Things to do in Newcastle: Architecture

If you love architecture, then Newcastle is definitely the place to visit. For a lot of people, the city offers a different set of attractions, perhaps it’s the shopping, the culture, with museums and art galleries. Of course, Newcastle has all of that, but for some, it’s the architecture they come for. Newcastle has a lot to satisfy those who love a beautifully created building, so if you’re coming here for that, or you’ve moved here and want to know which buildings are best to head to first, then we’ve come up with our favourite five.

Newcastle Castle & Keep

The first has to be Newcastle Castle and its Castle Keep. These structures give the city its name and is a Norman construction built by the son of William the Conqueror. It has gone through some changes over the centuries, up until the 19th century. A keep was added during the 12th and the 13th centuries and is now listed Grade I and a Scheduled Ancient Monument. You can’t visit Newcastle and love architecture without visiting the castle.

Bessie Surtees House

You’ll find two splendid merchants’ houses on Newcastle Sandhill, which were both built during the 16th and 17th centuries and are impressive both aesthetically and historically. This is Jacobean domestic architecture at its finest. If you want to find out more then there’s an exhibition that gives a detailed history of both buildings on the first floor. This site is also host to the North East English Heritage branch and it’s also Grade I listed. It’s also host to the dramatic story of Bessie Surtees and John Scott who absconded together. John Scott would go on to become Lord Chancellor. The site was completely refreshed and restored in 1930 and had some 17th century fixtures installed.

Old Assembly Rooms

These rooms were once the busy respite for people looking to socialise, originally designed by Willian Newton in the 18th century it narrowly escaped demolition in the 60s. It’s since been restored over the years and is well worth a visit, you’ll find it on Fenkle Street.

St Andrews Church

This beautiful church is surrounded by modern buildings, but it stands on its own merits with it’s gothic beauty. It dates back to the Anglo-Saxon period and it’s definitely a building to add to your list of architectural visits.

Blackfriars Dominican Friary

This beauty dates back to the 13th century and some parts were destroyed irreparably after the Dissolution of the Monasteries during the 16th century. It was threatened with demolition but saved and then renovated during the 80s. It’s beautiful brown brick uniformity and dark windows are an invitation for further exploration.

Escape Newcastle

Finally, after all that excitement and endless photo opportunities an hour of relaxation and fun with family and friends must be sorely due. You can get this at Escape Newcastle, where you can pitch your wits against the games room challenge. You will be locked in a themed room for 60 minutes and then have to find your own way out. To do this you’ll have to work out the clues and puzzles that are hidden here and there throughout the room. Do you have what it takes? Find out by booking a room!