31 December 2015 sees the welcome return of NewcastleGateshead Initiative’s annual New Year celebrations in Newcastle.
Join the early evening family celebrations in Newcastle city centre as wild beasts take to the streets to ward off bad spirits before the arrival of the New Year.
For night owls looking to celebrate the stroke of midnight in the city, a special midnight firework display will see in 2016 on the Newcastle quayside.
NewcastleGateshead Initiative and Newcastle City Council Arts Development Team are once again working with outdoor arts experts Walk the Plank to bring a touch of myth and magic to the New Year’s Eve celebrations in Newcastle.
Scary monsters, a cauldron of fire and dancing bears with giant claws will roam the streets around Monument as part of the early evening New Year’s Eve Winter Carnival. Feel the heat as fiery torchbearers lead the spectacular procession of artists and local community groups along Northumberland Street to Newcastle Civic Centre for an explosive firework display set to music.
Visitors to the New Year’s Eve Winter Carnival are encouraged to come in their best ‘beastly’ fancy dress – everything from wild-fanged wolves to grizzly Gruffalos.
The approximate timings for the New Year’s Eve Winter Carnival parade are:
From 16:30: Music and carnival starts to gather at Monument.
From 17:15: Parade leaves for Newcastle Civic Centre via Northumberland Street.
18:00: Fireworks finale at Newcastle Civic Centre.
Heart North East breakfast presenter Kelly Scott will be entertaining the crowds at Newcastle Civic Centre ahead of the firework finale and the Heart Angels promotions team will be out in force as the streets come alive with performers, musicians and some fiery surprises.
In addition to the early evening celebrations, revellers celebrating New Year’s Eve in Newcastle City Centre will once again be treated to a short midnight firework display at the quayside. The midnight display is made possible thanks to the support of local quayside businesses.
Carol Bell, head of culture and major events at NewcastleGateshead Initiative, said: “After last year’s Rugby World Cup 2015-themed celebrations on the quayside we’re moving the parade and firework finale back to Northumberland Street and Newcastle Civic Centre.
“Tens of thousands of people joined us for the New Year’s Eve Carnival last year and I’m sure this year will be just as popular. The theme is ‘wild beasts and dark streets’ so expect some monstrous characters as well as drummers, dancers and community performers from across Newcastle.”
Cllr David Stockdale, cabinet member for communities and facilities at Newcastle City Council said: “What a year it has been for NewcastleGateshead as it has triumphantly staged a variety of world class heritage, culture and sporting events. The annual New Year’s Eve spectacular promises to be just that…spectacular! As the streets will be awash with vibrant theatrical and musical performances from local community groups and performers.
“It will enable friends, families, residents and visitors to the region to come together and welcome in 2016; and at the same time showcase our wonderful cultural talents!”
Liz Pugh, co-founder of Walk the Plank, said: “We’re delighted to be back in the North East working with NewcastleGateshead Initiative and Newcastle City Council Arts Development Team on this exciting New Year’s Eve project which we hope will inspire and engage people of all ages, and be remembered as an event which is unique and different.”
For more detail about the New Year’s Eve Winter Carnival and the wider NewcastleGateshead Winter Festival, please visit: www.NewcastleGateshead.com/WinterFestival