Can you add names to these mystery faces from Sunderland’s past?

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WEARSIDE Echoes readers could hold the key to unlocking the secrets behind a batch of mystery photographs.

“The archives at Sunderland Antiquarian Society contain hundreds upon hundreds of wonderful old pictures,” said member Bill Hawkins.

Sunderland Pottery Staff - 1901

Sunderland Pottery Staff - 1901

“Unfortunately, many of them are missing vital details.

“Sometimes it is obvious where a photo was taken, but it is much harder to establish exactly when.

“We are hoping readers can help out, as they have been brilliant in the past.”

Among the mystery photos featured here is a shot of The Locarno in 1965 – snapped during an event which attracted dozens of happy youngsters to the Newcastle Road nightclub.

“The Locarno ballroom was one of Sunderland’s top venues in the 1960s and 70s, playing host to some of the world’s biggest bands such as Rod Stewart and the Faces,” said Bill.

“We are not at all sure what event the photo from our archive shows but, as it is full of happy young kids, hopefully it might ring some bells with a few people. Can anyone help?”

Other mystery images unearthed by Bill include a shot of Sunderland pottery staff in 1901 and workers at Sunderland Window Cleaning Company with their ladders in around 1912.

“Not much appears to have been written about Sunderland Window Cleaning Company, although I believe Denise Robert’s husband Bryan Thubron may have owned it before he retired,” said Bill.

“In contrast, the potteries of Sunderland have been well documented and are known throughout the world for their lustre-ware. However, where this picture was taken is a mystery.”

An undated picture of staff at Robson’s Flour Mill in Chester Road, as well as a group of mystery shipyard workers and a team of unknown football players are also among the puzzles.

“Edward Capper Robson & Sons owned a steam mill in Queen Street, just off High Street, in the early 20th century, which was the highest building in the town centre at one time,” said Bill.

“But, by the time World War One broke out in 1914, Robson had also taken over a flour mill from Edwin and Frederick Richardson, at the bottom of Chester Road. It was demolished in the 1960s.

“I’m very interested in putting a date to the photo, as well as names to faces. As for the shipyard and football pictures – well they are just complete mysteries.”

The final picture puzzle today features a group of happy young swimmers at the High Street Baths in around 1963. Again, names and an exact date are being sought.

“Tracking down names and dates helps us to complete our archive files,” said Bill.

“If anyone has information on any of the photos, we would be very happy to hear from them.”

Can you help Bill? Contact him on 551 3947.

Do you have a mystery picture to share with readers? Email Sarah Stoner at: