Events 1892


1 January

The Brigade was mentioned in the annual pantomime.

Robin: When duty calls our Lifeboat men are found;
Our Life Brigade in storm will stand their ground
Through surf to ship, as did brave coastguard Hoar.
Deeds such as these, fill all our hearts with pride.
And bring renown to Shields and all Tyneside.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 1 January 1892

2 January

The monthly drills continued throughout the year.


THE NEXT DRILL will TAKE PLACE Saturday Afternoon, the 2nd of January, at 3.30 o'clock.

S. MALCOLM. Hon. Sec.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 1 January 1892

10 January

The Brigade rescued the crew of the Huntsman.

13 January

Further information emerged about the rescue of the crew of the Crystal.

By the breaking of a tow line and by collision, we have what is now rare thing, two steamers lying near the entrance to the Tyne, one stranded on the beach and the other lying in the fairway. Of course neither of these disasters was due to any difficulty in entering the harbour. That supposed difficulty his already been sufficiently dealt with. What I was going to mention in reference to the sinking of the Crystal. It has never yet been publicly stated how the crew were taken off the steamer before she foundered. It appears that on the night question John Bone, pilot, accompanied his son, who is an apprentice, pilot, went out in his coble in search of ships, and though he did not see the collision, was close by when the vessel began to settle down. Two or three of the crew were taken off the steamer into the coble and transferred to the tug Gauntlet, and then further assistance was offered, but for a time the men elected to remain still longer by the ship. When, however, it was seen there was no hope of saving the steamer, another batch of men was taken off and put on board the tug—in all some eight or nine of the crew were indebted to the pilot coble for their safety.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 13 January 1892

17 January

The Brigade rescued six of the crew of the Wellington.


5 February


THE NEXT DRILL will take place on Saturday Afternoon, the 6th of February, at 4 o'clock.

S. MALCOLM, Hon. Sec.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 5 February 1892

15 February

The Brigade stood by in windy weather.

The weather was intensely cold yesterday, bitter wind blowing from the north-east. A heavy sea prevailed at the mouth of the Tyne, and for some hours last evening, the Volunteer Life Brigades were on duty.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 16 February 1892

21 February

The Brigade was on watch during stormy weather.


The wind came away about two o'clock yesterday morning from an easterly direction, causing a heavy sea to prevail at the mouth the Tyne. Rain fell very heavily the whole of the morning, and only abated in the course of the afternoon. The snow, which had lain in the streets and roads in a half-melted state from Saturday, was to a considerable extent washed away by the rain and a heavy fresh prevailed on the river. Owing to the rough state of the sea, along the coast a good look-out was kept from both sides of the harbour by the members of the coastguard, and the South Shields Volunteer Life Brigade was on duty from an early hour in the morning. It was Captain Geo. Robson's watch, but the other captains also put in appearance, and the muster of men was a very good one. The sea abated towards evening, the wind had gone down some hours before. A large number of steamers came in, between thirty and forty arriving between daybreak and dusk. They all made the entrance in safety, though one, about eight in the morning, seemed to in temporary difficulties when just off the end of the piers. She, however, righted herself and passed into the harbour without mishap.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 22 February 1892

28 February

The Brigade attended church parade.


To meet at the Brigade House at 10 15 a.m.

Wellesley Band in attendance (by kind permission Capt. Baynham, R.N.)

Collection in aid of the Royal National Lifeboat Institution.

All Seamen earnestly invited to be present and to be seated early.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 25 February 1892

25 February 1892

On Sunday next the members of the South Shields Volunteer Life Brigade, following the example of other volunteer bodies which may not have had so long an existence, will muster at the Watch House and march in uniform to the Seamen's Church at the Mill Dam, to be present at morning service. They will be accompanied by the band of the Wellesley Training Ship and ought to make an imposing display. The brigade have good reason to feel proud of their record during the last winter, as, unfortunately, there has been too much reason for calls upon their services. I may say that the brigade was never in a more efficient state than at present, and the pleasantest and most harmonious feeling prevails between officers and members, and also with the coastguard.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 25 February 1892

