Results 1-4of 4 Reviews
Perth, Scotland, United Kingdom
August 15, 2012
From journal It's not (completely) grim up North
Jarrow, Tyne & Wear, United Kingdom
January 3, 2006
The Angel of the North, Britain’s largest sculpture, crowns a hilltop 3 miles from the Gateshead town centre on the southwestern edge of the Tyneside conurbation. Designed as a paean to the industrial heritage of the region, it is rooted in 150 tonnes of concrete poured into old mine workings, cost £800,000 to build, and has won numerous awards including being voted one of the "Wonders of Britain," alongside Big Ben, Windsor Castle, and Stonehenge.
The Angel, designed by Antony Gormley and installed in 1998, stands as tall as four double decker buses, has a wingspan as long as a jumbo jet, a total weight of 200 tonnes, and a life expectancy of just over a century. It’s visited by 150,000 people each year but is seen by tens of millions more from the nearby A1 road and East Coast main line train services.
At first glance the weather resistant mix of steel and copper makes the Angel looks like an old aeroplane that’s crashed nose first into the earth and been left to rust; its reddish-brown colour, caused by oxidisation, redolent of the machinery that once filled the region’s now stilled steelworks and shipyards. Initially controversial, it’s since become much more than just another piece of costly public art, the sheer scale and welcoming presence making it every bit as locally iconic as the Tyne Bridge.
The best view of the Angel is from the north, where the A1 bends past the smoke stacks and service industries of Team Valley, the sculpture’s dark silhouette visible high up on the left, dipping in and out of the trees as you drive past. It’s the view I always have on the drive to my house from the airport, and the first sign that I’m back home. There are a few parking spaces next to the base of the Angel if you want more than a fleeting look, though the exposed hilltop is not a place to linger for too long, with a couple of information boards and some scrub glass the only things around to break the wind.
Regular buses run to the Angel from the Eldon Square bus station in Newcastle and Gateshead Metro Interchange. You can pick up schedule information and maps of nearby hiking trails through the Great North Forest at the tourist information office in Newcastle or at Gateshead Visitor Centre.
From journal South of the River, West of the Sea
Newcastle upon Tyne, England, United Kingdom
June 19, 2003
Designed by artist Anthony Gormley, the statue stands at 20metres(65 feet) tall and it's wings span 54 metres (175 feet). It's taller than 4 double decker buses. It's constructed from special weatherproof steel, which contains copper, and it's this that gives it its lovely warm bronzy glow.
The Angel stands on a hill just next to the A1, if you come by car a visitors'carpark is sign-posted. By bus, take any bus bound for Durham or Birtley from Gateshead bus station or Newcastle city centre - you'll be able to see where to get off.
Nothing can prepare you for the sheer enrmity of the Angel. It's not until you're right up close that you'll fully appreciate it's size. Early evening is the best time to see it (though the site is open round the clock) it looks even more dramatic against a glowing sunset.
The locals must be starting to feel the same way about the Angel now too. Not long ago some daredevils draped her in a Newcastle United football shirt -- a sure sign of acceptance in these parts.
Nearly forgot, there's a van selling soft drinks, ice creams, etc. at the carpark and there's a decent pub across the road with public toilets.
From journal Gateshead - No Longer the Poor Relation?
Todmorden, England, United Kingdom
July 1, 2002
From journal Newcastle, Northumberland, NORTH England