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Barracks Map, 1894

Name: Sunderland Barracks

Region: Sunderland

Date of Origin: 1794

Site Type: Military Residence

Condition: Closed in 1910. Now demolished

Status: Site now occupied by the Corporation Quay. The Welcome Tavern occupies the south eastern part of the facility.

Last Updated: 23/05/2020

Address: Barrack Street, Sunderland

"In response to the Napoleonic threat in the late 18th century, volunteer regiments were set up and barracks were constructed. In Sunderland men were housed in rented accomodation, but purpose-built barracks were constructed in 1794, close to the harbour. A hospital for 80 patients was also built a short distance to the south. The 1st edition Ordnance Survey plan shows a ball alley, hospital and magazine within the site of the barracks. In July 2002, to the rear of the Welcome Tavern, Barrack Road, dressed stone blocks and a section of an interior concrete floor retaining signs of former dividing walls were uncovered just centimetres below the modern surface. The Welcome Tavern is on the site of the barracks." - Sitelines

"The site of the battery and barracks is indicated by the name Barrack Street close to Sunderland docks. Defensive guns were installed in the 1740s during the War of Jenkins’ Ear and a barracks was added in 1795. These were located right on the shoreline at the mouth of the river up until the building of the neighbouring docks in the 1850s. Being so close to the shore, the batteries were subject to erosion and over time there were a series of instalments." - England's North East

"The barracks, which were designed by Thomas Neill, were built using timber construction as part of the British response to the threat of the French Revolution and were completed in 1794.They included accommodation for 1,528 infantry troops and, from 1803, an 80-bed hospital.[1] The soldiers' quarters were rebuilt using brick construction between 1826 and 1828. In 1873 a system of recruiting areas based on counties was instituted under the Cardwell Reforms and the barracks became the depot for the 68th (Durham) Regiment of Foot and the 106th Regiment of Foot (Bombay Light Infantry).

Following the Childers Reforms and the formation of the Durham Light Infantry from the amalgamation of the 68th and 106th Regiments of Foot in 1881,the Durham Light Infantry moved out of the barracks and established its depot at Fenham Barracks in Newcastle upon Tyne in 1884. After that the Sunderland Barracks were mainly used by Royal Artillery units. By the turn of the century many of the barracks built in the late 18th century were in poor condition and in May 1909, the War Office started considering disposal of the Sunderland site. The barracks were decommissioned shortly thereafter and demolished in the early 1930s to make way for Corporation Quay."


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