Famous Northeasterners

Although the Wearside Online community deals mainly with the Sunderland area, we do cast our nets further afield on occasions. This is because there are many other situations and people with a connection to Wearside. So here we have a section for other Famous Northeasterners. This article covers 8 pages, clickable at the bottom.

Just to point out that this Famous Northeasterners article has been with us for many years. However, we no longer update the content of this article only. This is because it is about people outside our normal catchment area. But, if you wish to help in the detail of this page, contact us. Obviously, if you wish to add someone to this list, please do so. But please use a couple of paragraphs and make your entry here.

Famous Northeasterners – Page 1

Sir George Biddell Airy

Famous Northeasterners - Sir George Biddell Airy
Sir George Biddell Airy was born on July 27, 1801 in Alnwick, Northumberland, England. He died on January 2, 1892 in Greenwich, London. His body lies in Playford Church in Suffolk.
Airy was not only the seventh Astronomer Royal (1835-81) but was also a very versatile scientist. He reorganized the Royal Greenwich Observatory, installed new apparatus, including the telescope that defines the Greenwich Meridian. He also rescued thousands of observations from oblivion. Airy did, however, hesitate in acting on the calculations of English astronomer John C. Adams in 1845 and delayed the discovery of Neptune.

Airy improved the theory of the orbital motions of Venus and of the Moon. In 1871 he used a water-filled telescope to test the effect of the Earth’s motion on the aberration of light. Then, in 1838, he devised a compass-correction system for the Royal Navy. In 1827, he was the first to attempt to correct astigmatism in the human eye (his own) by use of a cylindrical eyeglass lens.

He contributed also, in optics, to the study of interference fringes and to the mathematical theory of rainbows. The Airy disk is bears his name, of course. This is the central spot of light in the diffraction pattern of a point light source. In 1854 he measured gravity by swinging the same pendulum at the top and bottom of a deep mine. Thus, he computed the density of the Earth. He was among the first to propose the theory that root structures of lower density must exist under mountains to maintain isostatic equilibrium. Airy also received a knighthood in 1872.

Alun Armstrong

Alun Armstrong - Famous Northeasterners
Alun Armstrong was born on 17th July 1946 in County Durham. Formerly lived in Annfield Plain. Though his face may have once been handsome, it is now a relief map of crevasses that make him ideal for roles as Dickens characters.
Alun was a member of the original London cast of Cameron Mackintosh’s stage production, Les Miserables. This opened in 1985, of course. Although never regarded as a famous actor, Armstrong has certainly been one of the hardest working. Between 1999 and 2002, he performed in 17 productions. This includes two major films, ‘Sleepy Hollow’ and ‘The Mummy Returns’ and a hit TV miniseries, ‘The Aristocrats’.

Rowan Atkinson

Rowan Atkinson - Mr Bean
Rowan Sebastian Atkinson, the youngest of three boys, was born January 6, 1955 in Consett, County Durham, England. His father, a farmer, owned a plot of land in the area, but brought Rowan up in a residential area.

Like a lot of of English performers (at least in comedy it seems) Rowan’s original aspirations lay outside the realm of entertainment. He attended Newcastle then Oxford University on an Electrical engineering degree. Married to Sunetra Sastry since 1990 Has two children, Lily and Benjamin.

Of course, most people remember Rowan Atkinson for his work on the sitcoms Blackadder and Mr Bean. However, he was the bumbling vicar in Four Weddings and a Funeral (1994). He was also in a James Bond film – Never Say Never Again (1983). In fact, Rowan has many performances in films and television and has much respect world-wide. Indeed, Rowan is one of the most famous northeasterners.

Peter Beardsley

Famous Northeasterners - Peter Beardsley
Peter Andrew Beardsley MBE was born on 18th January 1961, in Hexham, England. Although, he grew up in Forest Hall, Newcastle-upon-Tyne. Well loved Newcastle Utd hero and England star with over 50 caps for his country.
Peter played for Carlisle and Vancouver Whitecaps before joining Newcastle in 1981. He played in the 1982 promotion side with Kevin Keegan, Chris Waddle, Terry McDermott, David McCrery and John Anderson.

After one season in the first division his transfer to Liverpool was for a then record fee. He spent several successful seasons there before Graeme Souness allowed him to move to Everton. Kevin Keegan brought him back to Tyneside for just over 1 million pounds which was an absolute bargain. He is now part of the England coaching staff. The locally born striker still ranks high amongst the greats who have played for NUFC.

Click for Famous Northeasterners – Page 2

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