Sunderland Coast Guide
Sunderland is a city with a strong industrial past situated at the mouth of the River Wear. The city was founded in Anglo Saxon times and became a major shipbuilding centre during the 19th century, with some 65 shipyards. It was also an important coal port that exported around the world. Glass making also became a specialty during this time and a new visitor centre outlines this fascinating history.
A Benedictine abbey, at which the Venerable Bede studied, was founded here in 674. It was later destroyed by the Vikings and its remains were incorporated into the current Church of St. Peter.
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Sunderland still operates as an important port today, importing and exporting goods and bulk cargoes around the world. Dating back to Roman times - when a principal trade was in salt, the port became prosperous in the 18th century when the main cargo was coal. The port is now owned by the city council who intend to develop it further.
Present day Sunderland has a population of around 300,000 and is a busy commercial centre with a diverse economy. The last shipyard closed in 1988 and the City Council were keen to attract other businesses to the area. They succeeded when Nissan built a major plant nearby, which in turn attracted many other suppliers. Sunderland became a city in 1992.
There are wide sandy beaches at Roker, which is part of Sunderland and at nearby Seaburn. Opposite Roker beach is Roker Park which was established in Victorian times and still retains an air of grandeur about it. Roker is certainly a popular holiday and weekend resort for those wanting to fish, jet-ski, windsurf or sail. At Seaburn beach you will find a wide promenade and plenty of attractions and amenities, including a children's outdoor play area.
Places to visit around Sunderland
Sunderland Museum and Winter Gardens - Burdon Road, Sunderland, Tyne & Wear SR1 1PP - England, UK Phone: 0191 553 2323
Washington Old Hall - The home of George Washington's ancestors now owned by The National Trust The Avenue, Washington Village, Washington Tel: 0191 416 6879
Washington Wildfowl and Wetlands Centre - Wildfowl centre designed by Peter Scott - Pattinson, District 15, Washington Tel: 0191 416 5454
Mowbray Park - Restored Victorian park - Burdon Road, Sunderland
Seaburn Centre - Theatre and exhibition hall - Seafront, Sunderland
Map of Sunderland area
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