Facing the Future

Facing the Future is a development programme to sustainably support underrepresented STEM industry professionals and practitioners with youth engagement. It is designed in collaboration with STEMazing, to co-create a summer engagement programme and a toolkit for post-project use.

Two young people watching a facilitator deliver an activity to them on their table.

Speak the Future

Speak the Future is an integrated arts-based and STEM programme designed to generate discussion and creativity around young people's ideas and aspirations for themselves and the region.

Inspiring Pioneers

In partnership with Newcastle University, we are researching inclusive commemorative practices and delivering five new blue plaques across the region.

Our Voices: Oral History Project

Working in partnership with Dr Andy Clark from the Oral History Collective at Newcastle University, we are documenting and celebrating the people of our region. These oral histories will be preserved and stored within The Common Room’s archive and collection, available to listen to in The Common Room's Oral History Listening Booth, and online.

Old map showing Western Coal Districts from 1861

Explore Online

Our ‘explore online’ programme offers a range of exciting activities for all the family.

Whether you’re interested in our industrial heritage and want to find out more about engineers of the past, or you want to explore what lies beneath our feet or do our weekly challenges, there is something for everyone to enjoy remotely.

"Oral History is a crucial tool for understanding lived experiences of the North East. The interaction between events, historical change and individual memory is necessary for capturing the area’s past and promoting opportunities for its future."

Dr Andy Clark Research Associate in Oral History, Newcastle University

"Loved doing my oral history interview today. We talked about my passion for engineering and innovation and what my role means to me. I think it’s so important to understand our heritage and industry especially in times when we’re allowing young kids to step forward and be our voice. The North East will become that vocal point for industry and it’s vital we have amazing groups like the Common Room to give us a central hub to explore, create, design, innovate, lead and inspire."

Stevie McLaughlin, Tharsus and Common Room Youth Board Member

"The Common Room is extremely important to the Royal Institution - it's a fantastic venue for Masterclasses, combining the classroom and theatre facilities we need to run the workshops with the unique opportunity for students to experience this important heritage organisation, linked as it is to the history of engineering"

Rachel Dorris, Royal Institution