Haydon Bridge

Haydon Bridge is a village in Northumberland, England, with a population of about 2000, the civil parish Haydon, being measured at 2,184 in the Census 2011.[1] Its most distinctive features are the two bridges crossing the River South Tyne; the picturesque original bridge for which the village was named (now restricted to pedestrian use) and a modern bridge which used to carry the A69 road. A bypass was completed in 2009 and the A69 now bypasses the village to the south.[2]

The modern village is divided in two by the River South Tyne, whereas the old village (Haydon) was to the north, on the hill overlooking the river; all that remains is a Norman church now reduced in size from the original, which used stone taken from nearby Roman Hadrian's Wall. The A686 road joins the A69 just to the south east of the village, linking Haydon Bridge with Alston and Penrith.

Haydon Bridge
Haydon Bridge from the south west

Haydon Bridge
Haydon Bridge is located in Northumberland
Haydon Bridge
Haydon Bridge
Location within Northumberland
Population2,184 (2011)
OS grid referenceNY842643
Civil parish
  • Haydon
Unitary authority
Ceremonial county
Sovereign stateUnited Kingdom
Post townHEXHAM
Postcode districtNE47
Dialling code01434
AmbulanceNorth East
EU ParliamentNorth East England
UK Parliament


In 1323, a Charter was granted for a market and fair to be held in the village, but as these gatherings so often ended in brawls between various families, they did not add to the peace of the district.[3]


Haydon Bridge is in the parliamentary constituency of Hexham. It has been held by the Conservatives since the early part of the twentieth century.


The village has four pubs: The Railway, The Anchor, The General Havelock, and Haydon Bridge's Working Men's Club. There are two schools: Shaftoe Trust First School and Haydon Bridge High School. The Reading Rooms has been converted into a Bed and breakfast, offering visitors to Haydon Bridge accommodation within the village.[4] The Railway Hotel has recently been refurbished and the old Railway Inn is now part of the hotel which also provides visitors to the village with accommodation, a bistro restaurant and beauty salon.[5]

A few years ago, the 'old foundry' as locals called it (based on its earlier use as an ironworks established in 1843) was demolished to make way for new accommodation specifically for past and present Haydon Bridge residents. The new flats are modern buildings designed to fit in with the rest of the architecture of the village.


The Haydon Bridge area plays host to a variety of different species. Most notably, the elusive red squirrel. However, grey squirrels are moving through the area and the group Haydon Bridge Red Squirrels was set up to combat this and preserve the threatened red squirrel.


Bridge at Haydon Bridge - geograph.org.uk - 1563203
Haydon Old Bridge


Old Haydon Bridge across the River South Tyne within the village itself was originally built around 1309 but had to be rebuilt in 1776 following a flood. Listed as a Grade II structure it is now only available to pedestrian traffic.

The new Haydon Bridge Viaduct, opened in 2009, now carries the A69 across the river some half mile to the west of the village.


Haydon Bridge Station
Haydon Bridge railway station

The village is served by Haydon Bridge railway station on the Newcastle and Carlisle Railway, also known as the Tyne Valley Line. The line was opened in 1838, and links the city of Newcastle upon Tyne in Tyne and Wear with Carlisle in Cumbria. The line follows the course of the River Tyne through Northumberland. Passenger services on the Tyne Valley Line are operated by Northern, previously it was operated by Northern Rail.

Bus services

Arriva and Stagecoach operate bus services jointly (Service 685) between Carlisle and Newcastle, with services passing through the village approximately every hour in each direction.

Wright Bros Coaches currently provides a limited service to destinations such as Hexham, Newcastle, Alston, and Nenthead. Tyne Valley Coaches also provide some services to the village usually on school days and only as far as Hexham via Newbrough and Warden.


Newcastle Airport is situated about 27 miles (43 km) from Haydon Bridge and provides daily internal flights to many UK and International destinations.

