Archive for the ‘Networking’ Category

I hope you are all up for a bit of German food as we’ve booked the Boardwalk in Whitley Bay for our Stammtisch night. Gunther Seebacher has been talked into providing the food for the night and for £14 a head you will be able to have some Jaegerschnitzel, Spaetzle, followed by Dampfnudeln. Let us know if you can join us on 25 February 2014 from 6.30pm, with dinner starting at 7.15pm. As it’s a closed event and they cater just for us, you will need to pay Gunther upfront for the food and I will let you know where to send cheque to, when you register with me.

Look forward to seeing you all soon for our first Stammtisch of 2014!!!

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Christmas in the Cave

Dear Stammtisch Friends

It’s been a while since we last met for a Stammtisch and therefore I would like to invite you to the last one of 2013 on Tuesday, 3 December. We had a few recommendations for The Cave (formerly Krakow), 2 – 6 Shakespeare Street in Newcastle and will be our next venue. Our evening will start at 6.30pm, with dinner being served from 7pm onwards. Please email me by Friday, 29 November if you’re coming to join our Stammtisch and what you fancy on the night from the menu so that the restaurant can get organised for our group.
If you fancy some comfort food on these colder days, head to Grants Bakery in Hexham or Corbridge, where you can find some delicious European style patisseries and cakes. RTR Handelsgesellschaft, a German owned company in Gateshead, is currently looking for a Technical Sales Manager. If you have a technical qualification, work experience in a manufacturing/engineering environment and strong commercial/sales skills, click here for the full job description.
We also had an enquiry from the Head of German at St Cuthbert’s High School in Newcastle. they would like to establish some links with companies who use German in their day-to-day business, so that the boys can gain an understanding of how German can be used in the workplace.
Companies could be involved in a variety of ways, from sending brochures of the company’s work to speaking to the pupils or getting involved in a day’s activities. As St Cuthbert’s has a strong science department, and is currently planning to build an engineering block, they are keen to make the most of any companies who combine languages and science. If you’re interested, please let me know and I pass on your details.
We’re also having a night out with the InterNations crowd and will head to The Broad Chare on Wednesday, 27 November. Join expats and other international minded people from 6pm onwards for chilled drinks and tasty bar nibbles.
Our next Stammtisch will be a film viewing of the Bavarian ‘Dampfnudelblues‘. Thank you to those that have already responded and I will be soon in touch with a date/venue. The DVD will become available in December and it’s probably easiest to meet in the new year after the festive period. If anybody else still fancies coming along (I’m sure there will be subtitles for the non-Bavarians :-), let me know as the numbers will decide the best venue. Here’s a brief interview with the author Rita Falk about the movie. And yes, we’re aiming for Leberkäs and Dampfnudeln.
In the meantime, if you do fancy a bit of German food, ‘Memories of the Blackforest’ will have some Spaetzle and Sausages for you. You can generally find Gunther’s stall on Blyth market on a Friday and Newcastle Quayside on a Sunday. He will also be at the Stockton Christmas market from 27 November until 8 December and in Blyth on Christmas Eve.
Enjoy the autumn weather & see you all soon!

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Dear Stammtisch Friends

If you fancy a few ‘Steins’ of Paulaner beer, sausages, music (Oompah band was mentioned) and Lederhosen & Dirndl’s, then head to the Students Union at Newcastle University for a 3-day Oktoberfest from 17 to 19 October. Germany’s Honorary Consul in the region, Jo Chexal, will perform the traditional ‘tapping of the barrel’ at 1pm on the first day. For more information and to get tickets, click here.

If you prefer a more upmarket German meal and fancy a variety of German beers, you may want to head down to the Quayside’s The Broad Chare between 11 and 19 October for their Oktoberfest menu. As soon as I know what dishes are on offer,  I’ll share it on our Stammtisch blog. If there are a few of you wanting to go there together, let me know (incl. what dates are good) and I’ll try and reserve us a table – simply email me!

Last month, Newcastle has become an official InterNations group and we’re currently planning our next event for the end of October. Our guests generally come from all corners of the world and newcomers are always warmly welcomed.

