Events 1893


5 January

The monthly drills continued throughout the year.


THE NEXT DRILL will take place on Saturday Afternoon, the 7th of January, at 4 o'clock.

By order of the Committee,


S. MALCOLM, Hon. Sec.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 5 January 1893

9 January

The Brigade was on watch during stormy weather.

Severe Weather at Sea
Further Shipping Disasters
Tyne Life Brigades on Duty

On Saturday and the whole of yesterday the weather on the North-east Coast was of a very tempestuous character. Heavy seas prevailed at the mouth the Tyne, and the Volunteer Life Brigades were duty on Saturday night and also last night The wind blew with steady force from the north-east, causing large billows to break against the piers, but though the sky was dull and threatening the lights at the harbour month wore always visible, and vessels making for the port came in safely, though they had a severe pitching before they got fairly in between the piers.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 9 January 1893

11 January

A new signal light is installed at the Watch House.

Now that we are in the midst of the winter storms the Volunteer Life Brigadesmen are paying close attention to the harbour entrance, and more than once within the last few weeks they have held all-night watch at the Brigade House on the South Pier. A very simple but effective means has been adopted for satisfying members who may be thinking of going down to the Brigade House as to whether a watch is being kept or not, and that is by exhibiting a red light in the west face of the turret of the building. It is easily seen from Seafield Terrace or the higher part the road leading past Park Terrace, and there is an unobstructed view of the light from about ten or fifteen yards below the western gate of the South Park, looking past the monument. The value of this arrangement will be at once apparent to everyone who has trudged his way down the pier a few times on dark, blustering nights, such as may expect about this period of the year.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 11 January 1893

18 January

The Annual Supper took place.


1 February


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

By order of the Committee,

S. MALCOLM, Hon. Sec.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 1 February 1893

15 February

Mr Lorden, the Chief Coastguardsman, retired.

The periodic changes in our coastguard staff take away from time to time faces with which we have become famliar, and for which we have formed a liking. I cannot say that Chief Coastguardsman Lorden, who had been stationed at South Shields for a good number of years, was amongst the most popular of men. His ideas savoured too much of the naval martinet for that, but he was one who held a high regard for his position, and underneath his Government uniform there beat a loyal and honest Irish heart. He had little "tiffs" with the Volunteer Life Brigade now and again, but when he took his leave a week or two ago, to retire on his pension, the officers bid him a hearty good-bye, with best wishes for the future, and amongst others who like to share in these farewell compliments is Odd Man Out.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 15 February 1893

23 February 1893

A church parade took place.


CHURCH PARADE on Sunday next. To meet at the Brigade House at 10 o ‘clock in the morning. Uniforms to be worn

By order,

S. MALCOLM, Hon. Sec.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 23 February 1893

27 February

The Brigade kept watch during more stormy weather.

Gale and Snowstorm

Very stormy weather prevailed yesterday on Tyneside and along the coast. Sleet and rain fell the whole of the day, and there was a high wind for several hours, which caused a nasty sea off the Tyne. As consequence, the Volunteer Life Brigade was on duty, and a strong watch was kept until nightfall, when the wind lessened in force and veered round to the southwest, the sea at the same time being less turbulent. In the early hours of this morning, the wind was westerly, and there was a hard frost.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 27 February 1893


2 March


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

By order of the Committee,

S. MALCOLM, Hon. Sec.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 2 March 1893

14 March

A call was made for the public to be given access to the newly opened pier.

It seems a great pity that, now the South pier of the Tyne Commissioners is completed some means cannot be adopted for throwing it open to the public along its full length. The pier is unquestionably one of the finest in England and the privilege of strolling as far seaward as its extremity, would not only be much appreciated by the residents of the town, but would prove an additional attraction to the visitors who will flock to South Shields during the coming summer. We hope the time is not far distant when both piers will open to the public from end to end, at all events on certain days of the week. Meanwhile the Commissioners might well do something to make that part of the South pier which is already open to the public a safer resort. The handrail which now exists for part of the way along the harbour-side ought to be continued at least down to the brigade-house, not less for the protection of the children and visitors in fine weather than for the safeguarding of the gallant fellows who carry on their rescue work from the pier in darkness, stress, and storm.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 14 March 1893

30 March



THE NEXT DRILL will take place on Saturday Afternoon, the 1st of April, at 4 o'clock.

By order of the Committee,

S. MALCOLM, Hon. Sec.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 30 March 1893


10 April

An Ambulance Review was planned to include a demonstration by the Brigade.

