Thursday, 7 May 2015


Join us for another occasion to hear experts from the Bewick Society talk enthusiastically about their own items or items from the collections of the Natural History Society of Northumbria. The Natural History Society will be exhibiting, for the first time, a recently discovered manuscript notebook by the local bookseller and Bewick enthusiast William Garrett. There will also be an opportunity to see the collection of fine Bewick books recently bequeathed by the late Geoffrey Shaw QC.

Date and time: Saturday 9 May at 1.00pm.
Venue: The Council Room of the Natural History Society of Northumbria,
2nd Floor Hancock Museum, Newcastle upon Tyne, NE2 4PT.
Admission: Free.
Contact: June Holmes: The Natural History Society of Northumbria, The Great North Museum: Hancock, Newcastle upon Tyne NE2 4PT. Tel no. 0191 208 5834 or Email

Wednesday, 22 April 2015

Chillingham Bulls, Bewick, Darwin and the Prince of Wales

Hancock Museum's Stories from a Stuffed Cow.

Part of the learning resources on the Culture Street website. Gives a brief introduction to the great Thomas Bewick's influence on Charles Darwin.
The resources themselves
help KS2 children understand the practice of writing research papers.

Stories From A Stuffed Cow from RogerLang on Vimeo.

Tuesday, 14 April 2015

D.W.S. Gray

Sadly David Gray, long-standing editor of the Cherryburn Times, died on Friday 3rd April after a short spell in hospital. David's passing has been a great shock to family and friends and our thoughts are with them at this time.

David transformed the newsletter of the Bewick Society to a Journal; he inaugurated the Bewick Society website and was a constant presence at Bewick Society events and meetings. An engaging public speaker, in private he was charming, generous and inspiring to colleagues and friends. The Bewick Society shall be much poorer without him. 

David's funeral will be on Friday 24th April at the West Road Crematorium, commencing at 2.45 pm and ending at 3.15.

A celebration of his life will be held in the central library of The Literary and Philosophical Society on Westgate Road later the same day beginning at 5 pm and finishing around 8pm.

This notice appeared in The Times, 14th April 2015

Tuesday, 17 March 2015

National Vote

There's a campaign underway to vote for Britain's National Bird
Bewick illustrated all of the short-listed birds in his British Birds.
7 Land Birds.
3 Water Birds.
You can view the Bewick illustrations on Flickr here

Voting is on the nationalvote website.
Or on twitter #bird_vote

Wednesday, 4 February 2015

In Response to Bewick

Detail of painting by Peter Veitch.

The ‘In Response to Bewick’ exhibition, part of the ‘To Bewick and Back: from Cherryburn into History’ project, features new art by eight University of Sunderland artists. 

All of the works have been inspired by the work of Thomas Bewick and by the artists’ experience of walking through Bewick’s landscape, along the River Tyne, in August and September 2014.

The exhibition can be viewed, 8am-6pm, Mon-Friday, in the Gallery Space of Gateshead Civic Centre, Regent Street, NE8 1HH (ground floor close to Bewick’s Restaurant) 

For more information about WALK and the project that this exhibition is a part of, To Bewick and Back: From Cherryburn into History, please see

The ‘To Bewick and Back’ project is coordinated by the University of Sunderland’s WALK research group assisted by The Bewick Society, the Natural History Society of Northumbria and Gateshead Council. It is supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund.

Saturday, 3 January 2015

Dr. Frank Atkinson C.B.E. 1924-2014

Dr Frank Atkinson died on Monday 29 December 2014. Frank was the driving force behind the foundation of the Thomas Bewick Birthplace Trust, the fore-runner of the Bewick Society, and acted as our President for many years.

In the Guardian  writes: "Atkinson was a devoted family man, marrying Joan Pierson in 1953, after she was appointed a junior assistant to Halifax’s museum service. The couple settled with their three sons in Ovingham, Northumberland, where he worked after retirement with the Thomas Bewick Birthplace Trust and as a member of the national Museums and Galleries Commission, since disbanded. He was awarded the CBE in 1995 and was an honorary doctor of civil law at Durham University."

There have been several other appreciations. Here are links to a selection.

Frank Atkinson - the man who built Beamish
Visionary founder of award-winning Beamish Museum dies aged 90
All about Frank Atkinson, the man who made Beamish.

Thursday, 27 November 2014