The borough and parish of Gateshead

Historical Account of Newcastle-Upon-Tyne Including the Borough of Gateshead. Originally published by Mackenzie and Dent, Newcastle-upon-Tyne, 1827.

This free content was digitised by double rekeying. All rights reserved.


Eneas Mackenzie, 'The borough and parish of Gateshead', Historical Account of Newcastle-Upon-Tyne Including the Borough of Gateshead, (Newcastle-upon-Tyne, 1827), pp. 745-760. British History Online [accessed 25 June 2024].

Eneas Mackenzie. "The borough and parish of Gateshead", in Historical Account of Newcastle-Upon-Tyne Including the Borough of Gateshead, (Newcastle-upon-Tyne, 1827) 745-760. British History Online, accessed June 25, 2024,

Mackenzie, Eneas. "The borough and parish of Gateshead", Historical Account of Newcastle-Upon-Tyne Including the Borough of Gateshead, (Newcastle-upon-Tyne, 1827). 745-760. British History Online. Web. 25 June 2024,

In this section



SOME Roman remains having been found in Gateshead, Dr. Stukely supposes that it was a fortified place of the Romans. Camden, and other antiquaries, supposed that Gabrocentum of the Notitia was here, an opinion sufficiently exploded by Horsley; though Dr. Stukely, after finding the place called Ad Capræ Caput, by Bede, and seeing a goat's head used at it as a sign, found that Gabrocentum, in British, signified goat's head, and therefore continued in Camden's opinion. But it is doubtful where Ad Capræ Caput was situated. Simon of Durham says that Bishop Walcher was murdered at Ad Caput Capræ, which, in another place, he calls Gotesheved. In Brompton it is Cattesse hevede. As gate signifies a street in antient and the present vulgar language, Brand thinks that Gateshead means the head or end of the road, because a branch of Watling-street ended here.

The first certain notice of Gateshead, which proves that the place had a church, and was in all probability even then an ancient and considerable vill, is the outrageous murder of Bishop Walcher in the year 1080. In 1164, Bishop Hugh Pudsey granted a charter to the burgesses of Gateshead, of which the chief privileges were, liberty of forest, freedom from toll within the Palatine, and in general wards all such advantages as were enjoyed by the burgesses of Newcastle. The survey of Boldon Buke states, that Gateshead, with the profits of the borough, the mills, fisheries, and bakehouses, with three parts of the arable land, were farmed under 60 marks rent. The remaining parts were in the hands of the bishop.

The most important portion of the history of this borough, is that of the perpetual disputes betwixt the see of Durham and the powerful and wealthy corporation of Newcastle, for the free navigation of the river Tyne, and the right of building quays and ballast-shores on its banks. The confirmation of the right of the mayor and burgesses of Newcastle to hold the conservatorship of the Tyne, ended these disputes in favour of Newcastle.

In 1552, during the temporary dissolution of the see of Durham, an act was obtained, which severed Gateshead from the bishopric, and annexed it to Newcastle; but one of the first acts of Queen Mary's reign was the restoration of the borough of Gateshead to its pristine state. Yet Bishop Tunstall, probably as a peace-offering to the grasping corporation of Newcastle, granted to the mayor and burgesses a lease of the Salt Meadows, for 450 years, under £2, 4s. rent; and of the borough tolls, during the same period, under £4, 6s. rent. In 1578, Bishop Barnes granted a lease of the manors of Gateshead and Whickham to Queen Elizabeth, for 79 years; but, in 1582, a new lease was granted, for 99 years, including all the pits, mines, wastes, and royalties, under £117, 15s. 8d. reserved rent. Next year, the queen consigned this lease to the corporation of Newcastle; and, after many changes, it expired in 1682. In 1716, Bishop Crewe demised the manor of Gateshead, for 21 years, to William Coatsworth, Esq. (excepting the third part of Tyne Bridge, and the advowson of the two rectories), under the yearly rent of £235, 11s. 4d. The lease has since been renewed to the Coatsworths, and is now vested in their descendant, Cuthbert Ellison, Esq.

Neither the origin of the borough of Gateshead, nor of the freehold property vested in the burgesses, can be traced to their original source. In 1551, the burgesses were in possession of Wynde Mylne Hill, Langflatt, and Stoneflatt. In 1563, they litigated their common right in Redheugh and Herelaw with the Whites of Redheugh. A decree, 30 Elizabeth, recognizes the usage of pasturing the town fields. In 1607, cows were stinted in these pastures, at fourteen-pence a head. In 1814, an act was obtained for enclosing the borough lands, or town fields, consisting of the Windmill Hills, Bensham, the High and Low Swards, Threstley Close, the Low Flatt, Middle Flatt, and Bull Close. These lands, amounting to 158 acres, 1 rood, were divided according to the proportions of borough-tenure and common right. They are now well fenced and highly improved. The borough-holders and freemen have built two houses on the Windmill Hills.

The Fell, (fn. 1) formerly "a wide, spongy, dark moor," was bounded on the east by the Roman Causeway, on the south by Wreckon Dyke, on the west by Eighton, Chowdene, and Darwin Crooke, and on the north by Saltwellside, Whinney House, and Beacon House grounds. By a survey taken in 1647, it contained 1300 acres; but about 1703, Sir Henry Liddell claimed a considerable part of it, which was settled in 1715, in a cause between him and the bishop of Durham; and as the borough-holders did not object to the decision, Sir Henry proceeded to inclose the part he had claimed. The bishop of Durham, as lord of the manor, is seized of the soil and royalties; (fn. 2) and the borough-holders and freemen of the borough not only claimed right of common, but also the privilege of letting stints, and allowing cottages to be built and inclosures to be made upon the Fell. In 1734, Mr. Ellison and Mr. Carr, the bishop's lessees, were permitted to enjoy a moiety of the small annual rents received for the cottages.

The borough-holders of Gateshead long neglected the herbage of the Fell; but in 1809, an act was obtained for dividing it. The commissioners were empowered to set out such parts as they pleased for roads, drains, quarries, watering places, &c. and one acre as a church-yard: of the residue, one-sixteenth part was appropriated to the bishop of Durham as lord of the manor, and another sixteenth part to the boroughholders and freemen of Gateshead, in compensation for their exclusive right of letting stints: the rest of the Fell (except a part for making two waggon-ways) was divided amongst persons having right of common. The whole Fell contained 631 acres, 0 roods, 21 poles, exclusive of roads, quarries, wells, &c. The allotments contained 595 acres, 1 rood, 19 poles; and the cottages and garths sold by the commissioners, 35 acres, 3 roods, 2 poles. (fn. 3) The claims of 17 freemen, 129 owners of ancient burgages, and 9 owners of various freehold estates, were allowed; and 45 claims were withdrawn or awarded against. At the time of the division, there were 430 cottages upon the Fell; 90 of which were pulled down as prejudicial to the division, and 340 were enfranchised, amongst which were 8 public houses.