The Proposed Ambulance Review

A meeting of representatives from the different centres and classes in the two Northern counties was held in the Schoolroom, Prudhoe Street, Newcastle, on Saturday night, to further the arrangements for the proposed ambulance review to be held August next. The chair was taken by Dr Clark Newton, and there was a very good attendance. The secretary (Mr G. Ogilvie) decided that all the delegates present at the meeting, together with the medical gentlemen who have conducted ambulance classes and the secretaries, be elected on the general committee: —An organising committee, with power to add to their number, was afterwards selected as follows:—Mr Page, Mr Buckland, South Shields; Mr Mole, Newcastle; Mr Lambert, Jarrow; Mr Sankey, New Benwell; Dr Hurst, Walker; Dr Clark, Newcastle; Mr Somerville, Newcastle ; Mr Pringle, Gateshead; Mr Holmes, Newcastle ; Mr Henderson, Newsham ; Dr Squance, Sunderland ; Mr Anderson, Elswick Colliery ; and Mr Cleghorn, Tyne Dock.—lt was agreed that the proceeds of the review, if any, should be divided between the Washington Home, Wallsend Cripples' Home, and other kindred children's institutions in the two counties. The question of patrons was left in the hands of the committee, and it was suggested that a circular sent to each class asking them to contribute to a guarantee fund. Dr. Clark, Cardigan Terrace, Newcastle, was appointed secretary in place of Mr Ogilvie, resigned. The next meeting is held on the 22nd inst. The programme suggested for the review is already an ambitious one, will include a supposed colliery explosion and railway collision, the injured in which will be treated for their supposed injuries and removed to the hospitals. It is also intended to ask permission for a body of volunteers to take part in a mimic battle, when the wounded will receive attention at the hands of members of the nursing guilds in the district, a number of whom have offered their services to the War Office to proceed on foreign service should their services be required. The members of the South Shields and Sunderland Volunteer Life Brigades are also to be asked to give an exhibition of life saving.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 10 April 1893


4 May


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

By order of the Committee,

S. MALCOLM, Hon. Sec.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 4 May 1893

23 May

The Ambulance Corps received their annual examination.

Ambulance Work at South Shields.—On Saturday afternoon, under the auspices the St. John Ambulance Association, 24 of the members of the South Shields Volunteer Life Brigade were examined in ambulance work by Sergt. Major Hutton, at the Brigade House, South Shields. After the examination the class were informed that they had all passed, and were complimented upon the highly satisfactory manner in which they had gone through the test. A hearty vote thanks to the instructor (Dr. Crease), the secretary, and Sergt.-Major Hutton, concluded the proceedings, certificates and medals will be granted in due course.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 23 May 1893

27 May

A visit by the British Medical Association was planned.

The South Shields Corporation has performed at once a wise and a graceful act voting to the Mayor a sum of money to be expended in entertaining the members of the British Medical Association during the meeting of that body in Newcastle next August. Apart from any motives of self-interest it is but fitting that a hearty corporate welcome should be extended the representatives of a great and noble profession. But the visit, it is to be hoped, will also redound to the advantage of the borough itself. Comparatively few people outside the immediate district are aware how completely the enterprise of the Corporation has transformed South Shields from the dingy, smoky town of a few years ago, to a charming and attractive health resort,—one of the finest certainly on the North East Coast, —and it is hoped that the visit of the British medicos will be the means of giving still wider publicity to its salubrity and attractions. The members of the Association will visit South Shields on August 3rd, and after being entertained to luncheon will visit the Pier Works, witness a special drill of the Life Brigade, and inspect the Wellesley Training Ship.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 27 May 1893

31 May


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

By order of the Committee,

S. MALCOLM, Hon. Sec.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 31 May 1893


20 June

A second church parade was held.


THE Members are respectfully informed that CHURCH PARADE to the Seamen's Mission Church, Mill Dam, will be held on Sunday, June 25th, 1893. Meet in the Watch House at 10 a.m. Uniforms must be worn. Wellesley Band will attend.

By order of the Committee,

S. MALCOLM, Hon. Sec.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 20 June 1893

26 June

South Shields Volunteer Brigade. —The members of the South Shields Volunteer Life Brigade held their annual church parade yesterday morning. Mustering about 60 strong at the Brigade House on the South Pier, they marched, accompanied by the band of the Wellesley Training Ship, and the members of the Coastguard, to the Seamen's Church Mill Dam, where they attended morning service. The preacher was the Rev. H. W. Farrar, chaplain, and in the course of an able sermon he made a touching allusion to the loss of H.M.S. Victoria. The procession included Mr Higgins, chief officer of coastguard, South Shields, with three other officers in the same service; Messrs. G. R. Potts, George W. Ross, W. Buckland, captains; and Messrs G. Scrafton, J. H. Wood, J. Thompson, and J. Henderson, deputy captains of the brigade. A collection was taken at the conclusion of the service on behalf the Royal National Lifeboat Institution.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 26 June 1893

27 June

S.S.V.L.B. ANNUAL CHURCH PARADE.—The collection taken at the conclusion of the service held at the Seamen's Church, Mill Dam, on Sunday morning last, in connection with the annual church parade of the South Shields Volunteer Life Brigade, amounted to £5 11s 8d. This sum will be devoted to the funds of the Royal National Lifeboat Institution.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 27 June 1893

28 June

An excursion for the Brigade members was proposed.

