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Ships Made On The River Wear At Sunderland

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Nockya
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Ships Made On The River Wear At Sunderland

Post by Nockya »

Ships Made On The River Wear At Sunderland

I remember many a time going down the river at Southwick in Sunderland watching the ships being launched from both Austin & Pickersgill and the Pallion yards.

As a kid we would stand on the river bank and wait for the mini tidal wave to hit the shore after the ships were launched. Then we would have to hurry up the slippy, oily river banks to avoid getting a soaking.

Some of them ships would be massive and if you stood on the Queen Alexandra Bridge you could practically touch the masts as they were pulled by the tug boats out to the North Sea.

We were even took down one day by the school to see a ship being launched. Sadly, with no shipbuilding left on the River Wear, this sight may never be witnessed again by Wearsiders or Mackems.

If I am not mistaking, when Sunderland was only a town and not a city it was once the biggest shipbuilding town in the world. Even if it was a city at the time it would probably have been the biggest shipbuilding city in the world. The reason why I say that is because years and years ago there was shipyards all along the river. There was even the only shipyard to launch newly made ships straight into the sea.

Sunderland, at one time, had the biggest undercover shipyard in the world and on the opposite side of the river, the second biggest.

It is also said that at one point Sunderland built 50% of all the world's ships.

Glorious days, but sadly all gone now, however Sunderland does build Nissan cars now and has the most efficient car factory in Europe - even exporting to Japan!

Here is a picture of the River Wear close to the Queen Alexandra Bridge. Its quite busy:
Image

Here is a diagram of the River Wear with the names of just some of the shipyards that existed at the time:
Image

Relatively recent pictures of the River Wear - notice that all the cranes have gone now.
Image

Laings Shipbuilding Yard in Sunderland:
Image



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Timmy
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Re: Ships Made On The River Wear At Sunderland

Post by Timmy »

I remember quite a few ships being launched on the River Wear. I also remember when they only made the SD14's and the B26's. Good memories and yes it is a big, big shame that no more ships are made here.


I might as well gan home, then!

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Crawford
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Re: Ships Made On The River Wear At Sunderland

Post by Crawford »

Nice post.
I was going to do a similar one a while back but it totally slipped my mind.
I remember many ships being launched in the River Wear.
As a kid we would try and reach them with stones as they travelled down towards the sea for their trials etc.

The river banks are a lot cleaner now but the memories of those dirty river banks with all those shipyards will always live on.

I am too young to remember this but apparently it is a picture of the River Wear. There seems to be a lot going on and even a barrage balloon to suggest it was war time:
Image



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cam
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Re: Ships Made On The River Wear At Sunderland

Post by cam »

I remember at school learning all about shipbuilding on the River Wear. Yes they were glorious days and now that all the shipyards are gone we should all be happy that Sunderland survived. Lots of other places crumbled when the industry left.


I might have the day off today!

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Bluebird
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Re: Ships Made On The River Wear At Sunderland

Post by Bluebird »

Here is an SD14 ship on the River Wear.

Image



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Jackal
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Re: Ships Made On The River Wear At Sunderland

Post by Jackal »

^ Is that actually on the River Wear because I can't make much out?


..... and Sunderland, the underdogs, are in the lead!

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Mighty Quinn
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Re: Ships Made On The River Wear At Sunderland

Post by Mighty Quinn »

Jackal wrote:^ Is that actually on the River Wear because I can't make much out?
Sorry I can't help on that one but if it is the River Wear it looks quite far up.



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Sunderland Nut
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Re: Ships Made On The River Wear At Sunderland

Post by Sunderland Nut »

The SD14's were one of the last ships to be built on the River Wear. I remember many ships being launched into the river mainly from Austin & Pickersgill.

Here is an image of an SD14 off the coast of Hong Kong:
Image

Wikipedia link:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Austin_%26_Pickersgill



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Moony
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Re: Ships Made On The River Wear At Sunderland

Post by Moony »

I never got to see a ship being launched at Bartrams. I am sure they were the ones who launched directly in the North Sea.

Apparently Austin & Pickersgill bought Bartrams out in 1968 but transferred all the work to the Southwick yard so Bartrams was closed. It would have been quite a sight.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bartram_%26_Sons

Bartrams part1


Bartrams part1


Bartrams part1



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cam
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Re: Ships Made On The River Wear At Sunderland

Post by cam »

^ Shame that there appears to be no part 2 above.

Here is a video that says it is a tribute to the biggest shipbuilding town in the world - Sunderland. There are many pictures included. The choice of music could have been a bit better though.



Here are two videos entitled "Sunderland Tugs and Shipbuilding in Pictures" which is self-explanatory really. These videos are well worth watching as there are many pictures of ships being launched on the River Wear. Shipbuilding may no longer be the industry of Sunderland anymore but one can't help being overawed at the sheer scale of the size of these shipyards and the ships that were built there.





I might have the day off today!

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