Letter of the week: New Sunderland pub plan should restore area's crowning glory

The former JJB sportswear store is shortly to be transformed into a bar.
The former JJB sportswear store is shortly to be transformed into a bar.

I was overjoyed to read of the plans to transform the JJB sports store into a bar, while restoring the old Three Crowns pub front to its former glory.

Prior to the plan getting council approval last month, there had been talk of its impending demolition for some six or eight months that I know of.

Now, I well remember my late father stating, as we passed said building, that the tin façade was covering up the original frontage of the pub and he told the name, which was the Three Crowns Hotel.

He then proceeded to explain how it got its name. It was simply from the fact that in that area of High Street West there was already The Crown & Thistle a little further up, across the road next up from Notrianni’s, which was sadly pulled down in the mid 60s to widen the road for access to The Bridges, as it is, car park and you can still make out the alcoves so to speak.

Meanwhile, even further up on the same side was The Rose and Crown, so basically this was the third crown – hence the name.

Last week's Letter of the week: What a mess Sunderland is becoming
I believe it dates back to the late 1700s but I cannot find confirmation but I did find a 1865 directory that mentioned it.

I have photographs of the original frontage on my Facebook page Sunderland taprooms and more and I must admit it looks pretty bland compared to the side frontage in Pann Lane, perhaps it is down to the pictures being in black and white. We shall see in the near future.

Anyway I am certainly looking forward to the end product, and hopefully it will breathe new life into the area which when you think about it is a bit out of the way these days, which is a shame.

Alan ‘The Quill’ Vincent,

Old Penshaw.