NewcastleGateshead Initiative (NGI) will move into The Common Room building this spring, following its two-year refurbishment.
Liz Mayes, Chief Executive of The Common Room, said: “This move will bring The Common Room team together with our colleagues at NGI, who promote our city across the world as a vibrant place to visit and do business.
“As one of the most historically significant buildings in Newcastle, it’s fitting that we will be the new home for the NGI team and we’re delighted to welcome them.”
The Grade II* listed building on Westgate Road is in the final stages of a two-year programme of works to preserve the building and its collection and create a new hub for innovation and learning in Newcastle city centre.
Since 2016, The North of England Institute of Mining and Mechanical Engineers and The Common Room, have been supported by a major grant of £4.1 million from The National Lottery Heritage Fund, thanks to National Lottery players. This was awarded to develop the project and restore and revitalise the Grade II* listed building, completing its transformation. The grant also enables a programme of STEM related engagement activity to take place around the region and within Neville Hall in line with The Common Room’s mission.
It was built between 1869 and 1872 to provide a headquarters for The North of England Institute of Mining and Mechanical Engineers, and holds one of the two most important collections in the world for the study of the birth of the industrial revolution.
When the building reopens as The Common Room, it will act as a hub for business, innovation, learning and engineering in Newcastle city centre, complete with a café bar and spaces available for corporate hire and weddings.
Sarah Green, Chief Executive of NewcastleGateshead Initiative, added: “NGI is delighted to move into The Common Room, as the iconic building has a history of innovation and collaboration bringing together great leaders from business, civic society and universities. Post-Covid, it is critical that NGI works with its partners to channel that same spirit of innovation and enterprise to create jobs, attract investment and to facilitate sustainable growth, a vibrant economy and a strong and diverse cultural and visitor offer in NewcastleGateshead.
“The Common Room’s location will support NGI to work at the heart of the region’s economic recovery and we look forward to hosting our partners, international trade delegations, inward investors, media and visitors in the building’s beautiful facilities.”
The Common Room is now seeking to raise £1m in match funding to support the capital project and is inviting businesses and individuals to get in touch to discuss exclusive partnership and giving opportunities.
Notes to editors
Image: Exterior of The Common Room