Posts Tagged ‘Humber’

Hull Colour – 7

Saturday, July 18th, 2020
Lighthouse, Paull 81-04-Hull-043_2400

I think that Paull was one of the places we may have walked to during one of our stays in Hull, taking a bus to somewhere outside the city to a suitable starting point. There were a couple of time I hired a car, but I think only to go for holiday weeks elsewhere in Yorkshire. The last time I hired one I managed to drive it off the road into a ploughed field at some speed somewhere near Meaux (which despite the name is on the outskirts of Hull) and decided the time had come for me to give up driving.

Strangely given that back in 1965 when I first visited Hull was a city full of bicycles it was over 35 years before I ever cycled around the city. And when I did in 2003, I visited Paull for a second time, though actually riding there from Hornsea.

Paull is a riverside village on the north bank of the Humber a few miles south-east of Hull, just beyond Hedon Haven. Neither Paull nor Hedon grew as ports because sandbanks in the Humber made them unsuitable for larger ships, while a deepwater channel led towards the mouth of the River Hull.

Navigation in and out of Hull was tricky, and in 1836 Trinity House built the lighthouse at Paull for ships leaving Hull to steer towards, before picking up other lights on the south side of the estuary. Unfortunately the channel soon moved and by around 1870 this lighthouse was obsolete and was replaced by two ‘leading lights’ a little further downstream at Thorngumbald Clough.

This extensive Grade II listed property was offered for sale in 2013 for £169,950 though it is unclear if it was sold and a rather lower bid was considered. For those of us used to London prices it seems excessively cheap.

Mouth of River Hull, RIver Humber 81-04-Hull-044_2400

This picture amused me after photographing the Humber Bridge and I think I captioned it at the time as “Not the Humber Bridge” . The view is actually of both the River Hull, coming in from the left and the Humber across the top of the image, and the spit of mud and sand is Sammy’s Point, where Hull’s major tourist attraction, ‘The Deep’ now stands, a little back from the point here.

This was a short gangway leading out to a iron-sheathed concrete dolphin at the mouth of the River Hull from the end of Nelson St. The dolphin, designed as a temporary mooring in deep water for vessels waiting for the tide to go up the River Hull (and perhaps to protect the bank from vessels off course) is still there, but the promenade has been rebuilt to stretch to the dolphin, and a footpath now leads north from it beside the Hull.

Alley in Old Town, Hull 81-04-Hull-050_2400
Alley in Old Town, Hull 1981

I can’t remember precisely where this was, but the view through it is to the wholesale fruit and vegetable traders, probably on Humber St, though possibly on Wellington St. I think this may have been an alley leading from Blanket Row, but the area has changed too much for me to now be sure.

Clearly I was attracted by both the atmosphere of the alley leading to the street and by the colour, particularly the three areas of blue against the muted yellows. Blue mixed with yellow in my paintbox to make greens and green is the only other colour in this image.

Barge R57 moored at wharf north of Ferry Lane, Hull 81-04-Hull-052_2400
Barge R57 moored at wharf north of Ferry Lane, Hull 1981

The last time I was in Hull I sat eating a lunchtime snack beside the River Hull here, though the scene had changed a little.

There was actually a barge moored a little downstream, though looking rather derelict, but I was surprised to find that there were still a couple of buildings from the earlier image remaining.

East Hull Ladder Works, Hull 81hull81003_2400
East Hull Ladder Works, Hull 1981

I don’t know the name of the dog or the name of the street where the East Hull Ladder Works then stood, but am fairly sure that it and the houses along the street either fell down or were demolished not long after I made the picture.

Probably this was a side-street off of Holderness Rd, well-placed for timber which came into Hull’s Victoria Dock. The rapid growth of Hull during the 19th century with its tremendous boom in house building will have created considerable demand for ladders.

Holderness Rd, 1977 – East Hull

And there were certainly plenty of them for sale on the Holderness Road as this picture from my web site ‘Still Occupied – A View of Hull‘ shows.

