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On this page I will advise such data as I have located about many subjects, until such time as sufficient data is assembled to create specific pages in the particular area. As for other pages on this site, this page IS a work in progress!

On this page, today, in no particular sequence ... map or maps, artworks, Seaburn images, Winter Gardens image, Ayres Quay Bottle Company, Smith's Ltd. jewellers etc., HMS Arrow, St. Peter's Church, Drury & Son, Ford Paper Mill, Steam Tugs Biddick & Roker, Finchale Priory, a Sunderland Church, Whitburn village.


The first such map comes from a volume entitled 'Atlas of British Social and Economic History since c.1700', by Rex Pope. Here. A Google book.

I should indicate that the map seems to contain an error. It shows the main Pickersgill yard (William Pickersgill and Sons Ltd.) in what I believe is the wrong spot. That yard was, I think, to the west (left) of Queen Alexandra Bridge & not to the east of it (right of the bridge) as depicted in the map. None-the-less the map is most informative.


What follows is, at left of course, a watercolour of Sunderland Harbour, painted by Molly Davison in about 1890. It is signed and 36 x 54 cm. in size. The work was part of a lot of two watercolours by the artist that was for sale at a Stride & Son (of Chichester, Sussex) auction held on Jan. 27, 2007. At right, I show a map section which shows, I believe, exactly where the artist sat to paint her picture. She sat, I believe, on the point of land where 'slipway' is marked at the top of the map section. And looked south-west. Long Bank would be the road rising up to the left away from the river. Low Quay is at left (with the 'Gridiron' hidden by high tide) and Bowe's Quay and the other quays stretch away into the distance. A rather larger painting by Thomas Hemy, painted also at that very same spot, is in the Sunderland Museum and Winter Gardens in Sunderland. A thumbnail of his work and a link to the page where you can zoom in on the work is here.

And next, a pair of Sunderland images, of works by the prolific artist L. S. (Lawrence Stephen) Lowry (1887/1976). Lowry was a Manchester artist, who, I read, created some 10,000 works in his lifetime. What an amazing achievement! An extensive Wikipedia biography is here. But there are many biographies elsewhere. Now there are more Lowry works that depict Sunderland, since it was, I read, a favorite holiday destination for the artist.

The 1961 work at left below, entitled 'River Wear at Sunderland' was shown at the Sunderland Museum and Winter Gardens in Sunderland from Jan. to Jul. 2003. The work at right, entitled 'Sunderland Docks' was, I believe, painted at about the same time. A third Sunderland image, a 1962 work entitled 'Dockside Sunderland' was, I read, purchased by Sunderland Museum and Winter Gardens in 2004, as per this page. Lowry prints are widely available for purchase, I understand.


With sources as follows:

First below is an image of Seaburn Beach in the early 1900s, i.e. the Edwardian era. Provided (thanks so much!) by Meg Hartford. It comes, Meg advises, from an old album of photos of Sunderland & Roker produced by Valentine and Sons Ltd., postcard vendors of course, of Dundee & London. A larger version of the image can be seen here. Second below is a fine e-Bay item that sold in mid Jan. 2007, for GBP 5.15 or approximately U.S. $10.18. A beauty indeed! Of Seaburn beach. In the 1920s or 1930s perhaps? Fair is fair. I commend & thank 'bluebells-curios' of the U.K., the vendor of the item, for the regular outstanding quality of their listing images. And third below, another image of the beach at Seaburn, this image having kindly been provided by Steve of e-Bay vendor 'sallen1960', of Norway. The image of the River Wear bucket dredger was provided by Clive Ketley.



A long established bottle works indeed, 'Ayres Quay Bottle Company' was established, I read, in about 1723. It was operated by various owners & finally from c.1869 to 1923 by Laing, Horn, Scott and Co.  In 1942, it would seem that it vanished for good when Sir James Laing built a new shipbuilding berth on the site.

