Bottle Bank

            Welcome to the Bottle Bank page which brings you the following text  from
Vestiges of Old Newcastle and Gateshead by J.R. Boyle FSA
Low Felly Gaieshead'On-Tyne, June^ 1890.The illustrations in the book are not available to me so I have sprinkled the text with pictures that were available

Bottle Bank and High Street.

So far, in our survey of Gateshead, we have stood by the old bridge of T3nie. We must now move southwards. The steep ascent of Bottle Bank is before us. This name formerly included the whole distance from near the end of the bridge to about the railway arch over High Street. Its present cognomen must have been conferred at a very early period. The word bottle is Saxon, meaning a house or habitation^ and thus carries us back to the earliest settlement at Gateshead, of which it also defines the locality. The same word
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occurs in such Northumbrian place-names as Harbottle, Newbottle, Shilbottle, and Wallbottle. In old documents the west side of Bottle Bank is called West Raw, whilst the opposite side is styled East Raw, and the road itself is the Via Regia. It was not only the royal road, but till the year 1790, when Church Street was formed, the only road to and from the bridge of Tyne. Every stage-coach and waggon which traversed the great north road was compelled to ascend and descend its steep gradient.

As Bottle Bank was the part of Gateshead first inhabited, so it maintained pre-eminence through many centuries. In the old parish accounts the cost of its repair is an ever-recurring item. The Bank was indeed at one time the great burden of the burgesses. When Charles I. was on his way to Scotland to be crowned he passed through Gateshead. . The magnates of the town, the
" four and twenty,'* forewarned of his coming, met and resolved " that the Street, from Helgate end to Pipewellgate end shall be forwith laid with hewen stone.** A ** ten weakes sesse for the repaire of the Botle Banke ** produced £\o los. 3d., from which amount £^ 8s. 6d. was " paid to William Bankes for laying 48 yeardes of newe stone and 6 yeardes of old in the Botle
Bank.*** To divers other workmen 18s. 4d. was paid "for makeing the streats even at the king*s coming.** The toil of the labourers was cheered by the strains of music, and 3s. 4d. was given to the piper, " for playing to the menders of the high waies five severall daies.**t

* It is interesting to find that, as early as 1423, bishop Langley assigned certain customs to be applied to the paving of the town of Gateshead.

t The piper, sometimes styled the waite, was an important parish officer. So, too, were the beadle and the bellman. Once a year each of these dignitaries received a new coat at the expense of the parish. The piper's coat was blue, the bellman's black, and the beadle's red. The following items are from the churchwardens* accounts :
1627. Paid the wayte for goeing a day w**» the scaylers in the Townc ffeilds, 8d.
Paid the bellman for giveing wameing about the Towne to scale the Towne ffeilds, ad.
1650. Paid to the belUnan for going about to keepe in doggt and swine, ad.
1632. Payd [the beadle] for whipping black Barborie, 6d.
1633. Paid to the beagle for whipping two men, 8d.
1634. Paid to the belman for burieing the old beagell, 4d.
Paid [the beadle] for whipping of a woman, 4d.
1639. Paid for amending the Goates head being the waites Cognisance, 3s.
1642. Paid the bellman for giveing notice to make cleane the streets, 3d.
1654. Paid the waites for pla]ring musick to the Townes peopell when they dressed the Townes ffeelds, as. 6d.
Paid them more when they went w*** them to mend the High waies, is. 4d.
1658. Paid the wates for playing when they went w^ the young people to mowe the towne fields, 3s.
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The importance of Bottle Bank at a later date is indicated by the fact that in Whitehead's Newcastle Directory for 1782-3-4, the first directory in which Gateshead is included, of the whole number of 145 tradesmen and others whose names and addresses are given, not fewer than 65 were located in Bottle Bank, Pipewellgate ranking next with 25 names, whilst Hillgate has but ten and Oakwellgate only six. It is curious to find, amongst the inhabitants of the Bank at that time, three merchants, three peruke-makers,
two attorneys at law, and two schoolmasters. The most notable names that occur are, John Greene, merchant (now represented by Messrs. John Greene and Sons), William Hawks and Company, ironmongers, anchor-smiths, and founders ;* and Isaac Jopling, marble and freestone cutter, about whom I have something to say in a note two pages further. There were no fewer than fourteen publicans, only one of whom, the host of the ** George," is dignified as " innkeeper.' ' The only signs of that day which still remain are the "Blue BelV^ the " Goat,"

Left click to enlarge
the " Queen's Head,''
and the " Half Moon." In the steep part of Bottle Bank two or three houses which date back to the seventeenth century are still left, but there is no known history attached to them. Over the shop now occupied by Mr. George M. Watson, bookseller, there is an oval panel bearing initials and date, SW E 1722
In 1732 this house was the property of William and Diana Sanders. The
* William Hawks, originally a blacksmith, was the founder of the firm so well known in after times as that of Messrs. Hawks, Crawshay and Sons. He established his business about the year 1764. His son, Robert Shafto Hawks, was knighted at Carlton House, by the prince regent, on the 21st April, 1817, on the occasion of presenting an address from the inhabitants of Gateshead. " R. S. Hawks and Co., woollen drapers. Battle-bank," occur in the Directory for 1787.