Foresters appear to have been appointed by the bishop in regular succession. Roger de Tickhill, who held that office in 1348, had an allowance of three-halfpence a day; and the same wages were continued from that time to 1438, when the "Park-keeper" had a halfpenny a day added to his salary for the "custody of the tower" of Gateshead, with other profits, and a robe, or 3s. in lieu of it, every Christmas-day.

From the earliest period on record, this town was governed by a Bailiff, appointed by the bishops of Durham. The names of several persons who filled this office occur as witnesses to charters in the vestry, from 1316 to 1620, when it was held by Sir Thomas Riddell, Knight. The borough petitioned the bishop to appoint them a new one in 1772, setting forth that since the death of Robert Delaval, whose patent was dated in 1681, that officer had been discontinued. At present, the Stewards of the borough are the substitutes of this ancient officer. They are annually elected by the borough-holders and freemen. Stewards were first appointed in 1695. Previous to that year, the church-wardens of the parish appear to have discharged the duties of these officers; as the receipts and disbursements of the borough are, up to that time, included in the church-wardens' accounts. (fn. 4)

The bailiff of Gateshead occurs as holding a court in this town in 1415; and, in 1614, a head-court of the corporation of Newcastle was held here, before Thomas Riddell, Esq. bailiff, and George Nicholson, steward. Lord Crewe's lease to Mr. Coatsworth comprises the right of holding a Halmote-court, &c. in the manor of Gateshead, which of late years has been annually kept, by direction of Cuthbert Ellison, Esq. the lord of the manor, under the presidency of his steward, Nathaniel Clayton, Esq. The neighbouring magistrates also hold a petty sessions every Saturday, in their room, in the Goat Inn. Bishop Tunstall, in 1557, incorporated the barkers and tanners of Gateshead; and in 1594, Bishop Toby Matthew, by charter, confirmed the dyers, fullers, blacksmiths, locksmiths, cutlers, joiners, and carpenters; and the cordwainers in 1602. In 1661, Bishop Cosin incorporated in one company, at their own request, the drapers, taylors, mercers, hardwaremen, coopers, and chandlers; and, in 1671, the occupations of free masons, carvers, stone-cutters, sculptors, brick-makers, tilers, bricklayers, glaziers, painters, stainers, founders, nailors, pewterers, plumbers, millwrights, sadlers and bridlers, trunk-makers, and distillers. In 1726, the church-wardens of Gateshead granted a lease of 21 years, of a house on the west side of the church-yard, as a meeting-house for the companies of dyers, fullers, blacksmiths, locksmiths, cutlers, joiners, and carpenters.


The borough (fn. 5) or town of Gateshead consists chiefly of the High Street, one continued line of buildings of various and irregular appearance, extending from the end of Sunderland road to the head of the Bottle Bank. The latter, which is a continuation of the High Street, is evidently named from the Saxon word botle, and signifies the bank of the village. The lower part of this street, extending from the west end of Hillgate to the Tyne Bridge, is now called Bridge Street. In 1790, Church Street, which turns eastward to the church, and avoids the steep descent of Bottle Bank, was formed. Pipewellgate runs from the Tyne Bridge westward, and parallel to the river, 330 yards. It is a very narrow and dirty street. (fn. 6) Bailey Chare leads west above 708 yards. (fn. 7) Ellison Street, which also runs westward, has been only recently formed. Further south is Jackson's Chare, which formerly led to the coalpits worked in the town fields. West Street (fn. 8) extends from the west end of Jackson's Chare to the west end of Bailey Chare. It contains several good houses, which enjoy the prospect of the vale of the Tyne. On leaving the Tyne Bridge, the first street leading eastwards is Hillgate, formerly St. Mary's Gate, which runs parallel to the river 254 yards. The Church Stairs and Church Walk run along the north side of the church-yard; and Canon Street, which leads to Oakwellgate, bounds the south side. Oakwellgate lies nearly parallel to the High Street, and is wide and airy. (fn. 9) A long range of houses, called East Street, has been lately built between the north side of the Quarry Field and Nun's Lane. There are a few lesser passes and avenues, called Oakwellgate Chare, Oakwellgate Lane, East Bailey Chare, Gordon's Entry, and Cooper's Entry.

Gateshead, in ancient days, had a borough market. (fn. 10) Its internal trade, though now confined to shops, is still very considerable; and its extensive manufactures in iron and glass would impart consequence to any place. The depressing influence of Newcastle has ceased to be felt, and an union of interests has converted the inhabitants of both sides of the river into one community. In 1814, an act was passed for "cleansing, lighting, watching, and improving certain streets" in Gateshead. (fn. 11) Since that time, the foot-paths in the High Street have been much improved; but the commissioners of the turnpike road certainly do not perform their duty in causing the streets to be properly cleansed. In 1818, a joint share company was formed for lighting the town with gas, which establishment is still continued. A Subscription Newsroom was instituted January 3, 1820. It is remarkable that the Gateshead Society for the Prosecution of Felons was the first society for that purpose established in Great Britain. The Post-office was established in 1772, and at first intended to be only temporary during the rebuilding of Tyne Bridge; but as it was found a great convenience to the town and neighbourhood, it has since been made permanent.


According to tradition, the old church in which Bishop Walcher was killed stood in the field on the north-east side of the rectory, once called Lawless Close, and afterwards the Miller's Field. The origin of the present edifice is uncertain. It is mentioned in 1291 as being at that time worth £13, 6s. 8d. a year. Hodgson says, "The shape and hewing of its stones prove that it has been built out of the ruins of some Roman edifice." The aisles are formed by light octagonal pillars, supporting on each side five arches. The transept opens into the aisles under similar arches. The body of the church is old; but the tower or steeple, and a portion of the west end of the nave, were rebuilt in 1740, (fn. 12) when a new west door was opened: the old entrance is by the south porch. The chancel opens into the nave, under a wide pointed arch. There were formerly three recesses in the wall within the altar-rails, for officiating ministers; but when the chancel was repaired by Dr. Prosser, the recesses were removed. The windows are modern and uniform. The south transept has an elegant window of stained glass, presented to the parish, in 1819, by Mr. Joseph Price, glass manufacturer. It represents the Annunciation of the Virgin, and the arms of the borough and of eminent families connected with it. The church is regularly stalled with old oak, carved with fleurs de lis, and with the prince's feather. There are also several coats of arms. The font is a large bason of black marble.

Six bells were purchased by contribution in 1730. In Bourne's time there were eight bells. The whole were new hung in 1773. The four spires were taken down in 1764, and the roof altered. The parishioners, on January 16, 1820, agreed to purchase a new organ by subscription. The present one was built by Messrs. Wood, Small, and Co. of Edinburgh, and cost 500 guineas. It is an excellent instrument; and its powers were beautifully unfolded by Mr. Ingham, the organist, at a Sacred Oratorio held in this church by the Amateur Choral Society on October 31, 1827. (fn. 13)

Monumental Inscriptions.—Robert Trollop (architect of the Town Court in Newcastle, 1659) prepared his own tomb, a heavy square pile, the lower part brick, the upper stone, sometime ornamented with golden texts beneath the cornice. On the north side, according to tradition, stood the image of Robert Trollop, with his arm raised, pointing towards the Town-hall of Newcastle, and underneath—

"Here lies Robert Trollop,
Who made yon stones roll up.
When death took his soul up,
His body fill'd this hole up."

