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The Bridge UK: A Free Festival Celebrating Hip Hop in Newcastle

by Margherita Farano

This summer, Newcastle is set to get vibrant as Method Lounge hosts The Bridge, an annual Hip Hop festival, for the 4th year. 



Running from July 10th to 14th, it promises live performances, workshops, talks, and more - all completely free. 


For all ages, Hip Hop enthusiasts and newcomers, The Bridge is spread across multiple venues; Hadrian Newcastle, The Tanners Arms, Zerox, and The Glasshouse (formerly Sage Gateshead).



Supported by Arts Council England, the festival is a groundbreaking initiative that connects diverse communities across the UK through the universal language of Hip Hop. 


The festival kicks off at The Tanners Arms with a launch party on the 10th featuring DJ Smoove, a Hip Hop pub quiz, an exclusive Bridge x Scranners menu, and more. 


Friday night hosts music from Abi Nyxx, Just B, Sophie Mitchell, Eyeconic, and more local names at Zerox from 8pm-3am.


Keeping up the celebrations, Saturday night makes a bang at The Glasshouse, featuring the renowned DJ Shadow performing live at 8:30pm. Tickets can be booked here



This year’s theme, ‘Lost Arts’, focuses on celebrating and reviving Old School Hip Hop arts, including turntablism and graffiti writing. The festival offers an array of workshops designed to engage participants of all ages and skill levels, including: 


Graffiti workshop for neurodiverse artists led by Sune. 


Graffiti classes and clothing customisation led by Pekoe from Bristol Crew, RBF. 


- An introduction to turntablism with DJ Specifik. 


Rap lyric workshop writing with songwriter Holly Flo Lightly. 


- An introduction to Popping and Locking with Female Funk Fruition’s Nadia Sewnauth. 


Lyric writing workshop to use our words for world change with Donald Jenkins. 


Tickets for workshops are free, but require advance booking here



The festival isn’t just about workshops, though; it also features a variety of exhibitions, talks, and performances. Highlights include:


Tiffany’s Sidewalk, Thursday 11th from 6-9pm: an exhibition showcasing artwork and memorabilia from the legendary 80s electro-funk club.


Hit the Breaks, Thursday 11th from 5-9pm: a live broadcast on Method Radio exploring the journey of drum breaks from Bitcore to Hardcorse, featuring iconic artists like DJ Specifik, Suraze, Luke B, Amy Warehouse, and Aems MC. Listen live here


What’s the Name of My DJ, Saturday 13th from 4-5pm: a panel discussion featuring Normski, Sarah Love, DJ Specifik, Mojaxx, and Holly Flo Lightly to discuss Hip Hop’s hidden heroes, hosted by Peep Magazine and Donald Jenkins.



In partnership with organisations like Child & Adolescent Behaviour Services LTD and Inspired Support, the festival aims to create a platform for artistic expression, cultural exchange, and community engagement. 


Don’t miss out on this unique opportunity to be part of a transformative cultural experience in Newcastle this summer!


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