Jarrow and Hebburn history group aims to bring historic display back to town

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A local history group has launched a campaign to bring a historic piece of craftsmanship back to its home town.

The Ark, created by shipyard carpenters in 1947, is currently on display at the Theatre Royal in Newcastle after being rescued from stores where it had been gathering dust.

The history of the Ark is important and people should be given the chance to see it, along with the families of the men who won the competition.

Win Currie

The wooden piece is based on Noah’s Ark and was built for a competition to encourage craftsmanship in shipyards. The contest was won by a team who are understood to have worked for Palmer’s in Jarrow, and was created in their own time.

Now, members of Jarrow and Hebburn History Society, supported by Coun Richard Porthouse, want to bring it back to go on display in its hometown.

Win Currie from the society said: “It is such a fabulous piece of craftsmanship we believe its home town is the right place for it to be.

“We have had a meeting with the managers for the theatre and we have been told they have it on loan for 10-years. As yet, we are unsure how long they have left.”

He added: “The history of the Ark is important and people should be given the chance to see it.”

Coun Porthouse said: “The issue of the Ark was brought up by the Jarrow and Hebburn History Society and we felt it was important for a piece of our history to be here where it belongs.

“We went in search of the Ark and discovered that it was at the Theatre Royal in Newcastle, where it is on loan for 10 years.

“But we are hopeful we can bring it back to the place where it was created in the near future.”