I understand that an image of the bottle works exists but I have not yet come across it. I can however offer the following, featuring a paperweight sold via e-Bay in early Nov. 2009. And both sides of a token for what seems to be essentially the same enterprise.

An eBay item in Sep. 2014 offered a 'blob top beer bottle' with a clock face on the front that says William Noble and hands pointing 10 to 12, also marked W. Noble & Co., Heywood. Marked on the back Ayres Quay Bottle Co. Sunderland.

The term 'Ayres Quay' must have encompassed a fair amount of territory. I read also that R. Pemberton operated glassworks there, on the ballast hills, from about 1802 to 1853 & that the business continued under other owners until 1881. Also at Ayres Quay, it would seem between the years of 1846 & 1868, was the ship building yard of John Robinson. And W. H. Pearson was building ships there also, in 1852 or thereabouts. And Wm. Richard Abbay also, in the period of 1847 thru 1856. And who knows how many more?

In a guestbook message you can read here, Tracey Finnamore refers to her ancestors having lived at Ayres Quay Villa, apparently located close to the quayside there. Tracey refers to two surgeons whose practice was located there i.e. Jonathan Shaw & William Candlish. I have invited Tracey or others who have knowledge of the history to write a few words about the doctors & their practice. It would seem that Jonathan Shaw, born on Mar. 16, 1818, died on Aug. 3, 1877 after serving as a surgeon & a general practitioner for over 25 years. His wife Mary (1822/1896) was Mary Candlish before marriage. I cannot spot quickly any references to William Candlish, surgeon. 


In Nov. 2009, what is entitled 'memo from' but would seem to be, in fact, a receipt, issued on Aug. 23, 1924 by 'Smiths Ltd.', Watchmakers, Jewellers, Silversmiths & Opticians, of 279 High Street, Sunderland, was offered via e-Bay. For a gold & diamond ring. A visually most interesting receipt, as I trust you will agree, which bears two 1 penny stamps. The item sold for U.S. 9.99.


A first day cover re HMS Arrow, a vessel which was 'adopted' by the City of Sunderland, when it was commissioned in Jul. 1976. The vessel, F173, was a Royal Navy Type 21 frigate, 384 ft. long, with a speed of 32 knots. It was not built by a Sunderland shipbuilder, rather it was built by Yarrow Shipbuilders Ltd., of Glasgow, Scotland. She was well armed - with a 4.5 inch naval gun, 2 20 mm cannon, 4 'Exocet' & a single 'Sea Cat SAM' missiles, even two torpedo tubes. And a chaff launcher (whatever that is). With a ship's complement of 177. You can read about the vessel here.

The vessel served with distinction in the Falklands War of Apl. 2 thru Jun. 14, 1982.

By the mid 1980s the vessel was suffering - from cracks in her hull. She had to be extensively repaired, & was fitted with steel plates to strengthen the vessel's hull & superstructure. She served until Mar. 1, 1994 when she was decommissioned. That is not the end of her story, far from it. The vessel was transferred to Pakistan, & served in the Pakistani Navy as PNS Khaibar. It would seem that she may well still be in service for Pakistan as this item is added to the page in Aug. 2011.

A souvenir booklet was published in 1976 to celebrate the Commissioning of HMS Arrow. Of 15 pages. Now, thanks to the kindness of David Bell, we are able to present the entire booklet. The cover first & then all of the other pages, excluding the inside front cover which is blank. A copy of the booklet was e-Bay available in early 2013, in an item which included 2 invitations to attend the Commissioning Ceremony & 2 copies of 'The Ceremony and Order of Service'. It sold for GBP 10.09 or U.S. $16.18,

Each thumbnail image below is 'clickable'. And each image you come to is also 'clickable'.


Alan Vickers advises that the current (2011) adopted ship is HMS Ocean. And here, thanks to David Sloan, is a fine image of HMS Ocean, which in late May 2012, as this page was updated, was visiting Sunderland for a few days.

