West Hartlepool (GB)

From Stamps of the World

West hartlepool 029.JPG
West Hartlepool dock map
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West Hartlepool refers to the western part of what has since the 1960s been known as the borough of Hartlepool in North East England. It was originally formed in 1854 as the result of the opening of seaside docks and railways that connected the docks to cities to the east and west.
The town of West Hartlepool was founded by Ralph Ward Jackson after having established the Stockton and Hartlepool Railway in 1839. The area, having just one farm house in 1845, steadily grew into a centre for shipping and railway transportation. The West Hartlepool Harbour and Dock opened on June 1, 1847. Five years later, also on June 1, the Jackson dock opened as well as a railway connecting West Hartlepool to Leeds, Manchester and Liverpool. This allowed the shipping of coal and wool products east, and the shipping of fresh fish and raw fleeces west, and the area's population grew as a result. Eight shipbuilding yards were established. Supporting shipbuilding and repair were: a canvas manufacturing firm, Bastown Brothers and W. Taylor iron foundries, block and mast makers and other related machinery. Streets were laid out along which shops and brick homes were built. Standard town services followed including paved roads, gas and electricity, sewers, a slaughterhouse, cemetery and more. West Hartlepool was formed in 1854 by the Bishop of Durham. Swainson Dock opened on June 3, 1856, named after Ward Jackson’s father-in-law. In 1878 the William Gray & Company ship yard in West Hartlepool achieved the distinction of launching the largest tonnage of any shipyard in the world, a feat to be repeated on a number of occasions. The municipal borough of West Hartlepool was created in 1887, and it was promoted in 1902 to be a county borough outside the control of Durham County Council. In 1967, a county borough, called Hartlepool, was established for both West Hartlepool and old Hartlepool, with the inclusion within the new area of local government of the parish of Seaton Carew on the coast to the south.

The historical Post office was situated on Whitby Road near the Marina and docks area, handling a high volume of mail and revenue services for the area in the late half of the 19th Century.
The Hartlepool Branch was to the south of West Hartlepool in the residential area, where Victorian housing sprang up to house the dock and shipping workers of those industries.

West Hartlepool was given the P.O. number 029 in the 1857 P.O. lists. As well as Post office and Money Order facilities West Hartlepool also had a Telephonic Express Delivery Office (Telegraph) and a Railway Station Office.

Sub-Offices known

  • PO & Money Order Offices

Belle Vue  : Collingwood Road
Elwick Road  : York Road

  • PO, MO & Telegram

Middleton Road (A)

  • PO, MO, Telegram & Telegraph

Milton Road (B)  : Stranton (C)

Postmark Examples[edit]

1884 pair of 1d Lilacs with West Hartlepool 3VOD duplex
West Hartlepool 8d rated cover to Paris France, pair of 4d plate 8, wing margins used in 1867
West Hartlepool 3d rated cover using 2 of the 1½d line engraved issues used in 1872