Sharon Reid


For many, fun and team- building are mutually exclusive– the idea of team – building can be an excruciating, cringe worthy experience. Let’s be honest spending eight hours or more with co-workers can at times be challenging, however, having to spend your ‘free’ time with said co-workers in forced bonding exercises can either enhance working relationships or foster feelings of alienation. One old acquaintance, told me about a particularly awkward team – building weekend, where one of the exercises was for everyone to openly criticise each other face to face! Needless to say, the fall –out from this was pretty epic and led to everyone disliking each other – a tragic outcome considering the whole purpose of the trip was to reinforce camaraderie.

Seaham Hall, an award –winning five –star boutique hotel, situated on Durham’s Heritage Coast, are seeking to provide a positive team –building experience courtesy of its brand new events space The Vortex, a contemporary, multi-use zone designed to inspire creative thinking. Accommodating up to 40 guests, it can easily be transformed from a typical, conventional meeting room to an inspirational space where chairs and tables are swapped for bean bags to encourage free-flowing exchanges of ideas between colleagues and clients.

The Vortex’s décor, designed by Louise James (Koncept ID); who has created a stimulating, yet professional space.  Inspiration has been taken directly from the iconic water feature at the front of the hotel that shares its name with the new space; the vortex of swirling water is replicated in the bespoke carpet design. The hotel’s location by the sea is reflected in the wallpaper, which features illustrations of giant jellyfish. All combined with a slick contemporary twist on a grand Georgian Break-Front bookcase, which houses games and puzzles such as old school favourites Connect 4 and Rubik’s cubes, and a concealed drinks fridge, there is also state –of –the art in -built technical equipment, along with a smart TV which is hidden by artwork when not in use.image

Team – building activities

Forget the running on hot coals reminiscent of the 80’s!  Seaham Hall has partnered with two local companies – Valley Adventures and Karting North East. Expect a range of team –building activities taking place within the hotels’ 37 acres, such as; falconry, treasure hunts, bush craft and cookery classes.  In addition, Valley Adventures offers archery, paddle-boarding, surfing, scavenger hunts, coastal discovery days, orienteering, circus skills, military-style assault courses and raft building, while Karting North East offers professional Karting experiences, plus paintball, rage rally, archery, tomahawks and off-road 4×4 driving.

Corporate packages

The Day Delegate Rate for The Vortex starts from £55 pp inclusive of VAT,  which includes the use of the main meeting room, refreshments on arrival and mid-morning, two-course lunch or working buffet lunch, afternoon tea, AV equipment, complimentary parking and WIFI.Seaham Hall -IMG_1352

The Residential Delegate Rate starts from £225 pp inclusive of VAT, which includes all of the above, plus an overnight stay in a Junior Suite, a three-course dinner, full English breakfast and use of the 44,000 sq ft Serenity Spa, complete with 20m pool, outdoor hot tubs and a huge range of treatment and massage options.

Although Seaham Hall can not guarantee lasting working relationships, hopefully, cringe worthy episodes with colleagues will be few and far between!


For more information, please call Seaham Hall’s expert meetings and conferences team on 0191 516 1400 – or visit  for ideas and inspiration.