The Customs House showcases a range of visual art forms reflecting our work with our local community.


The Customs House has several exhibition spaces.

  • The Customs House Gallery – Sheila from Shields And Her Cat
  • Upper Fusion Gallery – The Treasure Group Imaginary UK Tour
  • The Step Up Gallery – celebrates the amazing creative talent of children across South Tyneside.






Step Up Gallery 

Schools’ Drawing  Exhibition 

Tucked away next to our studio be sure to visit our Schools’ drawing exhibition all about Snow White. This exhibition presents drawings by children from Barnes Infant Academy, Dunn Street Primary School, Sunningdale School and Harton Primary.

Reception children from Barnes Infant Academy have drawn the main characters from this well known and much loved story. Elizabeth Kane Learning and Participation Officer The Customs House said:

“ This is the first year that Barnes Infants have taken part in our annual schools’ drawing exhibition. We hope when they visit our pantomime, as they do every year, all the artists are thrilled to see their work proudly displayed at our busiest time of the year.”


For the second year Harton Primary have submitted a superb selection of drawings. These drawings are by pupils from across the school. They have used a wide variety of materials. Elizabeth said:

“I am impressed Harton’s artists have had the freedom to create such personal and varied responses to the theme Snow White. It’s clear the arts are really valued at Harton primary.”

Children from Dunn Street created an observational drawing by looking closely at photographs of our cast. After making their first sketch they made a second drawing refining their drawings. We added a splash of colour inspired by award winning designer Paul Shriek costumes.

“ Mrs Giles class were eager to try new things. They showed great determination when I set them some tricky drawing challenges. What’s more I had a lovely surprise with the school kindly donating money towards our Heart of the House campaign. Their generosity helps ensure more young people like them can work with The Customs House to have excellent arts experiences. ”

Finally we have a set of Snow White portraits from Sunningdale school. Sunningdale school are the only school in Sunderland for children aged two to eleven with Severe, Profound and Multiple Learning Difficulties including Autism.

“ I love the children’s use of glitter adding some panto pizzazz and how they incorporated their hand prints in their artwork. Making these artworks would have been a really rich sensory experience.”

We hope you enjoy exploring this exhibition as much as we have enjoyed displaying their work.

For more information about our work with schools please see our schools, colleges and university page here.

Upper Fusion Gallery 

The Treasure Group – An Imaginary Tour

Our Imaginary UK Tour exhibition in the Upper Fusion Gallery.

Our Imaginary UK Tour exhibition in the Upper Fusion Gallery.

Exhibition opens to the public on May 14th until date tbc.

We’re taking down this exhibition very soon and will be moving our Step Up Gallery to the space. This will improve accessibility for our young artists and visitors ensuring everyone can see and celebrate their work.

Learn and Take Part

If you are a teacher and interested in completing a creative project or workshop with your class or CPD please see our Schools, Colleges and University Page.