29 February 1892

South Shields Volunteer Life Brigade. —Yesterday morning the members the above institution attended the Seamen's Church, Mill Dam, where service was conducted by the Rev. H. W. Farrar, chaplain of the Seamen's Mission, the offertory for the day being on behalf of the National Lifeboat Institution. The brigadesmen mustered at the Watch House on the South Pier at 10 30 and wearing the brigade uniform, marched to the place of worship headed by the Wellesley Band. Seventy-six brigadesmen answered the roll. The preacher took for his text. "And there shall be no more sea," Revelations, 21st chapter, 1st verse. At the conclusion of an able sermon he made an eloquent appeal behalf of the funds of the National Lifeboat Institution which he said had been instrumental in saving 36,000 lives from watery grave. The institution, had spent very large sums carrying out their benevolent work, but he was sorry to say they were in debt to a considerable sum. The tunes of the hymns sung during the service, were rendered in a beautiful manner by a hymn party formed by a number of the lads of the band. At the conclusion of the service the brigadesmen marched back to the Watch House, being accompanied the band as far as King Street. The collection amounted to £6 16s.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 29 February 1892


3 March


THE NEXT DRILL will take place on Saturday Afternoon, the 5th March at 4 o'clock.

S. MALCOLM, Hon. Sec.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 3 March 1892

4 March

The Tyne Lifeboat Service
False Alarm

A Brigade captain gives evidence in a trial about payment for crewing the lifeboat.

A case of considerable local and general interest was heard yesterday before Judge Meynell at the South Shields County Court. This was an action in which one John Peel sued the trustees of the Tyne Lifeboat Institution for 10s 6d for services rendered in the lifeboat on the 30th December last. Mr C. W. Newlands appeared for the plaintiff and J. Strachan (instructed Mr W. Osborne) represented the defendant trustees. Mr W. Cay, chairman of the Tyne Lifeboat Institution, was in court, and also a great number of men identified with the pilot service.

The plaintiff, John Peel, said he was a boatman, serving his time to be a pilot, and living in Edith Street. He had been out in the lifeboat off and on for 22 years. There was no fixed crew for the lifeboat. On the 30th December at about 1.30 in the morning, he was in bed when he heard the Castor's guns fire, and when three guns were fired it was a signal that a ship on the south side of the harbour was ashore, and when only two guns are fired it was for a ship on the north side of the harbour, and when a ship was ashore the lifeboat goes out as soon as the guns fire. On that morning he heard two guns fire from the Castor. He went down to the lifeboat with part of his clothes on and the rest in his arms. The lifeboat was partly manned when he got down, and got into her, and went off. The coxswains were John Landers Burn and Thomas Burn. They rowed down the north side of the harbour to the red buoy at the pier end, and spoke a pilot coble. They were out from 1 ½ to 2 hours, but they could not find that a ship had gone ashore, and as a fact a ship had not gone ashore. They went and asked the Castor what the guns were fired for. When they came ashore one of the crew made out a list for the money they usually received, 10s 6d a man, but it had not been paid.

Cross-examined: He had been out the lifeboat when the vessel had not gone aground and had received the money. The application for the money had always been left with the coxswain. He did not remember any occasion on which the money had been refused. He was in the boat for the British Prince, but they did not up to her. He did not remember if it was 5s a man they got that time, but they did get something. He remembered the Recepta. He was not in the boat on that occasion. He did not know whether they got anything or not. The Castor's guns were fired for the lifeboat as well as the Life Brigade. He had not been told that the trustees had complained of the men running to the boats on the slightest pretence. He knew the Castor’s guns were only fired in response to the alarm signals of the Life Brigade. When they asked at the Castor why the guns had fired, they said they had heard the battery guns, and he had since heard that it was something at Tyne Dock. It was a fine morning, the wind being west-north-west, but it was bitterly cold. There was no sea on, but they were not supposed to know that, jumping out of bed. He (witness) was a foy boatman. He had not got his "branch.”

Mr Strachan: With a calm sea, what necessity was there for launching the lifeboat? — Witness I didn't launch the lifeboat. There might have been a ship in a sinking condition.