I believe there a feeling among the gallant band of men who compose our Volunteer Life Brigade that there should be an excursion during the course the present summer by the members of the institution. The Tynemouth Brigade, which prides itself on being the first established in the country, has its annual holiday trip, so I am told; then why not their south side neighbours? The men have plenty of the long night watches in the winter, and a little reunion in the shape of an excursion in the summer should not be a bad thing. I commend the idea to the committee of the Brigade.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 28 June 1893

28 June


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

Annual Meeting on Friday, June 30th, at 7 30 p.m.

S. MALCOLM, Hon. Sec.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 28 June 1893

30 June

The Annual Meeting took place.


The Annual Meeting took place.

8 July

The results of the Ambulance Examination were announced.

Ambulance Work at South Shields

The following were successful at the examination held May 19th and 20th, 1893. Holy Trinity Vicarage, Ladies' Class, instructor, Dr Macdonald. Nursing Class. — Mary R. Atherfold, Annie Atherfold, Annie L. Eltringham, Marion Johnson, Eliz. Donald, Katherine Green, G. M. Green, E. H. Fitzgerald, E. Cubey, M. J. Blakey, I. Dixon, L. M. Coulson, B. A. Hall. B Grieves. A. Prior, A. N. Burn, S. T. Ewart, A. J. Spence, A. Hodgson, E. J. Nicholson, M. B. Reah, H. Little, M. E. North, L. Lang, E. E. Blakey. K. E. Green. Final examination. — M. L. Stobbart, E. A. Tully, S. Martin, E. Goddard, M. A. Scott, E. Forrest, F. S. Robertson, M. I. Lamb. P. Napier, E. Hall. I. Logie, E. Skelton. First aid class.—M. E. North, K. Green. Ladies' Class, Grammar School, Instructor, Dr Crease; Nursing Examination.—Sarah A, Grimes, Mary Sutcliffe, Edith Gray, Mary E. Sterry, Isabella M. A. Dobby. Jessie Glass, Mary Robson, Elizabeth Page, Mary Allen, Elizabeth Dobby, Mary L. Dobby, Eleanor W. Maxwell, Mary Davies, Millie Alien, Marion Stephenson, Isabella Robson, Amar Bainbridge, Isabella King, Laura Smith, Annie Haswell, Mary E. Potts, Ada B. Bone. Eisie Wildgoose, Laura King Elisabeth Robson.— First Aid—L. King. Final Examination. — Isabella Hall. Amelia Gray, Olivia White, Theresa Warren, Kate Pye, Joanna Buck, Sallie Cay, Lily Cay, Maggie Robson, Mary Todd, Annie Robertson, Mary E. Hoare, Margaret Stephenson, Elizabeth Stobbs. Alice Tulloch. Volunteer Life Brigade Class, instructor Crease, 1st examination.—John B. Johnson. James John Prior, Robert A. Tervill, Robert J. S. Kell. 1st re-examination.—Robert Bell, Richard Williamson, James E. Purvis, Robert Alexander, James Lumsden, Frank H. Webb-Peploe. Final examination.—A. Donkin, T. N. Newby, C. Riley, W. Clymer, J. Robe. T. B. Grimes, C. R. Toomer, R. Brown, F. W. Wilson, W. Sleight, D. W. Fitzgerald. A. Legg. N.E. Railway Class, Tyne Dock, instructor Dr Pope 1st examination.—F. W. Cooper, T. Coxon, J. Graham, 1st re-examinations. —G. Epsly, J. Straughan. Final examinations.—F. W. Cleghorn, G. Clark, T. Dalton, T, H. Forrest, J. Faid, J. Hogg, J. Jagger, C. L. Manson, T. Purvis, T. W. Robson, C. Robson, W. Stephenson, G. Shand. T. Stewart. M. Kane, J. Sanderson,, J. Varty, A. Wierd, J. G. Wilkinson, W. Roberts.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 8 July 1893

31 July

The visit of the British Medical Association took place and the Brigade featured in it.


SPECIAL DRILL at 4 30 p m. Friday August 4th. Members will muster at 4 p.m. in Uniform.

S. MALCOLM. Hon. Sec.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 31 July 1893


2 August

The great event the present week in this district is the visit of the British Medical Association to Newcastle. In connection with the excursion arrangements is a visit to South Shields, which take place on Friday. It is expected that a large number of the members' of the association will avail themselves of what promises to be a very delightful trip. They will leave Newcastle by special train at 1 25 arriving at South Shields at 1 50. At 2 p.m. they will be entertained to luncheon by the Mayor and Corporation at the Royal Assembly Rooms subsequently they will visit the park and some time later witness the Volunteer Life Brigade at rocket drill, and will see them practice. A section of the members will then go by special train to Marsden where every suitable preparation has been made for their visit. Those who do not do the Marsden trip will be shown over the Roman Remains, and be taken along the South- Pier and will see the mammoth crane at work. Tea will be provided in the South House for the visitors by the local medical men. There will be music in the parks and the model yachtsmen have consented to exhibit their craft on the lake or in the yacht house.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 2 August 1893

