Tyne and Wear HER(1656): Blaydon Burn, Tar Tunnel Entrance - Details
Blaydon Burn, Tar Tunnel Entrance
First marked, with a shaft, windlass and spoilmound, on the 1st edition OS of 1858. By 1896 it was disused, and the shaft had become an air shaft ventilating other workings, disappearing between 1914 and 1940. The site was re-used c.1900 by Priestman Collieries as the entrance to the tar tunnel, a transportation tunnel connecting the tar works at Ottovale above the valley with the rail way to the Tyne below. It is shown on the 3rd edition OS revision of 1914 and again on the 4th edition of 1940. When the Ottovale works closed in the late 1950s the tunnel was disused. The entrance was bricked up by Tyne and Wear County Council [HER 3423]. The brick entrance structure remains extant (Plate 57). This features an arched opening, façade rising to small piers at each side with cast concrete cappings. The bricks visible in the pinnacles were VGC (Victoria Garesfield Colliery), which was operated by Priestman and Piele 1875-1914 [Davidson 1986, 170].
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