Throughout history, our region was known for its rich deposits of coal and iron which fuelled the Industrial Revolution. At its peak of coal production in the 18th Century, The Great Northern Coalfield was the largest coalfield in the world. Coal not only boosted the economy but paved the way for pioneering engineering such as early railways and some of the country’s most famous bridges.

However, the task of extracting coal through mining was hard and dangerous work, often resulting in death and disaster.

This is the story of what our region’s engineers invented, innovated and campaigned for to make mining safer in the North East, the rest of the country and around the world.

This is the story of our region’s graft and glory; our engineering feats and responses to challenges facing industry past, present and future. Will you follow in the footsteps of our engineering superheroes?

Booking information

This exhibition is available to view every day of our Opening Festival, but booking is required. If you have already booked a ticket for a workshop, activity or performance, access to the Graft & Glory Exhibition is included on the same date. Otherwise, you will need to book a general admission ticket to access this exhibition. This exhibition can also be viewed online.

Date: Friday 30th July – Tuesday 31st August 2021

Times: Open Monday – Saturday, 10am – 4pm

Location: Wood Hall, The Common Room, Westgate Road, Newcastle Upon Tyne NE1 1SE.