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Tyne and Wear HER(15440): Byker, Waggonway from East Heaton Pit to Lawson's Main - Details

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Byker, Waggonway from East Heaton Pit to Lawson's Main






Post Medieval


Documentary Evidence

This waggonway linked the pits of Heaton Main Colliery to Lawson’s Main Waggonway (HER 15339) and to coal staiths to the south at St Anthony’s. Lawson’s Main waggonway was in use by the 1780s and the link with Heaton made by the 1790s. It is shown in detail on a map of the route from 1805 (Watson 27/13) and also on Casson (1801). The combined waggonway became what was probably the first iron railway in the north of England when its wooden ways were replaced by cast iron rails and stone sleepers in 1797. Part of the line also functioned as an inclined plane. Lawson’s Main Colliery was flooded out in 1811 and abandoned. The waggonway was closed in the same year and its components sold off (Turnbull 2009, 54-5). Heaton coal was then re-routed on a more direct and independent line to the east (HER 15340).




Alan Williams Archaeology, July 2012, Waggonways North of the River Tyne - Tyne and Wear HER Enhancement Project; North East Institute of Mining and Mechanical Engineering: All Watson Papers prefixed NRO/3410/ Watson 27/13: Plan of the line of Heaton Colliery Waggonway, 1805; Casson 1801: Map of the Rivers Tyne and Wear; Turnbull, L. 2009 Coals from Newcastle: An Introduction to the Northumberland and Durham Coalfield, pp 54-55 and 108; AD Archaeology, 2014, IRDL Site, Byker, Newcastle upon Tyne - Archaeological Watching Brief; Turnbull, L, 2015, A Celebration of our Mining Heritage

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