On Tuesday 26th April a lunch was arranged for thirty Red Hatters who met at Blackfriars restaurant in Newcastle. It was a bit of an eventful morning for some of the members, the weather was not kind and we had rain, hail and snow. Some of our members who were coming on the Metro had to get off at Heworth as there was a fire alarm and everyone had to evacuate the train and make their way to the bus station to catch a bus into Newcastle. A group of our members also caught a taxi but the people waiting for the bus were summoned back onto the station as it was a false alarm.

When everyone arrived they were greeted with a nice glass of fizz and the MD of Blackfriars, Andy then went on to give the members a talk on the history of Blackfriars and also about the history of food that would have been grown and eaten at the Friary. Our three course lunch was served at just after 1pm and this was delicious. We ended the afternoon by taking part in a trivia quiz which I am sure everyone enjoyed. A great day was had by everyone.

Gwynneth Johnston

Red Hatter Events 2016

Just to let you know that the Red Hatter committee would like to advise you that we will be having two Red Hatters events this year. Our first outing is to Blackfriars Restaurant, Newcastle upon Tyne on Tuesday 26th April. The cost of the outing will be £25 which includes a glass of fizz on arrival, followed by a three course lunch and coffee. (Meeting time for lunch will be advised when we have final numbers). Wine and soft drinks to be purchased separately. We will be dining in the Medieval Banqueting Hall, which King Edward III used to receive Royal Scot, Edward Balliol in 1334. The Managing Director of Blackfriars will be giving us an in-depth talk on the history of Blackfriars before our lunch. Also if there is time we will have a bit of fun with a picture quiz. If you wish to come along add your name to the list and also see the menu choice on the Red Hatters table. The committee will be taking a deposit of £10 (non returnable) or if you wish you may pay the full amount.

Our second outing will be a day coach trip to Harewood House which is near Leeds. This will take place on Tuesday 28th June and the coach will leave Seaham at 9:00 am and we should reach the house at approx. 10:45. Entry to the house is £11 per person. We can book introductory guided tours around the house, gardens and bird garden at a charge of £5 per person for each tour. If you wish to go on the guided tour this has to be prebooked so we will need to collect in monies for same, Alternatively you can wander around the house and gardens on your own. The cost of the coach will be £13 (including tip) if we take the 31 seater, however if we have to use a larger coach the price will be cheaper (price to be advised when final numbers are known). We have listed all the information on our Red Hatters board and if you wish to add your name to the list this can be found on the Red Hatters Table. Also there is a picnic area so if you wish to take a picnic on the day that is up to you. Depending on the numbers we have and just booking the entry to the house and gardens (no tours) and coach this will be approximately £24.

We hope you like our choice this year for the Red Hatters and is of interest to you all


Afternoon Tea Bayberry Hollow Tanfield Village Friday 27thNovember


On Friday 27th November our Red Hatters group went off to Bayberry Hollow Coffee and Gift shop for afternoon tea. What a great afternoon we all had, the ladies looking great in their red hats and purple attire. Thanks again to our three gentlemen who again supported us by wearing their red hats, especially Gordon Ayre who was supporting a very festive musical Santa hat.  So sorry we didn’t get a photo of you Gordon!  After enjoying our afternoon tea we all sang our Red Hatters anthem which amused the coffee shop staff – we sure showed them how we like to enjoy ourselves.  The gift shop was full of festive goodies and everyone made purchases and got those little extra Christmas presents.   The coach came to collect everyone at 4:30.  Thanks again to all the red hatters who attended and supported our last event for 2015.

Please let us have your ideas for 2016 and the Red Hatter’s committee would like to thank everyone for their support over the year and wish you all a very Happy Christmas and a Good New Year.


Gwynneth Jo– Group Leader – Red Hatters

Photographs Doreen Fe



Red Hatters Edinburgh Outing

On Tuesday 6th October 39 Red Hatter’s travelled from Newcastle to Edinburgh for the day.  The weather could have been kinder, dull and wet but this did not damper our spirits.  A small group took part in the Murder Mystery trail and Joan Fowler managed to get the majority of answers from the clues so well done.  The remainder of the group took in the sites of Edinburgh including art galleries and a visit to the Royal Yacht Brittania. At 4:00 pm everyone met at the Juniper Cocktail bar in Princes Street for cocktail or light refreshment before we headed off for our train home.   A great day was had by all.

Next Red Hatter out Friday 27 November – Afternoon Tea at Bayberry Hollow Cafe, Tanfield Village, Co. Durham.   Cost £12.50 for tea.  Bus to be arranged from Seaham and cost to be advised.

Gynneth J