Lifting lid on Tyne Tunnel vision

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BIKERS and walkers can now find out all about the Tyne pedestrian and cyclist tunnels linking Howdon with Jarrow, thanks to a new leaflet.

The leaflet provides information on the history and construction of the tunnels, as well as details of nearby attractions, popular cycle routes, public art and accommodation available.

The leaflet is available from North Tyneside’s tourist information centres or can be downloaded from the heritage section of the council’s website, www.northtyneside.gov.uk

The tunnels, owned by the Tyne and Wear Integrated Transport Authority, have undergone extensive modernisation work to mark their 60th anniversary.

Originally opened on July 24, 1951, the tunnels were built at a cost of £833,000 as part of Tyneside’s contribution to the Festival of Britain, an event staged to give people a sense of recovery and progress after the Second World War.

They included the first purpose-built cycle tunnel in the UK, and their four wooden-step escalators were, at the time, the longest single-rise escalators in the world.

The tunnels are used by around 20,000 people a month.

In 2000, they were awarded grade II-listed building status.

For further information on the leaflet, contact the borough council’s tourism team on (0191) 643 7409.