Weight and Stuff Report – 23 August 2010

Oh, the excitement! Down again today. Well, that’s assuming that the scale wasn’t just making it up, as the first time I went near it, it just flashed batt at me, which I think means it’s low on power. Or something.

Today’s picture is another one from yesterday’s walk. This is the old St Mary’s Church, which for much of its life was the only church in Gateshead, but as the population shifted away from the river, fell out of use. It was badly damaged by fires in 1979 and 1983, and stood as a blackened shell until it was restored. For a while it was an auction house, then a centre promoting Gateshead Quays. But it’s now been re-restored, so to speak. A modern gallery has been stripped out, opening up the interior quite nicely. It’s now open as Gateshead Visitor Centre, with displays on the history of the town.

It’s also a very attractive building from this angle:

St Mary's Church

St Mary's Church

Now Gateshead Visitor Centre

However, the other side has a new and quite large glass entrance, which I’m not so sure about. I’m not averse to adapting old buildings for modern needs, as it’s certainly better than leaving them to fall into ruin. Well, generally better, anyway. A good ruin can be a Good Thing, speaking with my photographer hat on. But I’m digressing again[1]. What I’m getting at here is that I’d have preferred an entrance more sympathetic to the original building.

St Mary's Church

St Mary's Church

Now Gateshead Visitor Centre, with the new entrance visible from this side.