Newcastle Civic Centre

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Newcastle Civic Centre
Newcastle Civic Centre.JPG
Newcastle Civic Centre
General information
Location Newcastle upon Tyne
Coordinates 54°58′44″N 1°36′40″W / 54.979°N 1.6111°W / 54.979; -1.6111
Completed 1967
Inaugurated 14 November 1968

Newcastle Civic Centre is a local government building located in the Haymarket area of Newcastle upon Tyne, England. It is the main administrative and ceremonial centre for Newcastle City Council.[1] Designed by the city architect, George Kenyon,[2] the building was completed in 1967 and was formally opened by HM King Olav V of Norway on 14 November 1968.[3] It is a Grade II* listed building.[4] The Newcastle Civic Centre is the joint eighth tallest building in the city.


Plans to build a new city hall[5] on the site at Barras Bridge had been proposed prior to the outbreak of the Second World War, to the point of holding an architectural competition, although these were halted by the war; and due to post-war restrictions on capital expenditure, it was not until August 1956 that authorisation to begin construction was granted. During the interim period, the demolition of houses and a former Eye Hospital on the intended site was implemented.[3]

Work commenced on the building in May 1960, and the foundation stone was laid by the Lord Mayor, Alderman Mrs Gladys Robson, on 30 November 1960. The building was completed in 1967 and was formally opened by HM King Olav V of Norway on 14 November 1968. The total construction cost was £4,855,000.[3] On 6 May 1977, the Civic Centre was visited by the 39th President of the United States, Jimmy Carter, who delivered a speech famously containing the Geordie phrase "Howay the lads!"[6] A stone commemorating the event was placed in the Centre grounds.[7]

Sculpture and art works[edit]

The Civic Centre is also notable for its modern sculptures, in particular the "River God Tyne" and "Swans in Flight", both by David Wynne.[8] The cashiers reception of the rates hall has an abstract mural by Victor Pasmore.


  1. ^ Official website, URL accessed 12 March 2007.
  2. ^, URL accessed April 22, 2007
  3. ^ a b c Official website, URL accessed 12 March 2007.
  4. ^ English Heritage. "Details from listed building database (1242692)". National Heritage List for England. Retrieved 12 June 2011. 
  5. ^ Not to be confused with Newcastle City Hall, a concert hall
  6. ^ US President Jimmy Carter said Howay and 'became a Geordie', Newcastle Evening Chronicle.
  7. ^ Jimmy Carter stone, URL accessed 13 March 2007.
  8. ^ .Tyneside Life & Times, URL accessed 6 June 2007

External links[edit]