Recruitment specialist Nigel Wright have forwarded us a vacancy for a German Speaking Team Manager in Tyne & Wear. The client for this permanent position is a leading SME energy consulting organisation and works across Germany. The team manager is responsible for the day to day operations of 15 energy consultants. For further information, see the Nigel Wright job description.

German actor Daniel Brühl (Good-bye Lenin, Die fetten Jahre sind vorbei) can be seen in two major films this autumn: Rush as Nicki Lauda and The Fifth Estate alongside Benedict Cumberbatch as Julian Assange. Also in time for Halloween, the Tyneside Cinema will show Murnau’s 1922 ‘Nosferatu’.

One film that most certainly won’t receive a UK release is ‘Dampfnudelblues‘, which is based on the Rita Falk book. However, as it looks super funny (and yes, my friends in Bavaria who have seen it, all recommended it), we are going to get the DVD in December and will be showing it somewhere – together with some Leberkäs and maybe even Dampfnudeln. Check out the trailer and if you fancy a bit of Bavarian crime/comedy, let me know so that I can organise our perfect venue.


See you soon!


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Dear Stammtisch Friends,

After a felt ten year absence, summer has eventually reached the North East again. I am sure you are all getting plenty of use out of your BBQs and have those beers chilled for the weekend.

Before you’re all heading off on holiday, here are a few suggestions that you may be interested in:

Every year, the German children’s group travels for a weekend to the castle in Featherstone (near Haltwhistle). This year the trip is from 27 to 29 September and our Stammtisch member Silvie Fish would like to invite other Germans (with or without children) to come along. Of course, non-German speaking partners are also very welcome.

Departure is on Friday evening and the return journey on Sunday afternoon. It is also possible to stay for one night only or simply come for a visit during the day. The plan is to cook, eat, drink and go for walks and for the kids there are also stories, crafts, treasure hunts etc. There are smaller rooms (usually for families with smaller children) and large rooms to sleep in. It’s all about the ambience rather than luxury. And this year the teenagers also get their own area to hang out in. Cost including food is £50 (simply half for one night), as long as we have a minimum of 25 people per night (which shouldn’t be a problem. Payment is in advance either by cheque or transfer and if you’re interested simply email Silvie by 1 September (indicating number of people/nights) – Tynemouth Classic Volkswagen Rally.

Discover Deutschland was a recent newsletter we received from DFDS and the cost for a ferry trip by car plus 2 people to Amsterdam was advertised as from £70/one way. While travelling around Europe, you may get a chance to see at a festival the French jazz/chanson singer ZAZ, who has been very successful in Germany over the past three years.
We haven’t got another Stammtisch date yet, but I can invite you to our next InterNations event, which will take place at Bar Livello, down at Dean Street, Newcastle Quayside on Tuesday, 30 July from 6pm onwards. Simply join InterNations for free and join our group for chilled drinks.
I wish you a very enjoyable & relaxing holiday season & look forward to seeing you all soon.

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Dear Stammtisch Friends

I would like to invite you to our next Stammtisch on Wednesday, 12 June 2013.

Our evening at the Mansion House in Jesmond will start around 5.30pm with a cold beer on the terrace (yes, there’s also West beer now available in the Mansion House). We will then have dinner in the drawing room and on the menu are 2 Bratwuerste (grilled sausages) with Altbadischem Sauerkraut (white cabbage), Kartoffelbrei (mashed potatoes) and Zwiebelsosse (onion sauce), followed by Apfelstrudel (appel strudel) with ice cream – all for only £10 per person. You pay at the door on the day, but please confirm (or if you have to cancel) with me as the Mansion House will only cater for us on the day.

Being from the sausage capital of the world (Nuremberg) and as they’re on our menu, I thought I’d share some sausage knowledge with you:

One of (or the) most famous sausage restaurants is in Nuremberg and the Bratwursthaeusle and they’ve been making and cooking sausages since 1313.  Germans are so mad about their sausages, they have even dedicated a museum to it. You can visit the Curry Wurst Museum in our capital Berlin. Uli Hoeness is famous as a footballer, being in charge of Bayern Munich and more recently for having trouble with the German equivalent of HMRC. Less known to the outside world, however, is his successful sausage business. Uli’s Wuerste have even been sold at McDonalds and in a ZDF programme, his sausages won the the ‘Knackigste Bratwurst’ award.

