10 things almost everyone in South Shields has done by the age of 21

From Sanddancer delicacies to annual traditions going back decades, there are some experiences almost everyone in South Shields has indulged in at some point.

Thursday, 15th November 2018, 11:58 am
Updated Thursday, 15th November 2018, 12:09 pm
Picture c/o Pixabay

Here we look a 10 things almost everyone in South Shields has done by the time they're 21:

A bucket and spade are almost essential items for children in seaside towns like ours. Even in the days of widespread foreign travel and family holidays to beach resorts, trips to Littlehaven or Sandhaven are still essential days out for Sanddancers.
Whether it was a knickerbocker glory indoors or a 99 on the go, there can't be many people in Shields who haven't had an ice cream from Minchella & Co.These days we also have Toney Minchella, and chances are you've been to at least one branch of both!

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This is a rite of passage and you probably won't have been old enough to remember your first trip on the "little train" in South Marine park. You're also almost guaranteed to have fed the ducks - and maybe even been out in a boat on the lake.
Probably in "dip" form, maybe just on its own - and almost certainly from Dicksons - this classic South Shields delicacy has passed the lips of thousands of Sanddancers for decades. You've probably also had a Dicksons pie or two in your time too.
We take it for granted, but not many towns still have this great form of transport. Many use it for travelling to work, but chances are you've just popped over for a day out and a bag of chips (not that the fish and chips on "The North Side" are quite as good as ours, of course).
Another thing on our doorstep we perhaps take for granted. It's no theme park, but there's a great selection of rides for people of all ages, complete with all the trimmings of a traditional seaside funfair. The great Good Friday trip to Ocean Beach Pleasure Park is a firm fixture in South Shields' cultural calendar.
You may have started off with a korma, eased in with an "English dish" or dived in at the deep end with something more fiery, but at some point most Sanddancers will have supped on something of spice from Ocean Road - even if it was just a takeaway.
Another firm fixture in South Shields' cultural calendar, and there's usually something for everyone on the Bents Park summer bill. Even if you haven't been as an adult, you were probably plonked on a picnic blanket as a child to drink in the atmosphere and bop along to the songs.
As a coastal town and a beach destination, it's natural South Shields is famed for its fish and chips - and Colmans has taken it to the next level, welcoming celebrities and gaining national applause. Everyone in Shields has their own favourite chippy, however, and many queue up every week without fail for the traditional Friday foodstuff.
We're an urban area with an industrial past, but we still have our beauty spots, and Cleadon Hills is the jewel in the crown of our green spaces. It's a popular sledging spot when the snow falls, a great place for a family walk, and is now home part of the year to a group of Exmoor ponies which people in South Tyneside have taken to their hearts.