The adaptation of a large mid-20th century flour mill as a centre for the arts has proved to be one of the outstanding examples in England of the adaptation of an industrial building for new uses.
The Baltic Mill, constructed in the 1950s, was the last large-scale installation to be constructed for handling grain which, after coal, had been one of the most important trades for the ports on the River Tyne. The silos and many other features of the original mill remain visible since it was converted under the direction of the architect Dominic Williams into one of the biggest temporary art spaces in Europe, which opened in 2002.
The Baltic has no permanent collection but mounts temporary and visiting exhibitions in facilities on six floors that include five galleries, three artists’ spaces, a performance arts space, a cinema and lecture hall, a media laboratory and a library and archive. Spectacular views along the River Tyne can be obtained from riverside and rooftop restaurants.