So now you’re thinking of ways how to get rid of all these calories. And one of the sports that has gained a following here in the North East since last year’s Olympics is ‘Handball’. Yes, proper handball. Not netball! :-) The Newcastle Vikings Handball Club meets at Percy Hedley in Killingworth and is open to newcomers. Their website is great – and you find out all the information you’re after.

And if you still have energy to spare – what about this one: ’24 Hours of Bavaria’. The annual event takes place in Fuessen in 2013 and the walk takes you past famous sights, including the world famous Neuschwanstein. There are various walks, but if you are really hard core, you’ll cover 80km in 24 hours. This year, 24 Hours of Bavaria takes place from 22 to 23 June.

I also have a book recommendation for you from Gunther. ‘Keeping up with the Germans‘ has been described as a witty and incisive look at the lighter-side of Anglo-German relations over the last 100 years. Gunther’s comments were: “Extremely funny… Had me in stichtes and all this I can identify with… A must read!

And online, a Brit in Germany – Adam Fletcher - writes a very funny blog and here are his ’20 Easy Steps to be a German’.

I hope to see many of you in the Mansion House on 12 June & wish you a lovely time until then.

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Dear Stammtisch Friends

It’s been a while since our last Stammtisch and I hope that I can soon organise a venue that will provide some delicious German cuisine.

However, in the absence of food, maybe a bit of humour will make up for it? Germany’s Comedy Ambassador to Great Britain, the very funny Mr Henning Wehn, will be in the North East next month. You may already have tickets for either the Gala Theatre in Durham or the Stand in Newcastle. If not, the Gala Theatre still has tickets for the evening of Sunday, 14 April and they are £12.50/each (the Stand is already sold out). Maybe we’ll see you on one of those nights?

Our Stammtisch members have also been offered a 10% discount for a cottage stay in Perthshire, Scotland for 2013. There are three cottages available, with en-suite bedrooms, modern kitchens and their own private terrace with bbq and garden furniture. They also welcome up to 3 dogs for free and there are storage facilities for your outdoor equipment. For further info, images or testimonials, visit http://cottagesinperthshire.co.uk.

And if you’re travelling to Germany with your kids, you may want to do a brief stopover in Nuremberg. That’s where the Deutsche Bahn opened the Kibala – the new Kinderbahnland – in the DB Museum.

If you are newcomer to the UK and are still struggling a bit with the colloquial English or cultural differences, we’ve had a book recommendation – ‘What’s for tea? – Englisch wie es nicht im Schulbuch steht’ by Claudia Hunt, may just be the one to read. 

We also received another recommendation of a novel entitled „DAS LEBEN IST WIE DER WIND“ von Helmut Jost Krüger. Prussia in the 18th and 19th Century provides the backdrop for the lives of a family over a period of 140 years. The novel is available via Kindle at Amazon.

I also wanted to briefly introduce you to the Cinnamon Trust, which is a national charity that offers support  to people in their last years and their much loved and needed companion animals. If you would like to help their efforts, visit the website. They look for example for volunteers that walk dogs or foster animals if their owner needs to go to hospital.

Well, that’s it from me for today – let me know if you have any particular food wishes, then I can chat to some of the venues, I’ve got in mind. What is your favourite dish that you’re missing and I will try my best!

Enjoy the last snow flakes!

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It’s winter time and I’ve found us a lovely new venue for our annual Christmas dinner. A great recommendation from German Recruitment’s Ali Guezel, Cafe Ei8ht in Gateshead is owned by Christian Vogel who will look after us on Monday, 3 December.