On a stone without the altar-rails,—"Here sleeps Mrs. Judith Weld, who was to three godly ministers a good wife; to Christ a faithful servant, to the church a virtuous member for piety, prudence, and patience. She departed this life 1656. In Jesu Domino splendida resurgam." At the west end of the nave is a long Latin epitaph on Brian Borrett, merchant; and a mural monument to the memory of Andrew Wood, M. A. rector. Under the belfry is a quaint epitaph, in rhyme, on Thomas Arrowsmith. This church is rich in plate. The parish register begins in 1559–60, and has been well kept.

Gateshead Rectory, (fn. 14) valued in the king's books at £27, 13s. 4d. is in the gift of the bishop of Durham. The rector is master of King James' Hospital; and there belong to him the fishery of Friar's Goose, with the liberty of drying nets, and 40s. paid annually by the grassmen for Parson's Flatt and Bull's Acre. He is entitled to great and small tithe throughout the parish, excepting some portions covered by moduses. He pays annually to the bishop of Durham 1s. 8d. and to the dean and chapter of Durham 3s. 4d. for St. Edmund's lands; and £2, 13s. 4d. to Kepyer School, in Houghton-le-Spring. The Parsonage-house, which was enlarged in 1814, at the rector's expense, nearly adjoins the church on the east. It is a good house, with gardens, and commands a view towards the river. The glebe consists of a field at High Team, a field between the Middle and Stoney Flats, a field on the south side of the Hexham road, another at Bensham, and the Rectory-field adjoining the Parsonage-house. The present curates of this parish are, the Rev. George Cooper Abbs, and the Rev. G. T. Ricketts, M. A. The Rev. John Tyson is the alternate Sunday evening lecturer.

The Hospital of St. Edmund the Confessor and St. Cuthbert (fn. 15) was founded in 1248, by Bishop Farnham, who endowed it with the whole village of Ulkistan; the old lordship of Gateshead; the wood of Benchelm, containing 43 acres, and lying between the arable land of St. Trinity and the road leading to Farnacres; and with 29 acres of escheated land in Alures-acyres. By the confirmation charter, it was to consist of four chaplains or priests; one of them to be master, and eat at the same table, and sleep in the same chamber with his three brethren, and pay each of 20s. a year. It had a clear revenue of £18 a year in 1292. In Bishop Skirlaw's time it is called "the hospital of St. Edmund the king," and is said to have consisted of "brethren, sisters, and paupers;" and, in 1448, Bishop Neville appropriated it, with its revenues, to the convent of St. Bartholomew, in Newcastle, by the name of "the hospital of St. Edmund the bishop." This grant was made on account of a fire that had happened in the nunnery, and misfortunes which had reduced them to great distress, and in consideration of their finding two priests to officiate in the chapel here. In 1544, it had a clear yearly revenue of "£7, 7s. 9d. which Doctor Bellasses now master of the same hath towards hys lyvyng, and giveth out of the same four marks by the year to a prieste to say masse there twyse in the weke for the commoditie and easement of the parishioners that do dwelle farr from the parish churche." After the dissolution, it remained in the hands of the crown; but masters were regularly appointed to it. Robert Claxton succeeded Dr. Bellasses, and from him the principal farm of the hospital derives its present appellation.

The original chapel of St. Trinity seems to have fallen into disuse after the union of the Hospitals of St. Trinity and St. Edmund. The ruined chapel that remains stands opposite to the Hexham road end, It is in that style of architecture that pre vailed in the reign of Henry III. from 1216 to 1272. The west front has a doorway, under a deep pointed arch, ornamented with a profusion of mouldings and niches. The south side has five lancet windows betwixt alternate buttresses. The north side has four similar lights, and two small doors; one under a narrow pointed arch, and another under a trefoil head. The east front has three lancet lights. The building seems to have consisted of one aisle, 25 yards long, and 6½ broad. Several steps to the altar still remain, near to which is an antique grave-stone. The remains of the ancient house of St. Edmund stand to the east of the chapel, and exhibit the ruins of a building in the style of Elizabeth or James. A heavy stone gateway faces the street. This house, after the dissolution, became the seat of the Riddells, a branch of the ancient baronial family of Northumberland. Sir Thomas Riddell's house and gardens suffered severely by the Scots under Lesley; and on January 28, 1746, being the seat of a Catholic family, it was gutted, plundered, and set on fire by a Protestant mob. The mansion-house, now the property of C. Ellison, Esq. was after this suffered to fall into ruins, and the stones have been nearly all used for building.

The charters of the hospital of St. Edmund being lost, and its revenues partly converted to purposes of private emolument, it was refounded by King James I. in January, 1610, by the name of "King James' Hospital, in Gateshead." The new society was ordered to consist of a master, who shall always be the rector of Gateshead for the time being, and of three poor brethren, who were ordered to receive £3, 6s. 8d. each, during the life of the first master, John Hutton, then appointed; and, after his death, the full profits of the hospital were to be divided, one-third to the master, and two-thirds to the three poor brethren. In 1810, an act of parliament was passed, which empowered the master and brethren to grant leases of their property, in parcels not exceeding one acre, for a term of not more than 99 years; and also enabled the bishop of Durham to make laws for the government of the hospital, and to augment the number of poor brethren, of whom there are now thirteen, viz. three elder and ten younger brothers, the former of whom have each a yearly stipend of £25, and a suit of clothes, with a house, (fn. 16) and an allowance of coals. The younger brethren must be single men, of the age of 56 years, or upwards, and of good character, not possessing more than £20 a year. They each receive £12 per annum, and a suit of clothes every two years. The rents arising from the lands and mines belonging to the hospital are, according to the schedule annexed to the act passed in 1810, worth £455 yearly, one-third of which is enjoyed by the master, and a salary of £40 is paid to the chaplain. The whole of the appointments are made by the rector of Gateshead, as master of the hospital. In 1808, the chapel of King James' Hospital having long been in ruins and neglected, a subscription was opened for the erection of a new chapel, to serve also as a National School. The building was completed in 1810, at the cost of £1331, 12s. It stands a little to the south of the old chapel, and its dimensions are 80 feet by 40. Adjoining the south side, 2 roods and 23 perches of ground was purchased and consecrated for a cemetery. Divine service is performed on Sundays by the chaplain, the Rev. John Tyson.

Gateshead Fell Church.—In 1809, an act passed "for building a church on Gateshead Fell, and for making the Fell a distinct rectory and parish." By the act for enclosing this waste ground, one acre was set out for the scite of the church and church-yard, which was vested in trustees, who were empowered to raise £1000 by a rate within the district of Gateshead Fell. After many delays, the foundation-stone of the new church was laid on May 13, 1824; and the building was finished (fn. 17) and consecrated on August 30, 1825. It contains 1000 sittings, half of which are "declared to be free and unappropriated for ever." The benefice is in the patronage of the bishop of Durham; and the Rev. William Hawkes, L. L. B. is the first incumbent. This new parish, in 1821, contained 472 inhabited houses, and 2420 inhabitants. At present, the population is estimated at about 3000.