 The goat is first connected with Gateshead by Bede, who styles the place Ad Caprae Caput, He is followed by Symcon of Durham. The goat's head reappears on the token of John Bedford, a draper, it is said, of Bottle Bank, who was one of the intruding " four and twenty " of Gateshead appointed by Cromwell's privy council in 1658. The vestry chair at St. Mary's presents the same cognizance in 1666. In 1616 the premises now known as the "Goat Inn" are
described as " a burgage, sometimes called the Bell of the Hoop." In 1627 the sign of the house was " The Spread Eagle," and in 1672 it had acquired its present name. It was formerly a reputable hostelry, and I have before me a tavern bill, issued considerably more than a century ago, by " GEORGE TROTTER, The Goat, in GaUshead^' whereon a woodcut (? by Bewick) of a goat passant^ forms an embellishment between the host's name and that of
his house.
The Glaziers' Arms. initials probably refer to the same William and a prior wife, or possibly to his parents. The adjoining house has been partly rebuilt within living memory, but fortunately, a carved panel from the former front has been replaced in the new one. Two chubby boys are represented supporting a shield, which bears two
grossing irons saltirewise^ between four closing nails^ and in chief a lion passant gardant Only one paw of the lion is left. These are the arms of the fraternity of glaziers, and indicate that a former occu- pant and owner of this property was a member of a ** Community, Fellowship and Company of the arts, mysteries and
occupations of Free-masons, Carvers, Stone-cutters, Sculptors, Brick-makers, Tilers, Bricklayers, Glaziers^ Painter-stain ers. Founders, Nailers, Pewterers- founders. Plumbers, Mill-wrights, Sadlers and Bridlers, Trunk-makers and Distillers of all sorts of strong waters and other liquors within our town and borough of Gateside,*' who were incorporated by bishop Cosin in 167 1.*
Few towns, I imagine, could boast a more comprehensive trade guild.

The house, now numbered 4, High Street, contains a fine oak staircase, with heavy hand-rail and spiral balustres, dating from about the middle of last century.

Opposite the end of Half Moon Lane there is an extremely narrow
thoroughfare, vieing with the old Quayside chares of Newcastle in its limited accommodation for traffic. It is now called Bailey Chare, but it would be more correctly styled Bailiff Chare. The name is a reminiscence of the ancient
* This catalogue of " arts, mysteries, and occupations " has evidently been arranged with a view to a euphonious
termination with '* distillers of all sorts of strong waters and other liquors." It is remarkable that in the first Gateshead
directory (1782), mentioned above, the first name, Andrew Allen, and the last, Robert Woodward, both located "above
Tolbooth," are described as "distillers of waters," and, so far as this town was concerned, had the whole business
to themselves.
Of the same miscellaneous company Robert Trollop, the builder of Capheaton Hall and the Newcastle Exchange, was a member. A singular letter, addressed by Trollop to the bishop's treasurer, formerly existed amongst the archives

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government of the town. The bailiff was an officer appointed by the bishop. He held his courts, at frequent intervals, for the correction of abuses and the punishment of evil-doers. The earliest name in the list of Gateshead bailiifs occurs in 1287, ^^d the latest in 1681. That list includes the names of Gategang, Lumley,Tomlinson, and Riddle. Half Moon Lane — in the days of its ancient narrowness, when it was the covered passage through which pack-horses came and went to and from the bridge of Tyne — was also called Bailiff Chare, for it was regarded as one thoroughfare from the foot of West Street, crossing Bottle Bank, to Oakwellgate. But its name was changed more than once. Miller Chare was one of its designations, and Tomlinson's Chare another, the last conferred by one of the Tomlinsons, William or Anthony, father and son,
the former bailiff of Gateshead in 1529, and the latter in 1575. But these names do not exhaust the list. Mirk Chare and Dark Chare, both appropriate designa- tions, must be added to the number.*

of Gateshead vestry, in which he offers what has all the appearance of a bribe. ** I intreat you/' he says, ** to send me
word whether you can grant the charter as when we wear w*** you ; that is, grocer and bridler and sadler. You know
the grocers overed ten pound to yourselfe, and ten to Mr. Stapleton, and for putting in the trunk-maker you shall have
each of you a very good new trunke."

The following list of the incorporated companies of Gateshead, and of the charters granted to them, may help some future inquirer in this neglected branch of local history :

I. Barkers and Tanners. Charter (i) granted by bishop Tunstall, 20th June, 1559.
II. Weavers. Charter (2) granted by bishop Barnes, 13th January, 1584.
III. Dyers, Fullers, Blacksmiths, Locksmiths, Cutlers, and Joiners or Carpenters. Charter (3)
granted by bishop Matthew, 2 1st August, 1595. New charter (4) granted by bishop Cosin,
20th July, 1 67 1.
IV. Drapers, Tailors, Mercers, Hardwaremen, Coopers and Chandlers, Charter (5) granted by
bishop Matthew in 1595. New charter (6) granted by Cromwell, 7th June, 1658. New charter
(7) granted by bishop Cosin, i6th September, 1661.
V. CORDWAINERS. Charter (8) granted by bishop Matthew, 1602.
VI. Frbe-masons, etc. Charter (9) granted by bishop Cosin, 24th April, 1671.
VII. Grocers, Apothecaries and Pipe-makers. Charter (10) granted by bishop Crewe in 1676.
The charters numbered i, 2, 3, 4 and 6, in the above list, are preserved amongst the records of the borough-
holders of Gateshead. 9 is in the possession of the Gateshead Corporation. Of 7 there is an office copy in the library
of the Society of Antiquaries of Newcastle. 5, 8 and 10 I have never seen.

The glazier of Bottle Bank, whose pride in the armorial bearings of his craft is still evident, may be fairly held responsible for my introduction of the following extract from " Jacob Bee, His Booke " : —

" 1683.
" Sep. 15. There was a man, a Glasier by traid, came from Gateshead, that stood in the Pillery In Durham
about one hour and one half, his name was Simpson, for taking a brib from one a Quaker."

• Mr. Clephan gives an amusing account of the way in which Half Moon Lane acquired its present designation.
"At the head of Bottle Bank, between the premises of Isaac Jopling • • ♦ and one of the three Half Moons of Gateshead, ran westward a covered passageway [the Bailey Chare, to wit]. • • • Xhe day came when the
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West Street, to which Bailiff Chare gave access, retains no evidences of antiquity. Yet it is the only part of Gateshead which can be definitely associated with Roman occupation. An early deed describes it as " the Angtport^ called ' ^ Mirke Lane.*' "Its category of names in modern times," writes Mr. Longstaffe,
"is very amusing. We have it as *Angiport,' *the way which leads from CoUyer- chare (its northern portion) to Durham,' *the High Street/ 4he King's way behind the gardens,' *the Durham way,' * Mirk Chare,' *Mirk Lane,' * Dark Lane,' * Dark Chare,' 'Back Loaning,' 'Laing's Loaning,' * Holchare,' and now by the rather modern and unromantic name of *West Street.'" Surtees,
writing about 1818, says, "the Back Lane, or Mirk Lane, has recently received considerable improvement, and from its airy situation and prospect over the vale of Tyne^ bids fair perhaps to become the residence of the principal inhabitants."

