This picture shows the Earl Grey Inn standing alongside St Faith’s Mission in Hudson Street, North Shields.
The earliest record of the Earl Grey dates to the early 1840s and Trade Directories list John Chapman as the proprietor.
The Port of Tyne Pilot newspaper reported on November 26, 1841, that John Chapman had been charged with “allowing drinking and disorderly conduct in his house at a quarter past two on the morning of Tuesday the 9th”, and that he was fined 50 shillings, plus costs, accordingly.
The Earl Grey changed hands on a number of occasions throughout the mid 1800s and the census return of 1871 shows William Dysart, 53, as the Inn Keeper. He was living with his wife Elizabeth, 41, son Henry, 13, stepsons Thomas, ten, and William, nine, and servant Elizabeth Stanley, 24. A blacksmith named John Mangham was also boarding at the inn, along with mariner Charles Wright.
An article in the Shields Daily News on September 14, 1872, reported that “licenses in the black list, namely ... W Dysart, Earl Grey Inn,” among others, would be renewed, but that “those persons were cautioned as to their future conduct.” Such future conduct seemingly improved as the Earl Grey retained its license without issue for the remainder of the 19th century.
Newcastle Breweries Ltd was the last recorded licensee of the Earl Grey in 1938, three years prior to a compulsory purchase order issued.
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