Two Little Bridesmaids c1930s

t15146This is another of my aunts photos (Freda McCorkell), as you can see it’s a delightful picture postcard showing two young ladies, probably bridesmaids, at an unknown venue.
As shown on the back one of the young ladies is Fanny Woodhouse the other is unknown, as to a date it looks to me to be around the mid 1930s but it could be even earlier, maybe one of your visitors can give a better idea of it’s date going by the style of dress.

I remember Fanny’s mother ‘Granny’ Woodhouse, she was a friend of my Grandmother’s and I was often taken round the corner by my Granny to visit her, this was before I started school and I found it very boring.

Photograph courtesy of Freda McCorkell, details courtesy of Fred Starr.

Turbocharger Casing from Stockton Castings

t15154The picture shows two big turbochargers of the type used in large diesel truck engines, made by Holset Ltd in Huddersfield. In the early nineties I needed these for an experimental gas turbine, but working at much higher temperatures than usual. Super strength cast stainless steel would have to be used for the casings. We were told that the only company Holset trusted with “specials” of this type was Stockton Castings, in Ross Road, off Portrack Lane.

We visited the company, coming up from London, on behalf of our bit of British Gas R&D. We were greeted by the owner, Mr Wolverston , (I understand), a real gentlemen. He would have been around sixty at that time. He greeted us in his little office, upstairs from the foundry. I remember him being very smartly dressed in a green suit. He showed us round and it was clear that this casting, which was somewhat complex, and had to be made to tolerances of less than 0.5mm, would present no problems. One of our team came up a few weeks later to see the job being done and it was a no fuss affair.

Has anyone any pictures of the owner or the company or can say what jobs they normally did?

Photograph and details courtesy of Fred Starr.

Staff at St. Patrick’s School, Thornaby c1960s

t15153Probably taken in the early 1960s… These teachers taught in ‘the huts’, the secondary school of St Patricks
I don’t know why Vin Martin isn’t on this one. Front row from the left; Kath Fllyn, Margaret Ahbrams? Marjorie Kilcoyne (my mum), ? Dalton Headteacher, Chris Laird, ??, ??, ??.
Back row from the left: Art Teacher ? Mick Spain, Woodwork Teacher, Len ?, ??, Frank ? and ??

Photograph and details courtesy of Lesley Wilson.

Bader Primary School, Thornaby

t15142 t15143It is nice to see that the new Bader Primary School signs give a hint as to were the school name originated from or should I say from whom it originated?

Indeed both Sir Douglas and Lady Joan Bader were there at the official opening of the school and today it stands on Thornaby Road appropriately between the Thornaby Spitfire and the Airman’s Statue both also reflecting the towns aeronautical history and the debt we owe to The Few.

Photographs and details courtesy of David Thompson.

Billingham South Modern, 1951

t15147We would have been about 14 years old when this photograph was taken, it shows Class B, my final year at school. I am on the front row of girls third from the right, I was Freda Leek in those days. All of these students will now be around 80 years of age. If anybody recognises any of these people then please do write in.

Back Row (l-r): Ken Stewart, Joe Allam, Fred Palmer, Doug Green, Keith Brown, Tony Wilkins, Derek Towers, Peter Holingshead, Brian Adamson.

2nd Back Row (l-r): Peter Walton, Raymond Mantle, William Young, Jean Watson, Audrey Lenard, Kathleen Twyzell, Merle Mitchel, Brian Smith, Keith Rawlinson, Brian Evans.

3rd Row (l-r): Willa Armstrong, Joyce Bentley, Shirley Robinson, Betty Ramage, Noreen Carney, Jean Scot, Catherine Pattison, Margaret Jorgenson, Wendy Gordon, Pauline Brown, Cynthia Robinson.

Seated (l-r): Mary Jameson, Jean Cox, Jean Hudson, Pat Walker, Mr Caygill, Jean Lewis, Freda Leek, Dorothy Pamplin, Elsie Hutchinson.

Front (l-r): William Raw, Charles Pattison, Desmond Stubbs.

Photograph and details courtesy of Freda McCorkell.

