Adele Bradley
By Adele Bradley

Senior Staff Writer

19 December 2023

| | 3 min read


It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas down on Shields Road

Giant Christmas wreaths to celebrate local businesses have been popping up on shops on Shields Road.

Image of a large Xmas wreathe with people in the shot
Artists have created large wreathes for local businesses on Shields Road

25 businesses have taken part to highlight the diversity of shops and goods all available on Shields Road, as well as add some festive cheer during this busy shopping period.

Working with artists Sally Southern and Nicola Lynch, the wreaths represent the wide variety of businesses available on the high street and feature unusual ornaments which reflect each individual business, such as thermal socks and handkerchiefs, mobile phones, cuddly toys, packets of crisps and barber’s combs.

A pop-up event was held on Hadrian Square on Friday (15 Dec) to display the wreaths, as well as provide activities and warming food for the local community to come together, with a raffle held for people to take some of the wreaths home.

The project is part of Newcastle City Council’s high streets project, which aims to revitalise five high streets in the east end, by boosting footfall and bringing back pride to the local area.

Cllr Alex Hay, cabinet member for a thriving city said: “It’s fantastic to celebrate this local high street and see some festive cheer. There’s so much on offer on Shields Road and it’s great to see local businesses getting involved. 

“Shields Road can often be overlooked as a shopping destination, but we’ve got plans to change all that. We’re investing £2.8 million in high streets in the east end, including Shields Road, Chillingham Road, Heaton Road, Heaton Park Road and Welbeck Road. We’ve been out talking to local people and businesses to find out what they want to see to help form plans for the area, we’ve seen new businesses open up as part of our empty properties grant and held community events over the summer. 

“In the coming months, we’ll be asking people and businesses to get involved in the development and redesign of physical improvements to the high streets so we can create more attractive public spaces that are greener and accessible to all.”

As part of the event, five wreaths were raffled off to the local community, including a giant crisps and chocolate bar wreath (Little’s News), a sparkling, silver ornamental wreath (Lacky’s Right Choice), two wreaths festooned with exotic biscuits and delicious treats (Sultans Supermarket and Sabor Mediterranean Restaurant), and a beautiful, traditional winter greenery wreath (Fantasia Florist).

Local organisations from the project area can apply for grants of up to £10,000 for events and activities that help to animate the five high streets. Funding up to £25,000 is also available to bring empty properties back in to use as part of a drive to boost footfall for the high streets. Find out more at  

Newcastle East – Inclusive, Healthy, Vibrant High Streets, is funded by the UK Government through the UK Shared Prosperity Fund with the North of Tyne Combined Authority as the lead authority.