Our evening will start with a Gluehwein Reception at 6pm, followed by 3-course dinner at 7pm. Our traditional German Christmas menu includes Flaedles-Suppe oder auch Fritatten-Suppe (pancake soup for the British), followed by Gaensebraten mit Rotkohl und Kloessen (goose with red cabbage and dumplings) and as a dessert home-baked Stollen and Weihnachstsplaetzchen (biscuits) as well as coffee and tea (there is also a vegetarian option). The cost per person for the complete menu will be £24.95 and has to be paid upfront (either visit or send a cheque to Cafe Ei8ht, 8 Regent Terrace, Gateshead, NE8 1LU (opposite the council offices), or email/text Christian (cafe8info@aol.com/ 07842 757 567 and he’ll call you back for credit card payment).

Could you also let me know by latest 29 November, if you’re planning to go as we’re limited on space in the cafe. We will be a private party on the night and it will be very much a family atmosphere. Christian said he could organise beer and wine for our group, but has to s ell it by the bottle. Can you also please let me know what you prefer so he has an idea what to get? Thanks!

Just a little bit about Christian himself. He’s originally from Berlin, but also lived near Tuebingen where he did his apprenticeship as a ‘Hotelfachmann’, which he completed in Achern, Black Forest. Six years ago he moved to the UK, where he worked in Windermere for 2.5 years. After that he did a spell as a supervisor in Ontario, Canada, but returned to the UK in 2010 to help open a hotel in Cornwall. Before taking over Cafe Ei8ht in May this year, Christian was the restaurant/duty manager at Matfen Hall. Since then, he’s even been involved in a buffet for the Duchess of Cambridge. And only three weeks ago, Christian added German specials to his menu. If anybody is interested what he’s got on, you can check out his menu on facebook (Cafe Ei8ht) or twitter (cafeei8ht). He’s also doing outside catering and if there’s sufficient interest in a dish, he may do it for a small group. His mum is currently here in the region to support him and is baking Stollen for the Christmas season – they take around 2 weeks to settle, so if you want one, you need to let him know by latest 24 November (price £5.50 for ca. 500g).

Unfortunately our usual venue, the Mansion House, will not be able to do a separate event this year, but Gunther very kindly invited the Stammtisch to join one of their events on 20 December. This will include a proper Christmas dinner, half of bottle of wine, Stollen plus entertainment on the night. So if you’re not heading to Germany for the festive period, the Mansion House might just be the place. Can you contact Gunther directly gunther.seebacher@newcastle.gov.uk/0191 281 0863). Thank you!

If you can’t wait that long, the 60th and last Weihnachtsbasar is just around the c orner at the United Reformed Church in Newcastle on 24 November from 11am to 2pm.

is also putting on another Christmas weekend on 1 and 2 December, with Taffy the Storyteller at the Priory Theatre and on the Village Green you can meet Santa & feed the Reindeer, Pony & Trap rides, stalls, Christmas garland workshops, mulled wine and so on.

It would be great to see many of you at our Christmas Stammtisch on 3 December!

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Dear Stammtisch Friends

It’s the time of the year again to dust off your Lederhosen and squeeze into your Dirndls. I’d like to invite you to join us at the Brandling Villa in Gosforth for their Oktoberfest on Thursday, 11 October from 6pmonwards. They’ve got a range of Oktoberfest beers already chilled for you and you’ll have a choice of various German dishes including sausages (Bratwurst, Weisswurst, Currywurst) to Schnitzel and Spaetzle. We were there two years ago and it does get very busy & hot – so be prepared!!! Let me know if you’re coming, so we can all watch out for each other on the night and conquer some tables.

If you can’t wait that long, West in Glasgow are also putting their 6th Oktoberfest. Every Friday, the ‘Bayrische Buam’ play traditional Oktoberfest music at the West beerhall from 7pm to 10pm, but as it’s popular you need to pre-book your table.

Thanks again to all of you that have filled in our travel survey. Newcastle Airport was obviously the key departure airport in the region, but Edinburgh was also popular for German connections. 100% of the respondees stated that they would like additional links to Germany and most popular was our capital Berlin, followed by Stuttgart, Munich and Frankfurt. So watch this space!

