Here’s everything you might want to know about the wedding itself and the celebration for friends next day. You’ll also find essential information on how to get to Leadgate for the party by road, rail or on foot; parking advice & mini-bus shuttle service to and from Wark village/Hexham train station; comprehensive list of local accommodation options as well as links to tourist information sites if you’re planning on an extended stay in Northumberland.

Steve & Kim will be getting married on SATURDAY 14th AUGUST at 11 am, witnessed by family members and a few close friends. The venue is our area’s local registry office at Hexham House, a recently restored 18th century mansion on Gilesgate in the historic heart of Hexham.

From there it’s only a two minute walk for the wedding party across the grounds to Hexham Abbey next door, a magnificent grade I listed building dating back to the 7th Century.

We’ll be hosting the wedding breakfast in Priors Hall, part of the Abbey’s Georgian assembly rooms, seen here on the right of the church, with its own private car park.

Catering will be by Bouchon. The award winning bistrot is the the region’s home of authentic french cuisine, and their Hexham restaurant one of our favourite eating out places.

Here’s an example of their lunch menu to give you an idea. Please note: this is not our selection, which will take account all our wedding guests culinary needs and requirements, and is yet to be confirmed.

STARTERS: (v) Soupe du Jour / Sea Trout Tartare with Groat & Citrus Fruits / Bayonne Ham & Celeriac Remoulade – Wholegrain Mustard Dressing / Pea & Broad Bean Salad with Rocket – Truffle Vinaigrette
MAIN COURSES: Steak Frites (served medium rare) / Pan Fried Coley with Ratte Potatoes & Jerusalem Artichokes – Sauce Vierge / Spring Navarin of Lamb with Roasted Potatoes & Spring Vegetables / (v) English Asparagus Millefeuille with Softly Poached Egg – Sauce Hollandaise DESSERTS: Plateau de Fromages / Tarte au Chocolat with Pistachio Ice Cream / Coupe Bouchon with Strawberry Sorbet & Madeleines / Caramel Roasted Pineapple with Vanilla Cheese Cream

On SUNDAY 15th AUGUST we’re inviting you, our dear friends from near and far, to come celebrate with us at home.

It’s open house for guests at Leadgate – nr. Wark, Hexham NE48 3DS (01434 – 230939) – between 11am and 6 pm.

Here are directions by car, if you didn’t know, or indeed, remember with confidence from previous visits!

DIRECTIONS From the A69, just west of Hexham, take the A6079 exit signposted to Bellingham & Rothbury. Continue northwards through the villages of Acomb and Wall, then turn left onto the B6320 above Chollerford. After crossing the river north Tyne and after the roundabout carry straight on north, via Simonburn, to Wark village. Once there, follow the 90 degree left hand bend but avoid the next 90 degree right bend – instead go straight ahead and out of the village on the C 205 Road, signposted Whygate and Stonehaugh. Follow this winding and rising lane for 3 miles & take no turn offs, until you pass Hetherington Farm on your left.  Shortly after this you will see Leadgate ahead in its garden, situated on a sharp left hand bend. Travel time from the A69/Hexham is approx half an hour.

If travelling east along A69 from Brampton/Carlisle consider turning off as the road drops down to turn off left at Greenhead and follow  the scenic B6318 ‘Military Road’ signposted ‘Chollerford’. This 22 mile stretch runs by Hadrian’s Wall, near the Roman Army Museum, Steel Rigg Viewpoint, Housesteads & Chesters Roman Forts etc. Pick up directions again from the Chollerford roundabout. Alternately look out for the Wark/Bellingham sign on your left shortly after the descent at Greencarts and before you reach Walwick. This shortcut will bring you to a T junction with the B6320. Turn left for Wark and follow directions as above.

