The town is playing host to its first Poetry Festival, with a number of events planned in March.
It is the brainchild of traders Vikki Milne, of Blueberry Square, and Lucy Hull, from For the Love of the North, as a unique way of celebrating Whitley Bay.
Vikki said: “Poetry can be a powerful way of connecting and expressing our hopes, dreams and ideas. I thought it would be a great idea to invite everyone to write poems about Whitley Bay that we could display in shop windows all through the high street.
“We want people to share personal memories of times they’ve had here so we can celebrate what makes the town special to so many of us.”
There are three categories in the poetry competition – Under 11s, Under 18s and adults, with the deadline for entries being March 15. Entries will then be display around the town and winners chosen.
Lucy said: “So far seven schools have signed up to enter and we’re hoping to see a good number of adult entries too.
“This is a chance for children and grown-ups to get recognition for their work. We’ll be publishing a booklet with the best entries that will be available in a number of outlets.”
For more about the festival or how to submit a poem visit www.whitleybaypoetryfestival.co.uk
The programme is growing daily, with traders getting involved in fringe activities.
Black Storm Brewery is holding an open mic poetry night, Blue Bramble coffee shop is running poetry writing workshops facilitated by WriteSpace, Ann Cleeves, author of the TV series Vera, is performing at For the Love of the North, Jam Jar Cinema is going to screen Dead Poet’s Society and there will be other related activities at various locations across the town.