Our workshops are designed to support the National Curriculum. They use history to instil pride and raise the aspirations of future innovators and engineers. Our programme links with contemporary engineering companies to showcase the diversity of engineers and engineering. These support schools to meet several Gatsby benchmarks to enhance careers guidance. We have run workshops at our building, The Common Room, in central Newcastle, in schools, and at our partner engineering company’s sites.

Demonstrator wearing a mask showing a mineral to a child

Live Show

Discover how hard and dangerous the life of a miner was in the North East during the industrial revolution and since. Explosions, poisoning and suffocation were all risks in the dark and cramped mines. This captivating STEM show, in our historic lecture theatre, will lead you through a journey of human ingenuity versus geology, with a selection of meticulously preserved scientific and engineering marvels.

Presenting to an audience in the theatre

Heritage Tour

The Common Room is a building with an incredible history and some breath-taking architecture. Come and see the Wood Hall and our historic lecture theatre. View geological specimens from the North of England with our display ‘Mineral Wealth of the North’, and artefacts from our collection. Our building is also represented in LEGO® form with a 30,000-brick replica, so you can see everything up close!


We have partnered with LEGO® artist Steve Mayes of ‘Brick This’, to create a selection of LEGO® kits linked to STEM subjects and the heritage of the North East. Visitors can book to have a LEGO® building session to try their hand constructing each of these models. Just be warned, you can’t take them home!

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The Common Room holds “one of the two most important collections in the world for the study of the birth of the Industrial Revolution”. As well as over 35,000 printed books, we hold unique archives of photographs, manuscripts, maps, objects, underground plans and more! Much of this collection is freely available for education use, and we can retrieve items of relevance to the history of your local area.

To book one of our workshops, or to find out more about them, please contact a member of the Programme and Engagement team.

Our Education Programme is fully funded by the National Lottery Heritage Fund until 2023, meaning that we can currently provide workshops free of charge.

We can generally run workshops for groups and classes with a minimum of 10 children to a maximum of 35 children. However, if you have specific requirements please speak to a member of the Programme and Engagement team via the get in touch page.

On average, each workshop will run for 1 hour, or longer if they include meeting an engineer. However, we are happy to speak to you about how our workshops can be tailored to fit with your current timetable in advance of your booking.

The Common Room are happy to discuss how we can support the needs of your company, organisation or school, including offering bespoke, tailored workshops on the themes of engineering heritage and STEM. Please do contact our Programme and Engagement team to find out more.