The town of Gateshead runs along the River Tyne and currently has a population of over 78,000.

In the 12th century Gateshead became a significant borough and a trading town, with mills, mines and warehouses. Coal mining in Gateshead dates back to medieval times and Brett’s Oil and Grease factory can still be seen on the banks of the Tyne today.

As well as manufacturing, Gateshead is home to Tanfield Railway, the oldest functional railway in the world.

The 20th century saw industrial decline and rising unemployment in Gateshead. In 1939, Team Valley Trading Estate was opened by King George VI in an effort to reduce mass unemployment in the area.

Along the Tyne, The Baltic Flour Mill opened in 1950. It closed in 1981 and reopened in 2002 as the Baltic Centre for Contemporary Art.

Saltwell Park opened to the public in 1876 and its name originates from the well that used to be there. The original bandstand in the park moved to Beamish Museum in 1975, along with Ravensworth Terrace, which was demolished in 1985.

Most recently Beamish has collected the coal fired range and counter from the Davy brothers' Fish and Chip Shop in Winlaton Mill. These are now in use at the Beamish fried fish shop.