Film ID:
NEFA 22231



Visitor Tabs


This amateur film by Stephen Fairbrother looks at the Ryhope Engine Museum near Sunderland, based at the Ryhope Pumping Station, which was built in 1868 to supply water to the Sunderland area. The station ceased operation in 1967 only a few years before this film was made and after 100 years of continuous use.

The opening view shows the chimney at the pumping station looking east, with the sea in the background. A road runs past the pumping station, and a notice board in the grounds of the museum shows opening times and restrictions.

The film then shows a woman walking her dog beside a large man made pond or small reservoir next to the main building. Another view across the pond shows cars parked near the pump building, and documents the chimney. General views follow of the main building. 

The woman with the dog appears again and walks across the grounds, the main pump building in the background.

Water trickles from a pipe into the pond.

An interior view of the engine building follows, showing a  governor mechanism used to regulate engine speed next to a flywheel. The beam above goes up down as the engine drives the pump. A view pointing upwards, gives an idea of the height of the pump room and the mechanism. General views show more of the construction of the pump, some views slightly blurred.

A closer view shows the huge beam at the top of the engine, slowly going up and down. Close up views follow of the beam in operation.

An engineer in overalls explains how the mechanism works to a visitor. General views of the mechanism follow.

The film then cuts to what appears to be a waterwheel, slowly turning. Huge boilers power the machinery, which engineers are checking. A man in a white boiler suit throws some fuel into one of the boilers, and the film ends as another mechanic throws some wood into the boiler.

[Stephen Fairbrother and his father William made films featuring heritage railways and industrial heritage in the North East of England.]