Stockton Quayside

One of the postcards uses the word wharf instead of either docks or quayside, was the wharf a different section of the port? Corporation Quay was at the bottom of Finkle Street, could The Wharf be at the end of Wharf Street?
I have sailed into many ports and harbours throughout the world and there are often different sections that have different facilities depending on the type of cargo, I wonder if Stockton had a similar system.

Images and details courtesy of Anon.

18 thoughts on “Stockton Quayside

  1. Stockton Corporation Quay was the section from Silver Street along to Castlegate passing the Greyhound Pub.
    Fron there upriver It was then called Castle Wharf with Mooring stages for Mellors Tees Flour Mill.
    Then the Coal Staithe’s with the Rail Lines bringing the Coal and then the Castle Moat Ship yard, That was three Shipyards two on the Stockton side and one on the Thornaby side.
    Before the Staithe’s were mooring structures built out into the river, in my time they were just reduced to the main joists, we used to go for our break sitting on the dilapidated joists to eat our sandwiches feet dangling over the river.
    When the tide was out the banks were mud flats and the boats moored there sat on the mud, I have seen the river on very low tides reduced to a mere stream all altered when the Barrage went in.
    We often went from Browns where I worked to repair ships unloading at the Quayside usually Hatch coamings bent in heavy seas.
    I saw ships being built at the Ropner Yard Thisle Green, as school kids we saw parts of the Mulberry Harbour being Built, huge concrete units we thought must be to dam the river, they disappeared next time we saw them was after D Day.
    The River has a long history I was privileged to see a small segment in time during and after the war, those memories never fade.

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  2. My memory of the quayside was the walk from St Johns Crossing pass the woodyard and pass the grain store with a rare glimpse of the working locomotive that ran up and down the railway lines finally passing those two huge dockside cranes that were never used, I used to turn left at Finkle Street, walk up the hill to emerge near the Market Cross, then wander around the market for an hour of so always stopping at Smithies pet stall, Going home I walked south on the High Street pavement heading for Thornaby, invariably passing Giggy Moon on the way, Giggy never wandered far from Dovecote Street corner to the Odeon cinema doors, I am certain I once saw him selling newspapers, another market regular who always caused me to stop and stare was the “I will guess your weight man,” with his scales, wind, rain, snow and winter he was stood there wearing his faithful raincoat which must have been 50 years old, does anyone know his history, him and Mr Marsh were the market stars. In the back of my mind I can see the word Mellors, I have forgotten what this means, and another strange sign that said “We shall have rain,” I always laughed when I read this sign, it sort of cheered us up. So did the nameplate “The Shambles” a loveable shambles and perhaps the best-named building in the whole of Teesside.

    PS: The weigh man was called Jack Roberts and operated his trade for over fifty years, some feat. after he passed away it was found that he was a very wealthy man with every penny he earned an honest penny. Love and a Xmas Wish to All. Bob.

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    • I do not know where you get the idea 2 large Cranes never worked. My brother Curley Brown started at the Docks as a 15 years old trainee and operated those cranes for all his working life except for two years in the Royal Engineers National Service. His service would be around fifty years as a crane driver on those two cranes. Their biggest jobs over that period was with the unloading of Scrap metal from the the Continent which was the result of the 2nd World War clean up. They also loaded livestock from the Wharf, I remember him telling me about one of the pigs that escaped and swam down the Tees, only to cut its own throat with the swimming action the front trotters. Those cranes had a very lively lifetime as when my brother was called out at midnight to lift the Captain of the ship back on board as he was too drunk to walk on board, in doing so my brother fell from the access ladder which was covered in ice and broke his ankle with the result he had a permanent limp for the rest of his life..
      .

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    • Bobs comments on the characters you remember in the markets. Although its around 65 years ago when most Saturday mornings I would go into town with my mother and buy Saturdays lunch, TRIPE. What I can still see is the tripe stall, close to the town hall, and the two large ladies (really quite petit by todays standards) with heavy white plastic aprons, welly boots and white hats that would serve us. We would buy a “slab” of white and a “slab” of grey tripe, this would be lunch for my mother, father and elder brother. I would not have touched it with a bargepole.
      I was interested to note David Jones comment on the tripe factory in Tower St; which I had never heard of before. I guess there was some connection with the tripe stall?

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      • There was also a tripe factory near to Blackett’s brickworks in Portrack. I believe it was owned by the co-op. That would have been in the 1950s.

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          • Those are areas I worked in as a lad some 75 years ago so know what was there and area names. To start the Tripe stall was Willey’s who had a factory for cleaning the tripe in Castlegate hence the smell drifting around on hot days. Tripe and Onions with the Tripe cooked in milk was a staple food and as we had it quite often was actually quite tasty but then we ate everything that came out of the animals nothing wasted.
            The smelly factory on the then New Portrack Trading Estate processed Animal Gut for Sausage skins, I remember working around there and feeling quite sick with the smell, it was a Foreign name (Bloems?), not sure on that.

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            • Hi Frank, your mere mention of a smelly factory took me straight back to when something on North Road/Bridge Street West in Middlesbrough used to smell really bad, not sure what it was? but it made me gag! so was always worth trying to hold your breath till you were well past it!… so thanks for that memory! 🙂 Great to read a new comment from yourself. Have a Merry Christmas & Happy New Year!
              Jonathan.

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              • Hi

                The very smelly company on North Road in Middlesbrough was called Weshenfelders, they processed animal bones into fertiliser by burning them, I worked in Snowdon Road for about 5 years in the 1980s and many of our customers were turned green by the smell, we eventually got used to it.

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            • Hi

              You are quite right about the sausage skin factory, it was called Schuums and was at the bottom of Ross Road, when the sandwich van called on the trading estate you could always tell the Schuums workers by the smell.

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  3. I can remember as a child the old wharf, I also remember tramps living rough in the ruined buildings at the rear of the High Street

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  4. “The Docks & River”
    This looks like it is right next to the North Shore/Ropner Ship yard, near Hubback’s Quay at the bottom of Smithfield. This is where the ferry boats that crossed the river would board/disembark. I assume the lamp posts mark a jetty for the ferry. Blair’s (marine engine works) shear legs (crane) can be seen in the background. Princess Diana Bridge stands here today.

    “The Wharf”
    The tall building on the left is the huge warehouse at the end of Silver Street (Stockton Corporation Warehouse Number One 1880-1954(fire)). So this is showing the area known as Corporation Quay, between the bottom of Finkle St. & Silver St. Looking at earlier sources this area had previously been known as Martin’s Wharf and Ingledew’s Wharf. So I guess the postcard title is valid 🙂

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  5. My Dad used to be Transport Manager for Issac Robsons who used to have the shop on the corner of Bridge Road and Wood Street now Sanky homecare they had a nut and bolt warehouse in either Wharf Street or Moat Street and there was a wharf at the end of Wharf Street there was also Castle Wharf at the end of Castlegate. I used to live in Bickersteth Street as a child before moving to Tithebarn Road, Hardwick in 1965 when Bickersteth Street was demolished it might sound daft but even now 56 years on I still miss that house with no hot water, no bathroom just a galvanized tin bath and an outside privvy. Does anyone Remember the smell from the tripe factory in Tower Street?

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  6. The terms wharf, quay, dock, pier, slip, berth, jetty, levee are generally interchangeable and signify a structure used by boats and ships for taking on or landing cargo or passengers.

    If there is a difference, it is perhaps that a wharf applies to a structure projecting from the shore that permits boats or ships to lie alongside, usually for loading or unloading, whereas a quay is specifically a structure that enables unloading of vessels (so perhaps more solid, and made of concrete or similar).

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