Bishopton High Street c1890s

t13105This photograph is of my husband’s grandfather, James Thompson Duff, taken outside Number 13 High Street, Bishopton, in the late 1890’s. My husband and I lived in Number 13 for a short time in 1976-1977. Just out of the photograph, to the left, was the shop/post office where James’ father, Edwin Duff, was Post Master. Edwin and his wife Sarah are buried in Bishopton’s cemetry, along with more family members, along the church wall marked by a big marble headstone/footing

Image and details courtesy of Carole Duff

The Tilery, Bath Lane c1982

t14536This pub was part of the new estate of blocks of flats built on what was the Bath Lane area. It was situated at the bottom of what was Garbutt Street. The photograph dates from around 1982. For some strange reason it was named the Tilery although it is a good distance from the Tilery of my youth. I believe that the pub is closed/demolished.

Garbutt Street was actually a fairly wide main road that ran down from Norton Road to the level crossing over the North Shore Branch Line. It was wide enough for two double decker buses to pass one another, the buses in questions being the No 1 through Portrack to the Transporter at Haverton Hill, and the IA which I think got as far as the Malleable.

Photograph and details courtesy of Fred Starr.

Victoria Bridge c1955

t14518I’m guessing that this photograph of Victoria Bridge was taken somewhere near to where Thornaby Auto Electrics now stands, if that’0909s so then the dockside buildings in the distance must be somewhere behind Stockton High Street. I used to wander around that area in the late 1950s watching the shunting locos and I seem to think there were steam cranes there as well, but that could be a trick of the memory…

Photograph and details courtesy of Bruce Coleman.

The Atkinson Family?

t14531 t14532This photograph was taken by A & G Taylor’s photographers, (no.6 High Street, Stockton) and we believe it shows the Atkinson family. The matriarch of the family is Mary Atkinson nee Nolan. Can anyone confirm this? I am beginning to research my family tree so any help would be appreciated.

Photograph and details courtesy of Wendy Cawley.

T.J Sowerby Butchers, Billingham est. 1932

Two photographs showing our shops original frontage which we had from 1932 till the 1980s. Stood in the shop doorway and sat on the old carrier bike is Douglas Sowerby seen here in 1932 aged 14. Douglas is the current owners father, and was Tom John Sowerbys younger brother. It has been a family business with different generations of the Sowerby family working there since it opened in 1932, even now in 2015 the Sowerby family still run the shop with the next generation of father and son at the helm.

Photographs and details courtesy of Robert Sowerby.

Dovers United Football Team c1934/35

These two photographs were loaned to me by my Richard Hind School friend Dave Foundling and shows football teams from Thornaby which his father Les played in.

When these lads were about 15 and leaving school they organised a football team. They named themselves, Dovers United after a shop where they hung around. The shirts they are wearing in the first photograph are cricket shirts. Dave believes this to be in the Bon Lea area of Thornaby c1934.

t14516Back row (L-R): ??, ??, ??, Bert Drinkell, Bert Harrison, ??, ??.

Middle Row (L-R): ??, Tosser Addison, Dougie Gibson, Bobby Nicholson, ??.

Front Row (L-R): ??, ??, Les Foundling, ??, ??, ??.

t14517Second season c1935

Back Row (L-R): ??, ??, ??, Bill Harrison, Bert Drinkall, Bobby Nicholson, George Davis.

Middle Row (L-R): ??, ??, ??, ??

Front Row (L-R): ??,  Les Foundling, ??, ??, ??.

Photographs courtesy of Dave Foundling, details courtesy of Norman Hill.

R.A.O.B. Members c1920’s

t14514This photograph shows the Officials and officers of the R.A.O.B sometime in the 1920’s. My grandfather Thomas Arthur James Metcalfe is 4th from the right. Anyone any ideas as to the correct date? It must be after WW1 because it was the Admiral Jellicoe Lodge.

Photograph and details courtesy of Derek Graham.

Dovecote Street, Stockton

t14503An interesting old view of Dovecot Street before I knew it.  I can only remember Roberts wet fish shop in the premises occupied by Baillies in the picture. On the other side of the street, a Halfords Cycles sign shows the position of a business that lasted at least until around 1955 when my first cycle was bought.  This had an adult size frame and temporary wooden blocks fitted to the pedals. Also on the left is number 32 Dovecot Street which was occupied by the Borough Education Office in the 1950/60s.

Photograph and details courtesy of Peter Rigg.

Diesel Electric and Steam Trains, Thornaby c1960

t14486This photograph was taken at the bottom of George Street and Thornaby Road on the river side of the railway lines near The Erimus Works in about 1960. In the background through the steam to the right you can just make out Thornaby Town Hall.

