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The Port of Tyne is proud to be a sponsor and supporter of the spectacular Great North Run Million opening ceremony taking place with the world famous River Tyne and its bridges as the backdrop.


The event, created by artistic director of the 2012 Paralympics opening ceremony, is an artistic interpretation of the great heritage, history and future of the North East told in music, film, pyrotechnics, mass choreography, along with appearances by some of its best known superstars.

Andrew Moffat, Port of Tyne's Chief Executive Officer, said: "The Port of Tyne is delighted to be one of the sponsors helping to make this exciting event happen and also to be supporting the operations behind the scenes.    

"We are very much behind the numerous events each year that see people enjoying and using the river especially as they also support the local economy and the businesses that depend on the river.  

"The sheer scale and creative quality of this event means it will not only be fantastic for people to see and enjoy here, but will bring the national profile and acclaim that is so important for a strong and vibrant image for the region."

The Port of Tyne has played an important part in many river-based events over recent years, including the Bridges Festival, the Olympic Torch Relay, the Bambuco Bridge and the EAT festival and the Tall Ships Races as well as numerous charity organised events.

On Thursday 4 September, the Newcastle Gateshead Quayside and the River Tyne will once again take centre stage and be transformed into a huge outdoor arena for the Great North Run Million Opening Ceremony, marking the start of the official countdown to the 1 millionth finish of the Great North Run on Sunday 7 September in South Shields.

Brendan Foster CBE, Chairman of Nova International, said: "The response we've had since announcing our plans for the event has been overwhelming. We are really pleased to have the support of the Port of Tyne and for their help in organising a spectacular event that will incorporate the iconic River Tyne."

The Great North Run Million Opening Ceremony hosted by Ant and Dec, will feature live performances by Sting, Dire Straits legend Mark Knopfler, drum'n'bass superstars Chase & Status, Mercury Prize nominees The Unthanks, and electrifying performers Lords of Lightning, as well as fireworks and pyrotechnics, mass choreography, a giant floating sculpture, and video mapping onto Sage Gateshead.

The Port of Tyne's sponsorship extends beyond the celebration event itself into support of a year-long programme of art projects, events and exhibitions which celebrate and explore sport and art through Great North Run Culture. Featuring film, photography, dance, drama, writing, and much more, by using the world's largest half-marathon as the launch pad for commissioning exciting, innovative and accessible art. The first part of the year-long programme kicks off on Saturday, with the opening of the Great North Greats exhibition in South Shields Museum and Art Gallery.  


For further information please contact:

Lisa Donohoe, Public Relations Manager

Tel: +44 (0) 191 455 2671 Mobile: +44 (0)79123 90777

E: Twitter: @Port_of_Tyne

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