The Presbyterian meeting-house, in Bailey Chare, was first opened on January 1, 1786, and is in connection with the Church of Scotland. The present minister, the Rev. Hamilton Murray, succeeded Mr. Seivewright, who resigned for a living in Scotland. The Rev. W. M'Connel was the predecessor of the latter. He was an amiable, unassuming man, an excellent mathematician, and an adept in various branches of natural philosophy. The Wesleyans have a neat meeting-house in High Street, one on the Low Fell, and another at the Blue Quarries on the High Fell. The Independent Methodists possess a meeting-house on the Low Fell, and another at Wreckington on the High Fell.


Anchorage School.—This school occupies a very large and airy room, above the vestry of St. Mary's church, and is said to have derived its name from anchorage-dues in that part of the Tyne formerly belonging to the bishop of Durham having been paid here. It was repaired by the church-wardens in 1658; and soon after that period, the "Four and Twenty" held meetings in it. When it was first used as a school is not known; but it must have been before 1693, for, in that year, a Mr. John Tenant is, by order of a vestry meeting, discharged from teaching school any further "in a certain room over the vestry of St. Mary, in Gateshead, commonly known by the name of the Anchorage;" he having come there "without the consent of, and in opposition to, Mr. George Tullie, rector of the said parish, whom we conceive to have a right to place a schoolmaster in the room above-mentioned." Theophilus Pickering, D. D. rector of Gateshead, by deed, dated January 9, 1701, gave to certain trustees the sum of £300 to be by them laid out in the purchase of some rent-charge, or land, for the perpetual maintenance of a free school in Gateshead; and directed that the yearly proceeds of his bequest should be settled upon the Anchorage, in case "no other building be obtained or erected, by any person or persons, in as convenient a part of the town for this end and purpose." This sum of £300 is now in the hands of the corporation of Newcastle, who pay to the master 4 per cent. interest, amounting to £12 annually; for which, and £3 a year paid by the scholars (each paying 1s. per quarter), he teaches 15 children. By Dr. Pickering's deed of gift, a copy of which is given in Brand's History of Newcastle, vol. i. p. 669, the master is required "to teach, or be ready to teach, all the children of the parish of Gateshead the Latin and Greek tongues, as also to write and cast up accounts, and also the art of Navigation or Plain Sailing:" but during the time of the present master, and at least five of his predecessors, the number of free scholars has been limited to 15; and in addition to the branches of learning mentioned above, Reading, English Grammar, Geography, and Mathematics, are now included in the departments taught. Mr. James Charlton is the present master, and, with his two assistants, Mr. Robert Gillan and Mr. James Richardson, has now under tuition upwards of 90 scholars, including the 15 free scholars. The master and free scholars are appointed by the rector of Gateshead. (fn. 18)

Chapel School.—This school was established in 1808, in Mr. Methuen's Long Room, and is conducted according to Dr. Bell's plan. It was removed to St. Edmund's chapel in 1810, and hence called the Chapel School. It is attended by about 350 children, viz. 220 boys and 130 girls. All the children of the parish of Gateshead are admissible into this school on arriving at the age of six years, and paying a penny a week. Several donations, increased by interest, and the surplus of annual subscriptions, amounting to £300, form, it is hoped, "a permanent establishment for the institution." The interest of this sum, amounting to £12 a year, is applied towards the payment of the master's salary; the deficiency being made up by an annual subscription, and the weekly contributions of the boys. The salary of the mistress is paid by the weekly contributions of the girls, and a subscription by several ladies of the parish. Mr. William Armstrong and his wife are the present teachers.

In 1819, "the Church of England Religious Tract Society" was formed in Gateshead; and, in 1821, "the District Committee" for the deanery of Chester Ward in aid of the Society for the Promotion of Christian Knowledge. "The Gateshead Friendly Society," formed January 1, 1813, on the model of the Castle Eden Society, deserves particular notice. On December 30, 1826, it consisted of 68 ordinary members, who had, from the commencement, disbursed £430, 10s. 5d. and had a capital of £918, 3s. 3d. It is partly supported by the annual subscriptions of honorary members. "The Amicable Society of Tradesmen," in Gateshead, on January 2, 1826, had a capital of £2670, 7s. 7d. It consisted of 72 members, and had existed 14 years.

The Alms-house, now the Poor-house, on the east side of the High Street, has been noticed before. There are several charitable funds which have been bequeathed, in trust for the poor, to the rector, churchwardens, and overseers of the poor.

Annual Amount of Charitable Donations to the Poor of Gateshead Parish.

£. s. d.
October 26, 1619, Henry Smith, Esq. of London, payable out of the manor of Longstake Harrington, in Southampton 17 5 6
September 2, 1624, Anthony Hebson, glover and parish-clerk of Gateshead, out of various premises in that town 1 0 0
February 26, 1640, Henry Hilton, of Hilton Castle, Esq. £16 a year, ceased in 1739 0 0 0
November 16, 1648, Andrew Aldworth, of Newcastle, physician, out of premises in Oakwellgate 1 0 0
August 29,1660, Ralph and James Cole, Esqrs. out of premises now the property of Mr. Thomas Easton 4 0 0
January 16, 1673, Elizabeth Collinson, rent of two fields near Easington 12 10 0
February 7, 1676, Matthew Bates, master and mariner, out of premises in Hillgate 1 0 0
March 9, 1680, Sir William Blackett, Bart. out of premises at the north end of Tyne Bridge 2 0 0
September 26, 1689, John Bowman, tobacco pipe maker, a house in Hillgate, now occupied by six poor women 0 0 0
December 18, 1696, Thomas Rawling, of Newcastle, Hoastman, half of Oakwellgate malting—his executrix, Elizabeth Grey, gave the other half—rent 10 0 0
June 1, 1703, Jane Sutton, widow, chargeable upon a house in the Front Street 1 0 0
December 15, 1723, Thomas Reed, shipwright, £1 on the Butt Houses in Hillgate, not paid 0 0 0
July 16, 1728, Thomas Powell, of Newcastle, gentleman, the Poor-house, built by his executors 0 0 0
February 27,1746, Hannah Thompson, spinster, on a house west side of the Front Street, near the pump 2 10 0
Rent of two allotments in Bensham, in right of Oakwellgate malting and the Poor-house 6 0 0
Interest of £105 in the Saving Bank in Newcastle (fn. 19) 4 4 0
62 9 6

The following benefactions in money were left for distribution:—1654, Dr. Rand, £6, 13s. 4d.—1660, James Cole, Esq. £5.—1661, Mr. Madeson, £10.—1673, Bishop Cosins, £5.—1684, John Mather, £10.—1821, T. E. Headlam, Esq. £20.—1822, Thomas Harvey, Esq. £50—1824, Thomas Patten, Esq. £10.

