November Events in and around Sunderland (Mainly of a historical interest)

Posted on Oct 20 2015

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(events in and around Sunderland, mainly of a historical interest)


Sunderland Museum

19th September to 29th November  Picture the Poet: high quality photographs of living poets on loan from the National Portrait Gallery

19th September to 1st November  North East poets: image and inspiration - photographic portraits of North East poets taken by young people from Southmoor Academy

3rd November to 6th December  Portraits from the North East – the work of a photographic collective featuring North East people and celebrating their contribution to the life of the region.

26th September to 13th December  Ripples from the house on the shore: an exhibition to celebrate the work of bird artist Eric Ennion

Monkwearmouth Station Museum

21st March to 1st November   The art of mining: art celebrating the region’s rich mining heritage

15th November to 28th February   Ian S Carr: a Wearside railway photographer

Washington ‘F’ Pit Museum

The ‘F’ Pit will be open from 11am to 3pm on the 30th and 31st of October

South Shields Museum and Art Gallery

13th June to 31st October     Seaside Shields: holidaying at the seaside from the 1800’s onwards

Durham University Oriental Museum

12th June to 18th October     Nissan: 30 years on – the impact of three decades of Nissan on the lives of the people of the North East


The Canny Space (formerly Sunderland Holy Trinity Church) (tel 07881106330)

10th October at 6.30pm  I’m Jack: a novel based on the Yorkshire Ripper hoaxer                 Mark Blacklock

22nd October  2 to 4pm and 6.30 to 8.30pm  The East End remembered – two screenings of a film telling residents’ stories of their lives in The Garths and the East End, 1940 to 1995.

The Donnison School

The Lovell Lectures will be given at The Donnison School, Church Walk, Sunderland from 1pm to 3pm on these Mondays (admission £2.50 for visitors and £2.00 for members, including refreshments)

26th October          The harbour and docks of Sunderland                                                           Jack Curtis

30th November     ‘It really is a wonderful life’ – the story behind the film                                                Bernard Hope

7th December       A personal childhood journey through Christmas past                                               Jack Curtis

The Friends of Sunderland Museums (FOSUMS)

Meetings are held in Sunderland Museum on irregular Saturdays at 2pm. Visitors welcome, charge £1

14th November     Three Sunderland women                                                                                                John McManners

Hetton Local and Natural History Society

Meetings are held in Hetton and Eppleton Community Hall at 7pm – the entrance fee of £2 includes refreshments

26th October          Jeremiah Dixon (of the Mason-Dixon Line fame)                                        David Hughes

30th November     The Durham Probates                                                                                        Jennifer Tindall

Houghton and District Local History Group

Meetings are held at the Kepier Hall (behind Houghton Parish Church) on the fourth Thursday of the month at 6.45pm – a charge of £2 includes refreshments.

22nd October         Life in the 1970’s                                                                                                 Phil Curtis

26th November     ‘It really is a wonderful life’ – the story behind the film                                         Bernard Hope

Nifty Fifties

The group meets fortnightly on a Thursday in the City Library and Arts Centre from 1.30 to 3pm and

the charge is £2.50 per session, refreshments included.  Please ring 5611235 for further information.

15th October          Sunderland soldiers in the First World War                                                    Margaret Thynne

29th October          The history of herbal teas, including a sampling session                               Amanda Barrell  

Ryhope Heritage Society

Meetings are held at Ryhope Community Centre on the second Tuesday of each month at 1.30pm

13th October          The bridges of the River Wear                                                                          Ron Lawson

10th November     Bobby Gurney: Sunderland’s famous forward                                                     Anne Herrington

Silksworth Heritage Group

Meetings are held at Beckwith Mews, Silksworth, on the third Monday of each month at 1.30pm (please note the new date and time) and the charge is £1, including refreshments

19th October          An old-fashioned wash day                                                                              Colin Orr

16th November     The natural history of Tunstall Hills                                                                      Allan White

Sunderland Antiquarian Society

Members and visitors are welcome to view the Society’s archives at the Heritage Centre, 6 Douro Terrace, each Wednesday and Saturday morning from 9.30 to 12.  Meetings are held in St. George’s Church, Stockton Road, on the 3rd Tuesday at 7.30pm. Visitors welcome, charge £1.

20th October          Sunderland in the 1920s and 30s                                                                    Trevor Thorne

17th November     The history of Cleadon village                                                                          Maurice Chadwick

South Hylton Local History Society

Meetings are held on the third Monday at The South Hylton Tansy Centre at 7pm

19th October          A postcard journey along the old A1                                                                               George Nairn

16th November     Sunderland between the Wars                                                                                        Phil Curtis

Sunderland Civic Society

Meetings are held at Age UK, The Bradbury Centre, Stockton Road on the second Thursday of alternate months starting at 6pm.  Visitors welcome, charge £1

12th November     Sunderland City Council landscape architects Phil Dorian and Kevin Johnson will talk about their work.  Tickets for the Civic Society Christmas party on 10th December will be on sale at the meeting.