Sissons Paints, mosaic, Clough Rd, Bankside, Hull 81-04-Hull-058_2400
Sissons Paints, mosaic, Clough Rd, Bankside, Hull 81

Sisson’s Paints were another famous brand from Hull, and their advertising often used their 1910 trademark of two painters carrying cans of paint and a plank. Sisson’s won a court case against a far-eastern company that copied it, replacing the plank with a ladder, but now Sissons Paints Malaysia, one of several foreign companies that continue its name, uses it with a ladder. In the early years adverts using it had the plank carrying the text ‘Hall’s. Distemper’, a product responsible for many gloomy hallways across the world, which over the years I’ve cleaned laboriously from several walls.

Sisson’s extensive works were beside the River Hull at Bankside and had this mosaic installed in 1953 (their 150th anniversary) when they were rebuilt after wartime bombing. The company was bought by Reckitt and Colman in 1964, sold on to the Donald Macpherson Group in 1968 and taken over by  Finland’s largest paint manufacturer Tikkurila Oy in 1984, though production in Hull had I think ceased before this and the plant looked derelict when I took this picture. It was demolished in the early 1990s and the mosaic lost. All that remains is the gates.

Part of the large area occupied by the factory is now more colourful than ever as a part of the Bankside Gallery which sprung up following Banksy’s addition ‘Draw The Raised Bridge’ on Scott Street bridge in January 2018.

Bankside Gallery, 2018

Hull Colour 1972-85 on Flickr.


My London Diary : London Photos : Hull : River Lea/Lee Valley : London’s Industrial Heritage : Flickr

All photographs on this and my other sites, unless otherwise stated, are taken by and copyright of Peter Marshall, and are available for reproduction or can be bought as prints.


Hull Colour – 4

Tuesday, July 14th, 2020
Humber Bridge, Hull 80hull065
Humber Bridge, Hull ca.1980

I’m not sure from exactly where I took this view of the Humber Bridge under construction, but I was fortunate enough to go on a tour of the construction organised for a group of science teachers, and it could have been made during that visit, though I don’t remember taking any colour pictures then. The bridge took around 9 years to build and was completed and opened in 1981.

The mill visible on Hessle foreshore was built around 1810 to grind the chalk that was being quarried here into whiting, finely powdered chalk used as a filler in paint and, together with linseed oil to make putty, in whitewash, gesso and ceramic glazes etc. The windmill went out of use about a hundred years ago, losing its cap and sails and the quarry closed in 1970. The area is now a country park.

Humber Bridge, Hull 80shull062
Humber Bridge, Hull ca.1980

After the cables were spun the box-girder sections of bridge decking were added, beginning in November 1979 and this picture must have been made shortly after this. Wikipedia states “the Humber Bridge was the longest single-span suspension bridge in the world for 17 years.”

When our family was travelling to Hull by train in the 1980s we would look out for the Humber Bridge in the distance to know we were getting close to our destination. I always offered a small cash prize for the first of our party to spot it through the train window, but think I never had to pay it out as I always saw it before the others.

River Humber, Hull 80hull110
River Humber, Hull 1980

The Humber has always seemed more mud in motion than a river, always a dirty brown colour, and it is only the small waves that differentiate between the river and the shore in this view. The mud and sandbanks in the estuary are always moving, and for many years ships travelling up the river to Hull or Goole needed the services of the Trinity House pilots, who started offering their services in 1512 and in 1581 were granted a charter authorising them to examine and licence pilots and take charge of ships. Various Acts of Parliament followed to endorse and regulate their activities, but the 1984 Pilotage Act transferred responsibility to the ports. In 2002 Associated British Ports terminated the authorisations of all Humber Pilots and employed their own pilots directly.

