Northumbria World War One Commemoration Project
A community heritage project based on wartime experiences of the North Tyneside and wider North East communities.
Since early in the current decade there has been an enormous public focus on the centenary period of the First World War – 4th August, 2014 until 11th November, 2018 (the 100th anniversary of the signing of the Armistice with Germany). The country has been reminded over this period, by a series of important anniversary dates of key events, of the sacrifice of the nation, which brought personal loss to almost every family in the land.
The former Borough of Tynemouth marked that loss with a Roll of Honour published in 1923 containing very brief details of some 1,850 local residents known to have lost their lives due to causes associated with the war and their service. The project over the four years 2010 to 2014 researched detailed biographies of those men, with the aim of reminding the population today of that loss and also to explore the social and economic consequences for the town and its inhabitants. A current database of more than 1850 personal biographies can now be viewed.
In January 2015 the Tynemouth project was expanded to encompass all of the communities of the current Borough of North Tyneside.
An application for grant funding submitted to the Heritage Lottery Fund to support the project in researching a wider area now included in the project’s acclaimed database was successful and groups were established to research the casualties of Whitley Bay, Wallsend, Forest Hall, Benton and the mining communities of Killingworth, Dudley, Burradon, Backworth, Shiremoor and others. A further 2200 casualties were added bringing the total for the modern borough of North Tyneside to 4000 for the period 1914 – 1921.
Following the conclusion of the extensive programme of events in November 2018 that marked the centenary of the signing of The Armistice in November 1918 the project has been refocussed and is now examining the history of the men who served in the 18th Battalion, Northumberland Fusiliers (1st Tyneside Pioneers). In addition the project has acquired a substantial cache of correspondence in connection with the Borough of Tynemouth Prisoners of War Parcels Fund.
A new database will be established in respect of the research into the above topics which it is planned will include the post-war lives of those subject of this research where they survived the war.
In addition work is being carried on to enhance the existing Northumbria database in respect of new sources of information which have become available more recently.
The project work room: Room-B9, Linskill Community Centre, Linskill Terrace, North Shields, NE30 2AY is staffed by volunteers from 11 am to 3 pm each day, Monday to Friday (whenever possible). If planning a visit from a long distance it is advisable to contact us firstly by email so that a volunteer with relevant experience to the subject of your enquiries can be available.
WEBSITE UPDATED NOVEMBER 2019