“Plant of Renown” is the name given to this Loftus Lodge, which comes from Ezekiel 34:29 – ‘And I will raise up for them a plant of renown, and they shall be no more consumed with hunger in the land, neither bear the shame of the heathen any more.’
Other local lodges were “Charltons Excelsior” at Margrove Park, “Hope of Lingdale”, “Star of Brotton” “Dawn of Peace” and “Star of Hope”
The land for the Mechanics Institute was donated by Admiral Chalenor in 1861, the mechanics in question would be the ones associated with the booming local ironstone trade at that time. An 1866 report lists 54 pupils.
Surprisingly this is not a listed building.
Three 70ft furnaces of the Acklam Ironworks were blown in by Stevenson, Jacques & Company in December 1865, they were places on wooden piles driven into a marsh, in an area which become known as the Ironmasters district of Middlesbrough. At this point they are using ironstone from the Brotton ironstone mine as the companys own mine at Boosbeck had not started.
A fourth furnace was added in 1868.
They passed into the ownership of the Acklam Iron Company in 1888 and in turn to North Eastern Steel Company in 1896, which then become part of Dorman Long around 1904.
A 1924 Dorman Long publication shows a photo of the furnaces.
A group has been started to raise awareness and hopefully funding to safeguard the future of the Skinningrove Jetty
Preserving the historical structure is certainly a cause I can fully get behind. Sadly despite the effort of one councillor for many years, certain other members of the council appear to see it as little more than an inconvenience rather than an important piece of local history and an asset which people enjoy.
The ironstone mine at Port Mulgrave was started by Charles Mark Palmer in the 1850s and was originally called ‘Far Rosedale’ or ‘Rosedale on the Coast’ , it was renamed to avoid confusion with the Rosedale Mines.
The Main Seam at this location is actually slightly below sea level and shafts existed on the shore, but no trace of these remain due to landslips, additional quarrying and underground working of the Top Seam took place much higher up the cliffs and a shaft was sunk to connect to Top Seam workings with the wooden loading gantry on the harbour. The tunnel where this emerged from the cliffs is still visible.
The gate is now securely locked and the tunnel cannot be entered, I took the following photos back in 2007 when it was not locked, they show the large roof collapse just inside the entrance
The brickwork of the tunnel is almost built directly into the cliff face.
I believe the bricked-up entrance was used as a pillbox during World War 2, hence the loop hole.
The tunnel inside was extended in the 1870s to connect to the Grinkle Mine also owned by Charles Mark Palmer via Dalehouse.
I’ve previously posted photos of Ayton Banks when it was heavily overgrown.
The foundations of the terminal of the ropeway have since been cleared of brambles and weeds and are now much more visible.
The ends of two steel ropes from the ropeway can still be seen anchored into the concrete.
The 1928 OS map shows the cable running from the mine site about 2km to railway sidings near Cliff Rigg Quarry
Myself and other members of the Cleveland Mining Heritage Society also cleared the location of the early Cookes ventilator where we removed undergrowth from the masonery.
As a reward for helping out, we were allowed to look into the drift which is not open to the public.Inside is a hole in the wall which was opened when the museum was first developed, this leads over a flooded shaft. This would have been blocked then ventilation moved to other machinery.
A second short shaft also goes upwards, into the back of the mine recreation part of the museum.
There also a small bypass tunnel, to get you past the machinery when it was in use.
Several difficult to access areas of museum have become overgrown, so myself and some friends volunteered to help. The main area looked at was the Waddle Fan pit which was full of moss and rubbish.
Several members of our group descended into the pit to remove the debris
By the end of the day the pit was scrubbed clean and good for another few years.
The remains of Upsall Pit are now heavily covered in undergrowth, although the outline of the reservoir and spoil heap can still be identified
The pit was 564ft deep and sunk in the 1850s – 1860s, it is the lowest point of the Eston Mines so was used in pumping water from the mine and ventilation as well as providing access for men and tubs.
The row of houses know as Barnaby Moor or Pit Top (now demolished) were still in existence but deserted in the late 1940s.
This concrete cover marks the location of the village well.
This extract from ‘A Century is Stone’ by Craig Hornby gives much more detail.