South Shields is a coastal town in Tyne and Wear, England, located at the mouth of the River Tyne to Tyne Dock, and about 4.84 miles (7.79 km) downstream from Newcastle upon Tyne. The town has a population of 82,854 , the second largest population centre in the Tyneside conurbation after Newcastle. It is part of the metropolitan borough of South Tyneside, which includes the riverside towns of Jarrow and Hebburn and the villages of Boldon, Cleadon and Whitburn. South Shields is represented in parliament by Labour MP David Miliband.
In the sixth century, northeast England was famed for its centre of religious enlightenment and education, with the holy isle of Lindisfarne, close to Bamburgh and important religious clergy: St Aidan, St Bede, St Cuthbert. This region was known as 'Bernicia' with Bamburgh its capital and forming the Kingdom of Northumbria, with Deira (Yorkshire) forming the southern boundary.