Tyne and Wear HER(5287): Monkwearmouth, Ballast Hills - Details
Monkwearmouth, Ballast Hills
The Corder Manuscripts make reference to Meeting Hill "west one of the four ballast hills on Williamson land… estimated by the inhabitants as 1000 feet high". There was apparently a Baptist meeting house on the summit of this hill. Meeting Hill was cleared and levelled in 1833 for new streets. Palmer's Hill was an accumulation of ballast on the eastern side of Meeting Hill, on which there was a large square house, lived in by Peter Haswell, a sawyer. The 'fine old house' on the southeast slope of Palmer's Hill belonged to the Freemasons, and later became a school. Corder also mentions that a ship was built on Palmer's Hill in 1840 (shipyard HER 2733). In 1860 John Dickinson's engineworks were built (HER 5286). During the construction process the Palmer's Hill ballast hill was levelled and 6000 cartloads of ballast were removed. The ballast hills are shown on Lewin's plan of Monkwearmouth of 1714, as 'Sir William's ballast ground' on Burleigh and Thompson's 1737 map and Buck's Ichnography of 1740s. By Garbutt's map of 1817, several buildings have been built amongst the ballast hills. On Wood's map of 1826 a road, later to become Palmer's Hill Road, runs between two ballast hills, both of which have buildings on their flattened summits. By Robson's map of 1844, the northern most ballast hill has been levelled. The Ordnance Survey second edition hints at underlying ballast deposits through the use of hachures.
<< HER 5287 >> Corder, The Corder Manuscripts, Sunderland Library Local Studies Lewin, 1714, Plan of the manor of Monkwearmouth Burleigh & Thompson, 1737, Map of Sunderland Buck, 1740, Buck's Ichnography Garbutt, 1817, Map of Sunderland Wood, 1826, Map of Sunderland Robson, 1844, Map of Sunderland 2nd edition Ordnance Survey map, 1897 T. Frain, Tyne and Wear Museums, 2003, Charles Street, Sunderland, Archaeological Assessment;