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Conferencing in Style: Unique Venues in Newcastle and Gateshead

If you’re planning a conference or event in Newcastle upon Tyne and Gateshead but don’t know where to start in your search for a venue, this guide is for you! From iconic landmarks to contemporary spaces, Newcastle and Gateshead offer a range of venues that combine functionality with style. This blog presents an overview of some of the region’s unique venues to ensure your event stands out from the crowd and leaves a lasting impression on delegates.


The Glasshouse International Centre for Music

Situated on the banks of the River Tyne, The Glasshouse International Centre for Music (formerly Sage Gateshead) is an iconic part of Newcastle and Gateshead’s Quayside. It offers versatile event spaces for conferences, exhibitions and meetings, including the recent NHS Research Development Forum. Designed by Sir Norman Foster, The Glasshouse is an international centre for music and home to the Royal Northern Sinfonia. Recently, they had the honour of hosting the first BBC Proms weekend outside London in July 2023. With cutting edge facilities and picturesque views of the Quayside, The Glasshouse offers the perfect environment for a memorable conference experience.

Sage Gateshead at sunset with a cloudy sky, standing across the River Tyne, with the Tyne Bridge and other bridges along the Tyne in the background. The venue is large, made of glass and resembles a snail

Photo by Sara Farid of The Glasshouse (formerly Sage Gateshead) and the Tyne Bridge


St. James Park, Newcastle United Football Club

St. James’ Park, the beloved home stadium of Newcastle United, goes beyond football to offer several spaces suitable for conferences and large-scale meetings. The stadium boasts excellent catering services and modern facilities, making sure that your conference will be nothing short of exceptional. Its location in the heart of the city centre also means excellent transport links, easy access to a plethora of bars and restaurants, as well as other city centre venues which can enhance your event offering. If you’re looking for something to add to an unforgettable social programme, you can even take part in a stadium and rooftop tour!


The Biscuit Factory 

Situated between the city centre and bustling Ouseburn area in the cultural quarter of the city, The Biscuit Factory is a stunning contemporary art gallery and a truly individual venue. Refurbished and reopened in 2002 after its former days as a Victorian biscuit factory, the building has maintained much of its original structure and charm. The combination of art and event facilities make The Biscuit Factory an exceptional choice for conferences, meetings, and gatherings, offering a creative backdrop that is sure to inspire attendees. Spaces boasted by the venue include purpose-built function suite The Biscuit Room, design-led space Artisan, and a gallery featuring an independent in-house café, The Factory Kitchen, which also has its own rooftop terrace, perfect for summer socialising.


Discovery Museum

The Discovery Museum in Newcastle city centre is a Grade II listed building, offering spaces which showcase the history and innovation of the region. The museum’s modern facilities and commitment to accessibility ensure that every delegate can participate fully in the conference’s engaging and inspiring atmosphere. With ramps, an abundance of seating throughout the museum and wheelchair-hire services, accessibility is at the forefront of the Discovery Museum’s values. It also has a range of exclusive and immersive local history and science exhibits which delegates can enjoy before or after the event.


Wylam Brewery 

Wylam Brewery resides within the beautiful Palace of Arts building, amongst the greenery of Exhibition Park in the heart of Newcastle city centre. The building is the last remaining structure from the 1929 North East Exhibition, which celebrated and encouraged craft, art and industry, and is visually intriguing both inside and out. Wylam Brewery regularly hosts a range of events, including weddings, live music shows and corporate events. The Grand Hall, a multifunctional events space, can accommodate up to 800 standing, 300 theatre-style, or 200 seated for dining. Its central location means it is easily accessible for delegates, with excellent public transport links as well as being within walking distance to other amenities. The convenient location, peaceful setting and flexible spaces provide a seamless experience for both delegates and organisers.

Wylam Brewery in the Palace of Arts in Exhibition park, across from the lake on a cloudy day, surrounded by greenery. The venue and its surroundings reflect into the lake below

Photo by Sara Farid of Wylam Brewery on a cloudy day


Tyneside Cinema

Tyneside Cinema is a beautiful, historic building offering a range of versatile event spaces, including the Classic Auditorium, the Digital Lounge and The Electra. These unique spaces provide immersive experiences for delegates, with a blend of cinematic heritage and modern design, making Tyneside Cinema an ideal venue for film screenings, conferences, and networking events. Continuing the history of inclusion upon which Tyneside Cinema was founded, all spaces available for hire are wheelchair accessible, making sure every area of the venue is welcoming to those with additional access needs. The venue also has informal spaces such as the Tyneside Bar and Café and Vicolo by Tyneside Cinema, which are perfect for indulging in some food or hosting a drinks reception. If you’re planning on travelling further afield, Monument and Haymarket Metro stations are just a short walk away.


Newcastle Civic Centre

As a prominent landmark in the city, Newcastle Civic Centre provides various spaces fit for conferences, seminars and other events. Flexible room configurations and modern amenities enable Newcastle Civic Centre to offer a professional setting that caters to the diverse needs of conference delegates and event organisers. Newcastle is a walkable city, and the central location of the Civic Centre offers the added benefit of having several amenities, such as cafés, hotels and public transport links, right on its doorstep.


BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art

Situated on the Gateshead Quayside, BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art presents unique event spaces with a modern and artistic atmosphere. Housed in a former flour mill, the gallery boasts multiple rooms available for conferences, presentations, and workshops. Panoramic views of the Quayside and its iconic bridges, as well as the gallery’s exhibitions, certainly set the scene for creativity and innovative thinking. BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art is also home to SIX Restaurant, a modern rooftop dining destination, ideal for networking and post-event dining while enjoying spectacular views of the city.


The Common Room

The Common Room is a popular heritage venue that celebrates the region’s history of engineering and innovation. Located in the heart of Newcastle near Newcastle Central station, this venue combines cultural charm with a modern twist and has a variety of rooms perfect for social gatherings, networking events, product launches, and creative workshops, offering a vibrant and unique setting for conference delegates. A Grade II* listed building with an interesting history, originally constructed by the North of England Institute of Mining Engineers as their headquarters, The Common Room won a Silver Award in Business Events Venue of the Year at the 2023 North East England Tourism Awards. On the ground floor is 5|Quarter, a charming café bar that adds to the venue’s personality. With its elegant and inviting design, 5|Quarter offers delegates a lovely space to relax, grab a coffee, and enjoy their time at the conference.

Drooping lights over an ornate wooden stairwell at the top floor of The Common Room. There is a glass ceiling and portraits obscured by the banister. The photo shows the listed building's beauty and character as a venue

Photo by Sara Farid, taken outside the NGI offices in The Common Room


Newcastle Helix

A hub for scientific innovation and research, Newcastle Helix doubles as a premier events and conference space. The Helix comprises several buildings, including the Frederick Douglass Centre, The Core and The Catalyst, to form a 24-acre district that is an exemplar of sustainable urban regeneration, combining commercial and residential space with first-class research and education facilities. It also houses the National Innovation Centre for Ageing (NICA) in The Catalyst as well as the National Innovation Centre for Data (NICD). Sleek design elements, advanced technology and the innovative spirit of Newcastle Helix make this a highly rated and unique venue in the North East.


Newcastle upon Tyne, Gateshead and the wider North East region offer a diverse selection of unique conference and events venues, each providing their own individual style and functionality. From iconic landmarks to modern spaces, these venues cater to the needs of those seeking a professional but engaging environment. When planning your next conference in the North East, check out these venues to ensure a memorable event that reflects the spirit of this brilliant region.


Get some more venue inspiration here.

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