About NewcastleGateshead

United by seven bridges across the spectacular Quayside, Newcastle (on the north of the Tyne) and Gateshead (on the south) form a single, diverse and extremely attractive visitor destination.

World-class culture, vibrant nightlife, award-winning dining, inspiring heritage, fantastic shopping and acclaimed architecture are linked here, as nowhere else, by the famous Geordie spirit.

Useful facts about NewcastleGateshead

  • Rough Guides named Newcastle the top destination in the world to visit in 2018.
  • People from Newcastle and Gateshead are known as ‘Geordies.’ They are renowned for their distinctive accent and friendly, welcoming, fun-loving nature.
  • Newcastle and Gateshead are connected by seven magnificent bridges which span the River Tyne.
  • The Gateshead Millennium Bridge is the most recent of these bridges, built in 2001 it is called the ‘blinking eye bridge’ by locals due to its unique tilting mechanism.
  • Gateshead Quays is home to two of the most significant cultural venues in England; Sage Gateshead, a landmark music venue designed by famous architects Foster + Partners (who designed the dome of the Reichstag in Berlin) and BALTIC, a contemporary art gallery which became the first non-Tate venue outside of London to host the Turner Prize in 2011.
  • Grey Street, in the heart Newcastle’s historic Grainger Town, is a landmark street in the city, its neo-classical buildings were designed in the 1830s by local architect Richard Grainger.
  • Charles Grey, 2nd Earl Grey, who was British Prime Minister from 1830 to 1834, was born and raised in Northumberland, north of Newcastle. His statue stands on top of a 40 metre column in Newcastle City Centre.
  • Newcastle Castle has one of the finest surviving castle keeps in England and is where Newcastle gets its name from. Much of the Castle Keep you can see today was completed in stone in 1178, during the reign of Henry II.
  • Blackfriars Restaurant, located in a 13th Century former Dominican friary, is believed to be the oldest dining room in England.
  • Locomotion No. 1 was the first steam locomotive in the world to carry passengers on a public railway. It was built by pioneering railway engineers George and Robert Stephenson in 1825 at their workshop on Forth Banks in Newcastle.
  • The incandescent light bulb was invented by Sir Joseph Swan in Newcastle, which he patented in 1878.
  • Newcastle had the first street in the world to be lit by electricity.
  • James’ Park is one of the oldest association football grounds in England, having hosted its first match in 1880 and been home to Newcastle United since 1892.

Tourism statistics

  • 65 million people visited NewcastleGateshead in 2018. This was up by 3.5% on 2017.
  • The number of days visitors spent in the destination also grew on 2017 (+3.7%) to 21.87 million visitor days.
  • Visitor expenditure in NewcastleGateshead now stands at £1.76 billion, up by 4.3% on 2017.
  • The number of people directly employed in tourism in NewcastleGateshead in 2018 stood at 16,193, up by 4.6% on 2017. When indirect employment in the supply chain is taken into account total employment stands at 20,678, up by 4.8% on 2017.
  • The number of overnight visitors to NewcastleGateshead stands at 2.22 million with these visitors spending 5.44 million nights in the destination. These visitors spend £626 million up by 6% on 2017.
  • Day visitor levels have risen by 3% to 16.4 million, with expenditure levels growing by the same rate to £1.1 billion.
  • The average spend per trip by overnight visitors is £218.90 compared to £206.72 in 2017, while the average spend per day visitor was £50.92 compared to £49.00 in 2017.
  • The Food and Drink sector accounts for 32% of all expenditure and 37% of all employment.
  • 88% of all visits are day visits while these visitors account for 64% of expenditure.

Business strengths

  • Tech and digital – Newcastle has a vibrant digital cluster with the highest growth in England (+30.7%, 2013-2017) outside of London and our software and technology market is forecast to grow to 2.5bn by 2020.
  • Life Sciences – one of only six designated UK Science Cities, Newcastle has an internationally renowned reputation for life sciences. In the heart of the city, Newcastle Helix is a 24-acre mixed-use site for science, business, living and leisure.
  • Business and Professional Services – Newcastle is home to some of the biggest names in business and professional services, and has a strong reputation in the banking, corporate finance, insurance, contact centre and shared services.
  • Offshore and Marine – Newcastle is a major centre for the renewable, offshore and subsea energy industries and is one of six Centres for Offshore Renewable Engineering (CORE) in England.