The first contract was under plan 2272, drawn at York on the 19th April 1924, completed between 17/3/1925 and 17/6/25, and occupied from 28th May 1925. Included in the specifications were French tiles for the roofs, and 11" hollow walls. Rumour in `the Trade` has it that the tiles came from Belgium, paid for by German reparations after the Great War.

A note on this plan said that there would be 222 houses and 8 shops. Quite what happened to the other 32 houses was not explained. The houses would consist of 32 type A with 1 reception and 3 bed, 38 type B1 2 reception and 3 bed, 122 type B2 2 reception and 3 bed, and 30 type C with 2 reception and 4 bed rooms. This was not what was built in the event. The layout was sites 1-12 on Woodlea, sites 15-32* east side of Briarwood, sites 33-38 west side of Briarwood, 41-48 on the north side of Hollywood, and sites 49-76 on the south side of Hollywood. 72 houses in all in this first contract. *Sites 15-16 actually face on to Hollywood Avenue.

The second contract was under plan 2345. This was completed between 17/6/25 and 13/7/25. This contract was for sites 77-90 east side Briarwood, and sites 115-120 west side of Briarwood. 20 in all. Although built in 1925, this contract had also been drawn in 1924. It included an alleyway to the allotments at the rear of sites 80-96 between sites 88 and 89. Sites 93-96 were never built, or not as originally planned.

The third contract under plan 2491 showed site types 7, 11, 20, 26 and 27. A mixture of these was planned for sites 153-170 on the south side of Hollywood, and sites 135-148 on the north side of Hollywood Avenue. There were to be alleyways on both sides of the proposed block of shops, with agriculture drains from the market garden, at the rear of the south side of Hollywood Avenue. I believe that sites 129-130 may have been constructed under plan 2478 although the rest of that plan was amended by plan 2491. They were type 20 houses. There was also to be grass verges on all the estate roads. By the post war period the grass verges became too expensive to cut and so tarmac was put down. These verges were never intended for parking and Northumberland County Council put up notices to that effect. Unfortunately this particular by-law was not taken over in 1974 by the City of Newcastle.

The fourth contract was under plan 2640. This was dated 3/11/26 and still showed 222 houses and 8 shops. The Tennis Courts were still shown to the north of Rosewood Avenue. This contract involved sites 91/92, 99/100, 113/114, 121-128, 181/182. These were the corner sites of Rosewood and Fernwood, Fernwood and Briarwood (both), Briarwood and Rosewood (both), Rosewood and Beechwood. Also the south side of Rosewood, between Briarwood and Beechwood Avenues.

Two acres of land were allocated for the proposed cemetery, on Hollywood Avenue, by the Council on the 11th October 1939. By the 14th January 1940, this had been increased to 3.10 acres. On the same date the Gosforth Council said that all its trees would be subject to preservation. (a policy not carried on by its successor, the City of Newcastle).

By March 1941 the disused isolation hospital (constructed in 1901) was being used as an ARP School. On the 2nd July 1941 the Council adopted the top section of Hollywood Avenue. The construction of the cemetery started on the 9th April 1942. This had been deemed necessary as the cemetery at St Nicholas churchyard was now full. By May 1943 Mr Turner (of Hollywood Avenue) was being allowed to graze goats opposite Woodlea Gardens. Whilst interments started on the 19th July 1943, the cemetery site continued to be used for emergency food production. In 1943 potatoes had been grown. In 1944 cereals and grass were planned.

References and sources:

Gosforth and its Parish Church/George Harbottle/1974
A History of the Parish of Gosforth/Richard Welford/1879
The North Eastern Railway: Its Rise and Development/WW Tomlinson/1915
Tyne and Wear Archives Service, Blandford House, Newcastle
City of Newcastle Libraries.
Boldon Book/Editor David Austin/Phillimore/1982


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