South Shields Museum appealing to public for shipyard memories and memorabilia for upcoming exhibition
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The team at South Shields Museum and Art Gallery in Ocean Road is appealing to the public for shipyard memorabilia ahead of upcoming exhibition.
The theme of the new exhibition will focus on shipbuilding, ship repair and associated industries in South Tyneside.
It comes after a previous exhibition focusing on coal mining, another of the area’s once-giant industries which employed thousands of people on either side of the river Tyne.
Exhibition curator Adam Bell said: “The shipyards and the coal mines were once our two big employers.
"In 2018 we staged a major exhibition about South Tyneside’s pits, in which we featured paintings by the legendary South Shields artist Bob Olley.
“The southern banks of the River Tyne were once home to many yards big and small. From the mighty shipyards of Hawthorn Leslies in Hebburn, Palmers in Jarrow and Readheads in South Shields, through to busy ship repair yards such as Brigham & Cowans, Tyne Dock Engineering, and Middle Docks of South Shields, and Jarrow’s Mercantile Dry Dock.
"Many thousands of men and women were once directly employed in shipbuilding and ship repair locally, or employed by a firm supplying the yards, making it one of the borough’s most significant former industries.
"Now it’s time to put shipbuilding and ship repair in the spotlight, and we’re absolutely delighted that Bob Olley has started work on a brand-new series of paintings, for display in the exhibition, charting our shipyard trades and traditions.”
Museum staff hope to bring the past to life, giving people an insight into the working days of people employed at South Tyneside’s shipyards.
They are looking for items to display in the exhibition, such as artwork and photos, certificates and paperwork, tools, workwear, models, commemorative items and any associated memorabilia.
Anyone who worked in the South Tyneside’s yards, or individuals with something they could lend for display, should contact Adam Bell, [email protected] or (0191) 211 5599 during museum opening hours.
The museum is open to visitors Monday to Friday 10am to 5pm, and from 11am to 4pm on Saturdays.