12 Words/Phrases you NEED to know if you’re studying in Newcastle!

If you have ever visited Newcastle and experienced Geordies in their hometown, sometimes it can feel like we are speaking a whole other language. However, Newcastle has regularly been voted one of the Friendliest Places to Live, so why not take a look at this Guide to the Geordie language, and you will be chatting like you’re a local in no time.

Phrase- ‘Why Aye Man!!’


You will hear this a LOT in Newcastle, and would basically be said instead of ‘Yes, of course’. You would typically hear this in response to a question, for example if someone asks: ‘Are you coming to the pub?’ they would answer with ‘WHEY AYE MAN!’


Meaning- Town                        

This one may be slightly self-explanatory, however, it is a very important word, so thought it had to be dropped in here somewhere. This has developed, due to our accents when we say the word Town, so you will often hear us Geordies say, we are ‘Gannin (Going) to the Toon’. In addition to that, fans of Newcastle United, are widely known as ‘The Toon Army’.

Word- Scran

Meaning – Food

Another word very commonly used around the Toon (see above), when discussing my favourite subject, eating or food.

Scran in a sentence- ‘Let’s go and get some Scran’ which typically could be followed up with the phrase ‘I’m Clamming’, which translates as starving!

Word- Bairn

Meaning – Child/Baby

If you are spending time around people that live in Newcastle, you will definitely hear them refer to their children as ‘the bairn’s’. This word is also featured in the very common (and probably my all time favourite) Geordie phrase ‘Shy bairns get Nowt’. This is the Geordie for’ if you don’t ask you don’t get’.

Word- Canny

Meaning – Good/Nice

Another word you will have definitely heard out and about in the Toon. This is usually used to describe a person, for example: ‘She’s a canny lass’, and is probably the best compliment you will get from a Geordie. However, this can also be used to describe pretty much anything else, for example ‘a canny bit of scran’.

Word – Radgie/Radge

Meaning – Throwing a temper tantrum

This word will be used to describe someone who is kicking off about something, and the sentence ‘they’re gannin proper radgie’ is heard very regularly on a night out in the toon. Also, if someone is in a mood, Geordies will often describe them as ‘in a radge’.

Phrase – Workyticket

Meaning – Pushing your luck

Someone will be described as a ‘proper workyticket’ if they are being awkward or mischievous. This word is said to have been derived from use within the Armed Forces, post war.

Phrase – Get Wrong

Meaning – Get told off

This is probably the phrase that confuses my non Geordie friends the most, and they always ask what it means. You would use this phrase to describe someone who is about to be in trouble, for example: ‘you’re going to get wrong for that’. Sometimes in the case of this phrase, the word ‘Wrong’ can be replaced with ‘Wrang’, just to make it even more confusing.

Word – Hoy

Meaning – Throw/Pass

Another one of my favourite and most used Geordie words, ‘Hoy’ means to throw or pass an item or object. A Geordie would typically say ‘hoy that over here’, or ‘I’m just gannin to hoy out the rubbish’. The word can also be used in the phrase ‘on the hoy’ which means going out for a few (too many) drinks.

Word – Bubble

Meaning – Cry

This means to cry, and is what any Newcastle fan does whenever their beloved Magpies are relegated from the Premier League.

Phrase – Gannin Yem

Meaning – Go Home

I can guarantee that you haven’t been on a night out in Newcastle unless you have seen someone stumbling out of the 24 hour Greggs at 4am stating they are ‘gannin yem’. The word ‘Yem’ can also be spelt or pronounced as ‘hyem’. 

Word- Mortal

Meaning – Drunk

This is probably one of the most common words you will hear anyone say in the Toon. If you have ever watched one episode of Geordie Shore, you will definitely be familiar with the meaning of this word. The sentence ‘ Let’s go to the Toon and get absolutely Mortal’ will be heard by many friendship groups every single weekend, and with the amazing Newcastle Night Life, who can blame them?