Byker Gove star Jill Halfpenny visits Jarrow Hall to learn more about Venerable Bede as part of new BBC Easter Walks TV show

TV star Jill Halfpenny will shine a light on one of South Tyneside’s best-loved attractions when her latest series airs this weekend.

By Hayley Lovely
Tuesday, 12th April 2022, 4:45 pm

The Byker Grove and Waterloo Road actress returns home to her native North East for new BBC One outing ‘Jill Halfpenny’s Easter Walks’.

The two-part show sees her visit some of the most popular attractions across the North East of England and Scottish Borders – including paying a visit to Jarrow Hall Anglo-Saxon Farm, Village, and Bede Museum.

During her visit to Jarrow Hall, she learns about the Venerable Bede, who lived in the nearby monastery, part of the Monkwearmouth-Jarrow twin monastic site.

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Jill Halfpenny on set with crew

The Anglo-Saxon saint, who was born around 672 AD and died in 735 AD, is said to have played a pivotal role in the calculation of the date of Easter, which brought together his interests in history, theology and astronomy.

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Jill said filming the series had been a great chance to rediscover her native North East and explore her own relationship with Easter.

“Though I was born and bred in the North East I have just moved back after years working away, and I am really, really loving it. I didn’t travel much as a child, and a lot of what I am finding is new to me so I am enjoying exploring my own backyard," she said.

The Anglo-Saxon village is Jarrow Hall's star attraction.

“When I was younger I was part of the choir at church, and I always felt that Easter was really intense – I seemed to be in church all of the time. For me it’s all about renewal and rebirth and in these programmes I have enjoyed seeing if I can find anything about myself in the area where I grew up.”

As well as her visit to Jarrow, Jill takes a trip back to her hometown of Gateshead, visiting The Angel of the North, and to Hexham to meet the creator of the Angel, Sir Antony Gormley.

The series also includes the impressive Durham Cathedral, which houses the remains of St Bede.

The first episode airs on BBC One on Good Friday from 1.30-2.30pm and the second episode on Easter Sunday from 11.25am-12.25pm.

Children love seeing the animals at Jarrow Hall.