We must now return to High Street, and proceed slowly southwards. But before we leave the end of Bailey Chare we must remember that here stood narrow pack-horse outlet from the town-street to the ' king's way ' must be widened, and become a lane for wheeled vehicles ; ♦ ♦ * and before the close of the [eighteenth] century the alley that divided the mason's yard from
the Half Moon was broadened into an uncovered lane. Mr. Jopling then proposed to himself, in the spirit of the old adage, to have the amended thoroughfare at his door named Marble Street ; but, not keeping his own counsel, before he had reared his sculptured slab, Mr. Birch, the landlord, [an ex-comedian, by the way, who had succeeded to the Half Moon by marrying the previous innkeeper's daughter,] stole a march upon him. To the surprise of the master-mason, he saw in the early morning the apparition of ' Half Moon Lane ' on the wall of the inn. Much disconcerted, he stuck
up his inscription nevertheless. But the public went with the innkeeper ; the ' Half Moon Lane ' passed into common speech ; and the controversy was forgotten — forgotten until 1847 ; in which year further buildings were removed, to make the widened way still wider. The long-hidden tablet, which had been covered by a tradesman's sign, then came unexpectedly to light, and the old standards had to interpret its meaning to a new generation."

But Isaac Jopling deserves to be remembered for other reasons than his attempt to perpetuate the memory of his trade in a street name. In 1810 he was the recipient of the gold medal of the Society of Arts, "for searching out and working quarries of British marble."

May 29 1810. — The Society of Arts presented a gold medal to the late Mr. Isaac Jopling, senior, of Gateshead, for penetrating into the remotest corners of the North Highlands, discovering variety of marbles, working the quarries, and bringing (at great labour and expense) the produce of these almost inaccessible regions into use. The above wood cut by the late Mr. Thomas Bewick, represents correctly the obverse and reverse of this beautiful medal, which weighs loz. lOdwts. and lOgrs. For an interesting account of the difficulties which Mr. Jopling had to encounter, whilst working the quarries in Sutherlandshire, see the " Transactions of the Society of Arts, 8fC." for 1810, vol. xxviii. p. 59. The marble works in Gateshead, are still carried on by Mrs. Isaac Jopling, junior, to whose kindness I am indebted for the loan of the above wood cut. (From John Sykes book, digitized by Google)

These quarries were in Sutherlandshire. Jopling's story of the difficulties he encountered and the hardships he endured, in the course of his enterprises, is almost romantic. " I spent," he says, "seven summers and two winters in Assynt, a parish situated in the north-west comer of Sutherlandshire, not less than fifty miles from a market town, where there had never been a road, a cart, or a smith who could shoe a horse ; during which time I opened many quarries of marble, and made, at least, fourteen miles of road, through heretofore impassible mosses, bogs and rocks, to the sea. The difficulties and disadvantages I have laboured under were innumerable ; meat, coals, iron, and every article were to fetch from such a great distance ; and the people, torpid with idleness, • ♦ *
would do nothing for me without an exorbitant price, and never till it suited their own convenience ; and from* having no markeU, and not being in the habit of selling, they could never be persuaded to part with any article at less than nearly double its worth. ♦ • • From bad houses and a wet climate, I was seldom dry, day or night, except in fine weather, of which there is but little. ♦ * * To this account of expense, hardship and loss, I might add a little of vexation in having my tools broken, and frequently thrown into bogs, corn sown in my road ; my oxen hunted before my face, for miles, with their dogs, and my grass eaten by their cattle for whole summers together."

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formerly one of the pants of Gateshead. "The pant at Bailyees chaire'* is
mentioned in the parish accounts for 1642. Till about the year 1632 this was
the only pant in the town, but after a second one had been constructed it was
usually described as "the low pant'* or "the lower pant.** Mr. Clephan has
recorded the reminiscences of his "seniors/* who, in "the days of their youth,**
remembered " a flaming forge ** at Bailey Chare end ; " and in front of the
smithy rose up a huge wooden pump, flinging its long arm over the public
street, by the side of the foot-road.***

A few yards above Bailiff" Chare we have a modem building, now the
drapery establishment of Messrs. Hedley and Co., which occupies the site of an
interesting old mansion. This was the house of the Coles, a family who, as
Surtees puts it, "became gentry in spite of Garter and Norroy, per saltum^ and
rose in three generations from the smithy to the baronetage.** The grounds
and gardens extended back to Oakwellgate. Part of the house, fronting the
High Street, remained till 1865. There is a rude but picturesque engraving of
it in Richardson*s "Table Book'* (iv., 300), and Mr. Longstaffe is the fortunate
possessor of two beautiful iron hinges from the house, which, he says, "always
remind him of old James Cole,** the founder of the fortunes of the family.
Surtees tells us that, in his day, "the mansion had long been converted to
purposes of trade ; but ♦ ♦ ♦ one principal room, an upper chamber, lately
remained panelled with dark oak, with a mantel-piece ornamented with carvings
of scripture history, and supported by terms, with a profusion of flowers and

* The following items, all relating to the low pant, are from the parish accounts :
* 1637. Paid Tho: Saikeld for dighting the pant, is. 6d.

Paid for shouleing the rubbish togeather att the pannt, 4s.
1 63 1. Paid for taking up the pant head and laying it downe, 5s. lod.

Paid for sowdering the pant pipes and laying the flags, 6s.
1633. Payd Michell Sharpar and his laborar for worke dune to y* cundith of y^ lower pant, as. 6d.

1652. Paied for car3ring away the rubage w^ had lyen 4 yeares at the lowe pant and was verie much

noysome to people and troublesome to all that passed by, £%. los.
Paid the masons for mending the channell at the White Hart doore, before the lowe pant, 2s. 6d.