Since June 21, 1821, the parochial affairs of Gateshead, as far as regards the maintenance of the poor, have been regulated by a select vestry, (fn. 20) consisting of the rector, the four churchwardens, the four overseers, and twenty of the principal rate-payers. The tenth report of the select vestry contains the following table, shewing the rental collected upon, the rate per pound, the amount of rate collected and disbursed, the sum paid for county-rate, the number of poor and illegitimate children, and the average expense of maintaining each person in the poor-house, per week, including clothing, for the last seven years:—

Years ending Apr. 1. Rental actually collected upon, incl. stock in trade. Rate per pound. Amount of rate collected. Amount of rate disbursed. Paid for county-rate. No. of out-poor. No. of casual poor. No. of illeg. childr. No. in poor-house. Total. Average exp. of each person in Poor-house, including clothing.
£. s. d. £. s. d. £. s. d. £. s. d. s. d.
1821 14,210 6 4 4499 14 1 4456 6 123 8 0 399 34 45 40 518 3
1822 14,727 4 10 3559 0 2 3569 9 10 103 4 0 373 18 40 40 471 3 2
1823 14,580 4 2 3037 10 2 3034 13 137 12 0 331 17 46 37 431 2 11¼
1824 15,451 3 8 2832 14 0 2824 13 6 233 7 1 317 22 42 50 431 2
1825 15,540 3 4 2589 18 11 2705 3 5 309 9 9 258 26 47 55 386 2
1826 15,406 3 8 2824 7 2 2782 17 11½ 442 8 11 252 23 45 52 372 3
1827 16,029 3 4 2671 10 4 2653 9 321 12 3 245 35 42 46 368 3

The churchwardens' receipts, for the year ending at the visitation in 1827, were £339, 6s. 9d.; and the disbursements £250, 10s. 6d. The receipts of the surveyors of the highways, for the year ending October, 1827, were £367, 12s. 3½d.; and the disbursements £303, 1s. 11¼d. The rate levied under the Street Act amounts to about £500 per annum. (fn. 21)


Those parts of Gateshead parish that are situate without the town, are well peopled and cultivated. (fn. 22) Redheugh, a mile west from the town, was held in 1280 by a family of that name. In the reign of Henry VI. it came into the possession of the Whites. Sir Francis Liddell, Knt. bought the estate about 1620; and his descendants conveyed it to Francis Earl of Derwentwater. In 1748, Lady Mary Ratcliff sold it to Dr. Askew, grandfather of the present proprietor. It is now the residence of William Cuthbert, Esq. Saltwellside, a pleasant mansion about 2½ miles south of the Bridge, belonged to the Hedworth family in 1595. In 1640, Sir Alexander Hall devised this manor to his brother-in-law, Ralph Maddison, Esq. (fn. 23) It was purchased of the Liddells, of Moor-house near Carlisle, by Joseph Dunn, Esq. the late owner, and is now the residence and property of his brother, Michael Dunn, Esq. Field House, half a mile south of Gateshead, is the property and residence of George Barras, Esq. Deckham Hall, which lies east of the old Durham road, near the toll-bar, in 1614 belonged to Thomas Deckham, Gent. It was sold a few years ago, by George Wooler, of Fawnlees, near Wolsingham, to the late William James, Esq. Gateshead Park, in 1340, belonged to the Gategangs, "lords of Pipewellgate." The present mansion-house was built by Mr. Coatsworth, and is now the property of Cuthbert Ellison, Esq. but the residence of Isaac Cookson, jun. Esq. Wreckington village bounds Gateshead parish on the south. It is so named from the Roman road, called the Wrecken Dyke, or road, which led from the station at Lanchester to the estuary of the Tyne. A hiring, held on the second Monday of April, and the first Monday in November, was established here in 1822.


