Welcome to The Handbook's website. A free community magazine and business directory delivered monthly to homes in Harton and surrounding areas of South Shields, Cleadon and East Boldon. It is also available from a range of outlets including local businesses, libraries, restaurants, coffee bars, Health Centres and dentists’ surgeries.
  • ‘Tyne’ Lifeboat and Canopy

    The Lifeboat, located at the start of the Pier Parade in South Shields the world’s second oldest lifeboat in existence. It shows a beautiful example of the North East’s history with the sea. The local landmark was built in 1833 and has been recently restored. The installation of the lighting has been attracting budding photographers ever since. In 1884 it was given to South Shields Corporation by the Trustees of the Tyne Lifeboat Institution. It was placed on public display in the decorative canopy as a permanent reminder of the skill and bravery of the men of the Tyne Lifeboat Institution. What helps make the scene so picturesque ...

  • The Cabinet of Linguistic Curiosities

    Local South Shields author and ‘The Handbook’ contributor has a new book out just in time for Christmas.  Every day since 10 December 2013, the @HaggardHawks Twitter feed has been bringing you a daily Word of the Day. As a general rule (and as with all HH words) these Words of the Day are culled from the more obscure corners of the more obscure dictionaries, with the aim of bringing you a daily shot of vocabulary of which you’ll hopefully have never heard. And now, we have an entire year’s worth of words to offer you—with an extra slice of historical context thrown in just for good ...

  • Man, woman, boy and girl

     The origins and histories of four everyday words cropped up on HH this week:  Whereas man meant simply “person” or “human” in Old English (a meaning that still survives in words like manslaughter, mankind and manhandle), the word for an adult male in Old English was wer (which still survives today, oddly enough, in werewolf and virago). The opposite of wer was wif. Despite being the origin of wife (and so only referring to married women today), it originally meant merely “adult woman”—a more general sense that survives in words like midwife and housewife. Over time however wif gradually came to be used more specifically to refer to married women. But that meant that English needed another more ...

  • The Customs House

    When looking at some of the most prestigious and historic buildings in South Shields, the Customs House has to be one of them. This magnificent building situated at the Mill Dam overlooking the River Tyne is now at the centre of today’s artistic and cultural society, but it’s certainly had its fair share of ups and downs. Records show that in the mid nineteenth century despite the fact that the majority of Tyne bound vessels were loaded and discharged in Shields harbour, all customs business was still being transacted in Newcastle. North and South Shields together owned more shipping than Newcastle and as early as ...

  • Cleadon Mill

    Shrouded in an air of mystery, on the highest part of Cleadon Hills, proudly sits one of our most prominent local landmarks. Built almost 200 years ago Cleadon Mill was one of over a hundred windmills in the North East of England, mostly scattered along the coast. This stone tower mill which sits 200 metres above sea level, is built from Magnesium Limestone and was built for the purpose of grinding corn, but it is believed that this was not the first windmill on this isolated spot. Following the devastation brought on by the black death in the fourteenth century a survey of the land ...

‘Tyne’ Lifeboat and Canopy

The Lifeboat, located at the start of the Pier Parade in South Shields the world’s second oldest lifeboat in existence. It shows a beautiful example of the North East’s history with the sea. The local landmark was built in 1833 and has been recently restored. The installation of the lighting has been attracting budding photographers ever since. In 1884 it was given to South Shields Corporation by the Trustees of the Tyne Lifeboat Institution. It was placed on public display in the decorative canopy as a permanent reminder of the skill and bravery of the men of the Tyne Lifeboat Institution. What helps make the scene so picturesque ...
Read more