Looking back on 2016

Posted on 28th December 2016 | in Community , News

A look back at some of Amble’s best bits of 2016

2016 started off with floods and high winds, perhaps an indication of stormy days ahead, but we were still basking in the glory of our Best Coastal High Street award, and local businesses proudly displayed the certificate in their shops.

New businesses sprang up – particularly in the food sector; Amble is now home to  an artisan brewery, a new tearoom and a tapas bar. Our Post Office on Queen Street won a national sales award, and Ann Burke and Richard Wardman from 42 Queen Street were nominated for a Great British High Street award, although sadly they missed out on the finals.

This year saw local veterans honoured for their bravery, and acts of charity too numerous to list. Amble folk are renowned for their warm hearts, whether it be hair shaving, fundraising, or the random acts of kindness on display for Mauretania Day, honouring the “Friendliest Port” nickname for which we are famous.

Sophie, Countess of Wessex opening Amble’s Paddlers Park. April 2016

Our fourth Puffin Festival was another resounding success and once again brought many new visitors. This year puffins were officially placed on the endangered Red List, so we are fortunate that our Coquet Island feathered friends are (so far) doing well and have plenty to eat. The North Sea around the Northumbrian coast is less prevelent to overfishing, and rising sea temperatures have not affected their food sources.

April saw a royal visit to Amble; Sophie, Countess of Wessex met huge crowds of well-wishers, and spoke to volunteers and young people at Coquet Shorebase Trust, trainee chefs in Pride of Northumbria on Queen Street, and business owners at Amble Harbour Village, before opening the new Paddlers’ Park, to the delight of hundreds of schoolchildren.

It will be interesting to see how the major political changes ahead of us will take effect. As it is, the town continues to attract investment, with more apartments going up at Coble Quay. Plans to build a 30-bedroom hotel were announced – and were met with approval by most people, but public concerns were raised when, in October, plans were mooted for a 500 house development next to James Calvert Spence school on Acklington Road.

Lifeboat Day was the usual busy mix of fundraising activities and entertainment, with the lifeboat crew demonstrations as usual attracting a large crowd.

Armistice Day and Remembrance Day, grows more popular every year and this year saw the biggest attendances yet.

Amble’s new lifeboat Elizabeth and Leonard sailing into harbour. November 2016

The year drew to an end with a momentous day – when our new £2million lifeboat entered her home port for the first time. After two years of solid fundraising, local people secured £200,000 towards the state-of-the-art Shannon class lifeboat. The Elizabeth and Leonard will replace the Mersey class lifeboat The Four Boys, which has been in service in Amble since 1999.

Once again, the bright lights of the Torchlight Procession brought out huge crowds and festive cheer. Alice in Wonderland was this year’s theme, and the procession included decorated floats, stilt walkers and a fire eater.

We’d like to thank the strong and thriving Amble community for their continuing support for The Ambler, a spirit we always strive to reflect.

(Some of) The Ambler team

We celebrated our 100th edition this year, and we continue to encourage you to send in articles, events and photographs.

To our advertisers, we thank you for your tremendous support, and we wish everyone all the best for a healthy and happy 2017.

Editorial Team: Vivienne Dalgliesh, Célia Fery, Norma Hinson, Mir Jannetta, Tim Jones, Cath Findlay, Red Willcox, and photographers Andrew Mounsey and Bartle Rippon  

Artograffi Team: Mark Beswick and young journalists (LilyT, Ava, Hope, Bethany, Emma-Jane, Abbey, George-Anne, Louise and Emily),

Editor: Anna Williams