I’ve been contacted by language school International House here in Newcastle, who are organising voluntary international internships. Their students generally study Business English there prior to a placement where they can then enhance their skills and find out more about work life in Britain. They currently look for a placement for a 24-year old German graduate in communication studies, that is looking for a 8-week placement from Monday, 1 October. If anybody can accommodate this, please let me know and I’ll put you in touch with the relevant people at IH, who’ll forward you CV and further info. Thank you!

There’s a new free internet portal that may be of interest to you – www.deutsche-weltweit.de helps Germans abroad to find each other, share information etc.

And for any official business here in the region, you have to find Jo Chexal at the new German Honorary Consul’s offices, that are now located at Newcastle Civic Centre, Registrar’s Entrance, Newcastle upon Tyne NE1 8PS. Her email and telephone number have remained the same: newcastle-upon-tyne@hk-diplo.de / 0191 233 6317. 

There is a biometric machinery at the Honorary Consul’s office, so Jo can handle applications for biometric passports (including fingerprinting). However, you must ensure you make an appointment and bring along essential documents including originals or certified copies (beglaubigte Kopien) of birth certificates, marriage certificates etc. and copies of the deregistration certificate (Abmeldeschein). Photos are not the same as the British passport size. Robertsons of Gosforth, 202 High Street Gosforth, tel. 0191 2854652 can guarantee the right size as long as they are informed it is for a German passport. Also look out for other photographers that display a sign saying they can do German and other sizes (the specification is on the German Consulate/ Embassy website).

Jo can also stamp Lebensbescheinigungen for people who get a German pension, take applications for Namenserklaerung in der Ehe, Geburtsanzeigen, Unterschriftsbeglaubigung/ Identitaetsbeglaubigung, Erbschaftsausschlagung, Fuehrungszeugnisse, Beglaubigung von Uebersetzungen und Kopien, Genehmigungsvertraege for house sales in Germany.

And last, but not least – some more food recommendations.Siggi found Schwartau und Zentis Konfituere and Krombacher Bier in B&M Bargains in Bedford Street in North Shields, which apparently sells often German products. And as Lidl has given up on the rye bread, they’re now doing Brezn at least in the Battle Hill shop (somebody must be buying them as I’ve never yet managed to get any when I popped in!).

I look forward to seeing many of you on Thursday, 11 October for a great night out!

Warm regards


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Dear Stammtisch Friends

Hopefully you are reading this whilst enjoying the sunshine and a chilled drink! We have now a date for our next Stammtisch, which will be a BBQ on Thursday, 23 August from 5.30pm onwards in the lovely garden at the Mansion House in Jesmond. Our theme will be ‘Es geht um die Wurst‘, but obviously there will also be food choices for the non meat/sausage lover and please feel free to bring your family along. We will let you know menu/cost as soon as we know that there’s sufficient interest, therefore please let me know if you’ll join us as soon as possible so I can confirm.

I’d like to say a big thank you also to everybody who offered their services regarding the letter in the old German handwriting. The response was fantastic and the first person who emailed back ended up getting involved and it turned out to be a topic she was personally interested in. But thanks to everybody who so kindly wanted to help out – and I was impressed how many people were able to still read this writing style!

German language skills are also in demand elsewhere and I’ve got two job advertisements that somebody in our group may be interested in:

County Durham based Hospitality Guaranted are currently looking for a Conference & Accommodation Co-ordinator with fluent German/French skills to support their team. Tasks inv olve the management and co-ordination of venue finding enquiries, the completion of proposals for both UK and European markets. The candidate would also have to be able to translate from French and German into English and vice versa.The position involves supplier management and coordination, negotiations and proof-reading of contracts. Other tasks mentioned in the job descriptions were desk research, co-ordination of bookings, follow up of sales leads.

If this is of interest to you, please email me and I’ll forward the complete job description and contact details to you.

London based Listen & Learn are also currently looking for a freelance German teacher for elementary lessons for one adult in Greenside (NE40). The preferred schedule indicated was 1 lesson/week and for classes on Saturdays between 9am to 12noon. If you’re interested in this, please let me know and I’ll forward you all the details and then you can apply directly with the company.

