The Tynemouth Lodge Hotel has been trading as a public house since it was first built in 1799 for a Mr William Hopper who ran it for a number of years. Consisting of three floors, the hotel is situated next door to the former House of Correction and Justices Room, which had been built seven years earlier in 1792.
The House of Correction was originally a prison for minor offenders whilst the more serious offenders were sent to the county gaol in Morpeth.
Circuit judges regularly stayed at the Tynemouth Lodge whilst engaged in their periodical duties in the Justices Room, which was also the local court house.
Part of the old cellar of the Tynemouth Lodge Hotel was once set aside as a kitchen area to prepare meals for the prisoners housed next door, and were delivered there via a short tunnel.
The present beer garden of the Tynemouth Lodge is situated behind the pub and to the rear of the Correction House, on the fringe of Northumberland Park. The land on which the pub and Correction House were built was formerly known as Pow Dene Bank.
Tynemouth Lodge closed as a public house in 1983 but it was rescued and purchased from Scottish and Newcastle Breweries by Mr Hugh Price. It had been allowed to fall into a poor state of repair and was threatened with demolition.
Hugh was a founder member of the Tyneside Branch of the Campaign for Real Ale, and he went about restoring and renovating the old building. It re-opened on 22nd December 1983 as a free house specialising in real ales. He acquired land at the side of the pub for car parking and later bought the old Correction House next door.
Tynemouth Lodge has since proved to be a very popular and successful pub which offers a limited range of fast-selling house beers, traditional real ales and also boasts the highest sales of Draught Bass on Tyneside.
In the past 20 years the ghost of a lady chasing young children has been seen by two successive tenants of a flat on the first floor of the pub. The ghost wears a bonnet, appears to be about 30 years of age and is dressed in Georgian style clothing. On each occasion, the sightings occurred during the early hours of the morning.
Tynemouth Lodge is one of the oldest surviving pubs in the area which is still operating as an ale house, and is also a rare example one of the few pubs in the area that was built with a high quality faience of glazed terracotta bricks.
More information can be found in my new book, Inns & Taverns of North Shields (Vol. 2), published by Summerhill Books and available from local booksellers – price £9.99.
by Charlie Steel © 2013
His published books include ‘Monkseaton Village’ Vols 1 & 2, and ‘North Shields Public Houses, Inns & Taverns’ Parts 1 & 2, all of which are available from most local booksellers.