Tunnel is showcased to a world audience

Still from film Dick Lorent, filmed on location at the Tyne Pedestrian and Cyclist Tunnels.
Still from film Dick Lorent, filmed on location at the Tyne Pedestrian and Cyclist Tunnels.
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Historic tunnels in the borough are being seen around the world after a starring role in a short film.

The Grade-II listed Tyne pedestrian and cCyclist tunnels feature in the psychological thriller Dick Lorent, which was shot by London-based filmmakers Nico and Yan Martin, of 51-Prod entirely in the cyclist tunnel in 2011.

The film has been shown in Cambodia, Peru and at film festivals in the UK, France and Thailand.

Nico said: “My brother Yan and I took the opportunity of our nine-month trip around the world to show Dick Lorent in various places and countries as we have French and Spanish subtitled versions.

“In Phnom Penh we screened the film in a proper cinema, at the French Institute and a group of young Khmer students attended the screening.

“But the most scenic screening took place on an old boat on the Amazon stopping by day and night at all the smallest villages. That took three nights and two days to go from Santa Rosa to Iquitos.”

Paul Fenwick, project director for the tunnels’ owner the Tyne & Wear Integrated Transport Authority, said: “It’s fascinating to hear that the tunnels are appearing around the globe to different kinds of audiences in many countries.

“I can’t imagine what passengers on the night bus between Arequipa and Cuzco thought about the setting for the film and I’m not expecting an influx of Peruvian tourists to Tyneside as a result, but it is a cause of pride to everyone involved with the tunnels to know that they have travelled, through the medium of film, to distant lands.”

The tunnels are currently closed for refurbishment and will re-open next August.