WARNINGS Phone signal is erratic in this area, and satnav systems have a tendency to send folk across fords and into muddy fields so beware using them once you leave the main road at Wark. Leadgate is marked on the Hexham & Haltwhistle OS map 87, should you prefer consulting paper, or ask a local, who will always know! Driving up from Hexham on the valley road do not turn left at Simonburn for Stonehaugh, unless you really do what to come the extra long way around to get to us. Finally, look out for log lorries coming out of Kielder forest on the road between Wark & Leadgate, and be prepared to pull over if you see one coming! The Northumberland Jester won’t be there to guide you but if you do get lost, ring us on 01434 – 230939 Otherwise e.mail Steve on in advance for further advice or guidance.

PARKING for large numbers will be problematic at Leadgate. There are some spaces on the road verge (above) and our friends at the farm you see there have very kindly offered some extra space in their yard and – weather permitting – parking space in one of the fields, adjacent our house. That’s not perfect – the field gate you see above (right) has a steep entrance/exit and the other field gateway is well rutted by tractor tyres – so vehicles with a low chassis are advised not to use and others should exercise due caution! Happily we will be providing a 16 seater mini-bus shuttle service on the Sunday so guests can safely park in Wark and our driver will pick up and drop off at the village centre at regular times (t.b.c.) between 11 – 7. (The centre of Wark is the square & green with Grey Bull pub, post office & shops). We’ve also arranged pick up and drop off to link with rail services arriving/departing Hexham station (see below).

PUBLIC TRANSPORT Hexham train station (Newcastle – Carlisle line) is relatively well served by trains and is only a short walk from the centre. There are a number of taxi firms in the area and there is a cab rank outside the main station entrance. Sadly, although a regular weekly bus service connects Hexham rail station & Bellingham via Wark, it does not operate on a Sunday. However…..

On Sunday 15th our 16 seat minibus hire driver will be making two return trips from Hexham to Leadgate, the first for family & friends staying over in Hexham, leaving there 10.30/11.00 am and the second at lunchtime at Hexham station to pick up party guests arriving by train, with a return journey arriving around 19.15 pm to coincide with train services. Example services. OUTWARD Newcastle 12.55, via most stations en route, arrives Hexham 13.34. From Carlisle 12.54, all stations en route, arriving Hexham 13.45. RETURN Hexham 19.41 most station stops arriving Newcastle 20.23. To Carlisle, via all stations, leaves Hexham 19.34, arrives Carlisle 20.28. Mini-bus Booking essential as seats limited to 16!

ON FOOT Leadgate lies on the Pennine Way, one of Britain’s oldest & longest national trails, running from the Derbyshire Peak District to the Scottish Borders.. You’re more than welcome to get to us that way. (‘Leadgate 7 1/4 Miles’ is the waymark sign where thge path crosses Hadrian’s Wall at Rappishaw Gap). Overnight stops there are the new YHA hostel at Once Brewed next to The Sill – NNP Visitor Centre and the Twice Brewed pub/hotel/brewery on the Military Road. OR it’s an easier & shorter trek down from various campsites / B&B s in Bellingham, 5 miles to the north of us, or at Stonehaugh, just over a couple of miles distant.

ACCOMMODATION. Here’s a selection of places to stay with drive time in minutes ( ) from Leadgate & from Hexham. Given we’re in for a ‘Staycation Summer’ and the increasing popularity of Northumberland as a holiday destination early booking is strongly advised.

