Looking Back at world’s biggest crane in Wallsend

North Eastern Marine Engineering Co Ltd Wallsend
North Eastern Marine Engineering Co Ltd Wallsend

The North East Marine Engineering Company’s crane shown in this picture was built in 1909. At 154ft above wharf level, it was the biggest in the world.

The company began at South Dock, Sunderland, in 1865 and first began building engines at Wallsend in 1882. At that time William Allen was the company’s general manager and it was he who planned over 100 houses in Wallsend. Foremen lived at Northumberland Villas, mechanics at North Terrace and the lower paid at South Terrace.

In 1901 the company became one of the first to make bulk purchases of electricity from the newly founded Newcastle Electric Supply Company, with which they powered their machinery, including the giant crane.

If you have any further information please email discover@northtyneside.gov.uk