Heritage Talk: Steel Plates and Shipyard Gates

David Young, former Old Low Light trustee and now a member of the North Shields Heritology Project, will talk about Smith’s Dock, which at the turn of the 20th century was the largest dry dock in the world.

He will focus on the part it played in worldwide shipping, the industrial heritage of the local area and in the local community.

David, who is a regular speaker at the Old Low Light, will explain how through a project with pupils at Percy Main Primary School, the North Shields Heritologists have been helping young people to gain an understanding of working life in the yards and for some of them, how their own families were involved.

He will also draw on poems about life in the yards by shipyard welder Jack Davitt, who became known as the ‘Shipyard Poet’, writing under the name ‘Ripyard Cuddling’.

The talk is part of a programme of events linked to a new exhibition in the heritage gallery, the Merchant Navy – Tyneside Stories, which opened in October.

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