- The Civic Centre,
- Barras Bridge,
- Tyne and Wear,
- NE1 8QH
0191 277 7222
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The Grand Entrance
The ceremonial entrance was designed by Geoffrey Clarke, ARCA. Walls of Otta slate from Norway continue through a lobby to the Hall itself, at the junction of which there is a porter’s reception desk. Adjacent to this lobby, a lift is provided for Members giving direct access to the Council Suite and the underground car park.
The Grand Stair Hall extends in part through three floors in height. In the centre an eleven-tiered crystal chandelier is suspended, embodying 56 castellated cups with prismatic drops and spikes, with a finial of four crystal symbolic sea horses.
Galleries lined in English oak at first and second floor levels overlook the Hall through which the Grand Stair gives access to the Council Suite at first floor level. The floor to the entrance hall is of Portuguese Verde Viana marble.
At the northern end of the Grand Stair Hall three steps give a change in level forming a reception area to the Banqueting Hall. The floor of this area is Arabescato marble paving and has an African walnut Sculpture wood ceiling.
The wall between the Grand Stair and Banqueting Hall is faced in light Travertine marble, and the tower wall is faced in Portland stone, thereby expressing the effect of the tower itself rising through the Grand Stair Hall. This imposing wall was intended to be pierced at selected points with sculptures disposed in either cameo or medallion settings, as well as engraved lettering. Such modelling to the wall can be carried out at stages in the lifetime of the building, perhaps marking events of local significance. The inscriptions in the wall have been exquisitely cut by David Dewey. The wall is lit by a roof light extending over its full width, which also gives natural light to the Hall itself. Additional daylight is provided to the galleries through windows adjacent to the flank walls of the Council Chamber
The Grand Stair is carpeted, with marble margins with mahogany and aluminium handrails and glazed balustrades.
The engraved glass screens by John Hutton at ground floor level look out along the colonnade.
From the Grand Entrance there is access to the Banqueting Hall, which has bar provision. In addition access is gained to the administrative offices block and the Council, Lord Mayor’s and Sheriff’s Suites. From the Hall there is access to the basement where there are public cloakrooms, toilets and telephones. Access to this is also available from the Exhibition Hall and underground car park.
© 2009 Newcastle City Council