TV historian’s South Shields date

South Shields Town Hall
South Shields Town Hall
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Writer and television presenter Dan Cruickshank will give a potted history on 5,000 years of architecture in a talk at The Customs House tonight.

The architectural historian will explore some of the world’s most inspirational and characterful buildings, from the ancient Egyptian pyramids to the soaring skyscrapers of Manhattan.

Souter Lighthouse.

Souter Lighthouse.

He also presents less obvious, more surprising structures.

Mr Cruickshank, who is a regular presenter on the BBC, said: “My talk touches on buildings around the world stretching back 5,000 years and into the 21 st century.”

He has also taken time to look at some South Tyneside landmarks.

*The Customs House

The Customs House

The Customs House

A fine mid-19 th century commercial building of classical design that was calculated to express the virtues of strength and solidity. The historic styles of architect and ornament were, at the time, seen as a vital attribute of modern design.

The building also tells a story about the ways in which old buildings can make a positive contribution to the modern age.

*South Shields Town Hall

A splendid classical building completed in 1910 yet rooted in the English Baroque traditions of the early 18 th century - is another example of the way in which history was – in the past – used to ennoble and dignify our lives, and to carry a message about the virtues of a democratic society with its ideals rooted in the world of ancient Greece.

Dan Cruickshank

Dan Cruickshank

*Souter Lighthouse

A wonderful monument to inspired, 19 th century engineered design. It was pioneering – the first lighthouse to be purpose built to incorporate electricity – but it’s also a reminder of the fact that is was heroic Victorian engineers like James Douglass who built the modern world.

Dan Cruickshank: A History of Architecture in 100 Buildings starts at 7.30pm at The Customs House, Mill Dam, South Shields.

Tickets, priced £14 or £12 for Friends of the Customs House, are available from the box office on (0191) 454 1234 or online at www.customshouse.co.uk.