Repairs planned for vandal-hit military landmark in South Tyneside

A piece of South Tyneside’s military history blighted by anti-social behaviour is set for a revamp under new plans from charity bosses.

By Chris Binding
Wednesday, 11th December 2019, 11:45 am
Disappearing Gun at Trow Point, South Shields

Earlier this year, the National Trust was made aware of vandalism at the Disappearing Gun at Trow Point, which is currently covered in graffiti.

The Grade II listed structure, which sits at the Trow Rocks beach at South Shields, is what remains of an experiment in coastal defence technology in the 19th Century.

Although the original concrete housing remains, the gun is a replica placed at the site in 1987 to commemorate the trial exactly 100 years earlier.

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Repairs planned for vandal-hit military landmark in South Tyneside

The gun was last restored in 2015 by a group of Territorial Army soldiers as part of a community project.

However, plans which would have seen the landmark redeveloped as part of multi-million pound Tyne-to-Tees seaside regeneration project were shelved earlier this year.

At the time, leaders of the Seascape scheme admitted they had to prioritise other elements of the venture which aims to inspire the public to explore the North East coastline’s history and environment.

Now, National Trust bosses have offered a lifeline for the gun placement after submitting a listed building application to South Tyneside Council.

The plans aim to both restore the historic fabric of the structure and conserve its status as a visitor attraction.

A design and access statement, submitted to planners at South Tyneside Council, also outlines the proposals for the site.

The statement reads: “The proposed works include repairs to the replica gun shield which has suffered from the impacts of the marine environment and anti-social behaviour.

“The proposed works consist simply of removal of failed components of the ‘shield’ element of the replica and replacement like-for-like with steel painted grey, to ensure public safety and preservation of the site.”

The plans are currently out for public consultation ahead of a decision being made next year.

Comments can be made by writing to the council’s planning department before Friday, January 17.

For more information, visit and search planning ref: ST/0909/19/LBC