1653. Paid Tho: Gaille for a hang lock for the low pant heade, is.

f The pedigree of the Coles of Gateshead, begins with James Cole, a blacksmith, who died in the spring of
I $83. By will he left los. " to the por mane*s boxe of this parishe," and 20s., ** to gev unto the pore in the towne, as my


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A little beyond Half Moon Lane, on the west side of the street, we find
one of the very few picturesque old buildings of Gateshead which are still left.
It dates back to about the middle of the seventeenth century, and is now
occupied as a confectionary establishment by Mr. Edward Liddell. Its chief
features are the square projecting bays of the first floor, windowed on all three
sides, and the dormers above them.

Beyond the railway arch — after passing on our left an old tavern, now, and

wyf do se occasion." To one of his sons he bequeaths " my quarter of my quarell [quarry], with the worcking ger to
yt." ** To Edwoord Howetson, my sister sone, my bellyes, and stedye hamers, tooynges, and nayll-toylves, and all my
shoinge gear."

James Cole had four sons, Ralph, Richard, Thomas, and Nicholas. The eldest, Ralph, died in 1586,
bequeathing to his brother Richard his moiety of " the good shipp Robert Bonaventure, which is now departed, upon
her voyage, into thfi realme of France." He leaves to his brother Nicholas his house in Pilgrim Street, Newcastle, then
in the occupation of Marcus Antonio, an Italian, and to his brother Thomas his house in Gateshead.

Thomas, the third son, in 161 7, surrendered Scotteshouse and Gilbertleeze in the parish of Boldon to the use of
his nephew, Ralph Cole. From the Coles these properties passed to the Milbankes. The same Thomas died in 1620,
seized of Pallice Place in Gateshead, the site of which I notice below in my account of Oakwellgate. He was worth, at
the time of his death, according to Sir Cuthbert Sharpe, " an immense sum in bills, bonds and mortgages."

Nicholas, the fourth son, with others, had a bill in chancery filed against him in 1617, for an alleged encroach-
ment on the common, called "The Lay," at Durham. He and his brother Thomas were included amongst the
disclaimers at St. George's visitation in 1615.

We now come to the third generation. Nicholas Cole had a son Ralph, who became a merchant, and was sheriflT
of Newcastle in 162$ and mayor in 1633. He is described by the three Norwich travellers who visited the north in
1634, as " fat and rich, vested in a sack of sattin." " He was," says Sharpe, " a gallant and persecuted loyalist, who,
when the town [of Newcastle] was taken by storm lost his plate to the value of ;^8cx), and was obliged to pay general
Lesley, earl of Leven, jC^oo for compensation for his life, and freedom of his person from imprisonment." *' In 1642,"
says Mr. J. Edwin-Cole, " the parliament ordered that he should be sent for as a delinquent, and in 1644 he was seized
by the parliamentary commissioners sitting at Newcastle, disabled from being alderman, and coounitted for safe custody
to London House, his son, Mr. James Cole, being at the same time committed to the Compter in Southwark. In 1646,
a fine of ;^4,ooo was accepted for his delinquency." But in 1648 he was ordered to pay ;^i,5oo more as part of his fine
for his composition for the relief of Newcastle. In 1630 he bought the estate of Kepier Hospital from the Heaths, and
in 1636 he purchased the castle and manor of Brancepeth, which he settled on his son Nicholas. A letter from the
curate of Brancepeth to Cosin, the rector, dated 20 April, 1638, says "we like well our new lord, Mr. Cole, for his
liberalitie to the poore. He sent at Christmas 20s. for them, and other 20s. at Easter : and yesterday (the Court being
at Branspeth) he gave me los. to be distributed among them." He died in November, 1655, and was buried at
Gateshead. By will he bequeathed a rent charge of 40s, a year to the poor of Gateshead, and in 1657 the parish paid
£1 I2S. 6d. for "an eschuchinon for Ralph Cole, Esq', deseased, haning upon a pillor of the church."

Ralph Cole had three sons, Nicholas, James, and Thomas. Nicholas was sherifiP of Newcastle in 1640 and 1641.
He was created a baronet on 4th March, 1640. He compounded for his estate for /314 los. He married, at Gateshead,
on 28th September, 1626, Mary the second daughter of Sir Thomas Liddell, of Ravensworth. In 1656 he joined with
his father in conveying Palace Place to John Willobie. In 1665 Sir John Marley writes that Sir Nicholas Cole " never
comes to the town [Newcastle] except to make disturbance." In the household books of bishop Cosin, under date 6th
May, 1666, we read, " Given to Sir Nich. Cole's mayd that brought cruds and creame to my lord, is.'* He died in
December, 1669, and was buried at St. Giles's, Durham. The bishop speaks of him as "a very honest gentleman and
a very good neighbour."

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for the last eighty years, known as the *' Dun Cow/' but, prior to that, styled the
" Red Cow" — we reach the well-known Powell's Alms House, an institution of
which Gateshead has every reason to be proud. Thomas Powell, of Newcastle,
"gentleman," by will dated i6th July, 1728, made the following benevolent

bequest :

" I give all and singular my messuages, bonds, mortgages, notes, debts, &c., after my
debts and funeral charges are paid, towards erecting and building an almshouse for poor

James Cole, Ralph's son, was sheriff of Newcastle in
1644. He was for many years one of the " four and twenty " of
Gateshead, and an influential burgess. In 1657 he was one of
the churchwardens, and signed the documents which complain of
the intruding parson. Weld. His youngest daughter, Elizabeth,
was married to Sir John Jefferson, solicitor general to the bishop
of Durham, and recorder of Durham. By will, dated 29th August,
1660, he gave 4O8. a year to the poor of the parish of Gateshead in
augmentation *of the like sum bequeathed by his father. The two
bequests were charged on the same properties, one of which is
described as " the little house in the Murke Chare." The whole
income, however, was often not sufficient to pay the rent charge,
and in 1667 the churchwardens record the receipt of 7s. "for
three-quarters* rent of Mrs. Cole's old Rotten Cottages." By will
James Cole also bequeathed a silver communion cup and cover to
St. Mary's, Gateshead, both of which are engraved with the arms of
Cole. The cup also bears the following inscription :

9hefree gift of ^ames "^ Goh to S* Marijds Shurch
in the parish ^ of Sotshead.

