Take a look back through the arches

editorial image

MORE than – what, 30 years? – after they were demolished, one old iconic feature of Shields still captures people’s memories and their imaginations.

I’m talking about Tyne Dock Arches which were seen in an old photograph a few days ago, you may remember, when I was talking about Gary Wilkinson’s new film of the area.

It turns out to have delighted an online reader, Brian, who says: “Correct me if I’m wrong here, but wasn’t this looking down towards the corner where Catherine Cookson was born?

“Also, look at the detail there was in the arches: All that strength in the archways themselves, with the railways on top. Fascinating.

“Do you have any more pictures of them? It would be tremendous to see them as, apart from the dock walls, I can’t remember much of them.”

Well actually Brian, I think that first picture actually looked the other way from where Catherine Cookson was born, towards the old bonded warehouses which were demolished long before the arches themselves.

By contrast, this atmospheric photograph of what were, indeed, great feats of Victorian engineering, does look towards where the late writer was born in Leam Lane, later part of Newcastle Road.