a tough choice.

    4. Having your thrill ride options be limited to Ocean Beach Pleasure Park.

    Flickr: rickframe

    The option of spending all your money on the arcades or having a go on the waltzers is a tough choice, though there's always Quasar Laser.

    5. Explaining a saveloy dip to anyone who has never sampled this meaty treat.

    Flickr: mythoto

    It's saveloy in a bun, with stuffing, pease pudding, and then it is lightly dipped in the saveloy "gravy". Or, for an easier explanation: It's the best thing you'll ever eat.

    6. Being asked "Can you say...?"


    The bane of most regional accents, but no, we won't say "aye", "cushty", "book", or "arrggghhhh, Duncan me eyes".

    7. The cheeky trip over the water to go to Wet 'n' Wild.

    The aquatic paradise weirdly never lost its charm; slides a' plenty, and we've all nearly lost our shorts at least once.

    8. Having to tell people where Jarrow, Hebburn, and even South Shields is.

    Google Maps

    "Near Newcastle" tends to be the easiest explanation, but our towns stand up on their own too, but yeah, near Newcastle if you're not sure.

    9. The rowdy nightlife.

    Channel 4 / Film 4 / Via

    Fishbowls of oddly coloured drinks in the first bar was never going to end well, and throwing shapes to cheesy pop in Glitterball (okay, "Gutterball") rounds out every night.

    10. Getting asked if you watched Hebburn... over and over again.

    BBC / Via

    The BBC show put one of our towns on the map, which leads to lots of people asking how accurate it was. To be fair, not far off, we just all wish Vic Reeves was our dad now.

    11. Shopping splurges at The Metrocentre, and carrying too many bags on the bus home.

    Flickr: fredspoonphotos

    A bit of everything to be snapped up, it's a given you'll be struggling with far too much on the way home. They were all a bargain though.

    12. Never having the right change for the Tyne Tunnel.

    Okay, sometimes you do, but there's always that blind panic that you haven't and the scramble to find the right coins.

    13. No more Tommy The Trumpeter.

    The popular entertainer was a huge part of our youths for 25 years. He sadly hung up his trumpet two years ago, but will always hold a special place in our hearts.

    14. School trips to the Catherine Cookson Museum and Bede's World.

    Flickr: Denise Miller / Via Flickr: mercywatch

    Bede's World was in danger of closing recently, and it was wonderful to see people fight for its lasting legacy. If we had our school trips there, so should the next generation. Bonus points to anyone who still has their shoplifted Catherine Cookson museum pencil sharpener from the gift shop.

    15. No more Geordie Jeans.

    BBC / Via

    Where will I get my Eclipse jeans from now? Remember when they changed tack and started selling band T-shirts, clothing a new generation of goths? If you were really lucky, you'd see Flora from Byker Grove working in the South Shields one.

    16. The Great North Run.

    Flickr: Jeffrey Chan / Via Flickr: jeffreychan

    Once a year, a lot of people run towards South Shields. You're normally roped in to sponsoring friends and co-workers, if not doing it yourself. It's an incredible event that raises a lot of money for charity – just don't try and get the metro that day.

    17. Choosing a football team.

    Flickr: dkodigital / Via Flickr: dkohara

    Well, Gateshead aren't far off league football, and South Shields have Julio Arca now. But it's usually a straight choice between Newcastle and Sunderland. A choice between unrelenting misery and disappointment, and unrelenting disappointment and misery.

    18. Not knowing Muhammad Ali had his marriage blessed here.

    Keystone / Getty Images

    July 1977, one of the greatest sportsmen of all time had his recent marriage blessed in South Shields’ mosque, wearing a striking all-white suit. He even had a go at darts after.

    19. And not knowing Patrick Stewart was from here.

    Michael Kovac / Getty Images / Via Flickr: shankbone

    The legendary actor spent much of his childhood in Jarrow. Star Trek would have been very different had he spent any longer here; you can’t march through space…

    20. Having South Shields beach be your summer paradise.

    Flickr: dcknw

    Kids drinking tinnies next to you while you try and build a sand castle isn't the idyllic summer setting we all imagined. The ice creams are good though.

    21. Geordie Shore.

    MTV / Via

    This is on all of us. We are sorry, we're not all like that. Not all the time at least.