The opening ceremony took place on the afternoon of Thursday 4 February. The Duke toured the building, meeting students and staff (pictured), before unveiling a plaque to commemorate the occasion.
King’s Gate, which was completed in Autumn 2009 at a cost of £35 million, houses Newcastle University’s student services, including the student progress office, which deals with all aspects of students’ progress through university, from registration to examinations and graduation ceremonies. The building is also home to the student wellbeing service, the accommodation service and the careers service.
As he unveiled the plaque, the Duke, whose daughter Eugenie is a student at the University, said: "I came here wearing two hats, one as a member of the Royal family coming here to open a very important building and the other as a parent.
"A great deal of vision and effort has gone into creating this building and it is a particular pleasure for me to be here because I recognise how important it is for a university to support its students."
The Vice-Chancellor of the University, Professor Chris Brink, said: "This building represents an important breakthrough for our 19,000 students because they now have one door and one floor for all the services that they need."
Newcastle University buildings have a long tradition of Royal openings. In 1906, King Edward VII opened the Armstrong Building, and later gave his permission for the Great Hall within the building to be named King’s Hall.
In 1939, The Duke of York’s grandfather, King George VI, opened the King George VI building, which was then home to the University’s Medical School. Later, in 1984, The Duke’s grandmother, Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother, officially opened the modern Medical School. Most recently, Her Majesty The Queen performed the opening ceremony for the Great North Museum in November 2009.
published on: 2nd February 2010