Tracking the Past - A historical journey along Gateshead High Street

Welcome to Tracking the Past. Are you ready to take a ride? I hope you’ve got your tram fare!

My name is Henry Hopper. I’m a tram driver for the Gateshead and District Tramways Company. Come on my tram and we’ll take a ride along Gateshead High Street. The year is 1906.

Trams are quite new in this town. They are very popular as they save people having to walk. Until 1901 I drove a steam tram. These trams had a carriage for passengers to sit in and were pulled by a steam locomotive. On the right is a picture of my old tram.

Steam Tram, Gateshead High Street, 1900
Now I drive an electric tram. This runs on a track and it is powered by overhead cables.

We will be travelling along Gateshead High Street from the junction with Sunderland Road to the Tram Terminus on Hills Street.

There will be lots to see along the way. The High Street has lots of shops and businesses where you can buy everything you need. There are hotels, theatres, inns, boot-makers, ironmongers and more. Shop at Snowball’s Department Store, visit St. Mary’s Church at Oakwellgate, or borrow a book at the Free Library.

Or, perhaps you’d like to visit family or friends who live in one of the many streets and courts behind the shops.

There are eight stops on the High Street. Click on a stop to get off the tram and explore the area.

Off we go!