Gazette, 28 August 2015.
Poll gives overwhelming support to our area being known as ‘Teesside’ – Results follow launch of new ‘TeessideTogether’ group.
Gazette readers have had their say on the region’s so-called identity crisis. And it makes good reading for the new TeessideTogether group, which hopes to consign the term “Tees Valley” to history.
For years, the question of identity of the area lying to the north and south of the River Tees has been debated. Teesside, Tees Valley and Cleveland are among the names which have been used, with North Yorkshire and County Durham also brought into the equation.
To try to settle the argument, a poll was launched on GazetteLive this week, asking readers to vote on their favoured term for our area – and a whopping 81.2% said Teesside was the correct term. Only 1.4% selected Tees Valley. And of the other votes, 14.5% said “something else” while 2.9% believe there is no definition.
As well as voting, readers also left comments on the issue, giving their views on the true identity of the area. Among them was Janet Campbell who said: “Historically, Middlesbrough was part of North Yorkshire, alongside Redcar and East Cleveland, Stockton, Darlo and Billingham classed as Durham! Sorry, Hartlepool too! Simples!”
PachterStation said: “The River Tees and the TS postcode settles the argument, plus we’re known as Teessiders. But snobs out there will prefer North Yorkshire. Using Cleveland should be totally abolished. Can’t say I’ve ever come across such confusion. Tees Valley is laughable.”
While Pedro said: “Teesside – the rest are cosmetic rubbish, and THAT goes for the airport.” And GJ Hadfield said: “Will somebody please wake me up when there is a chance of progress being made?”
Back in 2010, Teesside topped a Gazette readers poll, with Tees Valley rejected by locals. The issue reared its head again recently following the launch of a new organisation known as TeessideTogether.
The area has also recently announced a bid for the 2025 UK City of Culture – under the Tees Valley banner. As reported, TeessideTogether argues that after almost 20 years, all efforts to persuade local people they are from the Tees Valley have failed.
The organisers believe the area needs a clear identity as devolution moves ever closer in the region through the Government’s Northern Powerhouse initiative.