The Victoria Tunnel is a preserved 19th century waggonway under the city from the Town Moor to the Tyne, to transport coal from Spital Tongues (Leazes Main) Colliery to the river and operated between 1842 and the 1860s. The Tunnel was converted in 1939 into an air raid shelter to protect thousands of Newcastle citizens during World War 2.
In 2008 the Victoria Tunnel was carefully repaired and opened for guided tours with funding from the Heritage Lottery Fund and TyneWear Partnership. Since 2010 the Ouseburn Trust has operated guided tours, with our award winning volunteer guides. ‘Best Team at 2015 North East Museums Awards’
Click here for everything you need to know about planning a visit to the Victoria Tunnel (dates, times, prices etc) but please note you cannot book for today
Or if you are ready to book, (Note you cannot book tours for today) go straight to
Please note it is not possible to book on tours for today, and you may need to look a week or two ahead for available tours as we are currently experiencing a high level of demand.
The Victoria Tunnel is a place of many stories;
- an award winning attraction – Small Visitor Attraction of the Year 2013 in the North East of England Tourism Awards, and a Bronze Award in 2014
- Strongly recommended as Number One Visitor Attraction in Newcastle on Trip Advisor
and has been awarded the 2016 Certificate of Excellence from Trip Advisor. Follow this link to read visitors’ reviews …
- In September 2012, the Tunnel featured in the BBC series ‘How We Won the War’.
- The Tunnel was also featured in BBC 2’s programme ‘Dan Snow’s History of the Railway’ in January 2013.
- In March 2015 the Victoria Tunnel is featured in a Barclay’s Bank advert with Alan Shearer.
- During autumn 2015 we hosted ‘Hitlers Headquarters’ a performance by Twentyseven Productions. A preview shown on Tyne Tees News can be viewed here
Go on your own journey of discovery to learn how tough life was during WW2, listen for the air-raid warning and the sound of planes passing overhead dropping their bombs and memories of people who lived through the dreadful period in Newcastle’s history. See the rough wooden replica beds and benches, just like those slept or sat on, by frightened citizens during bombing raids. And visit the WW2 crucifix and see if you can identify the people named in the roll of honour. You may also be interested to hear about the sightings of a ghost seen in the Victoria Tunnel by visitors from a Paranormal group!!
Experience life in a Victorian waggonway, learn how it was constructed and listen out for the wagons full of coal heading for the Tyne. Be brave, listen to the story of William Coulson’s death and be aware as you hear the approaching waggons heading towards you through the tunnel in the pitch black darkness.
Be reminded which Newcastle landmarks you are beneath, including the unique chance to walk underneath Hadrian’s Roman Wall.
If you enjoy heritage guided walks take a look at the wonderful programme offered by our friends the Newcastle City Guides