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Conference organisers tuck-in to delegate delights in NewcastleGateshead

9th September 2013

Categories: Convention Bureau News

Conference planners this weekend sampled the culinary delights of NewcastleGateshead’s acclaimed festival of adventures in food, EAT!, as part of a fam trip designed to showcase the many inspiring experiences on offer to delegates attending an event in the destination.

The trip, which hosted planners from the British Pharmacological Society, Nuffield Health, Sanofi Pasteur MSD and Resolution Events, featured a Nordic Feast as part of EAT’s programme of pop-up restaurants at The Boiler Shop Steamer in the Stephenson Works; (the world’s first locomotive works founded by Robert & George Stephenson 190 years ago in 1823).
Sarah Stewart, chief executive at destination management and marketing organisation, NewcastleGateshead Initiative said: “We were delighted to welcome these influential event planners during EAT! NewcastleGateshead. The destination has a strong reputation for delivering a year-round program of festivals and events, meaning there’s always something fresh and interesting happening when delegates descend on the city for major conferences.

“We hope the weekend inspired the planners and showed them that as well as our knowledgeable and supportive Convention Bureau, first-class venues and support services, NewcastleGateshead has a huge amount to offer organisers looking to bring their next big event to North East England.”

The trip also featured a building tour of BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art (the first non-Tate venue to host the prestigious Turner Prize), a stadium tour of St James’ Park, and was topped-off with a bespoke roof walk on the destination’s landmark international music venue, Sage Gateshead.

Sandra Fontaine, Senior Congress Events & Travel Executive at Sanofi Pasteur MSD, commented: “What a great idea to invite conference planners to experience NewcastleGateshead outside of just the meeting room. Whilst it’s clear the place has some fantastic venues for hosting conferences, I was delighted to see some of the equally wonderful activities on offer to delegates, and indeed all visitors, to the city – the particular highlight for me was the Sage Gateshead roof walk, such a thrilling experience and amazing views of the city.”

A survey conducted by NewcastleGateshead Convention Bureau in December 2012 revealed that delegates visiting the destination enjoyed the place so much, that 87% would consider returning with friends and family for a leisure visit.

The Convention Bureau’s ‘experiences your delegates will love campaign’ encourages event planners to inject some fun and creativity into their event social programmes and positions NewcastleGateshead as the ideal delegate destination.

Organisers looking to bring an event to NewcastleGateshead and would like further information on how the Convention Bureau can support, as well as more inspiring ideas for delegate activity, should visit


For media enquiries contact:
Shelley Armstrong
Media & PR Manager
T. +44 (0)191 440 5739
M. +44 (0)7717 631 109

Notes to editors:
• NewcastleGateshead Initiative is a destination management and marketing agency; a public-private partnership supported by Gateshead and Newcastle City Councils, working with around 170 private sector partner organisations across NewcastleGateshead and the wider region

• NewcastleGateshead Initiative is supported by a board offering expertise from a range of sectors and professions. We also work with a wide range of partners, stakeholders and businesses, who share our ambition to inspire people to visit and to live, learn, work and invest in NewcastleGateshead.

o Our marketing & communications team works to promote and position NewcastleGateshead as a vibrant tourism destination, through targeted campaigns nationally and internationally. Our visitor information team helps ensure visitors have the best possible experience when they’re here, providing information and support.

o Our cultural programming team work with partners across the destination to bring together NewcastleGateshead’s cultural offer and deliver some of our most popular festival & events, including EAT! NewcastleGateshead, Juice Festival and the NewcastleGateshead Winter Festival.

o Our 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, venue sourcing and accommodation booking, to arranging transport and entertainment for delegates

o Our inward investment team helps businesses locate, expand and flourish in NewcastleGateshead, providing a range of services to make it easy to realise their ambitions for growth

• United by seven bridges across a spectacular riverscape, Newcastle (a city on the north bank of the River Tyne) and Gateshead (a town on the south bank) form a single, diverse and extremely vibrant visitor destination. World-class culture, vibrant nightlife, award-winning dining, inspiring heritage, fantastic shopping and acclaimed architecture are combined here like nowhere else, by the famous Geordie spirit which is symbolised by Antony Gormley’s iconic Angel of the North as it welcomes travellers to the area.

Imagery / Photography opportunities:
• - NewcastleGateshead’s Initiative’s extensive royalty free image library

Useful links:
• - NewcastleGateshead Initiative’s media website
• - business meeting and event specific website for NewcastleGateshead

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