NE1 Launches Fast Track Chef’s Training Course With 3 Of Newcastle’s Top Restaurants

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NE1 Ltd is working with 3 of the city’s top restaurants and Newcastle College to avert an impending skills crisis in the restaurant industry in the North East. Attracting and training new recruits, as well as recruiting highly skilled staff, is a growing problem and one that is likely to be exacerbated this year with the opening of another 26 new restaurants in Newcastle city centre alone.

To stimulate interest in a career as a professional chef and to provide a direct link into three of Newcastle’s finest restaurants, NE1 has teamed up with Fat Buddha, Babucho, 21 Group and Newcastle College’s Lifestyle Academy to create a chef’s fast-track training course.

The Traineeship programme will initially cater for fourteen 16 – 24 years olds on an eight-week intensive on-the-job training course that, after successful completion, will provide an NVQ Level 1 qualification in Hospitality and is expected to lead directly into either a job, or an Apprenticeship for participants.

The course is being run by Newcastle College but will be mostly work based to ensure that candidates get a real taste for a career in the industry.

The Traineeship will launch on 8 February – the hope is that if successful, the course will be repeated with an expanded intake of trainees and the involvement of more restaurants.

After 8 weeks, the training will culminate with a showcase three-course dinner prepared by the newly trained chefs, with each restaurant and their respective trainees preparing a course to be served to an invited audience of VIP and celebrity guests at the Chef’s Academy restaurant at Newcastle College.

Stephen Patterson Director of Communications at NE1 Ltd explained:
“The restaurant industry has been the number one growth sector in Newcastle over the past five years, helped by NE1’s Alive after Five and Restaurant Week initiatives that have boosted visitor numbers into the city and its restaurants in the early evening. This has led to an explosion in restaurant numbers and a demand for even greater numbers of staff.

“The growth in the restaurant industry in Newcastle is great news for the city, but staffing these new venues with good quality staff can be difficult. We want to offer our help to generate interest and enthusiasm in a career in hospitality and catering and create opportunities for young people to work directly with some of the city’s leading restaurants.

Bob Senior, Owner and MD of Fat Buddha restaurant said:

“We pride ourselves on our staff and we invest heavily in attracting and retaining the best – but it is becoming increasingly difficult to attract young people into the industry. We wanted to run an on-the-job taster course that gives young people the chance to experience first hand what it is like to work in a fast-paced restaurant environment and hope that it will encourage them and others to consider a rewarding career in the industry.”

Susan Davis, Operations Manager, Newcastle College Lifestyle Academy:

“We welcome any initiative that encourages young people to consider improving their training and education credentials especially in the restaurant and hospitality industry. As an education provider we pride ourselves on helping local employers address their skills shortages by providing a pipeline of well-trained job ready individuals. We are looking forward to working with the restaurants and NE1 on the fast-track training course and we will continue to support the successful recruits with their on-going training needs when they secure jobs, or apprenticeships in the future.”

Prospective course participants are invited to attend a launch event at Fat Buddha restaurant on Tuesday 26th January at 5pm to meet the restaurant and college staff and find out more details.

Further information, including how to apply, is available from Andy Brown, Newcastle College Hospitality Section Manager

Tel: 0191 200 4645

Sean Bullick CEO Newcastle NE1

NE1 Chief Executive Sean Bullick Makes Case at Number 10

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Sean Bullick, Chief Executive of Business Improvement District Company, BID, NE1 Ltd was at 10 Downing Street last week (w/c 30 November) making the case to Government advisors for Newcastle, the North East and the region’s business community and to discuss opportunities that exist for city centres like Newcastle to boost economic growth.

Sean met David Cameron’s special advisor on Housing and Planning, Alex Morton, to discuss city centre investment and development, with Newcastle the primary focus.  The meeting also discussed the role of BIDs in the UK and the potential to give them a greater role nationally, with NE1 being cited as an exemplar of what can be achieved for a city with focused effort and an allocated budget.

One of the primary issues discussed was the benefits that a property owners BID would bring to the city, something NE1 is keen to explore as a means of accelerating investment, growth and revenues for Newcastle and its businesses.  This point was raised as an issue of even greater importance in light of recent Treasury changes to business rates which will allow Local Authorities to retain any monies they raise.

Currently a legislative anomaly precludes a property owner BID being established anywhere outside of London, something NE1 is keen to put right in discussion with No 10, the Department for Communities and Local Government and the Treasury.

Agreeing they would aim to meet again Sean Bullick, Chief Executive of NE1 Ltd commented:

“Two significant issues affecting economic investment and returns in Newcastle were raised during the meeting and were positively received.  We are confident that the policy team will continue to support our efforts in these areas.”

Bigg Market Transformation One Step Closer With Appointment Of Architects

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NE1 Ltd is pressing ahead with its plans for the transformation of the Bigg Market, with the appointment of MawsonKerr Architects.

