The Victoria Tunnelis a preserved underground wagonway that was constructed in the 19th-century to support the local coal-mining trade. Almost 100 years later, it was converted into a life-saving air-raid shelter during the Second World War. Today, the Tunnel serves as a fantastic visitor attraction and educational tool for all ages, even being recognised with the Sandford Award. 

Best school visit I've ever been on. The children had an incredible time. It was a brilliant, educational day. We will definitely be back next year 

Our two-hour workshops are based in the historic Ouseburn Valley, just to the east of Newcastle city centre. We offer sessions on Tuesdays and Thursdays

What we can offer

  • A one-hour tour underground - We will kit out you and your class with hard hats and torches and take you for a short walk along the Ouseburn Valley and into the Victoria Tunnel.
  • A one-hour classroom activity - We offer an opportunity to handle original and replica artifacts and discuss the experience of children their age living through the time period of your session.

We can adapt both activities to focus three themes:

World War 2

Victorian History

Industrial Revolution

Co-ordinating a Visit

We can accommodate school parties of up to 36 children and accompanying adults. School parties are split into two groups, as no more than 18 children can be accommodated into the Tunnel at a time. There need to be at least two adults inside the Tunnel with each group. 

You may wish to combine your school's visit to the Ouseburn Valley (saving transport costs) with a visit to Seven Stories (National Centre for children's books), Stepney Bank Riding Stables, Northern Print or the Ouseburn Farm. We will be pleased to give you more information about these activities when you make your booking. 

We had a brilliant time and the children absolutely loved it! We feel privileged that we got to have such a fantastic experience with people who were immersed in WW2! We will definitely recommend this experience to other schools.

Ready to book? Email our team or phone 0191 261 6596 to check available dates  for this term or propose dates (Tuesdays or Thursdays) that suit your class next term. 

Essential Victoria Tunnel school visit information

  • We charge £5 per child and with 2 teachers/adults free for every 15-18 children 
  • We will send you an invoice separately. 
  • There is a coach drop-off point on Lime Street in front of the Ouseburn Village Green. 
  • Unless otherwise stated, tunnel tours start and finish at 55 Lime Street, Ouseburn (just opposite Seven Stories). We will meet you here and lead you to the Tunnel. 
  • There are no toilets at the Victoria Tunnel. Accessible toilets are located at the meeting point at 55 Lime Street. 
  • The Victoria Tunnel is a dark and confined space. Please ensure that all children are aware of this and are happy to come on a visit. 
  • We provide hard hats and torches. There is no strobe lighting within the tunnel.  
  • The Tunnel is damp and slightly muddy in spaces. Please ensure that your group all wear suitable, closed-toe shoes.  
  • The Tunnel has a constant temperature of 12º c (54º f). The walls were limewashed in the 1930s and this can rub off onto clothing. We recommend that you wear a warm outer layer. 
  • Food and drink cannot be consumed in the Tunnel.  
  • Indoor lunch facilities are available at Stepney Bank Stables or at Ouseburn Farm but must be booked in advance. 
  • We have a small gift shop at 55 Lime Street with a selection of souvenirs and pocket-money-priced keepsakes. We can arrange packs of souvenirs for classes in advance to collect on the day.

Accessible Visits

Our tunnel is not fully accessible, as there are 5 sets of blast walls from its time as an air raid shelter. This makes it difficult, and often impossible, for wheelchairs to navigate.

Wheelchair users can still go underground, but only in the first 30 meters before the first blast wall.

As an alternative offer, we have a film about the tunnel in WW2 which can be watched underground. Please request this at the time of booking.

Sandford Award logo