VCH Explore

Explore England's Past


The remains of the old north pier jut out into the harbour between the river mouth and the much newer Roker pier.

The first Wearmouth Bridge is a Sunderland icon, commonly used to illustrate local pottery.

Well-preserved remains of limekilns on the north bank of the Wear, near the Stadium of Light.

The coal reserves nearest to the coast could not be reached before deep-mine technologies were developed early in the 19th century.

The coal trade was at the centre of Sunderland's economy throughout the 18th and 19th century.

Very many of Sunderland's male population were freemasons in the late 18th century.

From directories and other sources comes evidence of trades and occupations in the port and surrounding area before 1800.

Dixon (or Dixon's, or Dickson's) Square is a reminder of an older Monkwearmouth.

Our Newcastle-based volunteers are scouring regional newspapers for references to life in Sunderland.


Bishopwearmouth Panns was a tiny township of six acres, most of it reclaimed from the river before 1600.