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I would like to invite you to our next Stammtisch to coincide with ‘Oktoberfest’ week held at the Broad Chare at Newcastle’s Quayside. I have reserved a table on Tuesday, 8 October from 7pmclick here for a link to the Broad Chare and food options on the day. Please let me know if you would like to join us as I need to give the Broad Chare numbers by the weekend.

This Friday – 4 October – there is also a joint UK-German concert in the St Nicholas Cathedral in Newcastle’s city centre. German Winds, which is led by Sven Hellinghausen, is visiting the North East and Scotland for a series of three concerts.

50 musicians are travelling over from Germany (they will even bring along three alpine horns) to perform with a further 30 musicians of the Alnwick Playhouse Concert Band. The evening programme will include a varied repertoire of music including Classical, Pop and Swing. Tickets cost £10/person, with the proceeds going to North Northumberland Hospice, which has wellbeing centres in Alnwick and Berwick.

Last month, Germany but also many other countries around the world celebrated 250th birthday of Alexander von Humboldt. Germany even issued a new stamp in his honour. If you do not know much about this explorer, polymath, scientist, adventurer, communications expert (actually hard to find a description for him), then I can recommend Andrea Wulf‘s book ‘Alexander von Humboldt & The Invention of Nature’/’Erfindung der Natur‘. And if you rather watch and follow his footsteps, there’s a new DW documentary on his travels in the Americas on YouTube. Another older documentary entitled ‘Natural Traveller‘ features Christopher Eccleston, with contributions for example from David Attenborough.

UK German Connections is currently inviting applications for Cultural Exchange Ambassadors. So if you are/know either a Language Assistant in Germany or the UK – then check out this website. This initiative aims to enhance Language Assistantship and for participants to gain valuable project management skills, to lead bicultural projects and create connections between UK & German schools. Deadline for applications is Thursday, 17 October 2019.

I wish you a good week and maybe see you at one of the forthcoming events!

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Dear Stammtisch Friends

We’re currently planning a few events here in the region and maybe there are some you would like to join in:

On Sunday, 30 June 2019, the Martin Luther Kirche is organising its annual Grillfest in Shieldfield, Newcastle. There is a family service from 3pm to 4pm, the bbq starts at 4pm to 7pm. Entrance donation is £1 per person (children under 10 are free) with the proceeds going to the North of England Child Cancer Research and the German Church. To get tickets – please call Oliver on: 07811 109 312

You may heard of the numerous sightings of dolphins at our coastline. I recently also met a lady through my consular work, who made me aware of the Dolphin Watch Association in Newbiggin-by-the-Sea. The next Dolphin Watch event will take place on Saturday, 6 July and I thought this may be good for a Stammtisch get-together at 11am at Church Point in Newbiggin. There is plenty of car parking next to the Marine Centre, where we can later head for refreshments. There is also the Newbiggin Dolphin Watch Group on Facebook, where you can follow the sightings, photos and videos. This event is open to all ages and if you have binoculars, bring them along! Please let me know if you’re planning to come so that I get an idea of numbers.

Other events I am currently considering are:

‘Vera’ Tour: to visit some of the film locations for this detective series
‘Project Auckland’: I was recently invited to a visit to this market town in County Durham and it is very impressive what is being developed there
– A Bavarian Movie with a short ‘language’ class

You may have also seen the news that Lufthansa has announced a new flight from Newcastle to Munich, not only connecting our region with the Bavarian capital, but also to a hub to another 140 destinations in 46 countries. You can already book the Munich flights now, which will commence in February 2020. Lufthansa will fly six days a week, leaving the North East at 1.40pm and arriving in Munich at 4.40pm. The inbound flight departs in Munich at 11.50am and arrives in Newcastle at 12:55. The German market is particularly important for business travellers as it’s the largest trading partner for the UK after the US.

The ferry service from Amsterdam to North Shields also brings many visitors to our region and hence DFDS Seaways are currently recruiting bi-lingual (German & English) travel advisors for their contact centre here at the Port of Tyne in North Shields.

