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On 9th April 2023, Side Gallery closed to the public due to critical funding cuts and the ‘cost of living crisis’.

Our amazing donors raised over £60,000 to #SaveSide, and thanks to their support, we were able to retain a small part-time team to look after our archive, continue our education programme in local schools, and apply for critical funding. Currently, we’re awaiting the outcome of an application to the National Heritage Lottery Fund. If we’re successful, it will put us on the path to reopening Side Gallery, but we have a long road ahead of us.

Thanks to your support, we’ve still achieved incredible feats over the last few months. Here’s what we’ve been up to:

  • Through the National Archive’s Archived Revealed Grant funding, we will create a fully accessible public catalogue, ensuring the stories we’re caretakers of are experienced by many more. 
  • Funded by the Paul Hamlyn Foundation, we launched our education programme in North Tyneside. The programme will run for 3 years and aims to train primary school children in two schools in documentary filmmaking and photography.
  • Secured £50,000 from Arts Council England’s Unlocking Collections to develop touring exhibitions and research the collection.
  • We’ve taken part in exhibitions across the UK, including Marc Wilson’s The Wounded Landscape Tour at The Impressions Gallery, Bradford
  • The collection is also playing a prominent role in the Hayward Gallery Touring’s After the End of History: British Working Class Photography 1989 – 2024, which opens at the Herbert Gallery in Coventry on the 29th of March. 
    We are also looking to the future. Several exhibitions will kick off in London, the first at Tate Britain in November, called Photographing 80s Britain: A Critical Decade, followed by an exhibition at Two Temple Place, details to follow! 

Watch this space… as soon as we have an update on our funding application, we’ll let you know. 

In the meantime, could you take 2 minutes to tell us what you see when you Reimagine Side?  

We know that if we receive the grant funding that will help us re-open our physical gallery space, it needs to evolve into something different to ensure that we’re fit for the future and as accessible as possible. To thrive, we need to Reimagine Side, and so we want to hear from you.

Watch the campaign film

Amber came together as a film & photography collective in 1968 focussing on documenting working class and marginalised lives and landscapes in North East England. In 1977 we opened Side Gallery, which is committed to celebrating the best in the wider tradition of humanist documentary photography.



Side Gallery is dedicated to showing the best in documentary photography: rich, powerful and challenging work engaged with people’s lives and landscapes, telling stories that often get marginalised, whether they are from the North East of England or anywhere else in the world.

We’re not far from the Tyne Bridge on Newcastle’s Quayside.

As of 9th April 2023, Side Gallery is closed to the public due to critical funding cuts and the ‘cost of living crisis’.



Landscapes & lives of NE England, classic & contemporary documentary: a unique film & photographic collection growing from the work we’ve continued to produce, commission & collect since 1968.

Photographic exhibitions, videos, clips, trailers and each month’s Featured Film are free. For personal use Amber’s feature dramas, feature documentaries and film shorts are available as pay per view. 


Classic and contemporary international film seasons, often linked to exhibitions at Side Gallery or to the wider work of AmberSide.

We have closed our cinema for re-development but we can still share films together digitally with our Doc North East programme.



Delivering distinctive projects with schools, colleges and the community – we use the AmberSide Collection and other resources as inspiration to develop creative, participative projects teaching documentary skills in photography and filmmaking to engage with local history and cultural heritage.



Amber relies on donations from people like you now more than ever.



The best, and in many cases the only, place for DVD & Video from 40 years of Amber Filmmaking. Photography books linked to Amber’s production and Side Gallery’s exhibitions. Side Gallery’s classic photography Posters & Postcards. Plus high quality digital Prints and special editions.