HMS Ocean visited Sunderland again in 2015. David Sloan's fine images below show HMS Ocean leaving Sunderland on May 4, 2015.

HMS Glasgow visited the city in Jul. 1955. A ball was held on Jul. 14, 1955. Was it perhaps, also a Sunderland adopted ship?


Most of an 1785 print of St. Peters Church, Monks Weremouth, Durham, which print was published by S. Hooper & engraved by J. Newton.


It is probably unlikely that the material that follows will be expanded into extensive coverage of St. Peter's Church in Monkwearmouth ( 1904 image). Even though the venerable church surely merits extended coverage due to its history of many centuries - built back in 674 AD, just a little before my time! The subject is, I know, well covered elsewhere already.  But ... the webmaster is a pack-rat, as you may have gathered,  & when he spots material of quality he finds it difficult to resist giving it a place in these pages.

This section started, in fact, as a result of seeing an e-Bay item of great quality, an item that sold for what seems to me to be the quite modest price of GBP 5.99. Covered next.

A fine lithograph of the tower of St. Peter's Church, Monkwearmouth, ex 'The Building News' of Nov. 15, 1872 - 13 x 8 1/2 inches in size, printed by Whiteman & Bass, of London. An e-Bay item that sold on Oct. 9, 2012. We thank U.K. vendor 'yelesomniloc' for his wonderful listing image - do drop by his store to view the current listings. Note: I have slightly modified the listing image for better presentation on this page - a bigger version of the print can be seen here. Sunderland Public Libraries are, I should note, to be commended for making another image of the lithograph available via Flickr.

And next a splendid image of the church thanks to Sunderland Public Libraries - who make the image available via Flickr here. A giant image of very great beauty. The image, in black & white, was, I see, published in an 1885 issue of 'Illustrated London News' as per an e-Bay item in Nov. 2012.

Next is the centre portion only of a limited edition etching by Walter Lishman (1903/1986), entitled 'Monkwearmouth circ 964-1964 A.D.' - ex an expired eBay item.

The interior of St. Peter's Church, before 1866, ex an expired eBay item.

The church would seem to have been altered considerably between 1872 & 1885. The entrance doorway in the base of the tower was removed, it would seem, & the top of the tower was materially changed also.

Vince Richardson has kindly advised as follows:-

I know the original entrance, known as Bede's Entrance, was the original Anglo-Saxon doorway which only existed as a 'porch' to the first level as seen on the etchings. This doorway seems to have been bricked up for some reason on the 1872 print. It would not have been 'removed', rather, due to its historical importance, just covered over to protect it from further decay. There is substantial alteration to the top of the tower, but seeing as this was a much later addition it is probably not of the same historical importance as the original early medieval porch & doorway. I did find this following reference to the 1875 restoration in a 'pdf' available here:-

'The tower porch is the most ancient part of the building, and the crumbling structure underwent much needed restoration in 1875, at a cost of £7,190.'

This doorway is still protected by an iron railing & is now only used when showing visitors to this historic site, so no one gets to use it on a daily basis. A much later built side door (12th Century?) now acts as the church’s main entrance.

Vince, we thank you!

Probably more imagery to follow in due course, as time & energy permit. Should any site visitor wish to contribute to this section, a summary history of the church perhaps, your effort would be welcomed.

I think that I am correct in saying that 'The Antiquaries Journal' of 1970, Volume 1, Part II, contains 9 pages re the church's 'Decorated window-glass and millefiori' (a technique which produces distinctive decorative patterns on glassware). Written by Rosemary Cramp, F.S.A.


At left below is a postcard image of the store of 'Drury & Son', haberdashers, of MacKies corner, Sunderland. MacKie's corner is where Fawcett & Bridge Streets cross High Street, the corner being named after a silk top hat maker named 'MacKie' who originally rented the corner in Victorian times.


