A post by archivist Andrew Gray
August means summer holidays. And for many of us, summer holidays means days at the beach. So this month, we celebrate the beaches at South Shields, and in particular the development of the foreshore north of the pier (Littlehaven beach) in the 1920s.
Our item of the month comes in the middle of this development, so first some context. The end of the 19th century saw the transformation of local government, culminating locally in the formation of South Shields County Borough in 1889. In 1896, the Corporation had got Parliament to pass the South Shields Corporation Act, “… to make better provision for the health and good government of the Borough and for other purposes.” This gave the local authority extensive powers (among others) to acquire new lands, to regulate the use of the seafront and public bathing, and to lay out and manage public parks. During the first decades of the 20th century, they took advantage of their new powers, and development of the foreshores at South Shields was typical of this new ambition.Continue reading “Item of the month: From tea rooms to decontamination centres – developments at South Shields sea front in the 1920s “