The little piece of Hartlepool which ended up in Paris
A famous Hartlepool landmark went international in 1971.
The Shades Hotel closed in 1970 and its fittings were soon snapped up. But did you know about the French connection – or the American one for that matter?
The upstairs bar found its way to a ‘fashionable eating house in Paris’, the Hartlepool Mail reported at the time.
And another bar looked set to be on its way to a USA pub which was about to be refurbished in a traditional English style.
It all came about when Hartlepool antique dealer Bruce Youle bought the fittings from the then owners JW Cameron and Co Ltd.
And Bruce, in 1971, told how a little piece of Hartlepool was finding a new home 3,100 miles away.
“I have been asked by Mike Broadbine of Boston, Massachusetts, to find a bar for him,” said Bruce at the time.
“I think he will be really pleased with this one. It is very old and made of mahogany. The fittings include wall seats and thick leather seats.”
Mr Youle was a big fan of Shades and said it “had such a lot of character and it is not surprising its fittings are in such demand.
“The art nouveau windows have the public house name on them and, although the building itself is boarded up, I am sure that old regulars will be pleased to know that part of it still lives on.”
The hotel closed in November 1970 after being one of the town’s most prominent meeting places for 120 years.
A Hartlepool Mail story from 1971 said: “Its position could hardly have been more central until recent developments moved the town centre away from Church Street.
“It was a popukar haunt of old sea dogs and the town’s business people conducted much of their affairs in its comfortable surroundings.”
Its history shows that it was first owned by Ralph Ward Jackson before the brewery took it over in the early part of the 20th century.
Mr Youle said in 1971: “Most of the furnishings have been in since then and it is a credit to the fine craftsmanship that it is still in fine condition.”
The Shades opened in 1856 and after it closed in 1970, it re-opened briefly as the New Shades.
Last year, Hartlepool Council stepped in to buy the derelict building in Church Street, giving the on-going regeneration of the area a massive boost.
The historic building which is Grade II listed was on Historic England’s Heritage at Risk Register.
In January this year, Hartlepool Borough Council’s Finance and Policy Committee approved plans to spend £60,000 to fund structural repairs at the site.
There were also hopes of a bid for Heritage Lottery Funding to regenerate the building.
What are your memories of Shades and other Hartlepool pubs of the 1970s era?
Which was your favourite and which would you love to see brought back? Get in touch and share your memories by emailing [email protected]