Thursday, 15 December 2011

Ryhope Pump House

The Ryhope Engines Museum is a visitor attraction in the Ryhope suburb of Sunderland, Tyne and Wear.
The Grade II listed building is the most visited man-made landmark in Ryhope and is based at The Ryhope Pumping Station, operational for 100 years before closing in 1967.
The volunteer-run museum contains two Victorian beam engines, which are kept in working order by members of the Ryhope Engines Trust. The site is owned by Northumbrian Water, successors to the Sunderland & South Shields Water Company which built the complex in the 1860s.
The engines are a near identical pair of double-acting compound rotative beam engines by the local North East firm R & W Hawthorn of Newcastle - 'possibly the finest pair of compound beam engines in Great Britain. Each beam weighs 22 tons and each flywheel 18 tons. Both engines can be seen fully operational and in steam on various weekends and bank holidays each year.
The museum also contains three 1908 Lancashire boilers (two of which are still in regular service), a blacksmith's forge, a waterwheel, numerous steam engines and pumps, a replica plumber's shop, and many items associated with waterworks. In addition, visitors arriving in the engine house are now able to see to the bottom of the 250-foot well shaft by means of a viewing panel inserted in the floor.

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