Witness, re-examined by Mr Newlands, said it had not been the custom to inquire when guns went if there had been any mistake; they went out as soon as they possibly could. The signals at the Battery could not be heard any great distance but the guns of the Castor could. They had always been paid, so far as he could remember, all the times he had gone out the lifeboat, whether life had been saved of not.

Mr J. W. Buckland, one of the captains of the South Shields Volunteer Life Brigade, said the brigades of Tynemouth and South Shields used gun cotton signals. He thought those had been in use about four years. The signals were fired into the air like a rocket, and when they had reached a height of about a hundred feet, they explode with a shower of sparks and a loud report like a gun. The Castor's guns were fired after these signals.

Cross-examined: The signals used to be fired by 32 pounders from the Spanish Battery — Yes.

And you brigade men found it brought too great a crowd of people down upon the piers and hampered your operations?—We don't complain.

And those rocket signals were substituted? - That was because the Government chose to do away with the Spanish Battery.

Those are signals for the brigade men to come down?—Yes, but not solely for the brigade. They take the place of the guns.

His Honour: Are those signals for the lifeboat as well?—Certainly it is supposed so.

And whether it is rough or smooth the brigade men go down? Even in the middle of summer it is required.

Mr Newlands: The Castor's guns give a much heavier volume of sound than the gun cotton signals? —Yes.

Robert Blair was the next witness. He said he is in the pilot service and lives at the Lawe. He had lived there all his life. Since the guns of the Castor were first fired they had recognised them as signals. He went off on the 30th December in the boat.

Cross-examined: He had sometimes been paid 5s. It was true when they went off in the Tom Perry about two years ago they were not paid anything. There was supposed to be a ship on fire and four guns went which meant fire, and they misunderstood them.

Mr John Landers Burn, chief coxswain of the lifeboat, said he was appointed as such by the lifeboat trustees. His duties were to look after the house and boats, and see the road was clear for the boat to go off at all times of the tide. He was paid 10s 6d every time he went off with the lifeboat.

Cross-examined: He got 10s 6d for going off to the British Prince. It was true the committee had complained about the Castor's guns, but they could not do without them. They complained because it raised the whole place both and day time and men went and took possession of the lifeboat.

Mr Strachan: Foy boatmen? Not only them. They come from all parts of the town. They are there within ten minutes from-the Mill Dam.

And you have to lock the door?-If you lock one door they open two—they come the other way.

Mr Newlands: Have the trustees provided anything else in place of the Castor’s guns to signal that the lifeboat has to be manned?—No.

And the Castor's guns were signals for the lifeboat?—At present they are.

Mr W. Cay, chairman of the Tyne Lifeboat Institution, said the institution had a certain fund. At the present time it was, he thought about £1,000. It was raised by every ship that cleared out of the Tyne paying a shilling a year. It did not depend upon the tonnage the vessel. The fund had existed a hundred years. There were no rules that he was aware of. The payments by the ships were voluntary, and the money was vested in the trustees to keep up the lifeboat establishment at the mouth of the Tyne. There were no rules as to the payment of the men who manned the lifeboat. It had been the custom pay 10s 6d ever since he could recollect. The chief coxswain was the representative of trustees when the lifeboat had to go off. He was their servant. They expected one the coxswains would be there when the lifeboat had to go off. The reason the 10s 6d was not paid on this occasion was because there was no service rendered. What he meant by no service was there was no ship there. If the men went out and there was no ship there that was their look out. If there had been ship there, and had been in danger they would have been paid. Had she been ashore they would undoubtedly have been paid.

Cross-examined: They had always treated the men generously. There had been application for payment which they had refused. There had he believed, been one or two cases when they had paid them less than 10s 6d. He had never looked upon the Castor guns as being for lifeboat purposes. They were not the lifeboat signals, and the committee had complained about the Castor guns.

His Honour decided that the payments by trustees for lifeboat service were voluntary and found for the defendants.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 4 March 1892

31 March


THE NEXT DRILL will take place on Saturday Afternoon, at 6 o'clock.

S. MALCOLM. Hon. Sec.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 31 March 1892


The Ambulance Corps annual examination took place.

