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Bridge delights delegates in blink of an eye

28th June 2010

Categories: Convention Bureau News

Bridge delights delegates in blink of an eye

Conference delegates descending on NewcastleGateshead for major national and international meetings already have the twin cities’ stunning venues, architecture and countryside to enjoy, but are now in for an extra treat this summer with the chance to see the 800-tonne iconic Gateshead Millennium Bridge ‘wink’ at them.

The structure famous for its winking eye tilt will open on a daily basis at noon, with clients holding events in NewcastleGateshead able to witness the spectacle, right through until early September this year.

Conferences delegates at nearby venues including The Sage Gateshead and BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art will be able to view the landmark’s trademark rotation from a riverside reception and delegates dining on NewcastleGateshead Quayside will have a prime view of the occasion. 

National and international associations attending major annual meetings in NewcastleGateshead this summer as diverse as the 15th International Congress on Marine & Fouling, the British Hydrology Society International Symposium and the UK Clinical Research Facilities Conference, will all get the opportunity to witness the bridge ‘wink’ during their forthcoming events.

The unique ‘blinking eye’ bridge, the world’s first tilting bridge, has picked up a whole host of accolades since its Royal opening in 2002, including the Stirling Prize, and is internationally recognised as a symbol of the regeneration success across Gateshead and Newcastle.

Jessica Roberts, head of business tourism at NewcastleGateshead Convention Bureau, said: “Corporates and major associations holding conferences in NewcastleGateshead frequently comment on the twin cities’ wow factor and this is further proof of how NewcastleGateshead pulls out all the stops to delight conference delegates. The bridge tilt is a truly amazing spectacle that will delight the many delegates due to converge on NewcastleGateshead over the summer.”

Practitioners and researchers from Europe, USA, Israel, Hong Kong and New Zealand who attended The Royal College of Nursing (RCN) Annual International Nursing Research Conference witnessed the bridge tilt as part of a gala dinner celebration at The Sage Gateshead.

Kathryn Clark, RCN conference and events manager, said: “For delegates to see this amazing structure rotate for their annual gathering proved both an exciting experience and a talking point throughout the duration of the conference and made our NewcastleGateshead meeting a truly memorable experience.” 

Gateshead Council cabinet member, Cllr Linda Green, said: “Watching the opening of the Gateshead Millennium Bridge is an awe-inspiring sight and one which we know enthrals everyone from local people to visitors from the other side of the world.”


For further information:
David Bootle, Media and PR Manager – Business, NewcastleGateshead Initiative
Tel: 0191 4405741, Mob: 07766993925 or email

Notes to Editors

• NewcastleGateshead Initiative (NGI) is the destination marketing agency for NewcastleGateshead. Its mission is to position and promote NewcastleGateshead as a leading European destination for leisure and business visitors through cultural programming, event bidding and high-profile, targeted destination marketing and PR activity.  Created in 2000 by Newcastle City Council and Gateshead Council as a publicly and privately funded business, NGI has developed a strong brand for the area - promoting it nationally and internationally as a place at the forefront of innovative culture-led regeneration and a world-class place to live, learn, work and visit.
• NewcastleGateshead Convention Bureau uses local knowledge and expertise to help organise conferences, meetings or events in NewcastleGateshead and the surrounding area. It provides a free service including arranging everything from venue sourcing and booking, to accommodation, transport and entertainment for delegates. With a huge choice of state-of-the-art venues NewcastleGateshead is fast becoming one of the UK’s most popular destinations whether it’s for a meeting of 10 people or a conference for thousands.
• It is estimated that visitors to NewcastleGateshead from around the UK and overseas contribute £1.2bn to the local economy.
• Press releases and copyright-free hi-res images on NewcastleGateshead are available from our website 

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