The Telegraph puts South Shields second bottom of the ‘best and worst’ seaside towns – this is why the rating is wrong

South Shields has been ranked second bottom on The Telegraph’s list of ‘Britain’s 20 best and worst seaside towns’ with a score of 11/100, but we disagree...

The publication described South Shields as a "half-forgotten place"; however, to those of us from the area, the town is at the very forefront of our minds.

With only Rhyl, in North Wales, getting a lower score (5/100) than South Shields, The Telegraph said: "Of course, this list isn’t conclusive or even a top 20.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

"Instead, we chose a score of classic resorts and studied how they have adapted – or not – over the past three decades, looking at factors such as housing and high streets, renovations and conservation, as well as the cultural clout that so often accompanies gentrification.”

Sandhaven Beach.Sandhaven Beach.
Sandhaven Beach.

Surely the decline of the high street cannot be used as a stick to beat South Shields with, given that this is an issue that the seaside towns up and down the country are dealing with.

Read More
Shields Gazette newsletters: How to sign up for the Gazette's FREE emails to get...
Hide Ad
Hide Ad

When giving its rating for South Shields, The Telegraph said: “Few seaside resorts are part of an urban sprawl, but South Shields is one of a handful of exceptions, set at the eastern end of Tyne and Wear, just half an hour from Newcastle.

"Unfortunately, the vibe and verve of the university city hasn’t spread quite as far as the sea – most of the best food, nightlife, culture and accommodation here are all inland.

“That’s not to say South Shields is without options of its own: the likes of Bravi, Italianish, Mambo, and cosy Davinci’s ensure the town is strong on Italian and Mediterranean comfort dining. The Grotto is a quality hotel.

"For beaches, sand dunes, dramatic cliffs and post-industrial memories, South Shields is a fascinating, half-forgotten place, but for a more complete holiday, it’s best combined with a city break.”

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

South Shields has never claimed to have the "vibe and verve" that Newcastle offers, instead, it has its own unique "vibe and verve" that offers something very different away from the city centre.

A great example of this is the 'This is South Tyneside' festival, which puts the borough's seafront at the heart of everything that is great about South Tyneside, including live music, entertainment, and family friendly activities.

The festival even sees thousands descend on Bents Park for free open-air concerts each year – a feat that hardly screams "half-forgotten".

While the restaurants mentioned in The Telegraph's article are very good and highly rated, surely a quick look at a map would show a number of options along the promenade that are just hundreds of yards from the North Sea.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

These venues along the promenade provide nightlife and culture in the form of live music, often from musicians that are local to the area to showcase all the talent that South Shields has.

The different beaches, Ocean Beach Pleasure Park, the amusements, mini-golf course, and of course, the large selection of fish and chip shops all ensure that South Shields maintains the traditional British seaside town feel that we all know and love.

The Telegraph may have only given South Shields 11/100, but to us, it would get top marks every time.

Read South Tyneside's news on the go with our free email newsletters - bringing the headlines to your inbox. Catch up on the day's news and sport and enjoy even more from your Gazette. Visit our website here to find out more and sign up.