Tourists flock to soak up the Easter sunshine

Temperatures topped those in Spain as north Northumberland basked in an unexpected Easter heatwave.

By Ian Smith
Friday, 26 April, 2019, 10:53
Bamburgh beach on Good Friday. Picture by Jane Coltman

Thousands of tourists and day trippers flocked to the likes of Bamburgh, Seahouses and Beadnell to spend the day at the seaside.

Easter-themed activities in Berwick and on Ford and Etal Estates also proved popular in the sunshine.

The thermometer at Letham Shank weather station in Berwick hit 21.8C on Easter Sunday – higher than Barcelona and Madrid.

It helped to provide an unexpected early season boost for local tourism businesses.

Harvest Harris-Jones, chairman of the North Northumberland Tourism Association, said: “It has been fantastic that the north Northumberland tourism businesses have had such a great Easter, in stark contrast to the one last year.

“Having spoken to a number of our members both on and off the coast everyone has been busy welcoming visitors and helping them to build memories.

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“Thank you to all the hard work of Northumberland Tourism and partners who helped Northumberland be recognised as the best holiday destination, which has really helped to put Northumberland on the map.”

Northumberland’s growing tourism reputation, along with uncertainties over Brexit, are also providing a boost to the county’s tourism trade.

In an interview with BBC Look North, Jeff Sutheran, who runs St Cuthbert’s House B&B in North Sunderland, said: “We have heard conversations around the breakfast table of people who have not booked foreign holidays because they thought they might be queuing to get into that country, so say ‘why take that chance?’

“I think the uncertainty definitely is fuelling some sort of staycation increase and there is no doubt we are seeing the benefit of that.”

His wife, Jill, added: “Our guests have increased and are coming from different areas of the country.”