Irvins Building


Heritage Category:
Listed Building
List Entry Number:
Date first listed:
Statutory Address:
Irvins Building, Union Quay, North Shields, NT30 1HB


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Statutory Address:
Irvins Building, Union Quay, North Shields, NT30 1HB

The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

North Tyneside (Metropolitan Authority)
National Grid Reference:
NZ 36243 68549



UNION QUAY Irvins Building

26-JUL-02 II Offices, sale room, chandlers' shop, workshops and warehouse of Richard Irvin and Sons. 1913. Red brick with ashlar dressings; hipped slate roof to range on right, flat roof to steel-framed or reinforced concrete range to left.

PLAN: office range located to right (north east) of warehouse which is cranked towards the north.

EXTERIOR: Two-storey office to right has modillion cornice to deep band, outer canted bay windows and central window all with stone-mullions and cross transoms; swags carved in band above ground floor openings, all square-headed with carved brackets to cornice over and pilasters rising to pyramidal finials flanking shop window to right. Tall four storey three bay range to left, with three segmental-arched openings to ashlar ground floor and recessed bays articulated by pilasters with flat-relief carved capitals beneath broad entablature and cornice with stepped central parapet; segmental-arched windows.

INTERIOR: timber columns with cast-iron compression columns to range on left; the timber floors said to have marks on the floor where the nets were pinned out for repair. Reported to have oak panelling etc in range in right.

HISTORY: This building has stylised architectural detailing typical of the period and is the most prominent building on the harbour front at North Shields. It was built as a multi-functional commercial premises for Richard Irvin and Sons, fishing boat owners, fish salesmen and auctioneers. Irvin was a renowned pioneer of steam trawling, and was reputed to be the largest operator in the industry outside Peterhead in Scotland. Being such a large employer (with over 30 boats and hundreds of workers), Irvins ran a banking system for their own employees which was housed in the office range, which had a first-floor boardroom, on the right.

This building is a large-scale, prominent and historically important example of the industrial-scale, specialist fishing port that was the creation of the last quarter of the C19, and was concentrated around the North Sea ports of England and Scotland.


The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.

Legacy System number:
Legacy System:


This building is listed under the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) Act 1990 as amended for its special architectural or historic interest.

End of official listing

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