25 April

South Shields Volunteer Life Brigade. —The annual examination of the Ambulance Corps took place on Saturday night, in the watchhouse, Surgeon-Major Hutton, of the St. John Ambulance Association, being the examiner. At the close of the examination Dr Hutton complimented the men on the creditable manner in which they had done their work, and stated how pleased he was to meet the Brigade, and referred to their noble services rendered in connection with the wrecks of the Huntsman and Wellington.—Capt. G. R. Potts, on behalf of the Brigade, thanked Dr Hutton for his kind remarks. Dr Hutton in replying proposed a vote of thanks to Dr Crease, the instructor of the class, and Mr Page, the secretary.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 25 April 1892


3 May


THE NEXT DRILL will take place on Saturday Afternoon, the 7th of May, at 6 o'clock.

S. MALCOLM, Hon. Sec.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 3 May 1892

3 May

A presentation to Dr Crease took place in the Watch House.

Ambulance Work South Shields.—An exhibition of stretcher drill, to the ladies who attended the recent ambulance classes was given, last night, in the Watchhouse the South Pier by the Ambulance Corps the South Shields Volunteer Life Brigade. The various modes of carrying the injured were demonstrated in a highly creditable manner. The occasion was taken advantage of by the ladies attending Dr. Crease's ambulance class, and Mrs Warren, in a very graceful speech, on behalf of the class, presented Dr. Crease with a handsome silver-mounted walking stick, and silver match box. Dr. Crease in very suitable terms, thanked the ladies for their kindness, and at the same time he, on behalf of the St. John Ambulance Association, South Shields Centre, presented Masters James Robson, Cuthbert Harrison, James Harrison, Nicholas Gray, and Adam Gray with books, they having given their services in connection with the recent classes. A vote of thanks to the Brigade for their services, ably proposed Mrs W. A. Smith, also to Mrs R. Walker Hopper, secretary of the Ladies' Classes, brought the very interesting and instructive proceedings to a close.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 4 May 1892

17 May

The article of the 3 August refers to the result of the painting.

WANTED, TENDERS for painting the outside of the South Shields Life Brigade House; two coats of paint.—Tenders to be sent to J. W. BUCKLAND. 12 Winchester Street, South Shields, not later than Saturday next.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 17 May 1892


30 June


THE NEXT DRILL will take place on Saturday Afternoon, the 2nd of July, at 6 o'clock.

By order of the Committee,

S. MALCOLM, Hon. Sec.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 30 June 1892


14 July

The Annual Meeting took place.

27 July

The Watch House appears in the news.

The Watch House of the South Shields Volunteer Life brigade figured last week with unusual prominence. In a report of a prosecution for fishing for salmon in the playground it was stated that one of the Conservancy officers saw the offenders from the Watch House, but this seems to have been an entire mistake, for no one has the permission of the Brigade officers to use the Watch House for any such purpose, and they have strongly expressed themselves to that effect. On another day a woman was hauled out of the water, in a half-drowned condition, and the Watch House being handy, she was taken in there and received every possible attention, and thanks chiefly to the efforts of two the wives of the coastguardsmen, assisted by Robert Wells, the caretaker, who placed what appliances were available the house at their disposal, she was brought sufficiently round to be taken to her home.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 27 July 1892


3 August

Quite recently the Brigade House on the South Pier underwent transformation at the hands of the painter, or rather I should say "painters," for there were several "daub" hands at work. The result of their combined efforts I thought fairly satisfactory until I saw the effects produced by another hand on the premises adjoining, which are under the control of the coastguard. Now, I believe the coastguard would not have thought about putting a coat of paint upon their premises had it not been for the Life Brigade Committee taking the initiative, but I think something more requires to be done to give uniformity to the appearance of the two places, which, to the general public, appear as one and the same building. We are so proud of our Volunteer Life Brigade that we cannot quietly allow the Board of Trade to get the advantage even in such a matter as the appearance of the Watch House.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 3 August 1892

6 August


THE NEXT DRILL will place this Afternoon (Saturday), 6 o'clock.

By order of the Committee.

S. MALCOLM, Hon. Sec

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 6 August 1892

31 August

Evidence of continuing public support for the Brigade is shown.

