When the idea was conceived, it was to bring
together North and South Tyneside with pedestrian and cycle tunnels to
run under the river, making it easy to commute between the communities
of Jarrow and Howdon. Work on the tunnel was about to start in 1939, but the
Second World War put a stop to it.
Charles Brand & Son Ltd completed tunnelling in 1949 but it was not opened until 24 July 1951 by Alfred Barnes M.P. (Minister of Transport).
After it was first opened there were over a thousand people a day using it in order to get to work. In recent times that number has reduced to a couple of hundred or so a day.
The tunnels were closed in 2013 for refurbishment and were to open in August 2014.
They actually reopened in August 2019 (vertical lifts only at the moment)VEHICLE TUNNELS