Bigg Market rejuvenation L2R Will Mawson (MawsonKerr) Liam Haggery (Southern Green Architects) Gareth Neil (NE1 Ltd) Adrian Waddell (NE1 Ltd)

The plans for the Bigg Market are being delivered by NE1 Ltd, working in conjunction with Newcastle City Council and business and property owners in the area.  Supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF), the project will reinvigorate the Bigg Market, restore its historic significance to the city centre, unlock private sector investment and secure the city’s heritage for years to come by putting it on a sound economic footing.

There are 31 listed buildings in the Bigg Market and in consultation with the owners, MawsonKerr will define what is required to bring them up to standard, as well as redesigning the public realm to create a flexible, high quality public space in the heart of the city that provides an attractive location for businesses, residents and visitors.

The work will involve design ideas for the public areas, proposals for new uses for the gentlemen’s Victorian toilets and all detailed survey work for the buildings.  Another key element of the architectural planning will be the compilation of a style guide for property frontages to ensure that all future signage and facia boards are in keeping with the unique heritage of the area.

NE1 received 15 expressions of interest on the project from national and international architects with Newcastle based MawsonKerr selected after a rigorous tender exercise.  The team are experts in heritage projects of this sort and are adept at pulling together project teams comprising landscape architects, structural engineers and other heritage specialists.

The development phase of the project, mapping out designs for the public realm, detailing the work needed to the historic facades and seeking all the necessary permissions, lasts until May 2016.  At that point NE1 will return to the Heritage Lottery Fund for approvals for the release of the next block of £1.6 million funding for the project.  Together with match funding from other partners the project pot will be worth £3.2 million and, once delivered, will help unlock further investment in other developments in the Bigg Market.

Commenting on MawsonKerr’s appointment and what it means for the development, Adrian Waddell, Operations Director at NE1 said:

“We are delighted to have appointed MawsonKerr to help us with the next phase of the project. Everyone is galvanised, we have already met the owners or agents of all 31 listed buildings in the Bigg Market, they are as excited by the plans as we are and are looking forward to getting involved in the area’s rejuvenation.”

“This project is not without some significant challenges but it is an example of what can be achieved when the interests of landlords, with tenant businesses are aligned with public realm investment.  With the fantastic grant support from the HLF all parties can now work together to deliver the project that will restore part of the city’s architectural heritage.”

Ged Bell, Cabinet Member for Investment and Development and Newcastle City Council commented: “The partners have done a great job securing Heritage Lottery Funding and getting businesses to buy into the wider vision for the area, supporting our Re-Newcastle programme of investment, focussed on renewing and reshaping our city.  The work will not only restore this historic quarter of the city but will have a major impact on the surrounding area unlocking millions in private sector investment and creating new and better jobs for the city.”

Ivor Crowther, Head of Heritage Lottery Fund North East, commented;

“Regeneration involves transforming places.  Heritage is often central to this process, whether in the form of restoring a much-loved landmark or refurbishing boarded-up buildings.

“We believe that historic townscapes such as Bigg Market are the beating heart of local places.  Past Heritage Lottery Fund research shows that even small changes, such as improving shop fronts or restoring a building’s historic features can make a real difference.  With the architects now on board this project is moving into the next phase of delivery and there are a lot of exciting improvements being planned.”

Will Mawson, MD of MawsonKerr Architects said:

“We are delighted to be appointed and working with NE1 on this significant project. We bring a team full of experience to build on the good work already completed. There is a weight of expectation surrounding the development of this historic area and we are eager to begin the tough work ahead transforming the Bigg Market into an area Newcastle can be proud of once again.”
Richard Robson, Lugano Group Chairman commented:
“The Lugano Group has a number of property interests in the area and we are looking forward to working with NE1 and other businesses to restore an important part of the city’s heritage. With the architects now appointed we can crack on with the exciting plans for the area.”

NE1′s New Outdoor Dining Areas on Newcastle Quayside

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On Tuesday 11 August, NE1 Ltd will be giving people the chance to take a well earned break with free chocolate bars for the first 500 visitors to visit its new outdoor tables and chairs installed on the banks of the Tyne.  NE1 Street Rangers will be handing out the free chocolate bars to the lucky 500 starting at 12 noon.

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72 chairs and 18 tables will be positioned at key locations along the Quayside for people to enjoy during the summer months.  Dubbed ‘NE1 Relaxation Station’, the chairs and tables will brought out every day except Sunday or in the event of extreme weather conditions such as of high winds, or driving rain.  At all other times, the tables will be installed and will be free to use.

NE1 Relaxation Stations will be positioned on the riverside walkway of the Quayside opposite a number of shops and restaurants providing take away service to give the public somewhere to sit to enjoy their lunch and the view.

