Jesmond Dene was gifted to the City of Newcastle upon Tyne by Victorian industrialist Lord Armstrong.

In a new biography, author Henrietta Heald tackles the thorny subject of William Armstrong. He might have bequested his garden to the people of Tyneside but his riches came from the arms trade. Armstrong sold guns to whomever would buy them; often to both sides in a conflict.

Henrietta Heald’s book is a fascinating study of one of the 19th Century’s most powerful figures. Lord Armstrong entertained guests from around the world in Jesmond Dene.

Learn more about this multi-faceted man at the launch of William Armstrong: Magician of the North

The launch will be held on Tuesday, 28th September, 6.30–8.30pm at Discovery Museum, Blandford Square, Newcastle upon Tyne NE1 4JA.

Henrietta Heald will introduce the book with the help of Dr Penny Smith, Principal Lecturer in Creative Writing at the University of Northumbria.

William Armstrong – A Spark of Inspiration exhibition is on at the Discovery Museum until 16th January 2011 and can be viewed before the event.

To reserve a free place at the book launch, contact Linda Grogan at or call 0191 277 2274