If places around Newcastle were Waterloo Road characters, this is who they’d be
The guide no one’s asked for
When people back home ask what Newcastle is like, we're often confronted with pretty damaging stereotypes; they think that we just binge on Greggs and cheap drinks all the time. While these stereotypes aren't wrong, they don't tell the full story. Allow us to explain through the medium of your favourite adolescent TV show.
Robbo – Grantly Budgen
A true bookworm, Grantly was a staple of the school, and almost every pupil came across him at some point. Just like the long-suffering students in the Robbo, he frequently complained about his workload. Grantly initially turned up for a week's cover, before ultimately staying for 25 years. The Robbo is impossible to avoid, and two hours can turn into an all-nighter all too easily.
King's Gate – Rachel Mason
King's Gate is where the Vice-Chancellor resides, and if you committed academic misconduct, he'd have you escorted off campus before you could say 'PEC form'. Similarly, Rachel Mason would not hesitate to discipline anyone (student or staff) who crossed the line. However, she was also known for being one of the most supportive and caring members of staff, and King's Gate is home to the Student Health and Wellbeing Service. Look after yourself.
Byker – Earl Kelly
Park View – Jess Fisher
Park View girls are queen bees, flexing on everyone else with their en-suite rooms and touch-operated appliances (that don't work properly). They love nothing more than to party and to gossip, but they are also known for looking down on people from Castle Leazes. Jess was a drama queen, and had a brief relationship with Finn Sharkey (see below), but later dramatically broke up with him.
Castle Leazes – Finn Sharkey
Finn was a rah who thought he was God's gift to mankind (remind you of anyone?). He was a party animal, and everyone turned their heads when he walked through the school gates, just like everyone (supposedly) turns their heads when rahs walk down Leazes field in their flares and North Face puffa jackets.
Jesmond – Bolton Smilie
Everyone wanted to be friends with Bolton and everyone wants to live in Jesmond. What more can I say?
St Mary's – Jodi 'Scout' Allen
Scout was introduced as a girl who was not loved by her parents; her idle mother showed little care for either her or her little brother, Liam, while her father was nowhere to be seen. No one lives in St Mary's out of choice, and if you're unfortunate enough to live there, perhaps your parents aren't as loving as you thought they were.
Flares – Steph Haydock
Whatever the occasion, however you're feeling, Flares is always there for you, and so was Steph. Her affectionate, maternal nature was valued by many in the school, though some members of staff complained that she didn't take her job seriously. She could be very flirtatious, though she often regretted it later on (am I hitting a nerve?).
However, one man did fall for her charm: Security Dave. Unfortunately for him, nothing was ever going to happen, and Steph even resorted to telling Dave that she was dating Grantly just to get him off her case.
Think about the last time you went to Flares and tell me honestly that you didn't see at least one man who looked like this:
Bowsden Court – Connor Mulgrew
When Connor first arrived, he was presented as a quiet, dreamy character, but it was immediately obvious that something wasn't quite right. People who live in Bowsden have a mysterious air about them, mostly because no one knows where on earth it is. Moreover, Bowsden is so far north it might as well be in Scotland.
Tynemouth – Dynasty Barry
Dynasty was known as a spirited, rebellious girl, who was no stranger to trouble. She put a great deal of effort into looking glamorous, but the same couldn't be said of her schoolwork. Tynemouth is where you go when you're fed up of your course, and want to release your inner basic white girl; it's also great for spicing up your Insta.
The Arches – Tom Clarkson
One of the longest serving teachers (second only to Grantly), Tom was loved by staff and students for his warm personality and inspirational teaching. Freshers splash pictures of the arches all over their stories when they first arrive, and just like that one teacher that everyone loved at school, third years always take pictures by the arches when they've finished their dissertations. What a legend.
Every episode of Waterloo Road is now available on BBC iPlayer, you're welcome.