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Tyne and Wear HER(4696): Pallion, Short Brothers Ltd Shipbuilding Yard - Details

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Pallion, Short Brothers Ltd Shipbuilding Yard




Marine Construction Site


Early Modern


Documentary Evidence

In 1869, George Short transferred his timber ship building business from Mowbray Quay in Hylton to Pallion. The running of the business was transferred to his four sons and became known as Short Brothers in 1871, the same year that iron ship construction was adopted. In 1899, the neighbouring, North of England Shipbuilding Co. was taken over and the following year the firm was incorporated as a limited company, Short Brothers Ltd. At this time, the shipyard employed some 1500 workers. The yard had gained a reputation for quality ships, and thrived on multiple orders placed by relatively few customers, many of them local. Although orders increased during World War One, when 17 ships were built to private order and 14 barges for the admiralty, the inter-war period was one of decline, and the business closed periodically ijn the 1930s due to lack of orders. Government orders during WW2 rejuvenated the business - there were three berths and a workforce of around 900 at the end of 1945 - and the order book remained full throughout the immediate post-war years into the 1950s. Several tankers were constructed in this period when the trend was towards larger vessels. The three years between 1961 and 1963 were the last years of production at the yard, with the last ship completed being the Carlton in January 1964. Closure was made inevitable by the unwillingness, or inability, of the Short family to extend the berths in order to accommodate the increasing size of cargo vessels demanded by the world market. The yard closed with the loss of 300 jobs in January 1964 and was subsequently demolished, but the fitting-out quay was purchased by Bartram & Sons in the same year and remained in use until the 1980s.




<< HER 4696 >> The Archaeological Practice, 2002, Shipbuilding on Tyne and Wear - Prehistory to Present. Tyne & Wear Historic Environment Record.

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