4 August

The British Medical Association

One of the characteristics of the modern conference is the fashion in which its members contrive to combine business with pleasure, erudition with frivolity. This, we may perhaps take it, is the very highest development of latter - day wisdom, nothing less than the translation into action of the old saw which declares that all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. The conference of the British Medical Association, which has been sitting in Newcastle during the week, has certainly lacked nothing in its facilities for recreative enjoyment, as there has been little wanting in the more serious business the association. That business is now almost complete. It has ranged over a wide field. Many of the matters which have engaged attention were of little concern outside the medical profession, but many also were matters which come home to the life of every member of the community and are of interest and importance to every man who gives thought either to the government of his country or the progress his race. Some of the problems dealt with have perhaps passed beyond the point at which they can be profitably discussed at such meetings. Of such is the question of cumulative penalties for non-vaccination. Upon this matter the public, for good or evil, appears to have come to an irrevocable decision—a decision no doubt very illogical and based upon no scientific foundation, but one which will probably work none less well on that account. Others again of the papers discussed by the association dealt with matters upon which the country is sadly in need of more light. Of such is the subject of infant mortality. The slaughter of the innocents is one of the most deplorable features, one of the most damming blots upon our civilisation. The pity of it, too, is that where men are thickest, where presumably enlightenment has made the greatest progress, where the gospel of humanity finds its most congenial sphere the evil is most marked. It is one of the evils, but we hold a preventable evil, following in the wake of that huge factory system which steam and the telegraph have called into existence. The employment of young wives and mothers in these places, engaged frequently in hard physical labour confined almost invariably for excessive number of hours, exerts baleful influence which but ill fits the newly born child to survive that subsequent neglect which is the inevitable outcome of its mother's work. The association has discussed also the question of notification of infectious diseases, a proceeding which in this part of the country at least seems still to be regarded with suspicion by a section of the people. Cholera and the precautions necessary to ward off its attack of necessity occupied a prominent part in the discussions of the week, and for the rest the deliberations have extended over a wide field ranging from the administration of oaths to the treatment of inebriates and the value of hypnotism as curative agent. To-day and to-morrow will be mainly devoted to the delights of the various excursions. Yesterday the members visited Tynemouth and inspected its various beauties in weather which must have considerably marred their enjoyment. To-day gives promise of better things, and South Shields will no doubt put on its best holiday aspect, and justify its pretensions as a watering place of no mean order. The members of the association will arrive in Shields by railway—an arrangement which will spare them the odoriferous delights of landing at the Mill Dam—and will be entertained to luncheon by the Mayor and Corporation. The Life Brigade will give a rocket drill, and in addition to the beauties of the harbour the visitors will visit the Roman Remains, and the Marsden Rock, whilst the chief works on the river will be open to the inspection of such of the members as care to avail themselves of the permission. The fame of South Shields as a watering place is not as yet very wide spread. A metropolitan newspaper spoke of it this week as a” small place." Its many modern developments are largely unknown and its beauties undreamed of. To the majority of Englishmen it is still, as in the days when the Prior of Durham first permitted its establishment, a congregation of fishermen's huts called Le Sheeles. The beach, the pier, and parks and the many natural beauties which grace the coast line in the immediate vicinity eminently fit South Shields for the part of a watering place. The death rate, were we to eliminate that portion of the town which borders upon the river and is a disgrace alike to humanity and to decency, would justify considerable pretensions as a health resort; and the visit of the Medical Association affords an excellent opportunity of disseminating more exact and detailed knowledge of these facts throughout the country. This is perhaps regarding the presence of these distinguished visitors from a somewhat selfish standpoint, but assuredly their welcome will be none the less cordial because some return in kind lies within the range of possibility.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 4 August 1893

4 August

The Medical Association Conference

Yesterday, about 300 members of the British Medical Association, sitting in conference at Newcastle, visited Tynemouth and were entertained to luncheon in the Aquarium by the Mayor and Corporation of the Borough. Many of the gentlemen were accompanied by their wives and lady friends, and altogether between 400 and 500 persons sat down to an excellent meal served recherché style by Mr C. J. Downie, manager, of the Grand and Bath Hotels. The platform was occupied by Mr Amer's orchestral band, which performed a programme of popular selections during the meal. The chair was occupied by the Mayor of Tynemouth (Ald. Spence), who was supported on his right by Dr Long Fox, the president-elect of the conference. Mr E. Culley (Major of Newcastle), Mr John Armstrong (Mayor of Jarrow). Mr Digby Seymour, L.L.D., Mr H. A. Adamson (Town Clerk) and others. After the luncheon the usual loyal toasts were honoured.

