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Back in January Sophie and I decided to visit a couple of the art galleries in Newcastle, The Biscuit Factory –  the biggest commercial art, craft and design gallery in the UK, and The Laing, home to an internationally important collection of art, focusing on British oil paintings, watercolours, ceramics, silver, and glassware.

But before we get to the galleries, we must get off the metro at Central station and walk to Ouseburn, there’s plenty of photo ops along the way.  We get to the crossing over the central motorway, and before the crossing, we see The Oxford.

£134 per week.


The Oxford Galleries dance hall on Newcastle’s New Bridge Street opened in 1925 and was one of the most popular venues of its time. Over the years it went through many reincarnations and was known to generations of dancers and partygoers as Tiffany’s, Ikon, Ritzy’s and Liquid Envy. In 2017, the building was converted into student accommodation with only its listed frontage remaining. There’s progress for you.

Looking back when crossing the motorway we see


am not sure but think this used to be a Premier Inn.

Over the motorway crossing, we can see the reason for so much student accommodation,

Northumberland University – City Campus East

City Campus East, designed by Atkins, opened in September 2007, winning awards from The Journal newspaper and the Low Carbon New Build Project of the Year accolade. It t is home to the Schools of Law, Design and the Newcastle Business School.

Crossing over the central motorway, the Tyne Bridge & Newcastle Cathedral in the distance

There’s a saying in England- “It’s grim up North”…

Under the flyover

As we walked past the college we realised there was a football match imminent.

Jolly Boys

There are a fair few historic buildings in this area of the Toon (as Newcastle is called by natives)

The Dispensary was established in April 1777 and funded through subscriptions, gifts and legacies. Its first site was in The Side but in 1782 or 1783 it moved to Pilgrim Street where it remained until 1790. For the next fifty years, the Trustees leased a building in Low Friar Chare. At the expiry of the lease, the Dispensary moved to 14 Nelson Street, where it remained until 1928. Its final move was to 115 New Bridge Street which was still its home when it finally closed in 1976.  Now a Chinese store.

Public Washery

This former municipal washhouse and baths are located on the corner of Gibson Street and New Bridge Street in Newcastle. It was built in 1907 and designed by F H Halford. The baths had separate men’s and women’s entrances and are notable for its ornate tiles. The baths were closed in 1965 after which the pool was boarded over, and sometimes used as a badminton court. During the Second World War, the pool was used by the Fire Service as a reservoir, for water used to put out fires caused by air raids. The former baths are a Grade II listed building.  I would love to go in as I’ve seen pictures of the inside, the tiles are gorgeous, but the council is trying to sell it off so it’s unobtainable for now.

next to it is St.Dominic’s Priory.

A Roman Catholic church, by Dunn and Hansom, it has a foundation stone dated 1887 and is a Grade II listed building.

Back over the road where there is more rather gaudy student accommodation

It’s not easy being green

Got the blues

we saw a student at the window 🙂


and finally, we get to the Biscuit Factory

The gallery’s home is a former Victorian warehouse, constructed in 1870. Prior to 2002, the Building was used in the manufacturing of biscuits.  Surprise surprise!

But that’s enough for today, stay tooned for next time when we will go and see the beautiful artworks and craftworks the gallery holds.


23 comments on “The Art of Newcastle-Upon-Tyne – Jan 2019

  1. beetleypete says:

    You make the best of all that ‘Grim’, FR. Thanks for the tour. 🙂
    Best wishes, Pete.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Glad you came along!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. beetleypete says:

        It has changed a lot since I last visited. Not as ‘Grim’. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

        1. No, it has its grim bits but also it’s good bits, like everywhere really.

          Liked by 1 person

  2. Brilliant walk, history and pics. I love my City and you discover stuff I never knew. As you know (tho I’m not against progress) I’m not happy about the style and type of new buildings going up which seem to strangle old Newcastle.

    Those two galleries are excellent…looking forward to your take on them.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Cheers John! I’m in 2 minds re the new builds, on one hand they’re totally incongruous and on the other quite good for photos!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. kmSalvatore says:

    Great history lesson for today Fraggy, loved the old buildings. , something about those new one..huh, we have the same thing here.. make ya wonder:) where do they get those nasty colors from:) I bet you gals put in well over 10,000 steps that day 🙂 too bad ya couldn’t get into the bath house. Ok, I’m off busy day today. Thanks for sharing , awesome as always . 😘

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Cheers Kathy, have a good day!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. MarySmyth says:

    Wonderful collection of images Fraggy. I am especially taken with the older architecture and rather prefer the grimier bits in cities, not a fan of modern development.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. No me neither, cheers Mary.


  5. Pit says:

    Thanks for the walk-around! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  6. joshi daniel says:

    Loved those striking buildings 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  7. April Munday says:

    Sometimes I look at new buildings and wonder what’s wrong with just blending in. It’s probably a sign of advancing years.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You are not the only one!

      Liked by 1 person

  8. CJ your posts just keep getting better and better…love these pictures from the buildings (I love buildings especially the modern uglyish ones) to the soccer supporters…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Cheers Clare am chuffed you like’em!

      Liked by 1 person

  9. The contrast between the various types of architecture and the time span they represent, is striking.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Glad that came across! Cheers Otto.

      Liked by 1 person

  10. steviegill says:

    Nice tour of the Toon. Newcastle definitely has an interesting mix of architecture.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It’s a really nice town to walk around. Cheers Steve

      Liked by 1 person

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