A very pleasing incident is mentioned by one the officers of the South Shields Volunteer Life Brigade in regard to the support received by that institution. It seems that there is box in the Shipping Office for subscriptions in aid of the brigade. It does not often happen that boxes placed in public places receive much recognition, but the box in question evidently did, for on being opened yesterday it was found to contain upwards of £5. It is gratifying to the members of the brigade to know that their services are generously recognised by the officers and crews of the vessels which trade to the Tyne.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 31 August 1892


1 September


THE NEXT DRILL will take place on Saturday Afternoon, the 3rd September, at 6 o'clock.

By order of the Committee,

S. MALCOLM, Hon. Sec.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 1 September 1892

28 September



THE NEXT DRILL will take place on Saturday Afternoon, the 1st of October, at 6 o'clock.

By order of the Committee,

S. MALCOLM. Hon. Sec.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 28 September 1892


14 October

The Brigade was on watch during stormy weather.

Storms and Floods
Shipwrecks and Loss of Life
Brigadesmen on Watch

Last night as darkness set in the wind lulled somewhat and the rain ceased, but the sea along the coast and at the mouth of the Tyne continued as rough it had been at any time hitherto. As a result the sailings were few and far between. About five o'clock the small screw steamer East Anglia went out, being bound for Lynn. She had a most severe buffetting before she got fairly outside, the seas at times coming right over her, and at other times almost three parts of her keel was out of the water as she rose on the crest of a huge wave. The few vessels which came in had of course a similar state of things to deal with but in all cases they came into port safely. The wind came away fresh at a late hour in the evening and under the circumstances it was considered desirable to keep watch at the brigade houses on both sides of the river entrance, There was a very good muster at the Watch House on the South Pier. The officers on duty were Captains Potts, Buckland and Ross. The honorary surgeon of the brigade, Dr Robertson Crease, and his assistant, Dr Goudie, also put in an appearance, the last named remaining some time with the rest of the brigadesmen. A long and vigilant watch was kept, but happily the services of the brigadesmen were not called for. This morning the storm had considerably abated, though a nasty cross sea was running off the bar, and the sky had a dull, threatening appearance, indicative of more tempestuous weather.

Writing yesterday our South Shields reporter said: -The gale which came away during the night rose the forenoon progressed, and the sea along the North-east Coast became rougher than ever. The wind veered round from a northerly point to south east, and being accompanied by rain showers the outlook from the Tyne piers was of a very wild character. The seas broke with great force along the beach and left a wide belt of foam, and the yeasty tops of the waves were carried in thick showers before the gale. Huge billows rolled into the Tyne entrance and finally expended their force the wide estuary, the breakers leaping over the outer end of the North Pier, and even reaching the topmost part of the Commissioners' crane which is stationed thereon. Numbers of people wended their way down to the beach and sheltered about the Watch House of the South Shields Volunteer Life Brigade, watching the effects of the storm with keen interest. A good many steamers inward bound made their appearance, and rode safely into port. A few essayed the outward trip, but one of them on reaching mid-distance between the piers, had her head put about, the intention of the master evidently being to turn round and come in again. In doing so, the vessel was brought into dangerous proximity to the Black Middens, and the coastguard and brigadesmen on the watch were thinking it almost time to fire the rocket signals when she sheered off into safer waters. Another steamer, which had been following close up, was, by the sudden action of the first vessel, placed in some jeopardy, but being skilfully handled, she was eventually taken out of danger. At the time of writing, the storm showed signs of abating, but was rather on the increase.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 15 October 1892

27 October

The Brigade rescued the crew of the Resolute.


4 November 1892


THE NEXT DRILL will take place on Saturday Afternoon, the 5th November, at 4 o'clock.

By order of the Committee,

S. MALCOLM. Hon. Sec

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 4 November 1892

9 November

The Brigade is to participate in a planned St John Ambulance concert.

All local sympathisers with the movement which has for its object instruction in "first aid" should make a point of attending the concert which is to be held next Tuesday evening at the Royal Assembly Hall. It is held under the auspices of the South Shields centre of the St. John Ambulance Association. The programme, which is a remarkably interesting one, includes one item especially so, in which several ladies will render "first aid in cases of supposed accident on the football field." The "patients" will represent a Westoe and Y.M. player badly injured. There will, also be an ambulance demonstration by the members of the Borough and River Police, and the Volunteer Life Brigade. The Wellesley Band will be attendance, and the programme will be supplemented by Mrs J. H. Burns, Mr Wm. Lyall, Mr James Page, and Mr L. Winstone.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 9 November 1892

9 November

The Brigade attended Mr Appleby’s funeral.

