Party in the Park as it turns 60

Summer heather on the slopes of Dove Crag in the Northumberland National Park. Picture by David Taylor
Summer heather on the slopes of Dove Crag in the Northumberland National Park. Picture by David Taylor
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Northumberland National Park is inviting people to join its 60th birthday celebrations at a special Party in the Park next week.

The event, on Wednesday, April 6, at Walltown Quarry Country Park, near Greenhead in the west of the county, promises a full programme of activities and entertainment for individuals and families.

Party-goers can meet the rangers and Drink the Landscape with the Park’s resident artist Megan Randall or have a go at making their own smelly cocktail and Park-inspired birthday hat. There’s also an opportunity to get adventurous and go on a wildlife safari or try your hand at bush crafts, make some music or create your own bird feeder with edible treats.

One lucky person will also have the honour of unveiling and cutting Northumberland National Park’s 60th birthday cake made by local confectioner Vallum House Cakes.

Tony Gates, chief executive at Northumberland National Park Authority, said: “Our 60th birthday Party in the Park at Walltown is a fantastic opportunity for people to join us in celebrating this important milestone in the Park’s history. We want our guests to have great fun and of course take the opportunity to explore this wonderful landscape.

“We’ve come a long way in 60 years and we have a lot to look forward to. Being crowned National Park of the Year in the BBC Countryfile Magazine Awards is just the latest in a long list of accolades for this special place.

“As Europe’s largest International Dark Sky Park, being England’s most tranquil area, and having England’s cleanest rivers, we now have even more ambitious plans for the future through The Sill: National Landscape Discovery Centre at Once Brewed on Hadrian’s Wall.

“Our ground-breaking project is the largest ever undertaken by a National Park in the UK and will transform how visitors of all ages understand and explore the landscapes and cultural heritage of not only Northumberland National Park, but the wonderful countryside and coastlines of the wider region.

“In an increasingly busy world, the opportunities for working, learning, discovery and recreation which the Park provides are more important than ever to people’s lives.”

Northumberland National Park’s 60th birthday party takes place at Walltown Quarry Country Park on Wednesday, April 6, between 10.30am and 4.30pm. Admission is free, but there are charges for some of the activities – prices range from £2 up to £7.50. Car-parking charges apply. To find out more, go to www.northumberlandnationalpark.org.uk/events/party-in-the-park/