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Gallery 1 > North-East of England > Littlehaven, South Shields

There are two beaches in South Shields. Little Haven beach lies just across the North Marine Park from the Guest House. This pleasant, small beach lies beside the mouth of the river Tyne.

 

Located beside Little Haven beach is the artistic display - The Conversation Piece. This display is comprised of 22 bronze life-size figures sculpted by the Spanish artist Juan Munoz. South Shields locals call them the weebles because of their circular bases. They are interesting for adults at one level and fascinating for children at another, and they have now become a South Shields landmark. Since 1999, the statues have stood beside Little Haven Beach at South Shields, overlooking the harbour and the Tyne piers. With their large round bases, these strange figures resemble children's wobbling toys. Like many public sculptures, they have been given a local nickname. Tynesiders call them the "Weebles", after the popular toy of the 1970s (slogan: "Weebles wobble but they don't fall down"). The first thing many people do on seeing them is to push them to see if they do wobble. At a quarter of a tonne each, they cannot be budged.

 

The Groyne Lighthouse resembles a 1940's sci-fi movie space craft is located on a small groyne in the river mouth at South Shields. It was built in 1882 and was at the mouth of the river before the north and south piers were built. It still acts as a navigational aid to ships entering the River Tyne.