Sunderland is perfect place to take up
WHETHER it‟s staging a folk festival, organising a sports awards evening, showcasing the
latest Dr Who series or simply arranging an intimate networking event – the University of
Sunderland has been steadily building an impressive portfolio of high-profile conferences
The word is now spreading about the University‟s success for accommodating events, open
to all sectors no matter how diverse - and next month (September) sees the official launch of
UniSpace, branding the venue‟s contemporary award-winning facilities.
In a region world famous for its hospitality and recently voted “the most exciting, beautiful
and friendly region in the whole of England” by the Lonely Planet‟s Bluelist, it easy to see
why Sunderland is the ideal venue for your next event.
Set in stunning and accessible locations, with a range of facilities and purpose-built outdoor
events area, UniSpace has a number of contemporary venues to suit every occasion and
offers a range of unique specialist activities to give your event that touch of something
special and enhance your delegates‟ experience.
What makes UniSpace stand out as a unique conferencing venue is the added value it can
build into any event, from the cultural to quirky, whether it‟s glass-blowing
demonstrations/workshops at the National Glass Centre, outstanding sports facilities from a
climbing wall to fitness classes, an IT training event in the impressive „Computing Cathedral‟
or team-building sessions in our Media Centre, which houses TV and radio studios, there‟s
an interest to cater for all tastes.
The University also has an experienced team which understands that small details make a
huge difference and will look after you every step of the way, from tailoring a package that
suits your exact requirements to ensuring all aspects of your event run smoothly and
Having recently received official accreditation from the Meetings Industry Association (MIA)
and being awarded a corporate membership of the Association of British Professional
Conference Organisers (ABPCO), the University is rapidly becoming one of the region‟s first
choices for organisations planning an event.
Sharon Olver, University of Sunderland Commercial Services Manager, explained: “We have
been expanding our portfolio of events, catering for all requirements for some time now.
When we realised the word about our success was out, as more and more requests are
coming in from a diverse range of sectors, we felt it was the right time to brand the
university‟s unique facilities under the UniSpace banner.”
“Our UniSpace team is dedicated to providing genuinely warm hospitality and an exceptional
experience on every occasion, and is on hand to deliver a tailored service to suit any
“Clients are assigned an individual events co-ordinator who will assist throughout the whole
process, ensuring their event runs smoothly and successfully.”
UniSpace facilities include:
City Campus - offering four self contained venues in and around urban green spaces, with
superb AV & IT facilities and free WiFi, meeting and events spaces and impressive
Sir Tom Cowie Campus at St Peter‟s – set on the banks of the River Wear next to the
historic St Peter‟s Church, six self-contained venues surround University Square, a social
hub, and benefits from great public transport links, parking for up to 640 cars and free WiFi.
The campus offers added value with The David Puttnam Media Centre boasting a 200-
seater cinema, and state-of-the-art radio and TV studios.
CitySpace – an award-winning iconic building located at City Campus, this venue has
several large flexible spaces ideal for exhibitions and product launches, hosting everything
from fashion shows to the prestigious BBC North East and Cumbria Sports Awards.
The Industry Centre – less than one mile from the A19 on Sunderland Enterprise Park, the
venue offers a choice of four meeting/training rooms, seating 10 to 100 people, making it
perfect for small to medium groups.
The National Glass Centre at the University of Sunderland – located at St Peter‟s Campus,
the stunning venue on the banks of the River Wear is home to the university‟s internationally
renowned glass and ceramics programme, and is a premier visitor attraction and wedding
venue. Architecturally unique, the venue has exceptional banqueting meeting and events
facilities for up to 300 delegates in a remarkable setting.
High-profile events hosted by the University include:
- BBC North East and Cumbria Sports Awards (2010/2011)
- BBC tour of the UK to showcase new series of Dr Who, introducing Matt Smith
- BBC North East Pre- Election Debate 2010
- Sunderland Folk Festival (Aug 27-29, 2011)
- International Photography Conference (2010)
- Media launch event of first Sunderland City 10K (2010)
- International Women‟s Film History Network (2011)
- Sunderland Partnership Fairtrade Fashion Show (2010)
- The Oral History Conference (2011)
- The Calligraphy Symposium (2011)
- The Association Of Chartered Physiotherapists For People With Learning Disabilities
(ACPPLD) Conference (2011).
Two major events UniSpace be will hosting in the near future are the prestigious British
Pharmaceutical Student Association (BPSA) Conference next year at the £8.5m Science
Complex, officially opened by Lord Robert Winston in February this year; and closer to
home, the Sunderland based Royalty Theatre Youth Academy is staging their first ever
open-air performance to the public in The Quad, outdoor social space in Chester Road.
Up-coming events for 2011/12:
ESPA College Training Week
Electric Vehicle Conference
Redhouse Academy Awards Ceremony
National Youth Brass Band Auditions.
Pete Colby, Rolls Royce HR Business partner (Rotatives) explained that having used other
venues for briefings to all their employees, they had struggled to find suitable facilities which
met all of our needs. However, after arranging a meeting with the University, they were
shown around the facilities and decided to book the lecture theatre for an important
communication event from the company‟s Executive Vice president.
Pete said: “Everything went extremely well and the staff were incredibly helpful, including
excellent technical support. We don‟t need to look for other suitable venues anymore, we
have found the perfect places.”
Phil Roberts, Head of BBC North East and Cumbria, added his praise to the professionalism
of the university, which has seen the corporation returning year after year to host its premier
He said: "For both Doctor Who and the BBC Look North Election debate we had specific
venue needs in bringing the BBC closer to the people of Sunderland and the region. The
University has been a first-class partner in this respect. Thanks for looking after us so well."
The University‟s civic partnership approach has also led to our supporting two of the biggest
concerts in the North East this year. Teaming up with the Stadium of Light to provide extra
car parking and accommodation facilities for visitors during the massively successful Take
That and Kings of Leon concerts. These facilities are also utilised annually by Sunderland
City Council during the ever-popular Sunderland Air Show, as thousands of visitors flock to
the area from across the UK.
As well as being a welcoming place to stay with a range of accommodation options including
university halls and leading hotel chains such as Marriott and Premier Inn, there are plenty of
reasons to visit Sunderland. It‟s rich in arts, history and culture, is host to some of the best
sporting venues and stadiums in Europe and boasts some of the UK‟s most glorious
To book your event with UniSpace, call the team on 0191 5152666 or email
Media Contacts: Helen Franks, External Communications Officer (0191 515 3276 /