Religious sites

St Chuthbert's church, Haydon Bridge, Northumberland - geograph.org.uk - 601736
St Cuthbert's, Haydon Bridge

The village where the "new" church is and on which the old church at Haydon looks down, was built in 1796. Dedicated to St. Cuthbert, it is said to have been one of the many resting places of the bones of the saint, which the monks carried throughout the northern counties for hundreds of years. Occasionally services are held in the old church in which, oddly enough, the font is made from a Roman altar. There is a great deal of doubt as to when this little church was originally built; if the bones of St. Cuthbert rested there, it must have been in existence before the saint found his last resting place in Durham Cathedral in 995.

Church - geograph.org.uk - 296960
Haydon Old Church

There is a gruesome legend connected with the old church, given in detail in William Lee's Haydon Bridge and District. It is the old story of the girl who longed for finery which she could not afford. Watching the local tailor making a coat for her master at Altonside Farm, the girl pestered the tailor so much that at length he made a bargain with her. If she would go to the old church at Haydon at midnight and bring back the communion book from the altar, he would make her a coat which would enhance her charms in the eyes of her lover. Accordingly, the girl carried out her share of the bargain, but, as she was leaving the church, she heard voices, and hiding behind the door she saw two men dragging what appeared to be a woman's body into the church and burying it under the flagstones. Running out of the church towards her home, the girl tripped and fell, and on recovering herself she saw by the light of the moon that she had tripped over what is described in the story as a "bowarrow", which she recognized as that of her lover! The next night when he came to visit her she showed him the incriminating evidence, at which he trembled like "an aspen leaf" and dramatically said "I bid you farewell, a long farewell". So the girl gained a new coat but lost her lover.[3]


Every year Haydon Bridge now has a Summer Exhibition held in the community centre. This displays work of artists and photographers local to the village such as Elaine Westall and wildlife photographer Will Nicholls. This event is usually held in June or July.

There is also an Arts and Crafts fair later in the year, in the same venue, where photographers, wood craftsmen, jewelers and more will sell their products to anyone who visits.

Notable people

  • Ned Coulson was another celebrity of Haydon Bridge, noted for his wonderful swiftness of foot. On one occasion he won a race against a rider on horseback. Coulson was of Kenyan descent.[6]
  • Philip Larkin would spend holidays with Monica Jones at 1A Ratcliffe Road: the cottage she once owned. One of his better-known later poems Show Saturday is dedicated to the 1973 Bellingham Show, which they attended. They also went to the tar barrel ceremony in Allendale, and dined at Blanchland. It was a record of Tommy Armstrong's Trimdon Grange Explosion which Larkin heard at the cottage that prompted him to write his own late poem The Explosion.[7]


  1. ^ "Civil Parish population 2011". Retrieved 29 January 2016.
  2. ^ Coulter, David. "End of a long road for campaigners". Hexham Courant (27 March 2009). p. 9.
  3. ^ a b Ridley, Nancy (1966). Portrait of Northumberland (reprint ed.). London: Robert Hale. pp. 63–65. OCLC 503957631.
  4. ^ [1] The Reading Rooms
  5. ^ [2] The Railway Hotel
  6. ^ Hugill, Robert (1931). Road Guide to Northumberland and The Border. Newcastle upon Tyne, England: Andrew Reid & Company, Limited. p. 185.
  7. ^ [3] Myer's Literary Guide

External links

A686 road

The A686 is a road in Northern England. It runs from Penrith in Cumbria to Haydon Bridge in Northumberland. The AA named the A686 "One of the Greatest Drives in Britain" owing to the dramatic scenery of the Pennines hills encountered along its route. The road is popular with motorbikers, and due to the great number of steep bends many casualties occur along the road. It was recently voted 9th best drive in the country by Top Gear.

A69 road

The A69 is a major northern trunk road in England, running east-west across the Pennines, through the counties of Tyne and Wear, Northumberland and Cumbria. Originally the road started in Blaydon, but since the creation of the A1 Western Bypass around Newcastle upon Tyne, it now starts at Denton Burn a suburb of Newcastle upon Tyne.