The Mayor of Tynemouth said, on behalf of the Corporation of that borough he gave a hearty welcome to their visitors, who had come that afternoon to see the beauties of Tynemouth. (Applause.) The inhabitants of the place were exceedingly proud of Tynemouth, which they believed was a first-class watering place and health resort that only wanted to be known throughout the kingdom to be properly appreciated. (Applause.) They were pleased to have so many distinguished visitors with them that day, and he hoped they would be able to carry away with them pleasant impressions of their visit. (Applause.) He gave them, "Our guests” and asked his friends to drink it with enthusiasm. The toast was received with musical honours and cheers.

Dr Long Fox said, in the necessary absence of the president he had the privilege and honour of proposing the health of the Mayor and Corporation of Tynemouth. He thanked his Worship for the kind way in which he had spoken of them. He was sure that so far as the members of the association were concerned they would allow him to express in their name their heartiest thanks for the hospitality and consideration they had received that day, which he could only describe as magnificent. (Applause.) And especially would he ask them to drink the health of the Mayor, who although not quite as young as they should wish him to be was as active as he was old, and honourable and kind as he was active. (Loud applause.) Ald. Spence was one of the most prominent members of the governing body of that remarkable river, the Tyne -, remarkable in so far as it was a great triumph of engineering skill and enterprise. He believed that more earth had been dredged out of the Tyne than was taken out of the Suez Canal, and the work was still in progress. Those whose names were so honourably associated with it would, he was sure, not be forgotten in the grateful hearts of future generations—(applause) —and none would be more honoured than that of the present Mayor of Tynemouth. (Applause.)— The toast was received with hearty cheers, and was briefly acknowledged by the chairman.

The afternoon was joyously bright and breezy, and the distinguished visitors were conducted, after the luncheon proceedings, to the Tynemouth Priory grounds, where the ruins and all parts of historical interest were pointed out by the Town Clerk, and minutely described. Afterwards the company proceeded to the Spanish Battery where the Mayor had arranged for a special drill by the members of the Volunteer Life Brigade. The firing of the rocket, the manipulation of the lines, and the transit of "the rescued" over the haven were sights that were seen by many of the spectators for the first time, and naturally awakened keen interest. The brigade house was thrown open and many visited its interior, and examined the life-saving apparatus and numerous wreck souvenirs with evident gratification and not a little curiosity. By the kind permission of Capt. Baynham, R.N., the boys of the Wellesley went through a series of manual exercises and military movements on the Battery, and the proceedings were enlivened by selection of music from the ship's band, which was under the leadership of Mr Eskdale. Altogether a pleasurable afternoon was spent, and the company took their departure for Newcastle, some by boat and some train, amid many expressions of grateful acknowledgment and admiration for all they had witnessed.


The arrangements for to-day include an excursion to South Shields. At 1-25 the party leave the Central Station by train for South Shields. At two o'clock luncheon will be provided by the Mayor and Corporation of South Shields at the Royal Assembly Rooms, Stanhope Street. At 3 45 a visit will be made to Marine Parks and South Pier. At 4.30 a visit will be made to the South Shields Volunteer Life Brigade House to witness rocket drill and lifeboat practice. At 5-15 a visit will be to Marsden Rock, a special train being provided by the Harton Coal Co. Ltd. The party to Marsden is limited to 100 members from a distance. Tea will be provided by the medical profession in South Shields, and will be served both in the Volunteer Life Brigade House, South Pier, and at the Grotto, Marsden Rock. The return from will be made at 6-45 and the whole party will return to Newcastle by train leaving South Shields at 7 25.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 4 August 1893

5 August

British Medical Association
Visit to South Shields

Yesterday about seventy members of the British Medical Association paid a visit to South Shields. Several ladies accompanied them. They left Newcastle by special train, and arrived at the Shields Station shortly before two o'clock. They were met by a number of the local medical men and escorted to the Royal Assembly Hall, where the members the Corporation were assembled. The introductions over, the guests filed into the hall, where the tables had been set for between two and three hundred. A great number of local ladies and gentlemen swelled the attendance and there were very few vacant seats. The Mayor (Ald. Rennoldson) presided. Amongst these present were the Town Clerk (Mr J. M. Hayton), Ald. Eltringham, Donald and Imrie; Councillors Lawson, senr., junr., W. R. Smith, P. Thornton. T. M. Young. P. Marshall, T. D. Marshall, G. Luceck, J. Reay, R. Readhead, A. Robson, J. Grant, S. Cottew, W. Runciman, Drs. W. Cowans, J. F. Armstrong, J. Robertson Crease, F. W. Legat, J. Crisp, J. Drummond, C. J. Sutherland, F. W. Gibbon, W. H. Turnbull (Medical Officer of Health), A. C. Monro, Sinclair, Goodie, Macdonald, Rathborne, E. H. Gibbon, Mr J. M. Moore, J.P., Mr Geo. May. of Simonside, Mr J. G. Messent (Engineer to the Tyne Commission). R. Urwin (secretary to the Tyne Commission), Dr Armson, Sir Wm. Moore, of Dublin, and a great many prominent members the British Medical Association.

The toast of "The Queen" having been honoured.

