Lost assets of Wellesley Nautical School are coveted

Items from the Wellesley Nautical School that were sold at auction back in 2010.
Items from the Wellesley Nautical School that were sold at auction back in 2010.

A SEARCH has begun to find the missing history of a former training school.

Formers boys who attended the Wellesley Nautical School are looking for items which were once in the school or used on the Wellesley training ship which have gone missing over the last few decades.

After the ship was destroyed by fire in 1914, a temporary school was created at Tynemouth before moving to Blyth in May 1920 for a new permanent base after £22,000 was raised in a public appeal.

The school provided training for young men in service in the Royal and Merchant Navy, also giving them a sound education and a good moral and religious training.

It continued in operation until 1973 when the site was taken over by Sunderland City Council, and later demolished in 2007.

Now officials at The Old Boys of Wellesley and trustees of the former school are looking for former assets in the hope of creating a lasting legacy and potential museum in Blyth.

A former war memorial was rescued, placed in storage and rededicated at a ceremony in July 2010, while a figurehead of Admiral Boscawen was also refurbished and donated to the Ashington Sea Cadets, but other assets have disappeared.

Barry Elliott, who has begun to search for the missing items, said: “It has been found that all the other assets have now been disposed of in one way or the other.

“I was contacted as part of my continued quest to bring a museum to Blyth based on all history, but mainly the history of the maritime and mining movements.

“I appeal to the town and beyond to help locate the missing items, whether you purchased or were given them.

“It is my aim to work with the old boys, the trustees and whoever else may be interested to return all the assets to their rightful home and seek to create a museum.”

Anyone who has an item from the former school or knows the whereabouts of any assets should contact Barry Elliott on 07710 715045 or e-mail barryelliott@tswellesley.com