The route from the A1 junction to Carlisle City Centre is 54 miles (87 km).

Bardon Mill

Bardon Mill is a village in Northumberland, England. It is situated to the west of Haydon Bridge and Hexham, on the River Tyne South.


Blanchland is a village in Northumberland, England, on the County Durham boundary. The population of the Civil Parish at the 2011 census was 135.Set beside the river in a wooded section of the Derwent valley, Blanchland is an attractive small village in the North Pennines Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

Blanchland was formed out of the medieval Blanchland Abbey property by Nathaniel Crew, 3rd Baron Crew, the Bishop of Durham, 1674-1722. It is a conservation village, largely built of stone from the remains of the 12th-century Abbey. It features picturesque houses, set against a backdrop of deep woods and open moors. Located near the Derwent Reservoir, it provides facilities for sailing and fishing.

The Lord Crewe Arms Hotel has a vast fireplace where 'General' Tom Forster hid during the Jacobite rising of 1715. W. H. Auden stayed at the Lord Crewe Arms with fellow student Gabriel Carritt at Easter 1930, and later remarked that no place held sweeter memories. Blanchland may have been the model for the village in which was set the opening and closing scenes of Auden and Isherwood's play The Dog Beneath the Skin (1935). Another celebrated poet Philip Larkin used to dine at the hotel when staying with Monica Jones in Haydon Bridge. In July 1969, Benjamin Britten and Peter Pears stayed at the Inn.

Scenes in the fictional town of Stoneybridge in the first three series of the CBBC programme Wolfblood were filmed in the village.

Its unspoilt qualities make it a frequent setting for period films, set in the 18th century, such as those based on the novels of Catherine Cookson.


Chesterwood is a hamlet in Northumberland, in England. It is situated a short distance to the north-west of Haydon Bridge on the South Tyne, west of Hexham. It includes a number of "Bastle Houses" from the 17th Century, originally built to protect against raids by the Border Reivers. Unusually some of these Bastles are terraced. Just a couple of miles south of the Historic Hadrians Wall (Roman Wall) it lies in the Parish of Haydon and once had a Tower as the boundary of the property of the Barony of Langley. Langley Castle is located 3 miles south on the opposite side of the South Tyne Valley. There is an historical account of a murder in Chesterwood as burglars attempted to open the front door of the Bastle now known as "The Golf House" (so named as it was the club-house of a 9-hole golf course at the beginning of the 20th century). Frank Stokoe had his daughter slide the door bolt shut while he exited the house and crept around to the front door where he shot the would-be intruder dead.


HBHS refers to several high schools:

AustraliaHomebush Boys High School, in Homebush, SydneyKiribatiHiram Bingham High School, in Rongorongo, Beru IslandNew ZealandHamilton Boys' High School, in Hamilton

Hastings Boys' High School, in HastingsUnited KingdomHaydon Bridge High School, in Haydon Bridge, Northumberland, EnglandUnited StatesHelen Bernstein High School, in Los Angeles, California

High Bridge High School, in High Bridge, New Jersey

Hollis/Brookline High School, in Hollis, New Hampshire

Hudson's Bay High School, in Vancouver, Washington

Huntington Beach High School, in Huntington Beach, California

Haydon Bridge High School

Haydon Bridge High School is a mixed secondary day school located in Haydon Bridge in the English county of Northumberland. The current headteacher is Darren Glover, who took over in April 2017. The headteacher from January 2011 to August 2014 was John Whittle.It is a foundation school administered by Northumberland County Council, It is claimed to have the largest catchment area of any school in England, reputedly covering an area larger than that encompassed by the M25, the orbital motorway around London. In April 2016, Ofsted judged the school standards as "below par".Haydon Bridge High School offers GCSEs and BTECs as programmes of study for pupils, while students in the sixth form have the option to study from a range of A-levels and further BTECs.

