Newcastle (10) 17
Tries: Balding, Rudd Cons: Wilkinson 2 Pen: Wilkinson
Bristol (3) 3
Wilkinson set a new record as his side claimed a vital win at Kingston Park
Newcastle fly-half Jonny Wilkinson reclaimed the Premiership all-time scoring record to help the Falcons pile the misery on basement club Bristol.
Wilkinson kicked seven points to reach 1,486 league points and surpass former Leicester fly-half Andy Goode's mark.
Ed Barnes put Bristol ahead early on but that was it for the visitors, who have lost all four games this season.
Adam Balding and John Rudd crossed for the Falcons either side of half-time to give the hosts a second home win.
Wilkinson's first penalty from 45 metres levelled the scores at 3-3 and Newcastle should have scored when centre Jamie Noon nearly broke through and Jones joined the line from full-back, only for Tim Visser to be driven into touch by the corner flag.
The try did come when All Black Joe McDonnell burst through and Phil Dowson drove up to the Bristol line where Balding forced his way over on 23 minutes, Wilkinson's conversion matching Goode's mark of 1,484 points.
Newcastle had the edge in the scrum but Bristol looked more inventive when they had the ball, especially through Luke Arscott and Neil Brew, but both sides were finding it hard to hang onto the ball on a greasy pitch.
The Falcons were just about worth their 10-3 half-time lead but the second half started as messily as the first and it was hardly surprising both sides opted to kick the ball frequently.
Wilkinson did his best to spark the game into life with a couple of mazy runs and it looked as if he had made an opening for Steve Jones, but the pass was fractionally forward.
The try did come for the home side, Wilkinson and Tom May carving a way through for Rudd to crash over in the corner.
Wilkinson converted from the touchline to claim his place in the record books on 56 minutes.
Newcastle director of rugby Steve Bates:
"When Jonny kicked that conversion from the touchline in the second half it was just what we needed.
"It gave the team a big lift but that's what you get with Jonny. It's quite amazing that he has the record for points scoring in the Premiership considering how much rugby he has missed.
"We're very pleased with the result although we did make a few errors and we now go to Gloucester with confidence.
"We will keep our feet on the floor because while it was a good performance, it wasn't a vintage display."
Bristol head coach Richard Hill:
"There's no-one like Jonny when he's playing behind a pack going forward and we contributed to our own downfall by making far too many mistakes.
"I can't put my finger on why that happened and I'm at a bit of loss really after we played so well last week."
Newcastle: Jones; Visser, Noon, May, Rudd; Wilkinson, Grindal; McDonnell, Thompson, Hayman, Perry, Sorenson, Balding, Williamson, P Dowson.
Replacements: Davey for Rudd (62), Charlton for Grindal (66), Ward for McDonnell (55), Long for Thompson (51), Swinson for Perry (62), Winter for Balding (64).
Not Used: Clegg.
Bristol: Lilo; T Arscott, Brew, L Arscott, Lemi; Barnes, Beveridge; Clarke, Linklater, Hobson, Winters, Budgett, Salter, El Abd, Ward-Smith.
Replacements: Barden for L Arscott (62), Ashwin for Barnes (70), Thomas for Beveridge (69), Regan for Linklater (70), Bracken for Hobson (62), Blowers for Salter (62).
Not Used: Sidoli.
Ref: Chris White (RFU).