The corner was badly damaged in the town fire which devastated Havelock House (that fire is extensively covered here) on the opposite corner in 1898, but the main structure, cupola & clock survived & are still named MacKies corner.
Next, an interesting trade card for 'Drury & Son' - a 'Raphael Tuck and Sons', 'Oilette', postcard, mailed at Sunderland on Oct. 27, 1905. An e-Bay item which was sold for U.S. 19.00 on May 3, 2010. The reverse of the card promoted Drury & Son's felt hats, with wording that you can, with difficulty, read here.

And next another interesting Tuck 'Oilette' advertising postcard that was sold on e-Bay on Aug. 31, 2012. On the other side of the card it reads - 'We are Specialists in Farmers' Clothing, Tweeds for Hard-wear, Driving and Riding Waterproofs, Aprons and Gloves. We are noted among Hunting men, Jockeys and Huntsmen for Riding Breeches & Leggings. Drury & Son.' The bull depicted was, it would seem, the prize winning bull that won the 'Drury's Challenge Bowl'. Posted on May 26, 1905. The listing image was enlarged for better presentation here.


To start the subject off, here is a section of an 1896 Ordnance Survey map showing the Ford Paper Mill (Works) site at Hylton.

An interesting image, dating from about 1949, of the unloading of esparto grass at Corporation Quay - esparto grass destined for the Hendon and Ford papermills. A fine image ex 'Sunderland Tugs and Shipbuilding in pictures' on Facebook, here.


Some day in the near future I would like to add a page that features Sunderland's tug boats. But today I have but limited material on the subject. I do however have, to start things off, an image of Steam Tug 'Biddick', at Sunderland on May 31, 1966. In what I believe is a D. L. Chatfield image.

And an image of steam tug Roker, of 119 tons, built in 1904 by J. P. Rennoldson, at South Shields. Taken in 1964 at Methil, Scotland. A larger complete image can be seen here.


An 17th century print of Finchale Priory, sometimes referred to as Finchale Abbey, a 13th century Benedictine priory, the remains of which are located beside the River Wear, four miles N. of Durham. A print which sold via e-Bay on Oct. 26, 2014 for U.S. $49.95. The print, 11 x 6 3/8 in. in size (engraved area) was engraved by Daniel King & published in London in 1682 by 'Wilkinson, Dring and Harper'. A slightly larger image of the print can be seen here.

A Wikipedia page about the priory. And another fine page.


A partial image of, to the webmaster at least, an unknown Sunderland church. Described by the e-Bay vendor as being 'Photo Sunderland Venerable Bede Monk Street 1940s', which description has unfortunately not permitted the webmaster to identify the specific church via a Google search. Can you identify it? And tell us about it? Doris Hahn has kindly suggested (thanks!) that it may well be an image of the Venerable Bede Anglican Church, of Monkwearmouth, which church was created in 1871 from Monkwearmouth All Saints and Monkwearmouth St. Peter, & was demolished in the early 1960s.

But, in Feb. 2017 we are told, by Allison O'Brien in a guestbook message, that the church is for sure St. Luke's Parish Church, Pallion. Allison writes - 'the black and white photo of the church is St. Luke's, Pallion. My parents were married there in 1963. The church is still standing minus the spire. I remember my nana taking me in the 1970s to jumble sales in the church hall and in the summer the rectory gardens were also used.' A modest, more recent image of the church is available (via this page) of the church. If you compare the images the church is the same, still with a tower but no longer with the spire atop the tower.

The print, a Sunderland Echo image, sold via e-Bay on Oct. 27, 2014 for GBP 4.99. A complete & larger image of the print can be seen here.


A pleasing postcard image of the village of Whitburn, dating from 1906. A recent (Jan. 2015) e-Bay item. Click the image to view the card in a larger size.

May I suggest that you navigate the site via the index on page 001.PRIOR PAGE / NEXT PAGE

To Thomas M. M. Hemy datapage 41. All of the other Thomas Hemy pages, including image pages, are accessible though the 'Hemy' index on page 05.

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