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Tyne and Wear HER(4091): Newcastle, Victoria Tunnel - Details

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Newcastle, Victoria Tunnel




Early Modern



When the lease for mining was granted to Messrs. Porter and Latimer, commencing on 25 March 1835, they were faced with the serious problem of getting the coal from the colliery to the Tyne to be loaded on to colliers. The solution was an underground railway from Spital Tongues Colliery to the Tyne near Glasshouse Bridge. The loaded coal wagons went down the incline of the tunnel under their own weight and were drawn back to the colliery by a wire rope attached to a stationary engine. Its outfall was near Glasshouse Bridge where it emerged on to two staithes built into the river. It was built between 27 June 1839 to 8 January 1842 in stone and brick with a masonry invert arch, with a total length of 1½ miles (2.4 kilometres) and at a maximum depth of 85 feet (26 metres), descending through clay 222 foot in its passage from the colliery to the river. In January 1860 it was closed and remained so for nearly 80 years until 1939, when the City Engineer for Newcastle converted into an air-raid shelter at a cost of £37,000 and gave seating capacity of 9000 people. At the end of the war, most of the fittings were removed and all but one of the entrances were bricked up. The one remaining entrance was left in Ouse Street. An 800 metre stretch of the tunnel from Ellison Place to Queen Victoria Road was converted into a sewer to replace the Pandon Sewer. LISTED GRADE 2




<< HER 4091 >> 1st edition Ordnance Survey Map, 1864, 6 inch scale, Northumberland, 97 I.M. Ayris, & S.M. Linsley, 1994, A Guide to the Industrial Archaeology of Tyne and Wear, p.7 Oliver, 1844, Map of the Borough of Newcastle Tyne and Wear Industrial Monuments Trust, 1976, In Trust, Issue 2, June 1976 D.J. Rowe, 1971, The Victoria Tunnel, Industrial Archaeology, Vol 7, 1971 R. N. Appleby, 1927, Wood Rails Faced with Iron Treads, Reprinted from the Edgar Allen News of May 1927 C. E. Lee, 1951, The Waggonways of Tyneside, Archaeologia Aeliana, Vol XXIX Tyne and Wear Industrial Monuments Trust, The Victoria Tunnel leaflet Newcastle Town Council, 1838, minutes of meeting, Wed June 13 1838; Newcastle City Council & HLF, 'Victoria Tunnel - Newcastle's hidden heritage - Victoria Tunnel Overground Walks Maps and Guide'; AAG Archaeology, 2011, Northumbria University City Campus East- Archaeological Assessment; North of England Civic Trust, February 2009, Spital Tongues, Newcastle upon Tyne - Suggested Conservation Area Scoping Study, Draft Report

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