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It's all change on the River Tyne; NOSTALGIA DAVE MORTON recalls the people and places of the North East EMAIL:


OUR photographs vividly illustrate the changes that have taken place on the River Tyne over the last 100 years or so.

In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, both banks of the industrial Tyne leading to the sea were home to countless shipbuilders, boatbuilders and ship repair yards.

There were also staiths where coal from the many pits of the North East coalfield was loaded on to ships for London and further afield.

And there were riverside factories producing everything from rope to chemicals.

It was dirty, noisy and smoky, but it provided work for thousands as Tyneside boomed as a major industrial powerhouse.

Shipbuilding, especially, became synonymous with the River Tyne.

Vessels of every kind were built at Scotswood, Elswick, Newcastle, Gateshead, St Peters, High Walker, Low Walker, Wallsend, Hebburn, Jarrow, Willington Quay, Howdon, Coble Dean, North Shields, South Shields, and here at Bill Quay.

Our older images were kindly provided by historian Norman Dunn who runs two popular photographic websites, and is the leading authority on the history of Hebburn.

Our main image from around 1930 shows a river full of ships and lined with yards and factories.

Norman told us: "The photographer must have been standing above the small shipyard, Harrison's, at Bill Quay.

"Those first coal staiths with five colliers awaiting coal were called Pelaw Main Staiths even though they were in Bill Quay.

"They got the name because coal from Pelaw Main Colliery - which was in the Birtley and Chester-le-Street area - was shipped from here.

Norman went on: "On the left is Walker Naval Yard, and in distance, again on the left, is Swan Hunter at Wallsend.

"On the right, the first chimneys belong to the Tharsis Sulpher & Copper Works who set up in Hebburn in about 1869.

" Further along, we see the chimneys of the United Alkali Co who took over from Tennants Chemicals in Hebburn. Tennants started in Hebburn about 1865."

Today, the Hebburn and Bill Quay side of the Tyne is home to the grassy, path-lined Riverdside Park and new private housing estates.

Indeed, both sides of the Tyne along this stretch have changed beyond all recognition over the last century or so.

| Check out Norman Dunn's websites and Meanwhile, check out his relaunched Hebburn message board, Hebburn and our Neighbours, at http://mb.


Looking towards Hebburn from Bill Quay, Gateshead, pre-1918 (Norman Dunn)

Harrison's slipway, Bill Quay, Gateshead, early 20th century (Norman Dunn)

Pelaw Main Staiths at Bill Quay, Gateshead, early 20th century (Norman Dunn)

A worker leaves the tug repair yard, Bill Quay, Gateshead, in March 1950

Looking towards Hebburn from Bill Quay, Gateshead, 2017

Hebburn Riverside Park with a view of Swan Hunter cranes before they were dismantled, 2008

Workers leaving Hebburn's Hawthorn Leslie shipyard, 1950s

Looking towards Hebburn from Bill Quay, Gateshead, c1920-30s (Norman Dunn)

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Publication:Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)
Geographic Code:4EUUK
Date:Nov 7, 2017
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