The survey to build a canal from Bishop Auckland to Darlington by canal, travelling onward to Stockton using the River Tees was commissioned by the leading coal merchants of Darlington and district, who wished to transport coal by barge from the Bishop Auckland coalfields to Stockton. The intended canal when built linked with the nearest navigable section of the River Tees, allowing the barges to complete the journey by river. Brindley and Whitworth were the surveyors commissioned to prepare the initial feasibility study, they submitted their report and outline plans in 1770. The scheme collapsed due to the low density of population in this area and, therefore, of a sufficiently large market for the coal transported. After a few unsuccessful attempts at reviving Brindley and Whitworth’s plans in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth-century, they became the basis for the famous Stockton and Darlington Railway in the 1820s. The canal was never built. It was designed by James Brindley, the engineer responsible for the Bridgewater Canal, with Robert Whitworth’s assistance.
Map reproduced with the kind permission and consent of the copyright owners, the British Library, London. Details courtesy of Bob Wilson.
I wonder if anybody knows anything about this company, A & G Taylor photographers.
Images and details courtesy of Bruce Coleman.
It’s been empty for years but the Riverside Inn could soon get a new lease of life with plans to convert the building into shops and flats. Bulldozers moved in on Tuesday 18 June 2019 to clear the way for the revamp.
Who remembers the chemists on Norton High Street?
A view of terraced housing, Eggleston Terrace, Stockton c1985.
A view of the cobbled High Street and the market stalls below the shops of Holmes General Supply Store and Tylers Boot and Shoe Shop. We believe the photograph was taken c1890s.
Photograph courtesy of Mrs Denton.
Gordon Harnby was the company metallurgist for Power Gas, who at that time were the leaders in constructing steam reformers for the manufacture of town gas. The actual process had been developed by ICI Billingham. Their big innovation was that the process could use naphtha (cheap petrol). It was the technology that saved the British Gas Industry, greatly reducing the cost of gas. Furthermore, because the gas was supplied at high pressure, it could be piped over a wide area. Much of Teesside was supplied from a steam reforming plant at Hartlepool. The letter heading shows that by 1967 the company had been absorbed by Davy United.
However, the reformed gas boilers on these plants suffered from a serious corrosion problem, and Power Gas was cooperating with the R&D people in British Gas at London Research Station to find a solution. I eventually took over this job and met Gordon on a couple of occasions. Once at Bowesfield Lane. The letter from Gordon is to my predecessor, Peter Neufeld, and is full of good advice about the materials we should use in constructing a “side stream test rig” for testing more resistant boiler tubes.
The other picture reveals the cause of the corrosion. You are looking at the tube plate of a fire-tube type boiler. White potassium carbonate, carried over from the reformer, has deposited on the entrance of the tubes. When the boiler is operating, the deposit formed a sticky sludge which was highly corrosive, resulting in burst boiler tubes.
Images and details courtesy of Fred Starr.
The Michaelson Road Bridge in Barrow-in-Furness was built in two stages to replace the old Lift and Roll bridge by Head Wrightson c1960s. Due to submarines being built in the same area, the bridge was constructed in a vertical position and once complete it was maneuvered into its horizontal position.
Photograph and details courtesy of Tony Campbell.
An aerial view over Thornaby Town Centre 2006.
Photograph courtesy of Mark Swainston.
A back view showing the terraced houses and alley way in the Parkfield area of Stockton.
Looking towards Bridge Street from the High Street, Yarm c1970.
On the corner of Wilfred Street, in the Parkfield area of Stockton. Wilfred Street and others in this area were demolished c2006.
A view of the Church of England School on the Green, Billingham c1950.
Photograph and details courtesy of William Bennett.
A photograph taken in August 1979 of the Wellington Inn pub in Wolviston, Billingham. The building opposite was the old Parochial School (erected 1836) though a lot of people might know it as the ‘church or village hall’.
The Friends of the Stockton & Darlington Railway are holding their last walk on Wednesday 3 July meeting outside the main entrance to Preston Park Museum at 6pm.
The walk will take you along the original 1825 track-bed which runs through Preston Park and will be lead by Robin Daniels of Tees Archaeology.
Again all are welcome to come along and to finish we will steam along to the Locomotion in nearby Station Road for drinks and nibbles.
Built in 1872, this photograph shows an aerial view of The Queens Hotel, Bishopton Lane (originally Station Terrace until 1944) the day after it was destroyed by a fire in January 1981.