One of the strongest illustrations of the popularity the late Mr Appleby was afforded yesterday, when his remains were accompanied to the grave by one the largest and most representative gatherings that has ever assembled on similar occasions in South Shields. The turnout of members of the Freemasons' Lodges in the district was exceptionally large; the South Shields Volunteer Life Brigade was strongly represented; the Wellesley boys were very much in evidence, the mourners also including a large number of members of the theatrical profession, and not a few men who had an almost brotherly affection for the late lessee and manager of the Theatre Royal, South Shields. The tokens of affection in the shape of beautiful wreaths were almost embarrassingly abundant, such a floral display being quite unique in the annals of funeral obsequies in the district. Amongst those who followed in mourning coaches the remains to the grave were George Appleby, Newcastle, brother of the deceased, and family ; Mrs Hall, of Howdon, and Mrs Smith, of Gateshead, sisters ; Mr J. Geo. Appleby, nephew; Mr P, W. Wyndham, Theatre Royal. Newcastle; Mr Henry Mayhew, Scarborough Theatre; Mr Stuart McKinn, acting manager at the South Shields Theatre; Mr Claude Broadbridge, scenic artist; Mr J. J. Runcieman, Mr Ernest Stout, Mr J. B. Radcliff, Mr H. H. Emmerson, Mr Aaron Watson, representing the Savage Club, London; Mr C. G. Binks, Mr W. T. Martin, Mr C. Forster. and Mr Sam Brown, representing the Newcastle Liberal Club; Mr J. M. Moore, J.P., Chief Constable Moorhouse, Mr Herbert Osborne, Mr S. R. Chisholm, North Shields; Councillor Peter Thornton, Mr R. Chapman. J.P., Mr T. Vasey, Mr Turner and Mr Sidney, of the "Human Nature" company, Newcastle; Mr Charles Neville, Mr Marshall and Mr Forbes, of the “Crimes of Paris" company, Jarrow; Mr Tudor, circus proprietor; Ralph Allen, junr. No. Shields; Mr T. Tinley Dale, Mr W. Whiteman, representing the staff of the Theatre Royal, Newcastle; Ald. Wardle, J.P, chairman of the theatre company; Councillor T. D. Marshall, Mr John Cosans, Mr T. Brigham, Mr J, W. Scott, Mr Hebden Barker, Dr Crisp, R. B. Peverley, Mr W. Osborne, Mr W. W. Taylor, Mr J. H. Beers, Newcastle, Mr Harding, Newcastle, Mr W. Donnaldson, and James Hardy. The lodges of Freemasons represented, were the Hedworth, of which the deceased was S.W., the Hadrian, and the Hilda (South Shields), St. Bede (Jarrow), St. George (North Shields), and Industry (Gateshead). The members of the South Shields Volunteer Life Brigade were in charge of Captains George Robson, G. R. Potts, Walter Ross, and J. W. Buckland. An enormous number of people crowded the streets adjoining Challoner Terrace, from whence the procession started, and extended for a great way up Westoe Lane. It having been arranged for a service to be held at St. Michael's Church, the public had massed near the entrance in great crowds, but the admission the principal mourners to the church was facilitated by the excellent arrangements made the Chief Constable. The coffin was borne into the edifice, and a service held of solemn and impressive character. The voluntary, “O, Rest the Lord," was played by the organist, Mr L. Winstone. Then the choir, which was supplemented by the St. Saviour's choir, North Shields; Masonic choir, South Shields and male members of Mr Valentine Smith's Opera Company, sang Psalm 39. The service was conducted by the Rev. G. Pybus, of St. Hilda Church, and the Rev. C. E. Adamson, vicar of St. Michael's Church. The choir sang the hymn always given at Masonic funerals, "When our heads are bowed with woe," which was followed by a magnificent rendering by Mr Valentine Smith of the solo "Be thou faithful unto death." The large company left the church, the organist playing the Dead March in "Saul” and the funeral procession was reformed, and went on to the cemetery. A brief service, conducted by the Rev. Geo. Pybus, took place at the grave, a noteworthy feature being the beautiful rendering of the hymn “Brief life is here our portion," and the customary Masonic rites were, observed. The number of wreaths sent was extremely large. Amongst those who contributed some of the more beautiful floral offerings were the Newcastle Liberal Club, the North Shields Caledonian Club, South Shields Volunteer Life Brigade, the Hedworth Lodge of Freemasons, South Shields Theatre staff, the Tynemouth Priory Cycling Club, orchestra of South Shields Theatre, Valentine Smith, Councillor Peter Thornton, Mr Tudor, Mr C. Walton, Mr Machin Avenue Theatre, Sunderland, Mr and Mrs Frank Harvey, Mr F. W. Wyndham, Mr and Mrs J. L. Neville, Mrs Titman (Darlington), Mr Charles Melville, Mr J. Watt Henderson, Mr J. J. Runcieman, and Mr E. Stout. These were brought back from the cemetery to laid on the grave afterwards.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 10 November 1892