The Edinburgh Festival is already in full swing and I thought you may want to see Germany’s Comedy Ambassador to Great Britain. ‘Henning knows Bestest’ is the theme of this year’s show at the Fringe Festival and you can get tickets from 15 to 26 August. I’m also monitoring his schedule so if he’s next here in the region – Tanja went to his show in spring and said it was fab – we’ll have to get a Stammtisch there!!!

Win a Dream Tour of Germany! That’s a competition of the German National Tourist Board (NTB), that’s on Facebook until the end of August. You can design your very own Dream Tour and win a personalised 7-day tour. More than 20 NTB partners have come together to offer different travel modules to choose from. Good luck & let us know if you’ve won!!!

Sunny regards


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Unfortunately, we have no date yet for our next Stammtisch, which was meant to be a BBQ at the Mansion House. When the sun does make an appearance again in Geordieland for more than just a few hours, we’ll try and organise something quickly.

However, in absence of a Stammtisch, you may want to join one of the many events organised by Newcastle City Council while hosting the “Newcastles” from around the world. On Sunday, 22 July, from 11.15am onwards there is a service held at Newcastle Cathedral to celebrate Cities, Peace and Friendship, with songs from around the world being performed by the Crossings Choir.

On Tuesday, 24 July the visitors from the various Newcastles will party the night away aboard the ferry “Pride of the Tyne”. Tickets are £20 and there will be welcome drink, food and music from Hannabiell and Midnight Blue. You can order via Irene Hatton or call 0191 211 6826. Departure is at 7pm prompt from the Pitcher and Piano and you’ll return at 10.15pm.

Another interesting event will be held at the Mansion House in Jesmond on Wednesday, 25 July from 7.30pm. The POT LUCK PALADAR is part of the EAT Festival and you can either make a dish particular to one of the many countries of the world that have a “Newcastle” in them (check the website for details) for the shared table or just come along and enjoy the buffet of world dishes. There will also be live music in the garden, Geordie canapés and a fun quiz with your chance to win a great prize. Click here for details.

Maybe you can help with this request – a letter needs to be translated from German into English. Unfortunately I can’t help as I am having difficulty reading the old fashioned handwriting (1930s). So if there’s somebody in our group that would be able to do this for a fee, please let me know and I’ll put you in touch with the relevant person.

We also had a request from a PhD student at Newcastle University who is currently working on a research project about language use. Alina is looking for German native speakers (between the ages 18-35 & with high level of English) who are willing to take part in a language experiment.

The study lasts for approx. 55 min and involves judging a sequence of short video clips and completing a language and biographical questionnaire. Participants will be tested on an individual basis at the School of Education, Communication and Language Sciences and will receive £5 for their participation. The tests will take place June-August and if you are interested to take part, please e-mail alina.schartner@ncl.ac.uk.

Another request to the Stammtisch was if anybody has any experience/insights into four universities in Germany, where an international student wants to do his Masters in Electrical Engineering: TU Munich, TU Darmstadt, Brandenburg TU (Cottbus) and Otto-Von-Guericke University in Magdeburg. The gentleman is interested in reputation of these universities, how his degree would be valued, cost of living in the above cities and if there would be opportunities to get part-time jobs in his relevant field in these locations.

Apparently since the introduction of the higher university fees, British students are now heading towards Germany to study there. Click here for the full article, that was recently published on gmx in cooperation with Spiegel Online.

Our cycling expert Tanja Cooper has asked me to forward you some information about her forthcoming challenge. She will very soon embark on a 1000 mile cycle challenge across the UK, starting at Land’s End and finishing her journey 14 days later in John O’Groats.

Her aim is to raise £500 for RoadPeace, a charity that offers emotional and practical support to crash victim’s families. RoadPeace is trying to improve post crash response and is also tackling bad driving and aims to make our streets safer for everyone. You can support Tanja and donate at www.justgiving.com/Tanja-Nick-Lejog

So fingers crossed that we will be able to do a BBQ in 2012 and in the meantime, I hope you will all have a superb summer holiday and look forward to seeing you soon!

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