I just returned from Germany and it is now my young nephews who keep me up to date of what’s going on there. This time I was introduced to Die Känguru-Chroniken (it was popular with my 10-year old nephew, but also the grown ups in the family). You can either buy a book, the audio book or watch some short YouTube videos. The author, Marc-Uwe Kling, who also reads the short stories, is a song-writer and comedian. It is difficult to explain, but it’s about Marc-Uwe sharing his Berlin flat with a very opinionated kangaroo. Here is a link to the episode ‘Theorie & Praxis’.

Make the most of the longest day of the year!

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Dear Stammtisch Friends

The German Embassy has just updated its FAQ section on Brexit and it is worthwhile checking this again when progress has been made. On the same website you will also find information videos as well as guidance from the EU Commission.

The ‘Bundesministerium fuer Verkehr und digitale Infrastruktur‘ has also issued Brexit information based on the current status.

The Martin-Luther-Church in Newcastle will also host an information event for EU citizens on Thursday, 28 February from 7pm. If you would like to attend, please register here (limited places). Speakers will include representatives of the German Consulate in Edinburgh, an immigration lawyer from Derbyshire Law Centre and the CEO of Newcastle’s Citizens Advice Bureau.

The German Chamber of Commerce (DIHK) also issues a monthly Brexit newsletter for businesses – here is a link to the latest and previous editions.

German citizens in the UK will be able to participate in the forthcoming European Parliament Elections in Mayclick here for further information on how to register.

I have also been contacted to promote an information event for German speakers interested in training as Blue Badge Tourist Guides for North East England. This event will take place in Newcastle city centre on Monday 25 February between 6.30pm and 8.30pm.

UK German Connections currently invites applications for the German Pupil Courses (deadline 1 March 2019). These are two-week courses in Germany for UK pupils studying German. There are three courses every summer for 12 pupils and one accompanying teacher each.

Comedian Henning Wehn is again in the region and added another date – 20 February – to his tour dates at the Whitley Bay Playhouse, with some tickets still being available.

And while on the lighter subjects – you may enjoy two of the stars of the Bafta winning ‘The Favourite’: Rachel Weisz & Emma Stone are having some fun with some British sayings, which may not be well-known by Americans (never mind non-English native speakers!).

Have a great week & see you soon!

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Dear Stammtisch Friends

There are quite a few events happening, which you might fancy:

This Saturday, 22 September will see the launch of THE INNER EYE at the Side Gallery in Newcastle. This exhibition explores the narrative of documentary photography in the German Democratic Republic, featuring over 250 images by 13 of the key photographers.

On Sunday, 23 September there will be another ‘Kaffeeklatsch’ in the Kaffeehaus Amadeus in Lanchester. If you want to come along between 3 – 5pm, please let Bernhard know, just email him: servus@kaffeehaus-amadeus.co.uk.

Europe Direct North East England will host two more Brexit events here in the region:

Brexit, Business & Trade: Tuesday, 30 October from 08:30am – 10am in the Stadium of Light Sunderland – click here to register
Brexit & Higher Education: Thursday, 1 November from 6pm – 7:30pm in the Calman Centre, Durham University – click here to register

The German Embassy has also recently updated the FAQs for German Citizens in the UK. It may be worthwhile to check out this site from time to time if you want check what advice there is.

It appears that ‘The Oktoberfest‘ has become another successful German ‘export’:

The Broad Chare will go all Bavarian between 29th September to 6th Octoberclick here for further information. I have booked a table for the Stammtisch on the ‘Tag der Deutschen Einheit‘ – on Wednesday, 3 October 2018 for 7pm. If you would like to join us on the day, please email me as places are limited.

The Tyneside Bar Cafe is also celebrating with German beers & food from Friday, 12 October to Sunday, 14 Octoberclick here for further information

From 25 – 28 October, there will be another Oktoberfest in Times Square in Newcastle.

And if you have missed Comedian Henning Wehn’s ‘Get on with it’ show – he has added another date to his stay at the Whitley Bay Playhouse: 21 February 2019.

Enjoy the start of autumn!

