This song is a standard example of the type of Victorian lyrical work that was beginning to appear in song collections during the mid 19th century. Tynemouth is famous for its cliffs and black midden rocks, which over the years have claimed numerous ships attempting to sail into the Tyne. On top of the cliffs stands Tynemouth priory, originally built in stone by Oswald, King and saint of Northumbria in 637 A.D.
This song forms part of a short run series of 'Shields' songs that were published some time in the 1850s by the Shields Gazette editor, William Brockie. The songs reflect the characters, landscape and industry in the small coastal towns of North Shields, South Shields, Tynemouth and Cullercoats. Famous for their fishwives, press gangs and tars (sailors), these towns, lying at the mouth of the River Tyne, were the gateway for trade in and out of the region. This small pamphlet forms no.2 of a series thought to consist of only 3 publications. Bound together in one volume held by South Shields Library, no.s 1-2 are complete with no.3 lacking all before p.17., and all after p.32. Songs are attributed to various authors in manuscript notes throughout the series, revealing that publisher William Brockie also contributed to the content of the publication.