Tyne and Wear HER(4858): Gateshead, Rectory - Details
The earliest recorded incumbent of St Mary's was Robert de Plessis in 1275. It is possible that even at this date the rector's house stood on the site of the later rectory on the east side of Oakwellgate. It was certainly there by 1428. Archaeological investigations in 1990 and 1991 revealed at least one structure on the east side of Oakwellgate, possibly part of the medieval Rectory. A number of 18th century plans, including Thompson's map of 1746 (the earliest covering the east side of Oakwellgate) show the Rectory as a large rectangular building, standing in its own grounds. In 1783 the rector of Gateshead was given licence to rebuild and enlarge the premises. The Rectory was further altered in 1814, and in 1834 it was described as being 'a commodious house’. By 1839, however, it had been abandoned in favour of a new building in Bensham and the western part of the old Rectory was converted into a public house run by Susanna Stobart - the name of which - The Brandling Arms - reflected local interest in the then current Brandling Junction construction works and appropriately commemorated that family's contribution to the industrial development of this part of Gateshead. Between 1861 and 1863 the Co-operative Society had its first store in the old rectory. A photograph dated to the 1880s, shows a two storied building of squared stone with a pantiled roof. The Rectory and public house became a 'muniment office' for the North East Railway by the late 1880s, and was later converted into gas and water offices for the company. The Rectory was mostly pulled down c.1914 and rebuilt as stores and offices for the Judge Brand Co. Ltd.
<< HER 4858 >> Northern Counties Archaeological Services, 1998, Gateshead Regional Music Centre, Archaeological Desk Top Assessment E. Mackenzie, 1827, A Descriptive and Historical Account of the Town and County of Newcastle, p 123 R.W. Welford, Newcastle and Gateshead, Vol 1, p 277 Thompson, 1746, A Plan of Newcastle upon Tyne Mackenzie & Ross, 1834, History of the County of Durham, p 89 F.W.D. Manders, 1973, A History of Gateshead, p 91, 138