Plans unveiled for dramatic renovation and re-brand of Newcastle O2 Academy

The venue will open later this year with a new owner and new look

Details about the rebranding of Newcastle's famous O2 Academy have been confirmed.

The venue's new identity will be as NX Newcastle and the rebranding will create 100 jobs for the city.

The £1.75 million venture is being headed up by independent organisation Electric Group and the venue is set to re-open in October this year after a state-of-the-art refurbishment.

Work has already began to overhaul the venue, which originally opened as a cinema in 1927.

Electric Group is aiming to create a more intimate experience both for artists and Newcastle gig-goers, with the introduction of mezzanine platforms that improve the flow of people throughout the hall.

Electric Group’s co-founder and CEO Dominic Madden explained: “By slightly reducing the capacity of the main room and adding standing mezzanine staircases on either side, as well as an additional mezzanine platform at the front of the circle, we’ll improve the line of sight between musicians and the audience, bringing music fans closer to artists so there can be a greater sense of connection between them.

The venue will be known as NX Newcastle

“We’re hugely excited to provide a 21st-century venue for the city that nurtures emerging creative talent as well as forming a major stop on the international tours of the highest calibre; today’s biggest music acts and DJs.”

All staff at NX will also be trained as part of Shout Up!, the Newcastle City Council-backed scheme to eliminate sexual harassment from Newcastle’s night-time economy.

Mike Weller is Electric Group’s Head of Music and added: “Front and centre we’ll be programming a series of daytime events to complement gigs, and on club nights we’ll be open till 4 am.

New levels will be added to the venue

"There’ll be incredible music experiences for absolutely everyone to enjoy, and we look forward to confirming upcoming acts in the summer.”

Once improvements are complete, the new-look space will accommodate 2,095 people on club nights, and 1,600 during live music gigs.