Victorian tiles saved during butcher shop demolation

Coun Lynne Proudlock, Irene Buckle (daughter of the owner of the Butcher shop), Coun Ed Malcolm and Ian Prescott from Keepmoat
Coun Lynne Proudlock, Irene Buckle (daughter of the owner of the Butcher shop), Coun Ed Malcolm and Ian Prescott from Keepmoat

Victorian tiles discovered during the demolition of a South Tyneside butcher shop have been donated to a museum.

The tiles were found at the shop in Frederick Street, Laygate, South Shields, which is currently going through a £30m regeneration project.

The images on the ceramics show various farmyard scenes and animals including sheep and pigs.

They have now been handed over to South Shields Museum and Art Gallery in Ocean Road to celebrate the heritage of the street and will be put on public display.

Family members of the original butchers turned up for the tile handover this week and were delighted that the shops legacy will remain.

Irene Buckle, whose father was most recent owner of the shop, said: “Our family are delighted these tiles have been saved and restored; as they are a huge piece of our family history going back six generations. We will be able to visit the museum and view the tiles, while fondly remembering our family members who worked in the pork butcher’s shop.

“We would like to thank Keepmoat, South Tyneside Council and the Museum for enabling this to happen for us; retaining an important piece of Frederick Street history for years to come.”

Keepmoat is currently working with the council and the Homes and Communities Agency (HCA) to deliver the revamp project, which will transform the rundown retail area and provide 223 new homes.

Ian Prescott, land and partnerships director for Keepmoat in the North East, said: “As soon as the council highlighted the existence of the tiles we were keen to ensure that they were saved and restored to enable a little bit of the history of the area to be retained. We are delighted that the local Museum has been willing to accept the tiles and display them for public viewing.

The Trinity home scheme forms part of the wider South Shields Riverside regeneration masterplan, which is supported by the three Simonside and Rekendyke ward members on South Tyneside Council, Councillors Michael Clare, Lynne Proudlock and Ed Malcolm.

Speaking on behalf of the members, Coun Malcolm said: “The Frederick Street area holds fond memories for many people. Whether they lived, worked or visited the area in its heyday, it was a bustling retail area with a strong community spirit. Sadly it has been in serious decline for several years.

“It is wonderful that some of the history of this area can be preserved and celebrated on display in the museum as we press ahead with our plans to help this area to prosper once again.

“We would like to remind people that the northern part of Frederick Street remains open for business and would therefore encourage people to continue supporting local traders. Once the regeneration is complete, the area will benefit from new neighbourhoods with quality housing and a strengthened retail offer.”