1 The Dovecote. Tasteful hideaway in walled garden, self catering for 2 in 18th century property. Also: B&B en suite doubles in the big house.  (Leadgate 20’/ Hexham 15’) 2. Carraw. Old farmhouse on site of Roman fortress on Hadrians Wall. 3 luxury B&B rooms + self catering annexe. On The Military Road / B6318.  Hosted by local farming family. (Drive time Leadgate or Hexham 20’) 3. Carr Edge Newbrough Working 700 acre farm. Sandra & Michael Gibson. 01434 674788.  B&B in Converted stables & granary into ensuite doubles. Valley views. Public footpaths to housesteads & Vindolana) 4. Hexham Town House B&B Elegant hi spec / good value accommodation just off the town centre in large Victorian house. (30’ drive time to Leadgate) 5. Brown Rigg, Bellingham quality lodges & guest rooms in family run 24 acre site. Also camping. Value for money choice, popular with families & ‘outdoor’ folk. (Drive time to Leadgate15’) 6. Fountain Cottage, Bellingham. New family run venture. Café & B&B (6 rooms, 4D + 2S) in large village with nearly all the amenities of town (+ regular buses to Hexham).  (15’ drive time to Leadgate/ 45’ Hexham) 7. Wannie’s Retreat, West Woodburn. NE48 2RH. Luxury rail carriage, 2 double beds, on old Wansbeck line running thru family farm. Amanda Stanners. E.mail 078825-322803 (Drive time 25’) 8. Chesters Bridge B&B Humshaugh. 2 bed en-suites. (20’ drive time/15’ to Hexham) 9. Hallbarns farmhouse B&B. Working farm B&B (15/20′ drive from Leadgate) 10. Bridgeford Farm B&B Bellingham. 3 en-suite double/twin. 01434-220940  Leadgate 15’/Hexham 30’

Country & Town Pubs/Hotels with Rooms & Eateries

1. The Beaumont. Hexham’s quality town centre hotel & restaurant. Often do 3 nights for price of 2 deals. (30 minutes drive time to Leadsgate) 01434 – 602331 2. The Battlesteads, Wark. Green credentials, observatory, restaurant, bar. 4 star 17 en-suite doubles. (Leadgate 6’/Hexham 25’) 3. The Holly Bush, Greenhaugh Village pub & eaterie. 6 doubles B&B. (Leadgate 30’/ Hexham I hr) 4. Barrasford Arms, Barrasford. pub/restaurant. Doubles en-suite. (Leadgat 25’/ ‘Hexham 20’) 5. Red Lion, Newbrough. Village pub on the old Roman Stanegate. Bar, Rooms, Food. B&B (25’ drive to Leadgate/ 20’ to Hexham. Also buses to Hexham) 6. Hadrian’s Hotel, Wall. Bar & eatery.  Also: ‘Hjem’ Michelin star restaurant. On bus route Hexham/Wark.  (Leadgate 20’ /Hexham 10’) 7. Walwick Hall, Humshaugh. Luxury boutique hotel. Stables block has self catering, 2 units allowing dogs.  (20’ drive time/15’ Hexham)

Local economy B&Bs at Bellingham and at Once / Twice Brewed near Hadrian’s Wall on the B 6318 ‘Military Road’. The Pennine Way – with Leadgate roughly half way along – links these places for sturdy walkers. Bellingham has old style B&Bs but clean, comfortable & friendly by all accounts. Bellingham is just up the valley, 5 – 6 miles away. (15′ drive away from Leadgate). Large village, well supplied with shops, cafes & pubs. Lyndale, just off the centre has been a B&B for many years. Single advertised at £45 per night. The other B&B at the Barn looks OK too. One double room which can be hired as a single for £55 per night. NB: Both these places are popular with Pennine Way walkers as overnight stops, so booking in advance essential! We don’t know anything about The Fox B&B. Lyndale 01434 – 220361 E. (no operational website; went via ‘Visit Northumberland’ website) The Barn 01434 – 220744 The Fox B&B 4 Tyne View Bellingham 01434 – 220668 e.mail: YHA Once Brewed Hostel Good value/superb location/all facilities new 86 bed eco building, built in conjunction with ‘The Sill’, National Park Visitor Centre, next door. Twice Brewed Inn. Neighbouring popular pub/ brewery /restaurant/rooms. 01434-344534

Stonehaugh Campsite. is the nearest campsite, and is in the national park, is a short walk over fields or by lane from Leadgate. 01434 230798

For contact details of all information centres in the county:

Extend your stay….These introductory visitor sites have lots of information.

For general tourist introduction with videos & other links:

We’re really looking forward to seeing you in August at our big weekend. We will be updating and adding to this page as and when we get more information or feedback. Meanwhile any further queries or advice please get in touch directly via / Home: 01434 – 230939 / Mob: 078115 77175