Sunderland Mayor launches charity event at Ryhope Engines Museum

The Mayor and Mayoress of Sunderland, Councilor Barry Curran and his wife Carol, celebrating the refurbishment of Ryhope Engines Museum & Pumping Station, by holding a Steam & Cream charity event, which includes a tour of the Museum followed by afternoon cream tea at the Roker Hotel. The mayor and Mayoress are pictured here with Keith Bell (centre) chairman of the Ryhope Engines Trust.
The Mayor and Mayoress of Sunderland, Councilor Barry Curran and his wife Carol with Keith Bell (centre) chairman of the Ryhope Engines Trust, celebrating the refurbishment of Ryhope Engines Museum & Pumping Station, by holding a charity event. 

The mayor of Sunderland Councilor Barry Curran organised Steam and Cream charity event to celebrate the refurbishment of Ryhope Engines Museum and support businesses.

The access to the building, which was built in the 1860s, has been improved after a disabled access lift was installed. An on-site ‘virtual tour’ of the rest of the historic buildings has also been created to provide a glimpse of the internal workings of the museum.

To help promote the new visitor amenities and support businesses, the Mayor organised the Steam & Cream charity event. It included admission to the Engines Museum and afternoon tea at the Roker Hotel.

All the money raised from the ticket sales will go to the Mayoral Charities which this year are Sunderland MIND, Sunderland Armed Forces Network and North East Disabilities Resource Centre (NDRC).

Coun Curran said: “While ‘Steam and Cream’ might appear a strange combination, I wanted to encourage people who might not previously considered visiting Ryhope Engines Museum to come along and see for themselves what a great place it is to visit.

“The very nature of the Victorian architecture means the lift can’t reach the very top level, so the museum has developed a virtual tour people can access on their smartphones or tablets if they can’t use the stairs on their visit.

“It really is a fascinating building and I hope that ‘Steam and Cream’ charity fundraising event will be the first of many visits for those who come long, with a nice afternoon tea on this occasion to help bring the occasion to a close.”

Ryhope Engines Museum is run by the Ryhope Engines Trust volunteer preservation group.

It is at Ryhope Pumping Station, which was built in the 1860s to provide one of four pumping stations to meet the increasing local demand for water for both domestic and industrial use across Sunderland.

The buildings closed in 1967 but the engines, buildings and grounds remained untouched until 1970 when restoration became a possibility.

Since then with the support of Sunderland City Council, voluntary group Ryhope Engines Trust has been working with the Sunderland Archaeology Group, the Sunderland and South Shields Water Company and Northumbrian Water to restore the buildings and machinery.

Chair of Ryhope Engines Trust Keith Bell said: “We’d like to thank the Mayor for choosing to host his latest fundraising event here and hope it helps to encourage even more visitors, by helping to promote the fact that these old buildings now have much better access.

“The Victorian engines worked for a hundred years and we have successfully maintained and run them for the last 45 years which is quite an impressive record for a group of dedicated volunteers.

“The new lift and creation of the ‘virtual tour’ is the latest stage in restoration work, with the maintenance of the machinery and running of the working museum and tea-rooms are all carried out by our small group of volunteers. We are open most weekends and bank-holidays.”

Comments are closed.