The Mayor said South Shields had that day been honoured in manner which he believed it had not been hitherto been honoured, that was, by the visit of a large section of the British Medical Association, and he did not think that any of the larger British Associations had ever had an invitation extended to them to come and see that town. He supposed the reason was that, until recent years South Shields had not been of sufficient magnitude to attract visitors connected with those large associations. They had not the merit of being one of the largest towns in the district but thought they might claim the merit of being of one the most rapidly developed and one of the most energetic towns in that part of the kingdom. This, he thought, would be plain to them, when he stated that during the last decade South Shields showed the second largest increase of any town in the kingdom, not only in regard to population but in regard to its commercial pursuits. This also he was happy to say, their municipal work was satisfactory. During the past few years the town had been very extensively improved, both in regard to its buildings for business and residential purposes, but partly in regard to municipal buildings for carrying on municipal work. They had also spent a very considerable sum of money, some £23.000 in laying out what was special feature there, the Marine Parks. Iv various towns in this country there were certainly very beautiful parks, but in South Shields. They had something quite unique in the way of parks, which were down by the seashore, and whatever strangers there were to the town present, he felt sure they would be abundantly satisfied that the place was attractive, and that the money had been well spent. (Hear, hear.) He was proud to welcome so many members of such an important Association as that of the British Medical. He would have been glad had they seen more of members down, but he supposed, owing to the counter attraction at Durham, they must be content. He was gratified so many had come, and he hoped they would be pleased with what was shown them that day of the attractions of South Shields. (Applause.) He then enumerated the advantages of the town from a sanitary point of view. and spoke of the excellent beach for bathing purposes, the magnificent South Pier, and the rock bound coast to Marsden, and outlined the plan of arrangements for the visitors making the best of the time at their command, and concluded by moving the toast of “The British Medical Association."

Sir Wm. Moore returned thanks for the toast. He said he had attended the meetings the British Medical Association for several years, did not know that at any meeting they had received the same hospitality they had received at Newcastle, supplemented as it was by that of South Shields. (Applause.)

Dr Berry-Hart proposed a vote thanks to the Mayor and Corporation for their kind hospitality which the members of the association had received at their hands.

Dr W. C. Armson supplemented the remarks of the last speaker, and the toast was heartily drunk.

The Mayor having briefly responded, the company broke and proceeded to the parks, beach, etc.

On arriving at the South Pier the visitors were much interested the lifeboats, the James Young and Tom Perry, which were fully manned and were very cleverly handled. The Volunteer Life Brigade gave an exhibition of their skill with the rocket lines, which also proved a very instructive feature. A section of the medical men went to the end the pier and saw the mammoth crane at work, and they seemed very much struck with that wonderful piece of engineering. A goodly number subsequently partook of tea in the Brigade House. About fifty left at five o'clock for the Westoe Road station, where, through the kindness of Mr George May, general manager of the Harton Coal Company, carriages were provided. The run along the coast to Marsden was much enjoyed, the weather being beautifully fine. After viewing the charming scenery the visitors, who included several ladies, were entertained to tea in the Grotto. The party, who were in charge of Dr. Robertson Crease, expressed themselves delighted with this little trip, and the way back to the station a stoppage was made and prominent member of the British Medical Association moved a vote of thanks to Mr May for the facilities he had provided for them visiting Marsden. This was supported by Dr. Emmerson, of Leicester, and was heartily accorded, Mr May responding in suitable terms. The train left Marsden at 6-45, and the whole of the visitors beat up at the Low Station at South Shields and left for Newcastle at 7 30. Mr J. G. Johnson of Fowler Street, was caterer for the tea at both the Brigade House and Marsden Grotto.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 5 August 1893

7 August

The Brigade took part in the Ambulance Review.