  • 1. William the Conqueror gained a decisive victory over the army of Edgar Etheling, Malcolm king of Scotland, and certain Danish pirates, on Gateshead Fell, in 1068, and after that recovered Newcastle, and laid it in ashes. About the year 1278, it was customary for the king of Scotland, the archbishop of York, the prior of Tynemouth, the bishop of Durham, and Gilbert de Umfranville, by their bailiffs, to meet the justices coming to Newcastle to hold pleas, and to ask their liberties of them, at the head of Gateshead, at a certain well there, called the Chille-well. The sheriff of Northumberland still goes in procession to the New Cannon, on the Low Fell, to receive the judges of assize on their northern circuit. Formerly, the procession halted at Sheriff Hill, or the sign of the Cannon, on the old road. In 1770, Robert Hazlett was hanged, and afterwards hung in chains by the edge of a pond on the Fell, from thence called Hazlett's Pond, for robbing a Miss Benson and the Durham postman. The pond is now drained and enclosed. In the years 1781 and 1782, military encampments were formed on this Fell; and, during the late war, a beacon was erected, on a place since called Beacon Hill. A quantity of very ancient gold, silver, and copper coins, were found on February 10, 1809, by some workmen who were forming a waggon-way on the Fell.
  • 2. Roger de Fulthorpe and others, in 1368, worked the coal-mines in "Gateside Moore." At one time, there were "eight pittes on Gateside Low Fell," which accounts for the immense extent of pit-waste on this part of the Fell previous to the division. The Low Fell was once separated from the High Fell by an earthen mound or fence, which was observable in 1747.
  • 3. Including roads, &c. the whole would not contain much more than half of the quantity stated as its area in 1647. The first allotment sold fetched £20, and the highest £60; but £40 was thought a good price for a borough claim. The allotments set out being equal to 222½ borough claims, the whole would be worth, at that time and price, £8900, but is now estimated as worth £46,725. Thirty years ago, the Fell was studded with miserable mud cottages, inhabited by tinkers, cloggers, travelling potters, besom-makers, egglers, and others of that worthy race called Faws. A sod cottage is now a rarity even on Gateshead Fell; and this year (1827), the gentry of the place had a concert of vocal and instrumental music, for the benefit of Mr. G. Bagnall, organist of St. John's on the Fell, and which was most fashionably attended.
  • 4. List of the Stewards of the Borough. 1695 Hauxley Stephenson and Edmund Sutton. 1701 William Coatesworth and Robert Leighton. 1703 Robert Sutton and John Cooper. 1710 Charles Jordan and William Donnison. 1716 Edward Fawcett and Jonathan Bell. 1719 John Thursby and William Stephenson. 1735 Thomas Coulson and John Fawcett. 1739 Robert Grieve and John Fawcett, 1740 Thomas Donnison and Ralph Lister. 1748 Martin Huntley and Joseph Lambert. 1750 Thomas Hutchinson and Thomas Coulson. 1753 Thomas Hutchinson and Robert Chambers. 1755 Thomas Hutchinson and James Barras. 1757 Anthony Chambers and James Barras. 1764 Anthony Chambers and John Huntley. 1770 Anthony Chambers and George Charleton. 1778 George Charleton and John Atkinson. 1784 John Atkinson and T. E. Headlam. 1792 T. E. Headlam and Thomas Harvey. 1815 T. E. Headlam and James Easton. 1822 James Easton and Michael Hall. 1824 John Rewcastle and James Pollock. 1825 James Pollock and William Hymers. 1826 William Hymers and Henry Smith. 1827 Henry Smith and William Gibbon. The stewards were assisted by four grassmen. Wainmen. Four wainmen were annually appointed in the borough of Gateshead, from the commencement of the oldest parish book in 1626 to 1740. Their duty was to collect a toll of six-pence for every loaded wain, and three-pence for every loaded cart, from all inhabitants that were neither freemen nor borough-men; and the like sums from all other persons passing through the said borough. All borough-men and freemen, exercising any trade in the borough, where they made use of wains or carts, paid the same tolls, except they were loaded with goods for their own particular use, and not exposed to sale. This toll, which never seems to have produced much above £4 per annum, was frequently resisted and finally abandoned.
  • 5. The extent of the Fell, which in 1809 was constituted a separate rectory, has been already given; but the original parish, which forms one ancient constablery, is still united as to the joint maintenance of the poor. The boundary of Gateshead (separating it from Gateshead Fell) commences at the river Tyne, at the north-east corner of a parcel of ground called "The Friar's Goose," and, following the little burn dividing this property from Felling estate, passes on the east side of Kirton's gate, where it crosses the Sunderland turnpike; and continuing by the fence which divides Gateshead Park from Felling estate, crosses the Sunderland old road; and taking the east and south fences of Mitford's Fields (now part of Deckham Hall estate) runs westwards and north-westwards, passing through Deckham Hall and Miller's Cottage (which are both partly in Heworth and partly in Gateshead parishes), again crosses the Sunderland old road, and takes the western fence of "the Tenement Closes" to "the Tenement Houses," where it takes the western boundary of the Claxton's estate; and passing over the north-east corner of St. Edmund's burial-ground and the south-west corner of the chapel (which is partly in Gateshead and partly in Gateshead Fell parishes), continues along the western boundary of Claxton's estate, and the ancient boundary of Peareth's Closes, to the east end of Sunderland turnpike, where it crosses the Durham turnpike road; and taking the eastern boundary of Sorsbie's, Charleton's, and Barras' ancient properties, crosses Potticar Lane (now the Durham branch road), and takes the eastern boundary of Shipcote and Cramer Dykes ancient inclosures to Whitefield House, where it crosses Kell's Lane; and taking the eastern, southern, and western boundaries of Kell's Field, otherwise Beacon House estate, again crosses Kell's Lane, and takes the southern boundary of Whinney House ancient inclosures; and running westwards by the little burn dividing these inclosures from Gateshead Fell, crosses Saltwell Lane; and taking the eastern boundary of Darwent Crook ancient inclosures, runs southward to Chow Dean, whence, proceeding by the southern boundary of Darwent Crook estate, it falls into the Team, and continues northwards along this rivulet until it falls into the river Tyne, at the north-west corner of the parcel of ground called St. Omer's (belonging to St. Mary's Hospital, Newcastle); and from thence continuing by the river Tyne to the point from whence we set out. The boundaries of Gateshead parish were perambulated May 27, 1824, on which occasion a number of medals were distributed.
  • 6. The scite of Pipewell-gate seems to have been granted by Bishop Hugh to Thorold of London, under the description of "his waste lying westward from Tyne Bridge to Redheugh." In 1348, a court was held before the bailiff and good men and true of Pipewell-gate. The pipes, or conduits, from which this street derives its name, terminated in an adjoining field, still called the Pant-head Close.—
  • 7. This street or lane has been called Half Moon Street, Marble Street, Mirk Chare, Thomlinson's Chare, and Miller's Lane. It formerly extended to Oakwellgate. The ancient and present name of Bailey Chare probably arose from Thomlinson being the bailiff of the manor, and the great man of the day in the parish.—
  • 8. West Street was formerly the Back Lane or Mirk Lane, and in some ancient charters Angiport. Prior to 1745, the great post-road came down this lane, and entered Gateshead by Bailey Chare. In that year, six feet of earth was taken off the old Bottle Bank, the rock opened above the west end of Oakwellgate Chare, and the Pinfold, which stood in the middle of the street opposite the Five-wand Mill, was removed to the Windmill Hill.—
