Alex Jacobs

Alex is the founder and managing director of Northern Secrets Ltd. After moving from Germany to the UK in 2004 and studying Tourism Management at university, Alex made a dream a reality: the opportunity to bring travellers to a part of the world he loves!

Extremely passionate about all things Northern England, Alex, aside from running the business, is also one of your dedicated travel consultants when creating your travel arrangements. Alex is also a registered Blue Badge tourist guide for Northern England and has expansive knowledge of the region & it’s hidden gems. Alex has travelled to every part of the destinations we cover and has vast experience in designing a trip that perfectly matches you, our client.

Alex is bilingual in English & German, therefore happy to speak, build and implement your chosen trip into the language you are looking for (we also offer French, Dutch & Italian tours).

Responsible for many aspects of the business, the core value has never been forgotten and play at the heart of his work: creating memories for travellers. This philosophy forms the ethos of our business and Alex ensures that this will remain the fact going forward into a bright future.

Anna Unger

Anna joined the team in 2018 to pursue & share her passion for this hidden gem of Great Britain.

After completing an MA in Art History, Archaeology and English Literature in Germany and working in the art auction trade initially, she pursued her passion for tour guiding as a certified tour guide in Munich & Bavaria for a few years. She enjoyed showing visitors the famous fairy-tale castles, world-class art galleries and quirky locations in and around the Oktoberfest mecca.

After relocating to the UK with her family in 2008, Anna, who is virtually bilingual in English and German (or even a Geordie-German if there is such a thing) set up her business Localiso as a self-employed translator and is happy to guide in either language. Missing tour guiding she grasped the opportunity to get back to her roots and after completing in-house training with Northern Secrets, she is also training to become a Blue Badge tourist guide for North East England.

Today, Anna is the one with all the ideas for new tours & journeys and is your personal travel consultant when booking a group vacation with Northern Secrets.

Rod Joyce

Rod is a professional interpreter/translator for modern languages – in particular English, Italian & German. Through this he has become more and more a people person as his work includes a great amount of live interpretations.

His big love is cycling though – any old dirt track will do! This region has a vast variety of cycling paths, tracks, roads and all have one thing in common: they cross through beautiful stunning scenery – whether the Northumberland coast, C&C cycle path from East to West, Hadrian’s Wall or Pennine Way… In Scotland, some of the best cycle paths will take you through Glencoe or to some of the Western Isles…

It is this passion for people & cycling that, combined, creates the splendid mix of becoming a great tour guide! Rod went on to train with us and now produces cycling tours for us & also conducts these on a regular basis.

Jill Oliver

Jill has spent a long career introducing the history, heritage and beauty of the North of England to many hundreds of people from overseas.

A native of the North East,speaking several languages, she is delighted to guide new visitors around this amazing and unique region.

Judith Shoulder

Judith, originally from The Netherlands, has lived in North East England for over 15 years and has worked in travel for most of that time. She is fluent in English, German and, of course, Dutch.

She is highly passionate about her favourite places to guide (definitely the city of Newcastle upon Tyne, her home area of North Tyneside & the beautiful North East coast.

Judith is our longest serving and one of our most experienced tour guides, looking after thousands of guests each year – she loves her work & will dedicate all her time & effort to creating a perfect tour experience for you.

Jane Sowdon

Jane is an amazing guide! Although she grew up in London, Jane moved to the North East in 1984 to study German and History – and put simply, she fell in love and stayed. She married a true ‘Geordie’ meaning she is now fully adopted into North East England life and culture. Jane has been teaching German for over 30 years and currently teaches part-time at two universities. She is passionate about the region and looks forward to showing you some of the historic, beautiful, and fascinating places we are all so lucky to have here.

Katie Murdoch

Born and raised in North East England and always thoroughly enjoyed showing visitors around the region, Katie is one of our fantastic tour guides!

She has experience and knowledge in places such as Newcastle, the North East coast, Alnwick & Durham. Guests love the personal approach and caring nature of Katie!

After studying languages at university she has worked in Germany, Austria, France and Spain. She is a passionate walker and, in her past, has guided hikes around some of the beautiful French countryside. She has been back in the North East for many years now and lives with her husband & three children. Hobbies include camping, caravaning and playing the violin.

Katie speaks several languages and guides for us in English, German & French.