I’m sure train buffs will be able tell us more about the transition to diesel and the trains.

Photograph and details courtesy of Derek Smith.

View of the River and Town Quay c1969

t14489Up to about 1965 it was impossible to see this vista as there was a tall fence along side the path that ran down past the North Shore Branch Line, and which blocked the view. The tearing down of the fence and the demolition of the Remploy building was one of the first steps to remodel this part of the riverside. The area in the foreground had been part of a shipyard up to the 1930s.

This photograph was taken three years before the riverside road was built over the small railway freight yard. The freight yard was built in 1949 to help revive Stockton as a port and can just be discerned. Part of Head Wrightsons is on the opposite side of the river.The number of big white vans just visible along the quay confirm that the railway yard was a failure, after its first bit of success in the 1950s.

Photograph and details courtesy of Fred Starr.

Memories of Seaton Carew c1965

We would like to thank Bruce Coleman who very kindly sent us the following in response to some of the comments on an earlier post ‘Memories of days out at Seaton Carew

t14498When I was a child in the early 1950s my Father was a member of the Haverton Hill Working mens Club, every year we had a trip from Billingham to Seaton Carew organised by the club, there were about 5 or six double decker buses full of parents and children each year, we received a packet of sandwiches and two half crowns in a brown envelope, the envelopes had holes in the front and were suspiciously like the Furness Shipyard pay packets, but that was possibly coincidental!, of course the sun always shone and my father and his cronies always disappeared into the Seaton Hotel at the first opportunity, my mother would sit on the beach all day only occasionally popping to the wooden hut to get a jug of boiling water to make a cup of tea, on one occasion a newspaper had a competition, they roped off a section of the beach and buried 5 “Gold” coins in the area, all of the kids were invited to dig for the coins, there were prizes for the finders but as is usual I didn’t win one and I never did find out what the prizes were, this is a bit like Willy Wonka, if anybody remembers this occasion and knows either who won or what they won I would be interested, I should imagine there are still a number of people that went on these trips who visit this site and can enlighten me.

The Thornaby Spitfire and the 75th Anniversary of the Battle Of Britain

During the recent sunny weather I took the opportunity to photograph the Thornaby Spitfire which looked fantastic set against the display of ‘flower roundels’ for which the council gardening team should be congratulated especially as this year is the 75th Anniversary of the Battle Of Britain.

It is also an opportunity to give a mention for the Thornaby Battle Of Britain Memorial Service which will be held on Sunday 13 September 2015 at the Airman’s Statue on Thornaby Road, 12:15pm for a 12:30pm service. All are welcome to attend.

Photographs and details courtesy of David Thompson.

Postcard showing Stockton High Street south

t14483The recent interest in the junction of Yarm Lane with the High Street prompted me to check my postcard collection, where I found this image dating from no earlier than 1931 when the tramway system closed.  At this time Barry’s occupied the corner premises and their immediate neighbour was the Royal London Insurance Society, judging by the visible portion of their building.

Image and details courtesy of Peter Rigg

B Flight 138 Squadron

t11218 t11219These two photographs show Eugene Chapman of Chapman’s Garage in the RAF during WW2. In the second photograph he is on the front row 2nd in from the right. He was in the B.FLT 138 SQDN stationed at Waterbeach and was an Engineer.

Photographs and details courtesy of Heather Schofield (nee Marshall).

Recreating a Stockton Postcard

t14477 t14477aI came across this very nice postcard of Stockton and decided to have a go at re-creating it as best I could, unfortunately I picked the wettest day last week (August 2015) to visit the High Street to take the photographs of the church and High Street so they are looking a little grey and washed out and of course I couldn’t get to the top of the Town Hall so I had to do them from ground level. Norton Green and Ropner Park as well as the Church haven’t changed much and the Shambles is still there in all it’s glory but of course the High Street has changed quite a bit, the layout is much the same as are some of the buildings but the overall feel is quite different from earlier times.

Images and details courtesy of Bruce Coleman

Riverside Clean Up c1970-80

t14478 t14478aThese two photographs of the River Tees were taken around 1970 and 1980 near to where the Watersports Centre now stands. At that time the embankment which formed the termination of the North Shore Branch of the Clarence Railway was still in existence. The remains of the narrow path which led from Church road and then down past the river towards the Malleable can just be made out.

By 1980, or thereabouts, the big jetty used for unloading supplies or fitting out ships from Ropner’s ship yard had disappeared. Over on the Head Wrightson’s side of the river, it is just possible to make out that a dock gate had been constructed. As has been explained in an earlier blog these were floated down the river and round the coast to where they were needed. In the colour photograph, what was the white, temporary looking building being used for?

Photographs and details courtesy of Fred Starr.