  • 9. Oakwellgate is supposed to have taken its name from an ancient well, once overshadowed by a broad branching oak. Brand was informed that three strata of pavement were discovered at the scite of the well; but the place is now unknown. At the southern extremity of Oakwellgate are some buildings, called King John's Palace. Between the High Street and Oakwellgate, the wealthy and loyal Sir John Cole had his gardens and residence. His mansion was afterwards tenanted by Henry Jenkins, Esq. of Barnes, in the county of Durham. In 1762, it was converted into a manufactory of broad-cloths, and afterwards occupied by Messrs. Macleod, as a brewery. It is now occupied by Mr. John Abbot, as a brass-foundry, &c. It had been splendidly furnished, as appeared by a chimney-piece in an upper room, which was finely ornamented with scripture histories, &c. carved in oak, and supported by turns with a profusion of flowers and foliage. On September 19, 1826, a committee was appointed to ascertain and fix the names of the several streets, chares, and lanes in Gateshead. The above names are taken from their report.
  • 10. In a suit at York, in 1577, between Richard Natrass and the town of Newcastle, respecting a free Market and Fair in Gateshead, witnesses deposed that they had seen a market or fair held twice a week, on Tuesdays and Fridays, when wheat, bigg, and cattle, used to be exposed to sale, about a cross, between the toll-booth and the pant or conduit; and beans, pease, oatmeal, and other goods and merchandise, sold at the "Brige-yate." The Toll-booth stood in the main-street, a little below the west end of Oakwellgate Chare. In 1700, it was used as a school-room, but afterwards converted into a Bridewell, and taken down when the miserable and scandalous Lock-up house was built at the head of the Church Stairs.
  • 11. By the Durham and Tyne Bridge Road Act, passed in 1824, the trustees are authorized to make a branch 138 yards in length, to commence at the east side of the High Street, opposite to Bailey Chare, and to proceed in a semicircular direction to near the south gate of the church-yard.
  • 12. Causfield, the architect, was ruined by the undertaking. The old tower was a low, plain, oblong structure.
  • 13. There were four Chantries in this church. Several deeds remain in the vestry, which mention the chantry of St. Mary in the north porch of Gateshead church. By one of these it appears that this institution existed some years before the foundation charter was granted in 1330, by Alan, son of Roger Prestre, and "Allan, called Prestre of Gateshead;" for one of these Alan Prestres was chaplain and guardian of its altar in 1323, and in 1311 he is called "Alaunus dictus Prestre capellanus de Gatesheued." The community of Gateshead were patrons. At the suppression, it was worth 75s. 4d. a year. "The chauntrie of the Trinitie in Gatished was founded by one Alone Prestore by reporte, but no dede of foundacion is shewed—yerelie value £4, 4s. 2d." By a deed in the vestry, dated in 1330, Alan Prestre, "capellanus de Gatesheued," granted to Isabella Strinolyne a tenement in Gateshead, to be held by the annual payment of 2s. to the altar of St. Mary, in the north porch of St. Mary's in Gateshead, and of 18d. to the altar of St. Trinity, in the body of the said church. St. John's chantry appears to have been founded by John Dolphamby of Gateshead, about the year 1421, in which year he granted 14 tenements in Gateshead to it. Conan Barton, of Sadbury, Esq. was its patron in 1496. There was no deed of foundation to be shewed in 1545, when its yearly value was £6, 12s. 8d. St. Loy's chantry was also founded by John Dolphamby, about 1442, and had Conan Barton, of Sadbury, Esq. for its patron. Both these persons' names occur in grants in the vestry; but neither the chantry of St. John, nor of St. Loy, are mentioned. Richard Jackson appears to have been its last incumbent, and to have had, in 1553, a pension of £3 a year. It is not mentioned in the Augmentation-office certificate of colleges and chantries for this county and Northumberland, in 1545.
  • 14. Succession of Rectors.—Robert de Plessis.—1275, Robert.—1322, Henry Manselot.—1344, Rich. Kilvington, S. T. P.—1370, John de Castro Bernardi.—Adam de Fenrother.—1376, John de Castro Bern.— 1379, John Bathras.—1380, Thomas Everard.—1389, William de Dalington.—John de Langley.—William Malberthorp, Cl.—1410, William Wandesford.—1419, John de Thoralby.—1421, Henry de Eton.—1427, John Bonour.—1435, John Lethom.—1436, Thomas Tanfield.—1474, Robert Mason, L. L. D.—1493, Ch. Mann.—1532, John Brown, Cl.—1557, William Bell, S. T. P.—1559, William Byrche, A. M.—1564, Lancelot Doddisworthe.—1571, William Hodgeson.—1587, Clement Colmore, L. L. D. Spiritual Chancellor of Durham.—1593, John Hutton.—1612, Thomas Hooke.—1620, Joseph Brown, A. M.—1649, Thomas Weld, (an intruder).—1660, John Laidler, A. M.—1683, John Cave, A. M.—1685, Richard Werge, A. M.—1687, John Cock, A. M. (a Nonjuror).—1691, Robert Brograve, A. M.—1691, George Tully, A. M.—1695, John Smith, A. M.—1695, Theophilus Pickering, S. T. P. (resigned for Sedgefield).—1705, Leonard Shafto, A. M.—1732, Robert Stillingfleet, A. M. (resigned for Ryton, afterwards master of Sherburn and dean of Worcester).—1733, William Lambe, A. M.—1769, Andrew Wood, A. M.—1772, Richard Fawcett, D. D. (vicar of Newcastle).—1782, Robert Thorpe, A. M. (rector of Ryton and archdeacon of Northumberland).— 1808, Richard Prosser, D. D. (resigned for the archdeaconry of Easington, prebend of Durham).—1810, Henry Phillpots, A. M. (rector of Stanhope and prebendary of the second stall).—1810, John Collinson, A. M.
  • 15. Tanner informs us that one Utton was abbot of a monastry here before the year 653. Leland imagines it to have been this hospital, and "be lykelyhod the same that Bede spekythe of." Trinity Chapel, in Gateshead, was certainly in existence between the years 1196 and 1207, as appears by a grant of lands in, Harlaw, preserved in the vestry of Gateshead. About 1200, Henry de Ferlington contributed his farm at Kyoe, near Lanchester; and by charter, Baldwin gave to Gerard, son of Geve, steward of the hospital, 17 acres in the south part of his field called Alrisburne. Bishop Farnham, in 1248, because its brethren, by reason of their poverty, neither led a secular nor a religious life, united this house with the hospital of St. Edmund; and, amongst the numerous charters in Gateshead vestry respecting this institution, one, dated April 28, 1485, calls it "the chantry of the Holy Trinity in the hospital of St. Edmund the Confessor."
  • 16. Dr. Lambe's executrix paid £300 for dilapidations, viz. £100 on account of the master's house in King James' Hospital, £50 for the house of each of the brethren, and £50 for the chapel. In 1783, Bishop Egerton permitted the rector, who is also master, to expend the said £100 on the rectory-house. The master's house and the old chapel were taken down in 1811; and the houses of the three elder brethren were at the same time rebuilt a little to the north of the new chapel. The remaining part of Dr. Lambe's dilapidation money was expended on these new buildings.
  • 17. Expense of building the church at Gateshead Fell:—March 15,1824, Mr. John Ions's contract for building church and tower, £2345; additional expense incurred for buttresses, £197; the spire, which was a separate undertaking, £200; total for church and spire, £2742. To this sum add the expenses of procuring the act for building the church, the interest of the same, expense of collecting rates, &c. which were paid out of the £1000 raised by authority of the act, £527; Messrs. Willis and Swinburne's salaries, as clerks to the commissioners, £70; total, £3339. Contributions for defraying the above:—Raised by authority of the act, by rates, £1000; the commissioners for building additional churches, £1000; the Society for building Churches, &c. £300; Cuthbert Ellison, Esq. M. P. £105; Rev. J. Collinson, rector of Gateshead, £120; the late Lord Bishop of Durham, £100; the trustees of the late Lord Crewe's charities, £100; Right Honourable Lord Ravensworth, £50; the dean and chapter of Durham, £30; Archdeacon Prosser, £25; M. Atkinson, Esq. £30; M. Plummer, Esq. £30; Borough of Gateshead, £30; Adam Askew, Esq. £20; Michael Hall, Esq. £20; Rev. Dr. Phillpotts, £20; Messrs. Willis and Swinburn, the amount of their bills, the former of which amounted to £56, and the latter to £14; sundry subscriptions under £20, and a collection in church, £220; sum to be provided, £69; total, £3339. A silver cup and salver was presented to this church by Lady Hawkes.
  • 18. List of masters of the Anchorage School:—Mr. George Hudson appointed by Dr. Pickering January 9, 1701.—The Rev. John Powel.—The Rev. John Spooner, appointed in 1757.—The Rev...... Busby.—The Rev. John Falcon, A. B. appointed in 1771.—The Rev. John Tyson, appointed in 1809.—Mr. James Charlton appointed December 11,1814.