Ambulance Review at Gosforth Park

On Saturday a review of the ambulance corps of the district took place at Gosforth Park. Owing, perhaps, to the threatening state of the weather, the attendance of the public was not large, but the review itself went off with much success. There were in all ten companies present, including the ambulance men the South Shields Volunteer Life Brigade under the command of Captain G. R. Potts, the railway classes at Tyne Dock, commanded Dr B. W, Gibbon, and classes from Jarrow and Elswick Works, under the command of Captain M. Jennings, M.D. The inspecting officer was Lieut.-General Havelock Allan, and the officer in command of the review, Capt. Fraser Hurst, M.D. There were also in attendance Sir Edmund Lechmere, Bart., M.P., and Colonel Thackeray, C.B., VC, R.E. The review commenced with a march past, in which the South Shields Brigadesmen figured to much advantage. The men were then drawn up in line for the bandaging, which was examined the inspecting officer. A volley of blank cartridge, for which the troopers under Lieutenant Trussler R.A. were responsible, caused certain men to stagger from ranks, fall to the ground, and be conveyed by stretcher parties to the hospital tent. There they were taken in charge by the corps of nurses spotlessly white uniform. Each injured man considerately consented to wear a ticket stating the nature of the accident he had been treated for. There was also miners' corps, who showed stretcher drill as carried out in three-foot coal seam. The shot which did duty for a colliery explosion was followed by the easy and comfortable slinging up of a stalwart person from the bowels the earth by the “Singleton chair," which seemed to be a modification of the apparatus used in slinging live cattle off or in a ship. In the neighbourhood of the hospital tent were gathered the ambulance waggons, patent wire stretchers, &c. and the “Tortoise” flying hospital tent, lent by the makers of  it, the London Military Stores Company, London. The ambulance movements over the men were drawn up square and were addressed by Sir Henry Havelock-Allan, and were warmly commended for their efficiency. Observations were added by Sir Edmund Lechmere, Col. Thackeray and Dr Clark Newton and votes of thanks were accorded, that proposed to Clark Newton and Clark being by Mr C. W. Harrison and seconded by Mr James Page, South Shields. There was afterwards a military tournament, which was under the direction of Lieut. Trussler, R.A. and embraced tent pegging, lemon-slicing, wrestling on horseback, fighting for cockade, sword exercise, and pursuing practice, all which were watched with the greatest amount of interest. But perhaps the most enjoyable feature of the day's proceedings was the exhibition of various methods of saving life in shipwrecks by the Tynemouth Volunteer Life Brigade, under the superintendence of Alderman J. Forster Spence,- J.P., Mayor of Tynemouth.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 7 August 1893

9 August

The number of persons trained in ambulance work in the North of England is exceedingly large, as anyone might have seen last Saturday at a review held at Gosforth Park. The classes included miners, policemen, railway servants, and artisans of almost every description, and they marched on to the ground in sections of varying dimensions. Elswick Works contributed the largest body, perhaps, but the constabulary made a brave show, as did also the South Shields Volunteer Life Brigade. The lady nurses were there in goodly numbers, but their duties were so light that many of them must have felt a little disappointed. In fact, there seemed considerable amount of wasted effort in connection with the review. Some of the contingents were kept a long time standing in the rain before being called upon to do anything. The review, however, went to show that the people who have acquired a knowledge in first aid to the injured are thoroughly in earnest, and that they form no inconsiderable portion of the community.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 9 August 1893

9 August

Successful Ambulance Aid

[To the Editor of the Shields Gazette."]

SIR,—As public attention has recently been directed to the great importance of work by the review held in Gosforth Park on Saturday, I send you particulars of two cases which occurred in King Street on Sunday, showing not only the value of "First Aid to the Injured," but also the prompt manner in which such aid can be rendered by the members of the several classes in connection with centre.

On Sunday morning a poor fellow dropped in the street in a very bad epileptic fit, in a few moments P.C. Steadman, and Messrs Geo Scrafton and C. VV. Harrison both members the Life Brigade class, were on the spot and at once took the necessary steps in order to the prevent the man injuring himself, and to bring him out of the fit. On recovering, the patient was carried home by two bearers.

In the evening a trap accident happened near the same place. The horse fell and the driver in attempting to jump out, fell, and broke his leg below the knee. Robert J. S. Kell also of the Life Brigade class, who was passing at the time, instantly took him in hand, with the assistance of Mr C. W. Harrison, P.C.s. Steadman, and Wm. Armstrong, the patient was carried across to the Police Station, where the injured limb was set in splints and bandaged. The man was then taken to the Ingham Infirmary on the ambulance, and carried into the ward by the ambulance men. Dr Hamilton after examining the injury spoke in the highest terms of the excellent way in which the limb had been attended to and the bandages applied. There is no doubt that in both the above cases the patients were saved from serious complications by the prompt attention of those who were able to render “first aid”. I have also pleasure in stating that immediate and kind attention was given to the patient by Dr Hamilton and the nurses at the Infirmary.

Yours &c.


Hon. Sec., St John Ambulance Association
South Shields Centre

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 9 August 1893

12 August

A suggestion was made to make the Watch House and lifeboats visitor attractions.

Suggestion for Shields

[To the Editor of the Shields Gazette."]

Sir,—When sheltering the other day from heavy shower of rain, in the Rocket Brigade look-out house on the pier at South Shields, my friends and I were courteously shown round that excellently appointed establishment and whilst our interest was directed in examining the models and diagrams, &c, of various appliances for saving life at sea it occurred to us that, considering the large number visitors, if a portion of the premises were set apart as a small museum for practical working models of the above class of appliances, together with other matters of interest in that connection and a small charge, of say 2d made for admission, the show would be largely patronised by the visitors and general  public and eventually add another place of interest to the town and I feel sure that the cost of maintenance would be more than covered by the sum realised. Something similar might be adopted with our lifeboat house. There seems no very great reason why the boats round which so much interest is attached to landsmen, should be locked out of sight behind prisonlike doors. Why not have them exhibited, with all their gear and appliances, for a small admission and give the proceeds to some charitable cause? Will you therefore allow me through the medium of your valuable paper to bring this suggestion to the notice of those who have the management of the brigade at both sides of the harbour, who probably may be able give this matter consideration.—Yours, &c., X.Y.Z.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 12 August 1893

31 August


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

By Order of the Committee,

S. MALCOLM. Hon. Sec.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 31 August 1893


27 September


THE NEXT DRILL will take place Saturday Afternoon the 30th of Sept. 1893, at 2 30 o'clock.

