In spring 2019, Newcastle United Foundation collected the keys to Murray House Recreational Centre – a disused building that once served struggling communities in Newcastle’s city centre.
Just a five-minute walk from the iconic structure of St. James’ Park, we made plans for an ambitious redevelopment of the site, proposing a world class facility for the people of Newcastle and beyond.
With blueprints set forward by award-winning international design practice, Ryder Architecture, planning permission was approved by Newcastle City Council in summer 2020 to begin building a united future.
But it is not just about state-of-the-art facilities – for more than a decade it has been our vision is to transform lives through coaching, education, mentoring and providing opportunities to those who need them most.
NUCASTLE powered by Newcastle Building Society will help us to reach thousands of children, young people, adults and elderly residents across the North East.
We invited you to learn more about our new home and how we are connecting with communities to engage, inspire and achieve through education, sport and wellbeing.
“We are creating opportunities for young people to learn and reach their potential”
Jamaal Lascelles | NEWCASTLE UNITED CAPTAIN
Accessible and inclusive, NUCASTLE’s three floors will provide the space our communities need to learn, move, meet and play.
The main entrance opens in a large, double-height space where you will find reception, social seating area and a small café where visitors of all ages will feel at home.
The street level will also be a buzzing hive of physical activity, combining adaptable recreation and event space with a multi-purpose sports hall, smart fitness suite and spacious, accessible changing areas.
NU Futures, our flagship programme in NUCASTLE will be delivered from the first floor in four innovative classrooms, a high-tech digital hub, meeting rooms and office space.
To top things off, our second floor will house a spectacular rooftop 4G football pitch for small-sided games. Offering a unique view over the city, players on the pitch will see the glare of the St. James’ Park floodlights and be cheered on by the famous Gallowgate roar.
Trusted for more than a decade in North East, we have earned the respect and support of other community-focused organisations, investors, local authorities and businesses with a common goal in mind.
A number of stakeholders united by our vision to offer new opportunities in the region have pledged millions of pounds worth of support to help our charity build NUCASTLE.
Key investors include the North of Tyne Combined Authority and Newcastle Building Society.
Just six months on from becoming the new owners of Murray House, the North of Tyne Combined Authority submitted a £2.6m investment to help us transform the way young people transition from education to the world of work via our NU Futures scheme, housed in our new community hub.
Newcastle Building Society became our Regional Community Partners in July 2020, investing £1.1m into the NUCASTLE project and agreeing a six-year partnership deal with our charity to help communities recovering from the impact of COVID-19 – also securing a multi-year naming rights agreement.
NUCASTLE is made possible by our generous investors:
North of Tyne Combined Authority, Newcastle Building Society, Banks Community Fund, The Catherine Cookson Charitable Trust, The Clothworkers Foundation, The Crispa (Richard Cahn) Charitable Trust, Football Foundation, Garfield Weston Foundation, Goldman Sachs Gives, Harrison Centre for Social Mobility, The John Horseman Trust, Joseph Strong Frazer Trust, Liontrust, McArdle Family, National Lottery Heritage Lottery Fund, Newcastle College, North East LEP, Northern Powerhouse, Northstar Foundation, People’s Postcode Lottery, Reece Foundation, Robertson, R W Mann Trust, Sir Graham Wylie Foundation, Sir James Knott Trust, Social Investment Business, Tony Blair Sports Foundation, UEFA Foundation, Whitley Bay Junior Football Club, Your Homes Newcastle
Our new centre will sit on the site of Murray House Recreational Centre, just to the west of Newcastle city centre. The site was originally used to provide training opportunities for men and boys as shipbuilding declined in the 1930s and was rebuilt in the 1970s to once again serve a struggling community.
Sadly, many people in the surrounding area face similar challenges today.
- More than 50 per cent of children in Westgate live in poverty, 20 per cent higher than national average
- Men in Westgate have the lowest life expectancy rates of all North East men, six years less than the national average
- More than 65 per cent of Westgate residents live an inactive lifestyle
The North East is also a region with steady unemployment rates through the decades – with the region’s young people among the hardest-hit by the impact of COVID-19 on the UK economy.
Our region now has the highest unemployment rates in the UK and the North of Tyne area has more than double the national average of unemployed 16 to 19-year-olds.
We pledge to make a difference in young people’s lives by equipping them with the opportunities and skills to become the next generation of high-skilled workers through our NU Futures programme.
We pledge that NUCASTLE will be a centre of learning, play, personal development and recreation for everyone – inclusive of all ages, abilities, ethnicities, faiths, genders and sexualities.
We pledge our staff will work hard in our city and beyond to ensure this generation will not be left behind without the employment, education or training to realise their potential.