You can now walk along an esplanade along what had been the river frontage of Victoria Dock and various ship-building and other related businesses but only as far as what was the Alexandra Dock and is now ‘Green Port Hull’, a a wind energy manufacturing plant and riverside quay. I think this picture was probably taken just a little further downriver than the path now takes you.

Humber Dock Side, Hull 80hull113
Humber Dock Side, Hull 1980

There were some blue sheds on the dock side of Humber Dock that were demolished when the dock was dredged and converted into Hull Marina, and these had painted steel columns and wooden sides. The marine air had over the years produced this incredible rusting, lifting up the thick painted layers.

The buildings at the right of the picture are still there, though considerably altered on Humber Place at its junction with Wellington St, and are now Francis House, the offices of an accountancy firm, though the Wellington St building at extreme right has been demolished.

Railway Dock, Hull 80hull114
Railway Dock, Hull 1980

Although Hull lost some of its most impressive warehouses to a road scheme which split the Old Town from the city centre to take the heavy traffic for the King George Dock to the east of the city, some of those beside Railway Dock were retained, with the three gables shown here still visible, though the mass at the extreme right has been demolished.

KIng Billy, Market Place, Hull 80hull115a
Railway warning, Hull 1980

King Billy, King William III or William of Orange, successfully invaded Britain in 1688 in what is sometimes called the ‘Glorious Revolution’. James II was unpopular, largely because he was a Catholic and was seen to be changing Britain to a Catholic country, suspending anti-Catholic measures by decree when Parliament refused to do so and prosecuting Anglican bishops for seditious libel. His actions prompted anti-Catholic riots and many leading political figures of the day invited William to come and take over the country. But there were also leading Catholic members of the aristocracy who defended James and the ‘divine right of kings’ to overule all others, including Parliament. One of them was the governor of Hull, Lord Langdale, who took the military to occupy the city of Hull, fearing that William of Orange might try and land there. But instead of coming across the North Sea, William’s fleet went down the Channel and landed at Brixham on Novermber 5th, marching from there to London. The army deserted James and he fled to France on December 11th.

Hull had remained under Catholic control until December 3rd, when Protestant officers, hearing of a plot to imprison them, got together and arrested Langdale and his Catholic supporters. The day was celebrated in Hull for many years as ‘Town Taking Day’ when many wore orange sashes and celebrated with a procession, church service and fireworks in the Market Square – and around the statue of King Billy after it had been erected there in 1734.

Market Place is very much a backwater in the Old Town now, on the edge of the busy A63 and with one side occupied by some of the city’s most tedious buildings, as well as the rear end of Holy Trinity. Since the listed public toilets under King Billy closed there are few reasons to go there.

Railway warning, Hull 80hull116
Re-used Railway warning notice, Hull. 1980

A dockside building with a doorway closed with boards from a notice that was once beside one of the swing bridges, probably that taking Wellington St across the Humber Dock lock, warning people it is an offence to pass the warning lights onto the bridge or be on it while it is moving.

A public footpath crosses the swing bridge into Albert Dock, and some time in the early 1980s while I was out walking with my family I notice that my wife and younger son in a push-chair were no longer following me. I turned around an looked for them, eventually spotting them on the bridge which was turning around to admit a ship to the dock. They had walked past the warning lights before they had been activated and the bridge operator, do doubt thinking only of the lorries which went across, had failed to spot a young woman already on the bridge with a baby buggy. She got a free ride and profuse apologies rather than a fine.

One of Hull’s minor tourist attractions, perhaps inspired by notices such as these, is now a footbridge across the River Hull on which people are allowed to ride. Unfortunately ship movements up the Hull are now extremely rare and the bridge almost never operates in anger, but there are scheduled tests most if not all weekends on which I’ve taken a couple of rides.


My London Diary : London Photos : Hull : River Lea/Lee Valley : London’s Industrial Heritage : Flickr

All photographs on this and my other sites, unless otherwise stated, are taken by and copyright of Peter Marshall, and are available for reproduction or can be bought as prints.