The tables will be stationed opposite Sabitinis restaurant and the row of shops which include Greggs, Great Coffee, Quayside Deli on the opposite riverside pavement and along the Quayside opposite Live Theatre.

To celebrate the launch of these new al fresco dining areas NE1 has teamed up with Metro Radio’s Stu Ellmore to give listeners the chance to win a family meal for four from Sabitinis.  Winners will have their celebratory meal served al fresco at a NE1 Relaxation Station.  Every day during week commencing 10 August listeners will be in with the chance of winning this open air dining experience.

NE1 Relaxation Stations are the latest in a series of NE1’s summertime initiatives to make Newcastle city centre more appealing for visitors and for workers in the city.   The stations join NE1 Monument Movies, NE1’s Quayside Seaside and NE1’s Newcastle Restaurant Week, which are now regular and highly popular events in the city’s summertime calendar.

North East Maritime Trust visit Newcastle City Marina

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The NE1 Marina is back in action for the summer, and to celebrate NE1 has teamed up with the North East Maritime Trust to bring a collection of classic boats to the Quayside on August Bank Holiday weekend.

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The Marina will welcome more than 20 vessels- including the Faramir (1982), one of the largest wooden yachts ever built and the Reaper (1902) to the Tyne from August 29 to 31, promising a wonderful showcase of maritime history. Members of the public will be invited on to walk around the Reaper.

The event will also feature skiff racing on Sunday and an exhibition of the boats’ history on the Quayside.

On Sunday there will be three skiff races for up to 6 boats:
14.00hrs    Open
14.30hrs    Mixed
15.00hrs    Scratch (one person picked at random from each team)

The teams will be (tbc):
Alnmouth       Gosforth
Amble             Gateshead
Whitburn       Blyth

Enjoy live music playing both days 12-3pm.

Event success for NE1’s Newcastle Motor Show

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The inaugural NE1 Newcastle Motor Show,

which brought Newcastle’s Grey Street to a standstill, has been hailed a phenomenal success by sponsors, Benfield Motor Group, car dealers, owners, enthusiasts as well as local businesses, with record numbers of visitors across the weekend.

The open air event delivered an unique experience to the hundreds of thousands of visitors who attended showcasing a range of show-stopping cars never before seen in the region including the Aston Martin DB9 GT, on only its second outing internationally; the Infinity Red Bull Formula 1 racing car and hundreds of privately owned rare, vintage and classic vehicles all displayed around Grey’s Monument and Grey Street.

The calibre of cars, the scale of the event and the fact that it was free to attend made the event unique with the public given rare and exclusive access to many multi-million pound cars, which would normally be showcased at VIP, invitation-only events.

The fantastic weather over the two days helped make the event even more memorable and boosted numbers with crowds of over 100,000 flocking into the city.  Businesses across the board recorded average increases of 43% in trade, with some reporting triple that figure with business up 200% on their usual weekend trade.  The impact was felt wider than the immediate environs of the show with Northumberland Street enjoying a 10% increase in footfall over the course of the weekend.

Stephen Patterson, Director of Communications at NE1 Ltd who organized the whole event explained:

“We were delighted to have worked with our main sponsor Benfield and other dealerships and private car owners to deliver this unique event and we’re excited about the prospect of making it bigger and better next year. The overwhelming response from the general public has exceeded our expectations.  It was wonderful to see Grey’s Monument and Grey Street filled with some of the world’s best cars and thousands of people enjoying this unique experience.”

Mark King, Commercial Marketing Manager, Benfield Motor Group said:
“The event surpassed our expectations, Benfield had to be involved in such an unique motoring event in our home town, but the experience was so much more than we could have hoped for – the crowds and the cars were amazing not to mention the phenomenal business leads the event generated.  It was great to be able to take our fantastic array of cars out of the showroom and onto the streets, we loved it and the sentiment was echoed by the public.”

Commenting on the success of the event, Dave Walker, Operations Manager, Vaulkhard Group said:

“Bringing the city to life with an open air motor show of this scale and magnitude was fantastic – you didn’t have to be a car enthusiast to enjoy the splendor of the occasion and we experienced record number of guests over the weekend.  Everyone we spoke to loved the experience, seeing the cars at close quarters and not from behind the window of a showroom was a rare treat and from a business point of view our business had two glorious days over the Saturday and Sunday.”

Newcastle City Council Cabinet Member for Investment and Development, Cllr Ged Bell commented: “It was amazing to see Newcastle so busy over the course of the whole weekend and Grey Street resplendent with so many beautiful cars.  Events are a spectacular way of raising Newcastle’s profile locally, nationally and internationally and this event was so brilliantly delivered that it showed off the city in a tremendous light.”

