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Tyne View, a brand new book telling the story of a unique journey, is launched next week.
In July 2011 Michael Chaplin, writer-in-residence for the Port of Tyne, along with artist Birtley Aris, photographer Charles Bell and poet Christy Ducker, took a 50 mile riverside walk up and down the tidal length of the River Tyne from South Shields Pier to Tynemouth Pier via Wylam Bridge.

They recorded their adventures, the people they encountered along the way and the places they discovered in narrative, photographs, poetry and art inspired by the river itself.

Just over a year later, the book has been published by New Writing North with support from the Port of Tyne, and from September 18th will be on sale in shops and on the internet.

Part social history, part snapshot of a river and its communities at a turning point in their long history, the book's rich narrative attempts to provide a unique insight into why this great Northern river occupies a place in the hearts of so many Tynesiders.

It is compellingly written by acclaimed author and playwright Michael Chaplin and beautifully illustrated with photographs from Newcastle-raised Charles, poems from Christy, one of the north east's most promising new poets and sketches by Northumberland artist, Birtley.

The Port of Tyne's Chief Executive Officer, Andrew Moffat joined the walkers for some of the way. Andrew said: "Michael came up with this great idea and we were delighted to support it.

"The stories and images gathered by Michael, Charles, Christy and Birtley on the walk make a fascinating collection and a very good read, as well as a unique record of the life and times of the River Tyne of not only today and yesterday but also provide a glimpse into the future."

Michael Chaplin said: "I wanted to find ways to celebrate the river and its effect on our culture. After becoming the Port's writer-in-residence I began to understand that though a walk is definitely rooted in the present, it also involves an examination of the past and an imagination of the future. The Tyne walk therefore became a journey of both memory and hope, as well as getting to know the river all over again."

Claire Malcolm, New Writing North's Chief Executive was happy to support the project: "Michael is a fantastic writer and his view of the region and the river's place in our history and its part in our future economic revival is an absorbing read and a beautiful record of life on the river in 2012. We were delighted to publish the book and to work with the Port of Tyne on such a creatively ambitious project".

The walk started on 12 July 2011 and took in South Shields, Gateshead, Dunston and Blaydon, crossing the river at Wylam and returning via Newburn, Elswick, Newcastle and North Shields before crossing the finish line at Tynemouth Pier.

Tyne View will be available from all good book shops and online from 18 September, RRP £18.99. Exclusive collectors' editions of the book are available only at


For more information please contact Sarah Piggett, Marketing & Communications Intern

Tel: 0191 455 2671


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