BACK again, after a short break, and already I’m off to the pub!
Come and join me, and see if we get any closer to solving the riddle of where this bar was.
You’ve seen a little of it before, because it was the backdrop to the picture of those chaps in the strange white caps that I featured recently.
It had come from Margaret Garvock, whose grandfather, Nicholas Stephenson, was one of the men who, it was assumed, were about to set off on a jolly of some sort.
Her grandfather, who worked in the shipyards, lived in Brunswick Street in Shields.
This picture is another from Margaret and is a much better one of the pub itself, showing the surrounding area. What’s nice is that it has a date on it, June 22, 1911, so we know the decorations on the pub were for the coronation of King George V.
I’ve since had one or two thoughts from readers as to which bar it was.
The name of the old Black and Grey in Union Alley came up – the pub has the name Grey on it – but this, I’m pretty sure, isn’t Union Alley.
It was also suggested it could be The Brunswick, at Laygate. Again, I’m sceptical.
I also heard from a correspondent, Jeff, who was reminded that, a couple of years ago, he was given one of those lists of old pubs of Shields that were circulating a few years ago.
He kindly sent me a copy. Might there be some clue on there? Well, the name of the licensees of this pub were a J and CE Wilson.
The only Wilson I can find who had a pub in Shields in this era was a chap who had the Star and Garter at East Holborn, long since vanished.
So really we’re no further forward,
Still, though, the picture is a wonderfully atmospheric one – as is another of Margaret’s which I’ll be bringing you shortly, that chimes with this time of year of harvest festival and leek shows.