BBC Radio 3 Free Thinking Festival: Building Bridges and Other Megastructures

Northern Rock Foundation Hall

To guarantee your ticket book in advance. There will be some tickets available on the day on a first come, first served basis.

In a space of less than a mile, seven bridges link Newcastle with Gateshead including the distinctive shape of the Tyne Bridge. But what kind of human endeavour goes into imagining and realising such man-made wonders?

Roma Agrawal, writer of Built: The Hidden Stories Behind our Structures, Newcastle University’s Sean Wilkinson and Erica Wagner author of Chief Engineer, look at the bond between the visionaries and the grafters with Rana Mitter.

Roma Agrawal is the author of Built: The Hidden Stories Behind our Structures. Trained as a chartered structural engineer, she has worked on several major engineering projects including the Shard and was awarded ‘Young Structural Engineer of the Year 2011’ by the Institution of Structural Engineers.

Erica Wagner is the author of Chief Engineer: The Man Who Built the Brooklyn Bridge, a biography of civil engineer Washington Roebling. Erica is former literary editor of The Times, the author of several books and is a lecturer in English and Creative Writing at Goldsmith’s University of London.

Sean Wilkinson is a Reader in Structural Engineering at Newcastle University whose research includes work on resilient communities, the design of high rise buildings and earthquakes.

Rana Mitter is a Professor of History at the University of Oxford where he is Director of the China Centre. He is a regular presenter of radio documentaries and of Radio 3’s Arts and Ideas programme Free Thinking.


For your information…

  • Phase one tickets will be available from 12noon on Monday 5 February, with phase two tickets available from 12noon on Monday 19 February.
  • Tickets are strictly limited to four per person.
  • To guarantee your ticket book in advance. There will be some tickets available on the day on a first come, first served basis.
  • Please take your seats 10 minutes prior to the event start time otherwise you may lose your place.


Part of BBC Radio 3 Free Thinking Festival 2018

Part of BBC Radio 3 Free Thinking Festival 2018

Welcome to the Free Thinking Festival from BBC Radio 3. All weekend here at Sage Gateshead we’re gathering together a throng of talented individuals to wrestle, debate and celebrate the theme of this year’s festival: The One and the Many. Whether it’s the impact of social media,...

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