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Dear Stammtisch Friends

With the weather starting to feel a bit more like spring time, I thought I might just let you know about a couple of German-related events, which will happen here in the region.

On Saturday, 31 March 2018 there will be a Beer & Food Festival in the Buck Inn in Chop Gate, Teesside. You will be able to enjoy a BBQ, 10 German and English beers and plus live music and even an Oompah band. The Beer Festival will start at 2pm and last until 10pm.

In April, on Saturday the 21st, the Discovery Museum in Newcastle will host an event entitled: “Hope, Pork’s Glory and Decline – The Story of German immigration on Tyneside”. Historian Karl-Heinz Wuestner will take you back in time and tell the story of those immigrants from southern Germany. Northern Cultural Projects will also be in attendance, displaying information from their ‘Hunting the Hun‘ project.

And as we’re always on the look out for German food places, here’s another tip for you. But if you are regularly travelling to London, you may have already discovered the ‘German Gymnasium next to Kings Cross?

Brexit is still on many people’s mind and one EU citizen, Annette Dittert – decided to publish her thoughts: ‘London Calling – Als Deutsche auf der Brexit Insel

With regards to Brexit, you may also find the FAQ section on the German Embassy‘s website useful. The European Commission has also issued some more guidance for EU citizens on this website.

Businesses may also be interested in Brexit related events organised by:

The North of England Chamber of Commerce – Thursday, 29 March @ Crown Plaza
Institute of Directors – Thursday, 29 March – Webinar
Institute of Export – Post-Brexit Planning Workshops – various dates

I am also currently looking for an experienced ‘Synchrondolmetscher‘ English/German for a client in the North East. Please contact me directly.

On the education side, the German Embassy is inviting again nominations for the Annual German Teacher Award. If you know any outstanding teachers at a school here in the North East or somewhere within the UK, please click here for the nomination form. The deadline for submissions is 7 May 2018.

And I’ve just seen an article about a study, which highlighted Franconian city, which apparently beats San Francisco, Paris or Rome with regards to quality of life 🙂

I hope you enjoyed our update and I will soon let you know about our next Stammtisch.

Have a lovely weekend!

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Dear Stammtisch Friends

We have plenty of autumn events taking place and maybe you will be able to join one or two?

It’s again ‘Oktoberfest Time’ and I would like to invite you to our next Stammtisch on Monday, 9 October 2017 in the Broad Chare in Newcastle for 7pm. I have already reserved two larger tables, so please let me know as soon as possible if you would like to join us. This year the Broad Chare celebrate the Oktoberfest from Thursday, 5 October to Friday, 13 October and if you’d like to have a peek beforehand what’s on offer, here’s the menu.

If you’re still looking for things to do this weekend, here are two suggestions:
– 6 mile Culture Crawl tonight in Newcastle in aid of Maggies Centre.
Tynemouth Beer Festival on Friday & Saturday

The Tyneside Cinema will present its ninth season of live satellite opera broadcasts from the Metropolitan Opera House in New York. On Saturday, 14 October you can experience Mozart’s irresistible fantasy Die Zauberflöte (The Magic Flute) in all its glory in an enchanting production with a cast of rising young stars, conducted by Met Music Director Emeritus James Levine.

Here in Alnwick, you’ll be able to attend the European Music Show on Tuesday, 24 October. This is a European Partnership in Education, facilitated and funded by Erasmus. For the past two years, Lindisfarne Middle School students have been collaborating with schools from Paris, Boblingen, Algarrobo and Palermo towards creating an original musical. The story, dialogue in five languages, choreography, music and costumes are all created by middle school students under the supervision of their project coordinators and parent volunteers. They even got the voluntary help of a professional movie director, Luc Porta, from Paris.

Then at the end of next month, Bernhard will host another ‘Kaffeeklatsch‘ in the Kaffeehaus Amadeus in Lanchester – here’s your diary date: Sunday, 29 October from 2.30pm. As usual, please register directly. The Kaffeehaus Amadeus is also planning a Christmas Special on Sunday, 17th December 2017.

