PICTURES: Festival brings the North East together in South Shields

Visitors enjoy some Salsa dancing during the Together Northeast Festival at the Customs House in South Shields Picture: DAVID WOOD
Visitors enjoy some Salsa dancing during the Together Northeast Festival at the Customs House in South Shields Picture: DAVID WOOD

A festival organised by people with learning disabilities created a real party atmosphere at a South Tyneside theatre.

Together Northeast was the first ever large-scale festival of its kind in the region.

Visitors get to meet some of the street entertainers during the Together Northeast Festival at the Customs House in South Shields Picture: DAVID WOOD

Visitors get to meet some of the street entertainers during the Together Northeast Festival at the Customs House in South Shields Picture: DAVID WOOD

It saw scores of people head to the Customs House in Mill Dam, South Shields for a day of theatre, film, dancing, stalls, and crafts.

The event included performances from theatre groups and musicians from across the region, as well as a fashion show supported by Sunderland University.

Kellie Woodley, from Inclusion North Community Interest Company, who helped organise the event, said: “There was a fantastic turnout during the day and there was something to keep everyone entertained.

“People could go to the Latin American party and try some salsa dancing, we had musicians, theatre groups doing performances – it was just fantastic.

We were excited to welcome groups from across the region who had chosen the Customs House to be their home for what turned out to be a hugely celebratory event for our area.

Ray Spencer, Customs House executive director

“What was amazing about the festival is that it was designed by people with learning difficulties but for everybody, and that really showed.

“Everyone was just having a laugh together and it was brilliant.”

She added: “This was the first time that there’s been something like this in the region and we’re so pleased with how it turned out.

“It was never really planned to be an annual event but you never know, hopefully we will be able to do it again next year.”

FESTIVAL: Visitors enjoy some Salsa dancing during the Together North East Festival at the Customs House in South Shields Picture: DAVID WOOD

FESTIVAL: Visitors enjoy some Salsa dancing during the Together North East Festival at the Customs House in South Shields Picture: DAVID WOOD

Customs House executive director Ray Spencer, said: “We were excited to welcome groups from across the region who had chosen the Customs House to be their home for what turned out to be a hugely celebratory event for our area.”

FESTIVAL: Visitors enjoy some Salsa dancing during the Together North East Festival at the Customs House in South Shields Picture: DAVID WOOD

FESTIVAL: Visitors enjoy some Salsa dancing during the Together North East Festival at the Customs House in South Shields Picture: DAVID WOOD

Visitors enjoy some Salsa dancing during the Together Northeast Festival.

Visitors enjoy some Salsa dancing during the Together Northeast Festival.

Visitors get to meet some of the street entertainers during the Together Northeast Festival at the Customs House.

Visitors get to meet some of the street entertainers during the Together Northeast Festival at the Customs House.

Visitors get to meet some of the street entertainers during the Together Northeast Festival at the Customs House.

Visitors get to meet some of the street entertainers during the Together Northeast Festival at the Customs House.

FESTIVAL: Visitors enjoy some Salsa dancing during the Together North East Festival at the Customs House in South Shields Picture: DAVID WOOD

FESTIVAL: Visitors enjoy some Salsa dancing during the Together North East Festival at the Customs House in South Shields Picture: DAVID WOOD