Stockton Clippies c1965

t15137This picture of a Stockton Corporation Leyland PD2 takes me back to the late 1960s when I was working as an electrician for Teesside Municipal Transport. Conductors and conductresses were being phased out at that time as the ‘Back Loader’ buses were being replaced with Leyland Atlanteans for ‘One Man Operation’.

The electric shop had five staff members, a foreman, a chargehand, an electrician, an apprentice and a labourer. I was the electrician and one of the jobs I dreaded was trudging around the ice encrusted depot yard on Portrack Lane, dragging a trolley loaded with batteries and jump starting these grand old buses in time for the works and school runs.

Photograph and details courtesy of Bruce Coleman.

Mrs Corners Class, St Cuthberts RC Primary School, Stockton c1956

t15140Back Row (l-r): Terry Newman, John Ruddy, Patrick Dunne, Jimmy O’Connor, Harry Wilkinson.

Middle Row (l-r): Bobby Flynn, Anthony Smith, Michael Elward, Mickey Brown, Phillip
Eglington, Ken Davies, Margaret Ross, Margaret Frail, David Scott, Stephen Hook, Leonard Phillips, Kenneth MaCue, Chrissy Lindo, Francis Harrison, Marty Stott.

Front Row (l-r): Angela Flynn, Kathleen Atkinson, Maureen Tracey, Monica
Caveney, Eileen McCue, Carol Scrimgour, Margaret Jones, Susan Dolan, Kathleen
Rowland, Anne Riley, Catherine Boddy, Rita McGeeny, Joan Heslop, Margaret Nevins, Margaret Abbs, Catherine Birch, Dorothy Whitfield.

Photograph and details courtesy of Kenneth Davies.

New South Wales 46 Class Locomotive

t15138 t15139I recently visited a museum at Valley Heights (in the Blue Mountains) NSW Australia. The main purpose was to view a 46 class locomotive built by Metro Vicks at Bowesfield Works, Yarm Road Stockton in 1956.
Quite a bit of restoration work has been carried out. They were designed to generate enough power coming down the mountain, to drive another locomotive back up the mountain. Considered one of the most powerful electric locomotives of its time.

Photographs and details courtesy of Colin Booth.

Which School?

t15120I have been given this photograph to include in the Billingham School Album, the information that came with it says that It is St. Johns on Cowpen Lane, Billingham. I have a number of photographs of St. Johns and the building is very similar to the one in this image but the houses to the right of the image are definitely not next to the school. It has been suggested that it may be St. Johns at Ragworth, since demolished and rebuilt. Does anybody know which school this is and who the teachers are?

Photograph and details courtesy of Bruce Coleman.

Distant view of the Transporter c1972

t15126This picture was taken from the North Ormesby area on a bank which forms part of the Eston Hills. The Transporter is in the centre of the picture. Off to the left the twin stacks of North Tees C power station can be seen. Haverton Hill can barely be discerned through the industrial haze. The white smoke is probably not pure steam, in some cases at least, and looks more lethal. The small group of chimneys on the right hand side is part of the South Durham Steelworks at Cargo Fleet.

During the 1950s and 60s most industry either continued with coal for fuel, or switched to fuel oil. Natural gas as beginning to make an impact and this led to a big clean up in the atmosphere. But in 1972 I would guess that at least half the houses on Teesside were still burning coal and the lower Tees Valley tended to hold the pollution from these even in the summer. It would be interesting to see a more modern picture, if this viewpoint is still a grassy bank.

Photograph and details courtesy of Fred Starr.

1st Billingham Boys Brigade c1947

t15134This photograph shows the 1st Billingham Boys Brigade, taken outside the Methodist Central Hall on Billingham Green around 1947.

Amongst the many faces is my late husband Charles ‘Chuck’ McCorkell, Chuck and I were married in this very church in 1960, the church has long since been demolished.

Other names of the people in this photograph are:- Gordon Brown, Jackie Stoves, Harry Oliver, Harry Gilbert, Brian Kemp, George Gamesby, George Crawford, Eric Brown, David Jefferson, Alec Brown, Billy Oliver, Jim Barnes, Bill King, Skip Tinkler, Alan Dent, Bob Stewart, Terry Gilbert, George Whitehouse, Stan Calvert, George Brown, Frank Barnes, George Fleming and Harry Whitehouse.

