The North East consists of large rural areas predominantly in the north and west of the region, as well as industrial and urban areas in the east and south. The North East is home to Northumberland National Park, and part of the Pennines, as well as two World Heritage Sites.
While areas like Teesside are still centres of heavy industry, the numbers employed in these industries has rapidly declined. The region has the highest proportion of 16-24 year olds who are not in education, employment or training (NEET) in England at 16.1%, and employment levels in the region are the lowest in England.
Thirty-five percent of children in Middlesbrough and 30% of children in Newcastle live in poverty, compared to an English average of 26%. The North East has the highest suicide rate in England.
Darren was 16 when he had to leave home to live in a hostel. He became lonely and depressed. Learning the bass transformed his life.
Teenager Holly was quiet and withdrawn when she first attended The Performers. But learning to play a variety of instruments with other young carers has helped her to speak up for herself.
David dreamed of learning to DJ, but most of the courses he found were too expensive. The fact that David has autism also made the idea of learning and performing with strangers extra challenging.
Hayley was bullied at school for being ‘different’ to other girls. With the support of a music project at her local youth centre, she’s discovered her potential on the bass guitar and found a new self-belief.
East by North East
Young people from diverse backgrounds worked alongside local musicians to develop their talents and build confidence in their own music-making abilities.