On 3 November from 9pm, Newcastle based Jazz Cafe will host Nautilus, a prominent contemporary jazz quartet from Germany. This is one of only three performances that they will be giving in the UK. Nautilus are Leipzig- based drummer and bassist Phillip Scholz and Robert Lucaciu, Cologne-based pianist Jurgen Friedrich and saxophonist Hayden Chisholm from New Zealand. Their brief, three-date UK tour is to promote their album ‘Infrablue,’ released by the London-based label Two Rivers Records.

There are probably various things that you may miss from Germany. InterNations recently put a few ideas together. What do you think about these ‘10 Things the UK needs to adopt from Germany‘? Do you have any other suggestions?

You may have heard of the South African tv host & comedian Trevor Noah. What you may not be aware of is that his father is Swiss and he therefore has been trying to tackle our language – in this YouTube clip he explains more. I can also highly recommend Trevor Noah’s book ‘Born a Crime‘, which describes him growing up in South Africa under Apartheid.

I wish you a lovely weekend!

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Dear Stammtisch Friends,

Next Monday, 15 May 2017 the Language Cafe at the Tyneside Cinema will host a joint French and German event, following the film Frantz. The film will start at around 6.15pm and there will be a discussion in French or German after the film. There are usually three groups, arranged by language level, so that everyone from beginners to fluent speakers can participate.

Also the Martin Luther Church in Shieldfield, Newcastle invites you again to their annual German Grillfest on Saturday, 24 June 2017. The event will start in the afternoon at 4pm and finish around 7pm. There is an entrance donation of £1 per person (children under 10 are free) in aid of the North of England Children’s Cancer Research Fund. To help the organisers plan ahead, please get tickets by either calling Oliver on07811 109 312, email him oliverheidrich@yahoo.com or simply turn up on the day.

If you’re still wondering what to do at the next bank holiday weekend, maybe the Northumberland Show at Bywell Hall near Stocksfield could just be up your street? On Monday, 29 May the finest livestock in the country is on show, there will be ‘bake off’ classes, Cumberland & Westmorland wrestling, a tug of war and Britains Strong Man Challenge Qualifier.

No day goes by and there is another ‘Brexit’ story in the papers and, of course, EU nationals are currently living a little bit in limbo. The German Embassy recently released some FAQs regarding Brexit and the impact on German nationals after the referendum, which you may find informative.

Here is also the lastest DIHK Brexit newsletter, which collates information on the latest events and news on this topic.

Also if somebody has recently taken on British citizienship or applies for the permanent residence status and are happy to share this with others, please let me know. I would also be interested in hearing from people who are planning to return to the EU and the challenges that brings.

However, if you are just planning your holidays, one quick piece of advice! Have a quick at your European Health Card, to make sure it is still valid as they expire and you have to renew them. The process is very simple via the NHS website and you should receive your new card promptly.

Honeywell have also shared information about new roles that have opened recently, both here in the North East and in Scotland. They are careers, requiring German in both Customer Service Administration and Technical Support:

Customer Service Administrator
Customer Care Specialist
Technical Support Specialist

Like many of you, I pick up German books when in the country and I can highly recommend these three – coincidentally, they all had as a common theme leaving a home and settling in a new country:

In ‘33 Bogen und ein Teehaus‘, author Mehrnousch Zaeri-Esfahani describes the journey she made as a 10-year old, when her family fled Iran via Turkey before they arrived first in East and then West Germany.

Dörte Hansen’s first novel ‘Altes Land‘ is based a bit closer to home. It follows the lives of two women – one makes a life for herself in Northern Germany after fleeing East Prussia as a child at the end of the war; another ‘escapes’ her life in Hamburg with her young son.

Bella Italia‘ is the first novel for author Daniel Speck, who already has a successful career as a script writer. The book is all about family, Italy (Sicily, Milan, Naples), Munich, cars, fashion, ‘Gastarbeiter’ and takes you on a journey through time, starting in the mid 1950s to today.

If you have books you would like to recommend to our Stammtisch group, then please forward this to me and I’m happy to share.

All the very best on this sunny day!

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