  • 19. Jane Hopper left a benefaction of L20; William Bailey left L5; Francis Collinson L20; Robert Harrison, of Bryan's Leap, L100; Margaret Ramsay, L20. Isabella Glover, one-third of a legacy of L20; William Coatsworth, Esq. L50; and Sir Henry Liddell, Bart. L31, 10s. These sums increased by interest, in 1747 amounted to L300. It appears that, in 1755, L200 of this fund was expended in erecting the Poor-house; and the remaining L100, in 1762, was expended in erecting a gallery in the west end of the church. The surplus of the seat-rents was applied to the payment of the principal, which, in 1811, was deposited in the Newcastle Savings Bank.
  • 20. In 1658, seventeen of the four-and-twenty of the parish of Gateshead were displaced, as being "persons who, by the humble peticon and advice, were disabled from exercising any place or office on publique trust, and guilty of profaneness and other crimes, soe as they are not fitt to be entrusted in that employment;" and their places filled by other godly and sober inhabitants of the borough, by order in council, dated at Whitehall, Tuesday 22d June, grounded on certificate from Robert Fenwick and Henry Ogle, Esqrs. and John Topping, governor of Tynemouth. The ancient four-and-twenty still nominate the churchwardens, the overseers of the poor, constables, &c. and generally make orders for such things as are paid out of the church-rate. In 1657, the parishioners of Gateshead complained bitterly that their rector, Mr. Weld, had for eight years refused "the favour of administering the sacraments to any of his parish, but to eight women and two men, weak and unstable persons that (were) sublimed his converts;" nor would he permit his excommunicated flock, consisting of 1000 persons, to engage a lecturer to administer the means of salvation.—From a scarce tract in the possession of Mr. Charlton, master of the Anchorage School, Gateshead. The oldest "Poor Booke" commences in 1691, in which year the rate was £98. In 1733, it was £107; in 1760, it was £183; in 1780, it was £568; in 1790, £1134; in 1800, £1847; and in 1817, £4563. The maintenance of the regular poor was often farmed in former years. The county-rate was first paid out of the poor-rate in 1800. The assessments are made on two-thirds of the rental. "The full and fair" annual rental of the parish has just been returned at £22,677.
  • 21. The roads belonging to the parish of Gateshead extend in length 5 miles, 1742 yards:—the Durham road, 3 miles, 445 yards; the Hexham road, 2 miles, 649 yards; and the Sunderland road, 1562 yards. Thus it appears the parish roads are 914 yards less than the half of the other roads. One moiety of the rate levied under the Street Act is paid by the owners of property, and the other by the tenants. All the accounts of this parish are regularly published—an example worthy of imitation.
  • 22. When the borough lands or town fields were enclosed in 1814, a reservation was made of "a certain part or parcel thereof, called and known by the name of the Windmill Hills, containing by estimation 10 acres or thereabouts." This land, with the houses and mills thereon, constitute the present property of the borough of Gateshead, and produce annually about £500. There are about 144 houses in Gateshead, that confer the right of borough-holder upon the proprietor. There are also 10 or 11 freemen; but as many of the borough-holders are possessed of more than one borough-right, the number of persons having an interest in the borough property does not perhaps exceed 100. On November 12, 1827, the borough-holders and freemen resolved to divide the money in hand. Whether this resolution be repeated annually is uncertain. There is a mortgage of £1600 on that part of the borough property which formerly belonged to Mr. Harrison. The appointment of Grassmen ceased on the division of the borough lands; and the Stewards are now the only officers of the borough. The minerals under the borough lands belong to Lord Ravensworth and Partners, commonly called the Grand Allies.
  • 23. Mr. Maddison, President of the United States of America, is said to be descended from this family. The other noted individuals connected with Gateshead parish are the following:— "In Gateshead was Mr. Tully, an eloquent man—he published a book concerning the government of the tongue—he was lecturer of St. Nicholas', Newcastle."—MS. Life of Barnes. James Tytler, chemist, in Gateshead, greatly distinguished himself in the controversy respecting the waters in and near Newcastle. He made several experiments on the subject, and treated Dr. Rotheram with great, though apparently just, severity. William Hilton, brother of a Captain Robert Hilton, seems to have lived in Gateshead. He wrote two tragedies; the one called the Siege of Palmyra, and the other Arthur. His numerous poems, some of which display considerable poetic genius, were published by subscription, in two volumes, in 1775. They are mostly on local scenes and circumstances. He also wrote "Titus in Sandgate," and the "Ship-owner's Manual." Robert Clover, of whom Mr. Hilton has given a brief memoir, was born at Gateshead December 5, 1738, and was buried there on June 15, 1757; yet, in that narrow circle of time, he gave proofs of extraordinary genius. He acquired such nice skill in music, as excited the admiration of Mr. Charles Avison, one of the first masters in the profession. Unassisted by masters, he made great advances in drawing, and portrait, landscape, and miniature painting. He also made considerable progress in modern languages, in Astronomy, and the Mathematics. When only fifteen years of age, he wrote two poetic pieces, in imitation of Milton's L'Allegro, which Mr. Hilton published with his own poems. But such indefatigable labour was too much for a delicate constitution; and he died when approaching to manhood, beloved and esteemed by all who knew him. He resided in the house which adjoins Mr. Price's house on the south. Daniel de Foe, author of the "True-born Englishman," when "sorely prest by persecuting foes," sought refuge in Gateshead. During his residence here, in Hillgate, he produced the universally admired "Adventures of Robinson Crusoe;" the chief incidents of which, it is said, were communicated to him by one Selkirk, a Scotchman, who had lived alone for some years on the island of Juan Fernandez, and from whom it is generally believed De Foe obtained those particulars which he narrated in the Adventures of Crusoe, thus cheating Selkirk of the emoluments he anticipated from the sale of his story. It is remarkable that the writer of a similar tale, called the "Adventures of David Dobinson," should also be a parishioner of Gateshead. The late William Hawkes, Esq. afforded a striking example of what may be effected by skill and persevering industry. He was originally a working blacksmith, and first commenced business with Michael Longridge, Esq. a gentleman of great spirit and knowledge in business. After this firm was dissolved, Mr. Hawkes proceeded on his own account, and, during some years, was ably assisted by his son, the late ingenious William Hawkes. Their extensive works at New Woolwich, for the manufacture of wrought and cast iron, chain cables, anchors, steam-engines, boilers, &c. give employment to a great number of men. The present firm is Messrs. William Hawkes, sen. and Co. Hewson Clarke served his apprenticeship to the late Mr. Huntley, chemist and druggist, Gateshead, during which he displayed considerable reading and acumen in a periodical paper called "The Saunterer." This procured him several friends and patrons, by whom he was sent to the college of Cambridge. But he had acquired such dissipated and extravagant habits, that he soon found himself abandoned by all his respectable acquaintances. In the metropolis, he subsisted by writing the "Scourge," and other satirical publications, for which he is noticed in Lord Byron's "English Bards and Scotch Reviewers." But his irregular and feverish life was short; and he, who might have reflected honour on his age and country, died unnoticed and unlamented. Thomas Wilson, Esq. a native and inhabitant of Gateshead Fell, is the modern boast of the parish. Amidst the cares of a large family and an extensive business, he contrives to find time for mathematical researches and poetical compositions. His "Stanzas on the intended new Line of Road from Potticar Lane to Leyburn Hold,"—"The Oiling of Dickey's Wig," and "The Pitman's Pay-night," are all productions replete with humour, picturesque descriptions, and the most delicate touches of nature. Whoever wishes to know the present circumstances, habits, and character of our coal-miners, will find the subject happily and accurately displayed in "The Pitman's Pay-night."