We now return to the descendants of Sir Nicholas Cole. Ralph, the eldest son, succeeded to the baronetcy on
his father's death. He represented the city of Durham in Parliament in 1675-6 and 1678. In 1685 he commanded the
Durham regiment of militia. ** He was taught to paint by Vandyke," szys Sharpe, " and is said to have retained
Italian painters in his service to the injury of his fortune." In the diary of Thomas Kirk, of Cookridge, under date i6th
May, 1677, he is described as " a very fine gentleman," who " has furnished his house with excellent good pictures and
paintings, of his own hands' working, and has made his orchards and gardens answerable to it." He painted a half-
length portrait of Thomas Windham, whose daughter Margaret was his first wife. His second wife was Catherine, the
daughter of Sir Henry Foulis of Ingleby in Cleveland. By his patronage of the fine arts and by his lavish hospitality
Cole so impoverished himself that he was obliged to sell Brancepeth. This he did to Sir Henry Bellassys in 1701 for
the sum of ;^i6,8oo, reserving to himself a rent charge of £$00 a year, the privilege of remaining in the castle during
his life, and after his death an annuity of ;^200 to his widow. He had disposed of the manor and part of the estate of
Kepier in 1674. He died in August, 1704, and was buried in the "lady porch " at Brancepeth. His portrait, painted
by Lely, has been engraved.

Sir Ralph had at least three sons. Nicholas, the eldest, was mayor of Newcastle in 1686. He married Elizabeth,
daughter of Sir Mark Milbanke of Dalden and Halnaby. He never succeeded to the baronetcy, but died in July, 1701,
before his father, and was buried at Brancepeth.

His eldest son, also named Nicholas, succeeded his grandfather as third baronet. He was twice married, but
died, early in 171 1, without issue, and was succeeded by his brother. Sir Mark, the last baronet, a bachelor, who died in
1720, "in landless poverty," and was buried in St. Margaret's churchyard, Durham, at the expense of his cousin. Sir
Mark Milbanke.

Communion Cup and Cover, St. Mary's.

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men and women in the parish of Gateshead, in the county of Durham, and to be built
in the street that leads from Newcastle to Durham, between the Goat at the top of the.,
steep hill, and the Tolbooth or Papist Chapel, and to purchase a piece of ground there, of
free land, and to be for the use of the poor of Gateshead for ever, the parish keeping it
in repair after first built ; and I do appoint Mr. John Maddison, hoastman, Mr. Charles
Jordan, mercer, Mr. George Surtees, grocer, of Gateshead, and Mr. William Stephenson,
to be trustees of this my will and testament."

The testator's wishes were carried out. In 1730 the premises were purchased
by three of the trustees named (see page 34 above), and the Alms House was
immediately built. A large stone slab on its front is adorned with what are
evidently intended as Powell's armorial bearings, a lion rampant^ crest, a demi-
lion rampant, and beneath these the inscription which I print in the margin.

In a few years the trustees had all de-
parted to their rest ; Stephenson, the
last survivor, dying in 1745. Then
came the defeat of the testator's inten-
tions. In 1750 Stephenson's devisees —
his wife and granddaughter — conveyed
the premises to the churchwardens and
overseers of Gateshead, to be used
thenceforth as the parish poor-house,
" for the lodging, keeping, maintaining,
and employing the poor of the said
parish, who shall and may hereafter
desire to receive relief or collection
from the said parish." The misappro-

This Alms Houfe was

Built at the Charge of

Mr. Thomas Powell late

of Newcaftle who by his
laft Will and Teftament did

leave and beqeath all his
Eftate Real and Perfonal

towards the Purchafing

and Building the faid
Houfe and appointed
Charles Jurdon
George Surtees
Wm. Stephenson


priation, thus initiated, continued till
comparatively a recent date. But in 1829, the Charity Commissioners, recog-
nizing that " the occupation of these premises as a parish workhouse diflfers
materially from what Mr. Powell contemplated,'' suggested the payment to the
churchwardens of ;^io a year out of the poor rate, as a rent for the Alms House,
and the employment of that amount in augmentation of the charity funds of the

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parish. In 1840, the Gateshead guardians of the poor proposed to sell the
building and apply the proceeds towards the cost of the Union Lane Work-
house. This intention was fortunately defeated, but it was not till some years
afterwards that the property " -^^

was restored in any measure
to the purpose for which it
was built

Opposite the end of
Swinburne Street, ** standing
like an island in the middle
of the High Street,*' says
Mr. Clephan, was the Toll
Booth. Its name indicates
its original use ; but, from
time to time, it served other
purposes. It is mentioned, as
early as 1577, as the southern
limit of the Gateshead mar-
ket. " Paid to 4 prisoners in
the Tolbooth, 2s. 4d.,'' occurs
in the parish accounts for
1637. One, at least, of the
incorporated companies for ^^^ "^"^"^' "'^» ^^^""^•

Gateshead held its meetings in it during the latter half of the seventeenth
century. It was rebuilt during the episcopacy of bishop Crewe (i 674-1 721),
whose arms were placed over the entrance. In 1700 a school was taught in
it, though it was used both before and after that time as the town gaol, and from
its walls a prisoner eflfected his escape in 1 77 1 . It was taken down, and a new
prison, known as "the Kitty,'' was erected at the head of the Church Stairs.*

* Id 1649 Gateshead was infected by the mania against witches, a mania which, as the reader of Ralph Gardner's
** England's Grievance" knows, had assumed ghastly and disgraceful proportions across the Tyne. The Toll Booth

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Proceeding qn our way, we soon find ourselves opposite a block of old
houses, which are interesting as indicating the general appearance of the
buildings which fronted High Street at the beginning of the present century.
They retain, too, the flagged platforms, raised above the ordinary footpath,
locally designated quays, and which, within living memory, stood out before
most of the houses in this street. They have now been nearly all removed,
or covered by projecting shops.

