North East Connected


BUSINESSES can learn how to solve problems SAS-style in the grounds of one of the North East’s oldest castles.

630-year-old Lumley Castle – now a four-star hotel and conference venue, at Chester-le-Street, County Durham – has unveiled four new team building packages aimed at corporate clients.

And one of the most popular is a Special Forces-inspired series of challenges designed to teach participants how to give – and act on – clear instruction, against the clock and with limited resources.

In the first task, teams must decipher a series of clues to work out which spy has planted a bomb while, in the second, a team leader instructs blindfolded team members to erect a tent.

The third task in the half-day package relies on delegates working together to cross an imaginary river using only limited equipment.

Other motivational team building packages include CSI, which relies on detective work to crack puzzles and solve clues; Desert Island, which features outward-bound style teamwork and Pen the Problems, in which teams of ‘sheep’ are blindfolded and herded into place with only the barking of their ‘sheepdog’ leader to direct them.

Each package can either be a stand-alone event or incorporated into a wider conference or event programme at the Castle, which also has 11 conference rooms, some dating back to the 14th century.

“Businesses are increasingly looking for ways in which to motivate and bring their work teams together,” said sales manager Lauren Colledge, “and these packages are a fun and very effective way of doing just that.                                

“Our business clients also tell us that because the Castle is straight out of a storybook and completely different from their work environments, it inspires their delegates to think differently and really unleashes their imaginations and creativity.

“It is also a spectacular place to relax and unwind at the end of a busy day.”

Overlooking Durham County Cricket ground, off the A1, Lumley Castle can cater for everything from small scale meetings and product launches, to seminars, AGMs and dinner dances.

In addition, the hotel, which has ample free parking and a helipad, can provide a secretarial service and arrange a variety ofentertainment, such as Elizabethan banquets and murder mystery dinners.   

For information about the wide variety of corporate packages, activities and facilities on offer at Lumley Castle call 0191 389 1111 or visit

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