Haydon Bridge Viaduct

Haydon Bridge Viaduct carries the A69 Haydon Bridge bypass across both the Newcastle upon Tyne to Carlisle railway and the River South Tyne, about 1⁄2 mile (0.8 km) west of Haydon Bridge.

Haydon Bridge railway station

Haydon Bridge railway station is a railway station which serves the village of Haydon Bridge in Northumberland, England. It is located on the Tyne Valley Line which runs from Newcastle upon Tyne to Carlisle, and is managed by Northern who provide all passenger train services. The station is sited 30 miles (48 km) west of Newcastle and 31 3⁄4 miles (51.1 km) east of Carlisle.


Hexham ( HEKS-əm) is a market town and civil parish in Northumberland, England, south of the River Tyne, and was the administrative centre for the Tynedale district from 1974 to 2009. In 2011, it had a population of 11,829.Smaller towns and villages around Hexham include Corbridge, Riding Mill, Stocksfield and Wylam to the east, Acomb and Bellingham to the north, Allendale to the south and Haydon Bridge, Bardon Mill and Haltwhistle to the west. Newcastle upon Tyne is about 25 miles (40 km) to the east and Carlisle is 37 miles (60 km) to the west.


Kielder is a small, remote village in western Northumberland, England. Located at the head of Kielder Water and in the north west of Kielder Forest, the village is 3 miles (5 km) from the Scottish border.

Langley, Northumberland

Langley, or more correctly Langley-on-Tyne, is a small village in Northumberland, England, located to the west of Hexham.

The village is on the A686 about 3 miles (5 km) south of Haydon Bridge. The skyline of Langley on Tyne is still dominated by the lead smelting chimney with its underground flue leading to the old smelt works, now a sawmill, where the old tracks for the ore wagons can still be seen. There are currently just over 100 residents.

Langley Castle

Langley Castle is a restored medieval tower house, now operated as a hotel, situated in the village of Langley in the valley of the River South Tyne some 3 miles (5 km) south of Haydon Bridge, Northumberland, England. It is a Grade I listed building.

List of schools in Northumberland

This is a list of schools in Northumberland, England.

List of state boarding schools in England and Wales

There are about 40 state boarding schools in England and one in Wales, providing state-funded education but charging for boarding. In addition, the Five Islands School in St Mary's, Isles of Scilly, provides free boarding during the week to secondary students from other islands. The Durand Academy in Stockwell, a district in south London, also provides free weekly boarding at a site near Midhurst, West Sussex.The gender shown is that of the boarding provision; some of these schools have mixed day provision.

New Haydon Bridge

The New Haydon Bridge is a bridge across the River South Tyne providing access to and from the village of Haydon Bridge.

Old Haydon Bridge

Old Haydon Bridge is a footbridge across the River South Tyne providing access between the Northern and Southern sides of the village of Haydon Bridge, Northumberland, England.

River Tyne

The River Tyne (listen) is a river in North East England and its length (excluding tributaries) is 73 miles (118 km). It is formed by the confluence of two rivers: the North Tyne and the South Tyne. These two rivers converge at Warden Rock near Hexham in Northumberland at a place dubbed 'The Meeting of the Waters'.

The Tyne Rivers Trust measure the whole Tyne catchment as 2,936 square kilometres (1,134 sq mi), containing around 4,399 kilometres (2,733 mi) of waterways.

William Errington

William Errington (1699 – 5 Mar 1739) was High Sheriff of Northumberland.

Errington was the only son of Francis Errington (1665–1699), a papist of the landed gentry branch of Walwick Grange, Northumberland. He married Mrs Isabel Bacon at Haydon Bridge on 17 Oct 1731 and was appointed High Sheriff of Northumberland in 1739 not long before his death.He left one son John (1733–1768), gentleman of High Warden, Northumberland and direct maternal ancestor of Sir William Errington Hume (1879–1960) physician and his son Cardinal George Basil Hume (1923–1999), Catholic Archbishop of Westminster.

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