Passing on, we find nothing further to detain us till we reach the chapel of
St. Edmund, Bishop and Confessor, now known as Trinity Church, which I
reserve as one of the subjects of a later chapter. But the stone gateway which
stands, almost meaninglessly, close to its north wall, must be noticed here.
This gateway, as is shown in a beautiful engraving in Surtees, formerly stood
by the foot*path side. It was the entrance to the grounds of Gateshead House,
a mansion built by William Riddell, in the later years of Elizabeth *s reigo;
on part of the estate of the dissolved hospital of St. Edmund, Bishop and
Confessor. He had acquired the estate by marrying Anne, the daughter and
heir of William Lawson, of Newcastle, to whose family the hospital lands
were granted at the dissolution. He was sheriff of Newcastle in 1575, and
mayor in 1582, 1590, and 1595. He died in August, 1600, and was succeeded
by his son, Thomas Riddell, who also attained civic dignities in Newcastle,
being sheriff" in 1601 and mayor in 1604 and 16 16. In the latter year he was
knighted. He represented Newcastle in the parliaments of 1620 and 1628.
He occupied Gateshead House from the time of his father's death till his own
death in 1652. He was the wealthiest and most influential of the burgesses of
Gateshead, and from 1627 to 1649 his name heads the lists of the ^*four and
twenty.*' The usual style of the parish resolutions is, **It is this day concluded

became the receptacle of suspected persons. The following entries in the parish accounts for the year just named tell

their own sad story :

Paid out for goeing to the justices about the witches, 4s.

Paid the constables for carying the witches to jaole, 4s.

Given them in the Tolebooth and carying the witches to Durham, 4s.

Paid for a grave for a witch, 6d.

Paid for trying the witches, £i, 5s.

Paid at M'** Watson's when the justices sate to examin the witches, 3s. 4d.

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'^hd agreed upon, By the Right Wor^" S' Thomas Riddell, Knight, M^ Ralph
Cole, the abovesaid Churchwardens, and others of the $aid Vestry and foure
and Twenty," etc. RiddelFs wife was Elizabeth, daughter of Sir John Conyers
.of Sockbum, and although Riddell himself conformed to the religion of the
times, she remained true to the faith of her ancestors. He, however, was a
royalist, and, on the outbreak of the civil wars, his son. Sir Thomas, of Fenham,
jbecame the colonel of a regiment of foot in the king's service, and was after-
wards made governor of Tynemouth Castle. After the battle of Newbum, and
whilst the Scotch army was in and about Newcastle and Gateshead, Sir Thomas,
the elder, appears to have fared badly at their hands ; all the worge, no doubt,
on account of his royalist sympathies. The injuries his estate sustained were
so grievous that we find him addressing a petition to the king, in which he setfe

forth,. ,\ ...... :,

^*That your Petitioner being an Inhabitant in Gateside near Newcastle upon Tine,
tbe Scots Army now of late since their coming thither, have taken and disposed of all
your Petitioner's Corn, as well that in his Garners, being a great quantity, as also his
Corn on the ground ; and have spoiled and consumed all his Hay, both of last year and
this year's growth, have taken and do keep possession of his two Milnes of great value,
have spent his Grass, and spoiled many Acres of his ground by making their Trenches in
it; have wasted and disposed of his Coals already wrought; have spoiled and broken his
Engines, and utterly drowned and destroyed the best part of his Coal Mines; have
banished his Servants and Overseer of his Lands and Coal- Works; have plundered divers
houses of your Petitioner's Tenants and Servants, and taken and spoiled their Goods, so
that they are not able to pay your Petitioner any Rents, nor do him any services. By all
which, your Petitioner is already damnified 1500/. And for all which premises the said
Scots have not given any satisfaction to your Petitioner nor his Tenants; whereby your
Petitioner and his Posterity are like to be ruinated and undone (most of your Petitioner's
Estate consisting in the said Coalyerie) unless some present course be taken for your
Petitioner's relief."*

The last of the Riddells who occupied Gateshead House was William
Riddell, the great-grandson of Sir Thomas, and who died in 171 1. The estate
then passed into the hands of the Claverings of Calaley. They, like the

* Riddell's complaint is not our only source of information as to the doings of the Scots in Gateshead during the
civil wars. In Lithgow's " Experimentall and Exact Relation upon that famous and renowned 3iege of Newcastle/'
we have a circumstantial narrative. After mentioning lord Calendar's successful sieges of Hartlepool and Stockton, he
proceeds, " Whence returning to the residue of his armye, lying at

Lumleye, he set forward to Osworth. From which
place my Lord Calendar, sending some horse and foote to clear the way for the Gatesyde, they were rancountred with

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Radcliflfes, the Widdringtons, and the Shaftoes, all families with whom the
Riddells intermarried, espoused the cause of the old Pretender. Perhaps the
most singular of the many remarkable events in his rebellion was the capture
of Holy Island Castle, on his behalf, by the two Erringtons, Lancelot and Mark.
They were able, however, to hold that fortress for only a very short time, and,
on abandoning it, were captured and confined in Berwick gaol. Thence they
effected their escape, and, after spending nine days concealed in a pea-stack at
Bamborough, made their way to Gateshead House, where they were secreted
for a time. At length they succeeded in getting out of the country in a vessel
which sailed from Sunderland to France.

the enemye, at the tope of the wynd mill hill, where being prevented by night, and the enemye stronger than they, they
were constrained to turne back. Whereupon the next day the Lieutennant Generall himselfe, came up with the residue
of his armye, and fiercelie facing the enemye, beat them from the hill, chased them downe the Gatesyde, and hushing
them along the bridge, closed them within the towne. Hereupon he forthwith commanded the Gatesyde, and then the
next day he begunne to dispute for the enjoying of the bridge, with the fierie service of, Cannon and Musket, which
indeed was manfully invaded, and as couragiously defended. Yet at last, in despight of the enemy he gained the better
halfe of the Bridge, and with much adoe fortified the same with earthen Rampiers, and Artilerie, which still so
defensively continued, untill the Towne was taken in by Storme. This being regardfully done, he caused to erect five
Batteries, along the Bankhead, and just opposite to the Town, from whence the Cannon did continually extreame good
service, not onely against the walls and batteries, but also against particular places, and particular persons : Besides the
frequent shooting of Pot-pieces, and other fireworkes of great importance, which daily annoyed the Inhabitants within
Towne. * ♦ ♦ Xhe chief Cannoneirs, that were upon his five batteryes in the Gatesyde, were William Hunter
Captain of the trayne of Artillerie, lames Scot, Robert Spense, and William Wallace, men of singular skill, and many
more, which I purposely (to avoyd prolixitie) omit."

