Date: 21/06/2011

Historical finds in unusual places

A recent refurbishment of PD Ports Headquarters turned out to be something of a historical goldmine when the builders discovered something out of place.

Builders were updating the Gentlemen’s toilets in Queens Square, Middlesbrough, when they came across something that you wouldn’t expect to find in the bathroom.
 
When removing the suspended ceiling they came across a selection of documents dating back over 150 years. The stashed away paperwork included a number of receipts, minutes from committee meetings and conservancy bills.
 
As surprising as it is to find such historical documents in the bathroom, of all places, what makes this more curious is that these documents are dated from 1860s and yet the building only dates back to the 1890s.

In many cases the employees working at Tees Dock have had fathers and grandfathers work there before them. The nature of this means that the relics found may have links to the employees working at the dock today.
 
It is hoped that some of the documents will be displayed at the Heritage Gallery in the recently refurbished Cargo Fleet offices building whilst the others will be kept at Queens Square for staff and visitors to view.
 
Michael McConnell, the group property director for PD Ports, added “It is very remarkable to find such history in such an unusual place, but we are happy to have discovered this as it is part of both Middlesbrough and PD Ports’ heritage”.

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