Sunderland Theatre Organ Preservation Society

Concerts are held on irregular Sunday afternoons at Ryhope Community Centre, Black Road, Ryhope starting at 2.30pm.  The 1932 Compton Theatre Organ was formerly at the Odeon in Holmeside.

18th October         The organist is Carl Heslop

13th December     The organist is Stephen Austin

Washington History Society

Meetings are held at 1.30pm on the first Monday of the month at the Life House (Washington MIND’s premises in Grasmere Terrace, Columbia,formerly Glebe Colliery Welfare)

2nd November       Fatfield to Cox Green: the history of the riverside                                         Eileen Appleby

Wearside Field Club

Meetings are held in Fulwell Community Centre, Chapman Street (behind Fulwell Junior School) on the second Tuesday at 7.30 pm.   Visitors welcome, charge £1

10th November     Victorian pit women                                                                                            Margaret Hedley


** At Sunderland Museum on 21st October and 18th November from 1pm to 3pm (drop-in) Kath Price and her textile volunteers will give a demonstration of traditional mat making.  On 14th October and 11th November members of the Sunderland Branch of the Knitting and Crochet Guild will demonstrate their skills.

** Sunderland Museum will host the Fairtrade Partnership’s One World Party on 31st October from 11 to 3pm – it will be a celebration of world cultures with Fairtrade products, world music, food and family activities

** Black Cats' Stories: a touring exhibition illustrating the significance of football to the people of Sunderland through digital storytelling, photographs, sound, moving images and animation.  The exhibition will be at Houghton Library from 12th to 22nd October and then at Sunderland City Library from 26th October to 27th November

** An Opera of Two Halves: an opera for the City of Sunderland, with football at the heart of the story – it will be performed at Sunderland Minster on 27th – 29th November.  Please see

** Sunderland Illuminations take place in Roker Park and the sea front from 26th September to 1st November

** A Roker Methodist Church on 21st October from 7.30 to 9pm there will be a ‘Stringing Bedes Heritage Evening’ to celebrate the life of the Venerable Bede.  The evening will include displays, presentations about Bede, heritage and wildlife as well as poetry readings and art inspired by walking through Bede’s landscape.

** The steaming dates at Ryhope Engines Museum this autumn are 24th and 25th October – there will also be a classic car event on 25th October.  For more information please contact the Secretary on 5160212

** As part of Sunderland University’s Discover series of public lectures, on 14th October author Ann Cleeves will speak on ‘Jimmy Perez, Vera Stanhope and me’. Also in this series, on 26th November ITV presenter Alastair Stewart will speak on the pressures facing independent media.  Both lectures will take place at the Murray Library Lecture Theatre starting at 6.30pm.  Tickets are free but need to be booked by telephoning 5153265

** At St Peter’s Church on 14th November at 3pm  former Sunderland South MP Chris Mullin will speak on ‘The changing face of Sunderland’ at an event to launch the Sunderland volume of the Victoria County History

**  Until 28th October, to mark the sixtieth anniversary of it’s opening, there will be an exhibition at Washington Old Hall titled ‘How the Hall was saved’.  General admission prices apply (tel 4166879)

** The WEA has arranged a free eleven week course on World War One, with tutor Sharon Vincent.  It is to be held at the Donnison School, starting on Monday 12th October at 10.30  Please ring 5654835 to reserve a place.


** Many of the Sunderland Literature Festival events have a historical theme including the following:

 The Time Bandits’ Battle of Britain performance will take place at Washington Town Centre Library at  2pm on October 19th (tel: 5613441).  Norman Kirtlan will give a talk on the case of Mary Bell at Houghton Library at 6pm on 15th October (tel: 5616383).  Stephanie Yearnshire will speak on Mary Ann Cotton – murderess or misunderstood matriarch? at the Ship Isis at 6.15pm on 17th October.  Peter Welsh’s theme is Washington in the Great War at Washington Town Centre Library at 10am on 22nd October.  On 23rd October at Sunderland City Library at 11am writer Amanda Revell Walton will talk about her saga series The Shipyard Girls, following the fortunes of the first girls to work in the Sunderland shipyards in the Second World War. Writer Lorna Windham will give a talk on Code of Honour and her other historical novels at Washington Town Centre Library  at 10.30am on 29th October.  Bryan and Mary Talbot will speak about their book Sally Heathcote: suffragette at Sunderland City Library at 1pm on 31st October.  Finally at the Sandhill Centre Library from 12th October to 13th November there will be an exhibition, Wor Women, exploring the roles of local women in the Great War.  For the full Sunderland Literature Festival programme please see      


Last changed: Oct 21 2015 at 7:31 AM