The foregoing narrative may be fitly supplemented by the following extracts from the parish accounts :

1640-41. Feb. 17. Paid for drawing the bill concerneing the Townes damages thrice over, sustained by
the scotts, IS. 6d.

1641. June 4. More paid to Tho: Potts of the moneys I [the accounting churchwarden] carryed from

hence to Hull at the scotts comeing here, £^ 15s. 4|d.

1643. April 7. Paid to Tho: Arrowsmith and John Scott and Richard Thompson for goeing to

Durham about Souldiours comeing to have a fre quarter in the Towne, 14s.
April 28. Rec. of Collonnell Clavering for wine that his solgers Received att the communyon, 148.
1643-4. Feb. 29. Paid fTor 2 horse lod of Colls when the solgers was att the church, 8d.

1644. June 8. Paid to George Browne for helping with the herdman to. keepe the kine on the Towne*

more (two weekes night and day) because the tyme troblesom by reson of the army, 7s. 7s.
Paide to Christopher Stout for his third quarters wages which should have beane at Martinmas
last past nothing, because ther was nothing done to the water race by reason of the army,
£0, OS. od.

1645. Paid to the scotts to redeame the great new gate, which they had taken away and carried to their

leagers w^ gate did hang at the entring into the Towne feilds, is. 2d.

1646. Paid to men for assisting us to drive the fTell ; and watching the beastes when they were pinded ;

(But James Towers of Newcastle procureing assistance of the Scotts came violently and
tooke them away by force) his beastes being in nomber 79 ; Also ther was at that tyme 90
of another mans, 9s. 3d.

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The history of Gateshead House came to a final period during the rebel-
lion of the young Pretender. The battle of Falkirk had carried alarm into the
very court, and the duke of Cumberland was dispatched northwards at the
head of an army. On his way he passed through Gateshead and Newcastle.
On the evening of the 27th January, 1746, the news of his approach reached
these towns, and thousands of the inhabitants crowded to the road along which
it was known he would pass. He reached Gateshead about one o'clock on the
morning of the 28th. When it was announced that the duke was coming, a
number of people, standing before Gateshead House, attempted to climb on the
garden wall in order to see him the better. The family was away, and the house
and grounds had been left in the charge of the gardener, a man named Woodness.
He, to defend his master's property, let the dogs loose, and a number of persons,
amongst whom were several keelmen, were bitten. The mob at once became
incensed, and sought the gardener in every direction. Had he been found, it
is almost certain that his life would have been sacrificed. Fortunately he suc-
ceeded in getting away. But the people were determined on revenge. They
considered themselves good Protestants. The duke, whom they had come out
to welcome, was going north in defence of the Hanoverian succession and the
Protestant cause, and the Claverings of Gateshead House were well known to
be staunch Roman Catholics. Besides, there was a popish chapel within the
walls of the mansion. The deliberations of the crowd were brief, and their
action decisive. So rapid, indeed, were their doings that when the duke actually
passed down High Street, the old house was one gigantic blaze. It was never
afterwards tenanted. Surtees describes it as exhibiting " the ruins of a building
in the high style of Elizabeth or James, with large bay windows, divided by
stone mullions and transoms,'* and adds, " a heavy stone gateway faces to the
street." The gateway is now all that is left. The memory of the site and of its
former occupants is preserved in the names of Riddell and Clavering Streets.

In front of the chapel of St. Edmund, Bishop and Confessor^ stood formerly
a stone cross. It is mentioned in an inquisition held in 1430 as **a certain cross
standing in the King's highway at the head of the town of Gateshead" (ad caput

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villae de Gateshed). It is again mentioned in a survey of the boundaries ot
Gateshead Fell, taken in 1647, as " a blew stone near S' Thomas Riddell, Knt.
his house, which is fixed in the ground or earth near to the high street leading
to the Southwards, close by the East side of the causway." Its base remained
ih 1 783, and is shown in Grose's engraving of St. Edmund's Chapel. It marked
the site known in former times as Gateshead-Head. In the year 1594, it was
the scene of a mart)rrdom. The martyr was John Ingram, ** a seminary priest."
Ingram was a member of an ancient Warwickshire family, though he is believed
to have been bom, about 1565, at Stoke Edith in Herefordshire. His parents
were Protestants, and he was sent to Oxford, and admitted into New College.
He, however, became a convert to the Church of Rome, and was ejected from
college for recusancy. He then, at the age of about seventeen, went to Douay,
from thence to the English college at Rheims, next to the Jesuits' college at
Pont-^-Mousson, and lastly to the English college at Rome. In 1591 he started
on a mission to Scotland. He found great diflBculty, on account of the vigilance
of the English government, in securing a passage to Britain, but ultimately
sailed from Dunkirk in a ship of war and landed on the Scottish coast. On
some urgent occasion he crossed the border, and though, as he afterwards
declared, he spent only ten hours in England, on his return, as he " entered
into a boat, to pass over the river Tweed into Scotland," he "was stayed by
the keepers of Norham Castle, apprehended and carried to Berwick, there
being kept under the safe custody of Mr. John Carew, governor of the town,
and used very courteously until such time as the Lord President caused him to
be brought from thence to York, where he was kept very close [for two months]
in the Manor, and very hardly used, and in the end, a little before Easter, was
sent also to London, there being also very straitly examined, hardly used, and
put also to the torture, wherein (as appeareth by his own writing) he confessed
nothing to the hurt of either man, woman, or child, or any place he had fre-
quented ; insomuch that Topcliflfe said he was a monster of all other for his
exceeding taciturnity." Another account mentions that, at London, **he was
often put to the rack, and another torture as ill, termed by some * Younge's

