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Catherine Corrigan

US Ambassador opens First World War exhibit at Newcastle Central Station

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Newcastle NE1, the city’s Business Improvement District, has welcomed the Acting US Ambassador to the United Kingdom to the North East, to open a free public photography exhibition to mark the centenary of America’s involvement in the First World War.

Situated outside Newcastle Central Station until the end of July, the exhibition ‘Fields of Battle, Lands of Peace: The Doughboys 1917-18’ is a unique portrait of the First World War battlefields by Michael St Maur Sheil, which tells of the healed scars of the First World War through our only remaining living witness, the fields of battle themselves.

This exhibition is comprised of contemporary photographs of the battlefields together with archive photographs, which act as a visual gateway to the fields where the conflict was fought, allowing visitors to see for themselves how the conflict changed the landscapes it touched, along with the course of human history.

Acting Ambassador Lewis Lukens officially opened the exhibit, which has attracted more than five million visitors so far on its tour of the world, and was in Turkey and France before arriving in the UK. Formerly the US Ambassador to Senegal and Guinea-Bissau, Mr Lukens was appointed Deputy Chief of Mission at the US Embassy in London in 2014, and has served in his current role since the departure of the previous Ambassador in January 2017.

In addition to officially opening the exhibit, Mr Lukens also attended a reception at the Mansion House in Jesmond, Hosted by the Lord Mayor of Newcastle and attended by local dignitaries, including armed forces veterans and American expats. He also met local businesses at a breakfast event organised by NE1, as well as making a number of other visits in the region.

Mr Lukens said: “I am delighted that this exhibition will visit the great city of Newcastle. Today, the United States and United Kingdom – and millions of our service members – are providing the global leadership that cements our enduring partnership and makes our countries more secure.  Fields of Battle, Lands of Peace…marks the sacrifices made by the men and women of America in World War One, which shaped our world in the 20th century.”

Newcastle NE1 Chief Executive Sean Bullick said: “It is an honour for Newcastle to play host to this exhibition, which I’m sure will be well received by the people of the city telling, as it does, the story of the First World War and America’s involvement.

“I’d like to personally thank Acting Ambassador Lukens for visiting Newcastle and meeting businesses here. NE1 works hard to forge global links for our members.   They are increasingly important to the city’s economy in the post-Brexit world, and our reputation as an international city of trade, tourism and study has never been more important.

Louise Rutherford, Regional Customer Experience Manager for Virgin Trains on its east coast route, which manages Newcastle Central Station: “Along with our partners in the city, Virgin Trains was delighted to welcome Acting Ambassador Lukens to Newcastle to open this important exhibition. It is a very interesting and moving exhibition, and many of our customers who pass through Newcastle station are taking time out to look at these photographs and learn more about, and reflect upon, the sacrifices which others have made.”

Lord Mayor of Newcastle, Cllr Linda Wright, said: “It’s a great honour to welcome the Acting Ambassador to Newcastle. The city has a long and proud association with the United States, and past visitors have included President Carter, Muhammad Ali and Martin Luther King.

“The photographic exhibition of the Doughboys at the Central Station reminds us all of the sacrifice American soldiers made during the First World War – something we will never forget.”


Get set for Summer with NE1 Newcastle Restaurant Week

By | News

When you just can’t face lighting another BBQ – NE1 Newcastle Restaurant Week returns to save the day with the 14th event, which runs from 7 – 13th August inclusive.


Diners will be able to take their pick from over 100 restaurants that have signed up to take part in the second NE1 Newcastle Restaurant Week of the year. Some of Newcastle’s finest restaurants will offer diners the chance to eat out in style for only £10 or £15 per head.


Among the big name restaurants are some of the founding fathers who have taken part in every NE1 Newcastle Restaurant Week since NE1 first launched the initiative back in 2011.  Terry Laybourne’s 21 Hospitality Group, Blackfriars and Silk Room are among the original 13 who helped launch the initiative and have remained firm supporters of the event ever since.  All will be taking part again this August with special NE1 Newcastle Restaurant Week menus.


The event is expected to beat all records for the number of participating restaurants and number of diners even eclipsing January’s event, which attracted over 45,000 diners.


Many new restaurants have opened in the city since January’s restaurant week was held, and those taking part in this August’s event include Kaltur, specialist in authentic Spanish food and tapas, and The Alchemist. .


The idea for NE1 Newcastle Restaurant Week came from New York where twice a year restaurants offer diners the chance to eat out at some of the city’s best restaurants for a fixed priced menu.  The idea translated well to Newcastle and the event has grown each time it has been held with more restaurants taking part and more diners enjoying the offer.


Newcastle’s restaurant scene has changed dramatically since the first NE1 Newcastle Restaurant Week was held in 2011.  At the time only 13 restaurants took part in the event, now over 100 restaurants take part in a city that has more restaurants per square mile than any other Northern city and now boasts a Michelin starred restaurant.

21 Hospitality Group has timed the opening of its newest restaurant, Porterhouse Butcher and Grill to coincide with August’s restaurant week event. This steak bar, featuring counter seating and a dining space in Fenwick Food Hall, opens as the NE1 Newcastle Restaurant Week kicks off. Porterhouse is Terry’s sixth restaurant in the city, with Café 21 and Saltwater Fish Company, in Fenwick, along with the Broad Chare, Caffe Vivo and 21 on Newcastle’s Quayside all taking part during the week.

Terry Laybourne said:

“We have always loved and supported the idea of NE1 Newcastle Restaurant Week.   It is great to have an event that brings Newcastle’s restaurant community together and allows us to celebrate the city’s culinary credentials.

We were keen to time Porterhouse’s opening to coincide with Restaurant Week, the event is always so successful for our restaurants and it will help Porterhouse to establish itself on the restaurant scene.  The event will test the kitchens, the team and the menus.  If the restaurant can cope with the rigours of NE1 Newcastle Restaurant Week, it can cope with anything.”


Stephen Patterson, Director of Communications at NE1 Ltd said:

“It is no surprise or coincidence that the growth of fine dining in Newcastle has mirrored the growth in popularity of NE1 Newcastle Restaurant Week.  Success breeds success and as more restaurants get involved in the event more diners seek to make the most of the offers.  A record breaking 45,000 people dined out during January’s event, we expect the number to rise in August with new restaurants and new menus added.”


For details of all participating venues and to download the NE1 Newcastle Restaurant Week vouchers visit