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Tyne and Wear HER(2132): North Shields, Bull Ring Docks (Smith's and A & P Tyne) - Details

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N Tyneside

North Shields, Bull Ring Docks (Smith's and A & P Tyne)

North Shields



Marine Construction Site


Early Modern


Documentary Evidence

A graving dock, (Collingwood’s Dock, HER ref. No. 2081)) and possibly an associated ship repair yard had been in existence at the Bull Ring from the 1750s. In 1883, due to lack of space at their yard in South Shields, Edwards and Sons, shipbuilders, purchased Collingwood’s dry dock at the Bull Ring. The yard was speedily upgraded, involving the formation of a new river frontage and the construction of two new docks which replaced the old dock. The first of these new docks was completed in 1885, the second in 1889. In 1893, J and G Edwards acquired Hepples yard (previously Fawcus’s yard), which lay to the south, then amalgamated with Smith’s yard to the north in 1899, forming (Smith’s Dock Co. Ltd.). Another graving dock was opened at the Bull Ring Yard in 1910, and one of the two early Edwards’ docks was extended. By 1930 the yard had four functioning graving docks. After World War Two another graving dock, previously run by Baird Bros., was added to the north side the Smith’s Dock Company yard. The yard is derelict with all fittings and fixtures removed. The shipyard retains six dry docks, a steel weighbridge, stone and concrete retaining walls dating to 1920s, crane tracks, foundations of office block, platers' shed, tinsmiths' shop, pump house etc, capstans etc etc. Archaeologically recording in advance of development.




<< HER 2132 >> 2nd edition Ordnance Survey map, 1899, 6 inch scale, Northumberland, 89, SE The Archaeological Practice, 2002, Shipbuilding on Tyne and Wear - Prehistory to Present. Tyne & Wear Historic Environment Record; The Archaeological Assessment and Survey, 2000, Redevelopment at the former Smith's and A & P Tyne Shipyards - Archaeological Assessment and Survey; The Archaeological Practice Ltd. 2005, Smith's Dock and A&P Tyne, Historic Buildings Recording

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