10 November

The Brigade received a substantial legacy.

South Shields Volunteer Life Brigade. —The honorary secretary acknowledges with thanks the receipt from the executors of the late Mr John Ridley, of Challoner Terrace. South Shields, of the sum of £50, being the amount of a legacy bequeathed to the above Institution.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 10 November 1892

14 November

The St John Ambulance concert took place.


THE MEMBERS are respectfully informed that the St. JOHN AMBULANCE CONCERT is Tuesday  the 15th inst. Muster at Brigade House at 6 45 o'clock. Uniforms must be worn.

Wellesley Band will attend.

By order of the Committee,

S. MALCOLM. Hon. Sec

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 14 November 1892

14 November 1892


Chair to taken at 7.30 by the Rev. H. E. SAVAGE.

SOLOISTS- Mrs J. H. BURNS, South Shields : Mr W. LYAIL, Principal Basso, Newcastle Cathedral; Mr WINSTONE, South Shields.

Original recitation. "The Wreck of the Wellington." South Shields, January 17th, 1892, Mr JAMES PAGE.

SEVERAL LADIES, and assisted by the Members of the VOLUNTEER LIFE BRIGADE, the Borough and River Police will render "First Aid in Cases of Supposed Accident on the Football Field," The "patients' will represent Westoe and Y.M. Football Players.

Music and Drill especially written for this concert by the Wellesley Band.

The Royal Humane Society's MEDAL will be presented to Inspector Barrett, the River Police; and PC's George Hall and J. Bruce, of the Borough Police, will receive presentations from the St. John Ambulance Association Committee, South Shields Centre.

Front Seats and Balconey, 1s; Back Seats, 6d.

Tickets can be had at Messrs Hirschmann's, Fowler Street, Mrs R. Walker Hopper, 5 Myrtle Crescent, Mr C. W. Harrison, and J. Page, 67 King Street, South Shields.

Doors open at 6.45 p.m. No money taken until 7 15.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 14 November 1892

15 November

Ambulance Work in South Shields
Rewards for Saving Life

One of the most interesting gatherings ever held under the auspices of the St. John Ambulance Association took place last night at the Royal Assembly Hall, South Shields. The programme included not only vocal and instrumental music, and a demonstration of ambulance skill, but presentations were made for saving life to three police officers. The building was crowded to its utmost limit. The tiers at the back of the platform were at one side occupied by the lady members of ambulance classed, and at the other side by the members of the South ShieIds Volunteer Life Brigade, who have been efficiently taught first aid by Dr Robertson Crease. The hall was crowded to its utmost limits. The Rev H. E. Savage, vicar of South Shields, presided, and accompanying him on the platform were Rev. H. W. Farrar, Mr J. M. Moore, J.P., Surgeon-Major Hutton, Dr Robertson Crease, Mr S. Malcolm, Dr Macdonald, Dr Goudie, Mr F. Thirlwall, and Messrs Harrison and Page, hon. secretaries. A telegram from Mr James C. Stevenson, M.P., president, was read, regretting his inability to attend owing to a previous engagement, and wishing them a successful gathering.

