Bill Quay Farm is a North East hidden gem, tucked away in Gateshead between Hebburn and Pelaw. The 25 acre working farm is a relatively new find for us but we’ve fallen in love quickly.
It’s run by Bill Quay Community Farm Association and is registered as a charity, therefore it’s operated on a not-for-profit basis. Visiting is free but a donation towards the up keep of the farm and animal costs is always welcome. There’s a small car park outside the farm but it fills up quickly so you’ll likely need to park in one of the terraced streets nearby. It’s not an issue during the week as there are plenty of spaces, but a weekend is a little more troublesome and it may take you a short while to get parked up. It’s such a nice feeling being in an industrialised, built up town yet being able to see large green open spaces and hear the sounds of farm animals. It must be lovely living right next to the farm. There’s a good range of animals to see at the farm, including pigs, sheep, goats and ponies. There’s also an indoor small mammal area which is home to chinchillas, degus, hamsters, rabbits, guinea pigs, and a lizard. The animal all appear happy and well looked after.
There are lovely walks and cycle routes along the edge of the River Tyne which is very close to the farm. It’s a dog walkers haven and great for young explorers to check out the woods. It’s great to see that although the farm is none profit they have still provided good, clean facilities for users. There are toilets, baby change and lots of antibacterial handwash containers dotted around the farm.
There’s a pond absolutely full to the brim of frog spawn and young frogs. I’ve never seen so many frogs in one spot before. I was too busy counting them with the little man to take any pictures though.If your little people aren’t sufficiently tired after your visit to the farm you can always pop into Bill Quay Park to use up the last of their energy. It’s a short walk from the entrance to the park and has play equipment for both younger and older children and some outdoor gym equipment if you’re feeling brave.
As well as the animals and beautiful surroundings Bill Quay Community Farm has a cafe with outside eating area. We’ve only had cups of coffee so I can’t comment on the quality of the food but there wasn’t a huge selection on offer when we visited. The cafe is the only thing at the farm that I think is lacking a little, it was a little grubby and messy both times we’ve been but I think it has the potential to be amazing. I can imagine tasty Afternoon Tea and huge chunky stottie sandwiches would go down a treat here.
I think Bill Quay farm will be a complete pleasure to visit this summer. I’m looking forward to walks in the sunshine, seeing the baby animals and picnicing near the River Tyne.
I’d definately recommend a visit, and don’t forget to donate a couple of £ to help keep this little North East gem open.