NE1 Presents Newcastle Motor Show

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Petrol heads, classic car enthusiasts and those who merely love anything shiny will be in their element when Grey Street in Newcastle plays host to some of the world’s finest cars in the first ever, NE1 Newcastle Motor Show on Saturday 11th and Sunday 12th July.

The NE1 Newcastle Motor Show will be free to attend and will be staged in one of the most prominent sites in the heart of Newcastle, with cars displayed from Grey’s Monument down Grey Street.

Grey Street will be closed to traffic during the two-day event to allow the public to marvel at the spectacle of an open-air car show with in excess of 100 rare, unique and exclusive vehicles on display.

The area from Grey’s Monument to the bottom of Grey Street will be separated into two distinct zones. Grey’s Monument will host the NE1 Newcastle Motor Show sponsors area displaying vehicles from the brands on show and also some ‘show-stopper’ vehicles, which have yet to be announced.

In addition to the sponsor’s area, a collection of rare and unique vehicles will be on display. This area will also be home to other activities for visitors to enjoy including two driving simulators, games to get people in the motoring mood as well a host of activities for families with kids including retail units and entertainment.

The second area, running down Grey Street from the Theatre Royal to Mosely Street is where private owners will display some of the finest cars in the region. From Ferraris, Lamborghinis and Bentleys to classic MGs and AC Cobras, expect to see Grey Street filled with some of the finest cars ever made.

Stephen Patterson, Director of Communications at NE1 Ltd who are delivering the event commented:
“This area of Newcastle is home to some fantastic businesses and world-class architecture. We have been in discussions for some time about staging an event that capitalises on this iconic part of the city. Thanks to the event’s sponsors and the region’s motoring enthusiasts, we are now able to deliver this fantastic event.

“This will be the first time that this number and calibre of cars have gathered in the city centre at any one time. Ultimately, the focus of the event is to deliver a unique spectacle and experience that the UK has not been seen before.

“We’re delighted that the event is happening and we believe that, it has the potential to grow in to an even of national and international significance”

Mark King, Commercial Marketing Manager, Benfield Motor Group explained why they are one of the mainline sponsors of the new NE1 Newcastle Motor Show, he said:
“As the North East’s largest motor group we needed to be involved in what will be the most unique Motor Show not just in Newcastle but the whole of the UK.

“The event will provide a wonderful opportunity for car enthusiasts and the general public to see a range of rare and exclusive vehicles and not just from behind a glass window of a car showroom. The vehicles will line the most famous and best loved street in the city, Grey Street and people will be able to get up close to the action and enjoy the festival spirit that will surround the event.

“We expect thousands of people to come along and join in the fun. Benfield are looking forward to giving the public exclusive access to some of our prestige cars from within our range of brands, including the Audi R8, Nissan GTR and the all-electric ground-breaking Nissan LEAF built here in the North East.” For details of the event and latest information on the exhibitors visit –

NE1’s Quayside Seaside is back and it’s bigger and better

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NE1’s Quayside Seaside on the banks of the Tyne signals that summer is on its way – for the past four years the beach has been a welcome addition to the city’s summertime events calendar and this year when it returns on Friday 22 May, it will be bigger and better than ever.

The pop up beach equipped with sand, palm trees and volleyball court is hugely popular with visitors to Newcastle and with Quayside workers who swarm to its NE1 deck chairs to enjoy lunch al fresco or a sneaky game of volleyball after work.

This year, NE1 has taken the opportunity presented by the need to update the beach’s four-year old wooden surround to redesign the space and add new elements for public enjoyment.

This year there will be four new elements to the beach:

As well as the traditional beach deck chairs, NE1 has extended the beach decking area and introduced fixed chairs and barrel tables that will remain in situ throughout the summer.

On the back wall of the beach, a kids’ climbing wall has been introduced in the style of ship’s masts and rigging.

To make more of the space behind the trees, five beach hut style areas have been installed.

In response to requests from various organisations for performance space on the beach, a small stage area has been created to allow buskers or other performers to use the beach for performance based activities.

Commenting on the NE1’s Quayside Seaside, Tariq Albassam, Operations Manager at NE1 Ltd said:

“The idea for NE1’s Quayside Seaside is to give people more reasons to visit Newcastle and to stay a little longer – we recognise that we have a wonderful Quayside with iconic and breathtaking views and the pop up beach provides a wonderful vantage point to enjoy them as well as providing a volleyball court for people of all ages to have a go at the sport and for kids to play with buckets and spades on the sand all for free.

Work began on the site on 12 May and the beach will open at 5pm this Friday, 22 May.

On Saturday 23 May, Volleyball England will be hosting a ‘Go Spike’ taster session to give people a chance to try volleyball and will host further volleyball taster session on the Quayside Seaside throughout the summer.

A timetable of all activities on NE1’s Quayside Seaside will be published on
– See more here