Inspection by Captain Freeland, R.N., Inspector- General of Life Saving Apparatus.

S. MALCOLM, Hon. Sec.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 27 September 1893


4 October

The Brigade was inspected.
Always ready! That can certainly be said our lifeboatmen and brigadesmen. Last Saturday the latter body were put to a severe test as to their knowledge of the work that is required of them in case of a wreck, and they stood it in a way to command the warm congratulations of Captain Freeland, Inspector-General of Life Saving Apparatus. There was a good muster of between sixty and seventy and the men found that the inspector was one who was versed in all phases of working the apparatus, and they were not slow to take advantage of a few hints which he let drop in the course of the examination.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 4 October 1893

7 October


THE NEXT DRILL will take place Saturday Afternoon the 7th inst. at 4 o'clock.

S. MALCOLM, Hon. Sec.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 5 October 1893


1 November


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

S. MALCOLM, Hon. Sec.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 1 November 1893

7 November

Professor Slimmingo, orator and elecutionist, was a well-known local character.

PROFESSOR SLIMMINGO AND ROYALTY. - Last week Professor Slimmingo, of South Shields, forwarded to the Duke of Saxe Coburg a copy of his "Tribute to the South Shields Volunteer Life Brigade."  He has received the reply:—Sir, l am desired by the Duke of Saxe Coburg to acknowledge the receipt your letter of the 3rd inst., together with it's enclosure and express to you the thanks of H.R. Highness. I am, sir, your obedient servant, W. J. Colomb.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 7 November 1893

18 November

Severe gales hit the coast and the Brigade was on watch.

South Shields

The boisterous weather of yesterday has been succeeded by a storm the like of which has not been experienced in this district since the memorable gale of October, 1881. The glass rose rapidly after midnight and gave the first ominous indications, and the wind soon afterwards veered to the north-east and came away terrific gusts. Between four and five o'clock the storm had assumed the proportions of a perfect hurricane, and on sea and land soon made manifest its fearful and destructive strength. At daybreak the sight between the piers was awe inspiring. The waters were boiling foam as far as the eye could penetrate, and beyond it everything was obscured in a cloud of spray which was carried high into the air and swept over the pier in a continuous volume. By this time the wind had gathered such velocity as to render it an act of extreme danger and difficulty to wend one's way in the teeth the storm as far as the Brigade House. The tops of the breakers caught the fierce gusts of wind and flung upon the pier like a deluge, and the difficulties of pedestrianism were added to by the mingling of sand and spray which pelted into the face unmercifully. The volunteer brigade house was opened at an early hour, and as early five o'clock members of the institution began to muster. Among the officers on duty were Capt. G. R. Potts, Capt. Buckland, Deputy-Capt. Scrafton, and Deputy-Capt. Page, and there was also a good attendance of members. A sharp look out was kept from the tower, but after six o'clock this morning not a vestige of sail was sighted. A trawler passed over the bar at 5 o'clock, and an hour afterwards a big refuge steamer hove in sight and entered the harbour safely. At the time of writing there were no signs of the storm abating. If anything, the storm was worse. The ends of the piers were never visible, owing to the density the foam, and sometimes the opposite shore was shut out from view, while the lighthouse the end of the Groyne could be only dimly discerned through the mists of spray. Along shore the seething waters are breaking with tremendous force and sweeping over almost the whole extent of the sands, leaving low-lying parts entirely submerged, and presenting the appearance of a sea in itself.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 18 November 1893

20 November

The Great Gale

The almost complete breakdown of the telegraph renders it impossible at the moment of writing to even estimate the full extent of the damage due to the recent gale. The reports to hand so far, however, indicate that the storm has been one of the severest experienced on these coasts for many years. It is agreed on all hands that the fury of the storm at its height was quite equal to that of the now historic October gale of 1881, which strewed our coasts with wrecks, whilst the storm itself was of considerably longer duration. Fortunately, so far as the Tyne is concerned, the list of casualties is comparatively trifling beside the long tale of wrecks in 1881. Although happily their services have not been required, the unselfish devotion to duty of the noble fellows who form our Volunteer Life Brigades is none the less commendable. Since Friday night a continuous watch has been kept, some of the members of the two brigades at the entrance to the Tyne having been almost continuously on duty during that period. The wholesale wreckage of the telegraph and telephone wires raises once more the question whether it would not effect a great saving in the long run were the wires, on all the great trunk lines at least, placed underground in the country, as they are already in the towns.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 20 November 1893


2 December


THE NEXT DRILL will take place on Saturday Afternoon, the 2nd of December, at 4 o'clock.

S. MALCOLM, Hon. Sec.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 29 November 1893