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Fiddle.' '' From London, on the 13th July, 1594, about seven months after his
apprehension, he was sent back to York, where he was committed to the Ouse-
bridge, and " kept there close prisoner in a low, stinking vault, locked in a
jakes-house, the space of four days, without either bed to lie on or stool to sit on."
From York he was carried to Newcastle, pinioned with a cord, and imprisoned
in the Newgate gaol. Thence he was sent to Durham for trial at the assizes,
held on the 22nd, 23rd, and 24th July. He was condemned to death. On the
26th he was conveyed in a cart out of the city of Durham, and then placed on
horseback. At Chester-le-Street his horse was changed. He rode between
the under-sheriflf of the county and the aldermen of Durham. About three
o'clock in the afternoon the cavalcade arrived at the Gateshead Toll Booth.
Ingram was then laid in a cart, and drawn to the place of execution, which,
Challoner states, was "at Gateshead-head." He was allowed to hang till he
was dead, and was then disembowelled and quartered. His quarters were sent
to Newcastle, and his head was set up on Tyne Bridge.*

At Gateshead-Head was the famed " Chill- well." At an inquisition held at
Tynemouth " on the morrow after Easter," in the year 1279, the jurors declared
that ** the king of Scotland, the archbishop of York, the prior of Tynemouth,
the bishop of Durham, and Gilbert de Umfraville, or their bailiflfs, at the
coming of the justices to all pleadings at Newcastle, ought to meet the said
justices at the head of the town of Gateshead (ad caput villae de Gatesheved),
at a certain well which is called * Chill,' and to claim from them their liberties,

* In the municipal accounts of Newcastle, under date August, 1594, are the following ghastly items which relate
to Ingram :

Paide for Jo. Engram, a semynarie, 4 nyghtes, 4d. His beddinge, 8d., lyinge in Newgate till he was tried
uppon. II watchmen 2 nyghtes, the 21 and 32 of Julii,4d. a pees, 7s. 4d. For 7 days after 4 watch-
men a nyght comes to los. 8d. [This last item would be for watching the quarters, after the execution.]
For 4 menn more in the nyghte, 2s. 8d. For 8 bow strings, 8d.
Paide for chairges att the execution of the semynarie prieste in Gatesyde, John Engram, 2s. 6d,
Paide for bringinge his quarters of the gibettes, iSd., and for a panyer which broughte his quarters to the
towne, 4d.
I am sure I shall be blamed by no one for speaking of Ingram as a martyr. Whatever our faith may be we
certainly unite in deploring the malevolent bigotry which consigned a human being to torture and death on account of
his creed. And, on the other hand, we cannot but reverence the heroism of one who braved the rack and the scaffold
rather than violate his conscience. Our reverence is the same whether the martj^r held to our faith or to the faith most
diverse from ours.

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if they come from the parts of Yorkshire/' If they came from Cumberland,
they were to be met at Fourstones, ** or elsewhere, at their entrance into the

A few yards further we come to the foot of Jackson Street, formerly
known as Jackson Chare, and at a still earlier period as Collier Chare ; although
we have Mr. Longstaflfe's authority for saying that the latter name was at one
time ascribed to the north part of West Street. We have now reached the sites
of the ** upper pant '* and the pinfold. Here we must bring our survey of the
High Street to a close. The road beyond is an attractive one to an antiquary
who knows its history and traditions. Almost every step suggests an interesting
association. There is the now almost forgotten Busy Burn, where, in 1646, a
" poore man,*' who had died of the plague, was buried by the parish at an ex-
pense of IS. A little further is Potticar Lane, which I have seen described in a
deed of 1650 as " Apothecary's Lonnin, alias Cut-throat Lonnin." Beyond this
is Camer Dykes (not Cramer^ as now erroneously spelled), of which William
Gategang died seized in 1430, and where, in 1441, GeoflEry Middleton, then
sheriflf of Durham, had licence from the bishop to obtain ** sea-coal ** during a
period of ten years. Next, a little on the left, is Deckham Hall, a deserted
modem house, which occupies the site of an old mansion built by Thomas
Dackham, who died in 161 5, and who, in a petition to the bishop of Durham,
praying for the return of an overcharge of rent, says, ** I have sent you, in
remembrance of my duetye, two hoUands cheeses by this bearrer.'* Close by
are Carr's Hill, with its old stone-roofed houses, and Warburton Place, where
a pottery was established far into last century. Beyond this point the road
stretches across Gateshead Fell, once the central resort of all the muggers^ faws^
and itinerant tinkers of the counties of Durham and Northumberland. Surtees
describes it as " formerly a wide, spongy, dark moor." An act was passed for
its enclosure in 1809, and three years afterwards it was divided and allotted.
About two miles from Tyne Bridge is the village of Sheriflf Hill, where for
centuries the justices of assize, coming northwards, were met by the sheriflfs of
Northumberland. Hence its name. The " Cannon" ale-house was " the place

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niotolidMllnpiMdklViatfJby JaiMaAWxMn.6,Q«»*a Squarv.WC

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of meeting/' where the sheriflf and his retinue, numerous and splendidly
mounted and attired, refreshed themselves till the judges arrived. Almost
opposite is the Sheriflf Hill Pottery, where earthenware has been made for
more than a century, though for how much longer I cannot say. About half a
mile further, and a little to the east of the road, is the Beacon Hill, the highest
point in the parish, 557 feet above sea level: Thereon, in times of danger and
alarm, the beacon fires were lit. In 1645 the parish paid i8s. ** for a new pann
and crouke to the Beacon."