The Tyne Dock flats which came with flowers - the new homes that were all the rage in South Shields

Tulips in Tyne Dock? Perhaps you had fuchsias for your new flat.

The choice was certainly yours if you lived in one of the brand new homes built at Tyne Dock, complete with 8ft long concrete flower boxes.

Back in 1961, 200 new flats were under construction at Tyne Dock in South Shields and they were three and four storeys.

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An innovative element of the design were the built-in 8ft long concrete window boxes placed outside the living room windows of the flats.

South Tyneside in 1961.

There were many firsts associated with the scheme as some of you may recall.

It was the first time these types of boxes had been provided in council-built flats in the North East.

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And the first flowers and plants in the boxes were all set to be provided by the council’s parks department.

After that, though, the choice was yours because once you moved in, you were encouraged to fill the huge boxes with floral arrangements of your own.

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Tyne Dock in 1961 and the view which awaited residents of the new flats.

Did you live there and were you one of the first tenants to live there? Get in touch and tell us more.

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A Gazette columnist at the time wrote: “Completion of the redevelopment will transform what was hitherto one of the most drab and dreary areas in South Shields into a pleasant modern community.”

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If you need more of a reminder of what was happening in South Tyneside in 1961, here’s a clue or two.

The new Hepworths shop in King Street.
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Once you had settled in to your new home, you could pop down to The Regent to watch the latest film. Burt Lancaster and Audrey Hepburn were starring in The Unforgiven and it was on in Technicolour at 5.30pm and 8.20pm.

Maybe you preferred to stay at home and equip your flat with the latest in TV technology. A new slimline 17 inch set was yours for 63 guineas from AH Cowey in Fowler Street.

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And if you had some cash to spare, how about a new suit for your new wardrobe. Hepworths were just opening their new shop in King Street.

Were you one of the first residents in the new Tyne Dock flats? Tell us more by emailing [email protected]

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The latest in TVs from Cowey's.
Starring at The Regent.
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How the Gazette reported the construction of the flats.