The Chairman, speaking of the South Shields centre of the St. John Ambulance Association, said it had many branches under its supervision. One of the best features of its work was the training of nurses to nurse at home. The other branches included the training of their police, to whom they gave their heartiest greeting as ambulance workers, and their railway men. Then the football class was a very essential one, he thought, and they had also that which appealed most strongly to all South Shields people, the Volunteer Life Brigade class. (Applause.) They would be glad to know that the brigade would admit no member into its ranks who was not skilled in ambulance work. The chairman then presented the certificates gained by the members of the different classes during the last year.

The Rev. H. W. Farrar, chaplain of the Seamen's Mission, then presented Inspector John Barrett, of the River Police, with the Royal Humane Society's bronze medal and certificate for saving a boy from drowning in the Tyne on the 10th of September last. The particulars of the incident are that Inspector Barrett was in his office at the Mill Dam about five o'clock in the evening, when he heard a cry, "He's gone, he's drowning.” Another voice, in the dialect added. "He's gyen.” P.C. Gaston had thrown a life buoy before Mr Barrett arrived. The current was very strong, and the lad was being carried quickly away. Barrett threw off his coat and dived in, the boy at the moment being about hundred yards from the shore, but he succeeded in reaching him and bringing him safely to shore, and the boy was today alive and well. Mr Farrar hereupon pinned the medal on to the breast of the officer amid applause.

Inspector Barrett warmly thanked Mr Farrar for the efforts he had made to put the facts before the society, but he said the greatest reward was in knowing he had been the means of saving life. Should a like circumstance occur again he hoped he should not forget the motto of the borough. "Always ready."

Surgeon-Major Hutton, at a later stage of the proceedings, addressed the meeting, and on behalf of the committee presented a gold medallion to P.C. Hall and a handsome volume of Scott's poems to P.C. Bruce, of the borough police force, in recognition of ambulance work done by them in restoring two boys to consciousness, who had been nearly suffocated in a bathroom, under circumstances recently reported.

The concert consisted of performances by the Wellesley Training Ship Band, songs, recitations, and physical exercise drill by Wellesley boys. The vocalists were Mrs J. H. Burns, Mr Winstone (who also officiated as accompanist), and Wm. Lyall of Newcastle Cathedral choir. Mr James Page gave an original recitation on "The Wreck of the Wellington,' which took place at South ShieIds on the 17th January last. An interesting part of the proceedings was the demonstrations of ambulance work by several ladies, members of the Borough and River Police Forces, and the Volunteer Life Brigade. Two "patients," representing Westoe and Y.M. Football Clubs, who were supposed to have sustained fearful injuries in colliding during a match, were laid out on the platform and their several wounds and fractures bandaged by ladies who have passed the degrees in ambulance work. They were afterwards taken in hand by men connected with the Borough and River Tyne Police, who gave a fine illustration of their skill in improvising ambulance stretchers. Afterwards an example of restoring the apparently drowned was given by members of the Volunteer Life Brigade, and the way in which the work of first aid was carried through evoked repeated applause.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 16 November 1892

18 November

Officers of the Brigade are empowered to act as Receivers of Wrecks.

It will be of interest to many people, especially to the supporters of the South Shields Volunteer Life Brigade, to learn that the officers of the brigade have been empowered to act as Receivers of Wreck under the Collector of Customs at the Port of South ShieIds. The powers are conferred by the Board of Trade by virtue of the 439th section of the Merchant Shipping Act, which "states that the Board may, "With the consent of the Commissioners of her Majesty's Treasury, appoint any officer of Customs, of the Coastguard, or any officer of Inland Revenue, or when it appears to such Board to be more convenient, any person to be Receiver of Wreck in any district, and to perform such duties as are mentioned in the said Act." The duties are specified in section 444 of the Act.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 18 November 1892


1 December


THE NEXT DRILL will take place on Saturday Afternoon, the 3rd of December, at 4 o'clock.

By order of the Committee,

S. MALCOLM. Hon. Sec.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 1 December 1892