Call to help with South Shields park display

The Temple Park memorial plaque.
The Temple Park memorial plaque.

A South Shields group is hoping readers can help with the staging of an exhibition involving one of the town’s iconic green spaces.

The display is being co-ordinated by local historian Janet Wylie on behalf of the Friends of Temple Memorial Park group, which she has just joined.

A previous Streets opf South Shields display.

A previous Streets opf South Shields display.

And Janet’s latest undertaking coincides with the return of the Streets Of South Shields project (of which she was a tutor) which focuses on all aspects of the town’s past, and which has been sadly missed since folding a little while ago.

Now, however, thanks to fresh funding from the Workers’ Education Association, the Streets initiative is back up and running – and will coincidentally be holding its meetings at Action Station in Boldon Lane.

As a result, Streets members can “get their teeth” into the park project as part of Janet’s efforts to “dissect South Shields bit by bit and making our home town better known to ourselves”.

And by doing so – “as each piece of the jigsaw fits snugly together we become better acquainted with our ancestors and the lay of the land”.

A newspaper cutting relating to the park.

A newspaper cutting relating to the park.

Janet said there was real disappointment when the Streets team had to disband, but now they’re back (and she’s also involved with the Friends) the two historical initiatives will “nicely tie in” with one another.

“Having joined the Friends of Temple Memorial Park,” said Janet, “I was asked to oversee an exhibition regarding the history and development of the park, since it was gifted to the people of South Shields in the 1940s.”

The 175 acres of land, between King George Road and Boldon Lane, was presented in the name of the then late Dr William Temple, Archbishop of Canterbury during the early part of the war, who had an affection for the north.

The park was formally inaugurated by his widow, Mrs Francis Temple, in 1961.

Janet, added: “To help stage the exhibition, I am looking for people who have memories of the park. Maybe they got married at the old St Cuthbert’s church and have some wedding photos. If they have, then I would ask them to please get in touch with me.

If anyone can help they can contact Janet on 0191 455 4830 or 07954 413542 or email her at 54janet@live.co.uk

As part of her research, Janet unearthed the attached cutting from the early 2000s which provided her with a bit more background regarding the park’s history.

If you can add any more, then Janet would love to hear from you.