Southwick Shipyard of Austin & Pickersgill Ltd

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When: 01 May 1965

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Aerial view of the Southwick shipyard of Austin & Pickersgill, Sunderland looking down the River Wear, May 1965 (TWAM ref. DT.TUR/2/36078A).

This set of aerial images is intended as a short historical tour of the River Wear from the Piers to Pallion. It gives us an impression of what the River looked like during the middle years of the Twentieth Century, when it was a hive of industrial activity.

Sunderland had an international reputation for shipbuilding and this is well represented in this set with images of its famous shipyards such as Austin & Pickersgill, J.L. Thompson & Sons and Sir James Laing & Sons. The River Wear was also home to a thriving marine engineering industry, reflected here by images of the engine works of William Doxford & Sons and George Clark.

Other industries are also featured such as glassmaking and of course the key industry of coal mining. Mining is represented by images of Wearmouth Colliery and the riverside coal staithes, which were vital to the coal trade.

These images reflect how much the River Wear has changed over the past 50 years, with the disappearance of traditional heavy industries. Those businesses may have gone but Sunderland can be proud of its industrial heritage and the men and women who worked on Wearside and helped to shape the City we know today.

(Copyright) We're happy for you to share this digital image within the spirit of The Commons. Please cite 'Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums' when reusing. Certain restrictions on high quality reproductions and commercial use of the original physical version apply though; if you're unsure please email [email protected].


Owner: Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums
Source: Flickr Commons
Views: 22096
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    optimal chicken

    • 24/Jul/2015 09:24:15

    Loving this set so far!

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    Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums

    • 24/Jul/2015 09:28:53

    Hi Paul, Really glad you like it. I've tried to create a sort of 'historical tour' of the River. If you look at the album it should take you along the Wear from the Piers all the way to Pallion. Have a great weekend.

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    optimal chicken

    • 24/Jul/2015 09:33:11

    Thank you. You too!

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    • 24/Jul/2015 18:22:45

    Great set. Keep up the good work.