If anybody remembers any of these names then do write in, they may be Fathers, Grandfathers or even Great Grandfathers of people still living in the Stockton area. I shall be very pleased to hear from some of Chuck’s old friends.

Photograph and details courtesy of Freda McCorkell.

Cars at ICI Oil Works?

An array of vehicles and a milk machine at ICI, Billingham.

Photographs courtesy of Ken Brooke.

Funeral procession of Charles Stewart, 1915

s828 s829A view of the funeral procession for Charles Vane-Tempest-Stewart (1852 – 1915), 6th Marquess of Londonderry, Earl Vane outside Wynyard Hall. The pallbearers are followed by Lady Theresa Susey Helen, Marchioness of Londonderry and Charles Steward Henry.

The hall was built in 1822 and rebuilt in 1841 after a fire and incorporated the late 18th century mansion built by the Tempest Family. The new building was based on Benjamin Dean Wyatt’s unexecuted proposal for a Waterloo Palace at Stratfield Saye for the Duke of Wellington. The plans were eventually executed by his brother Philip Wyatt.

Billingham Stephenson Hall c1960s

t15121This picture of Stephenson Hall shows the Hale Road entrance, this is just off Marsh House Avenue, the two storey wing to the left housed the Headmaster’s and secretary’s offices and the staff rooms, the single storey part was the dining area combined with the stage, beyond which was the main hall, this was sunken by about three feet.

The door in the corner was the staff entrance, the upper floor of the building behind the grassed area was the ‘Domestic Science’ room, the lower floor was the girls cloakroom.

The building is typical of it’s era, architecturally uninteresting and has since been demolished, the activities inside the building were much more interesting, there were many excellent teachers and the facilities were second to none, because the whole of the school started together on a September morning in 1958 there were no ground rules or set routines, we were all finding our feet at the same time and this included the staff.

Available to download is The Photo and Memories Album of Billingham School: 1951/1961.

Image and details courtesy of Bruce Coleman

Distant view of Portrack and ICI c1972

t15119I waited a long time for the air to clear over Teesside, in the late summer of 1972, before driving up to the range of hills which overlooks Middlesbrough, going towards Eston. Even so the centre of Stockton is barely visible. It was probably about 6 miles from where I was. The long thin rectangle about one third from the left is the Malleable works. Just behind it is the gasholder in Portrack and Hume House can also be discerned. But there is another tall structure as well. The towers of the Newport Bridge are in the centre of the picture. To the right of these the silos, etc, of the south part of ICI Billingham can be seen.

I don’t know the exact location from where this picture was taken, but if anyone has the time it would be interesting to see how things have changed over the past 44 years.

Photograph and details courtesy of Fred Starr.

Head Wrightson Fire Engine

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t15117As part of the 2016 Heritage Open Day programme the North East Land Sea and Air Museum at Usworth near Sunderland held an open-weekend and I spotted this former Head Wrightson fire engine on display in their workshop. It looks to be under restoration and in need of a bit of TLC.

“This Leyland FK9 was supplied in 1939 as a pump escape to the Thornaby-on-Tees Municipal Borough Fire Brigade and, after service with the NFS from 1941 until 1948, it passed to the North Riding of Yorkshire Fire Brigade. Subsequently it was sold to Head Wrightson at Thornaby for their Teesdale Iron Works. It was in preservation in Hampshire and was sold at auction at the Beaulieu Motor Museum in the late 1980s. For many years it was at the Preston Hall Museum, Stockton-on-Tees and passed to the Shildon Lorry Museum in 2008.”

The lorry museum closed c2009 and the fire engine passed into private hands before finding a new home at Usworth. I don’t recall ever seeing it on display at Preston Hall Museum but others may know more?

Photographs and details courtesy of David Thompson.

Stockton Library Staff, Wellington Street

Library staff, Carole Carr, Chris Robson, Irene Geldart, ?? and Laurence Collier at Stockton Central Library on Wellington Street, Stockton.