Gateshead Quays key to big conferences in England’s North East

England’s North East is set to target major conferences with an ambitious new conference centre development receiving funding from the UK’s Department for International Trade.

Gateshead Quays has been named as one of seven schemes officially backed by the government in £2 billion of new investment opportunities.

The £250 million, 3.84 hectare development will incorporate a significant flat-floor convention and exhibition centre, as well as a state-of-the-art, 12,500 seat entertainment arena, bars, restaurants and extensive public area.

The new development will increase the region’s ability to attract and host major conferences and exhibitions, as well as music and cultural events.

Paul Szomoru, Director of Business Events at NewcastleGateshead Convention Bureau, added: “This commitment to Gateshead Quays is very encouraging and shows that business events are a priority for the government.

“The new conference and event facilities will be bigger than anything we have seen in the North East before and will help us in our ongoing work to attract major conferences, as well as inward investment, to the region.”

The grand vision for Gateshead Quays has been unveiled by Gateshead Council, development partners Ask Real Estate, PATRIZIA and world-renowned architects HOK.

It is anticipated to support more than 1,140 jobs with well over half being newly created. Attracting an extra 296,000 visitors to the region it’s estimated to boost the regional economy by over £30 million annually in future years.

The development, situated between Norman Foster’s Sage Gateshead and the BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art on the south bank of the Tyne, will connect the waterfront to Gateshead town centre, drawing people across the Gateshead Millennium Bridge and acting as a catalyst for the regeneration of the wider quays area.

Cllr Martin Gannon, Gateshead Council Leader, said: “It is one of the most exciting development opportunities in the UK today I think it’s absolutely the right thing to do in this location. This is a gamechanger not just for Gateshead but for the region.”