infobox UK place
map_type= Tyne and Wear
country = England
official_name= Ryhope
latitude= 54.86
longitude= -1.358
population = 14,000
metropolitan_borough= City of Sunderland
metropolitan_county= Tyne and Wear
region= North East England
constituency_westminster= Houghton and Washington East
post_town= SUNDERLAND
postcode_area= SR
postcode_district= SR2
dial_code= 0191

Ryhope is a coastal village along the southern boundary of the City of Sunderland, in Tyne and Wear, North East England. With a population of approximately 14,000, Ryhope is 2.9 miles to the centre of Sunderland, 2.8 miles to the centre of Seaham, and 2.7 miles from the A19.

The older village section is centred around a triangular 'green', which contains a war monument. The newer 'Colliery' area of Ryhope flanks the Ryhope Street/Tunstall Bank road, which lead toward the Tunstall and Silksworth area of Sunderland.

Geography and administration

The A1018 Stockton Road/Ryhope Road weaves through the centre of Ryhope. This is a busy arterial route linking Sunderland with the A19 road to the south-west (in fact, it "was" the A19 before the current high-speed dual carriageway was built in the 1970s). Work is nearing completion on the A1018 'Southern Radial Route', which when opened, will bypass Ryhope along the clifftops and take traffic toward the Port of Sunderland in Hendon.

The Sea View road also links Ryhope with the town of Seaham.

Ryhope is surrounded by farmland meaning it is a relatively isolated suburb of Sunderland. A number of Cycle routes run through the village, including the National Cycle Network Route number 1 which is looked after by a local team of Sustrans Rangers. The Rangers have their own website for assistance and feedback on the cycle routes in Wearside this is www.cycle-routes.org/wearsiderangers.

Located to the south-west of the village is Cherry Knowle Hospital which is part of the South of Tyne and Wearside Mental Health NHS Trust. It is the main mental health services complex for the Wearside area.

The Ryhope Engines Museum is also located in this area.

Ryhope forms part of the Houghton and Washington East (UK Parliament constituency).


Ryhope (from the Old English reof hoppas, meaning 'rough valley' [cite web
url = http://www.n-a-g.freeserve.co.uk/DOCUMENTS/ISS22_7May2002/ISS22_7May2002.htm
title = Recognition of ancient names
accessdate = 2006-11-23
] ) is first mentioned in 930AD when king Athelstan granted the land of Bishopwearmouth (including the township of Ryhope) to the Bishop of Chester-le-Street. The land had been reclaimed from the Vikings who had captured it in 918AD.

Ryhope has a strong history of farming; in 1183 there were 22 recorded Villeins who provided the landowner with cattle and crops. in 1380 the population had swelled to approximately 150. In 1860 common grazing land was split into plots, which radiated out in strips from the village green. Ryhope's proximity to the sea has allowed it to serve as a seaside destination for centuries. The beach is said to have been a favourite sea-bathing spot for the Bishop of Durham.

Located on the Durham coalfield, it was inevitable that Ryhope would follow the path of many other villages in the area, and abandon agriculture as the main employeer in favour of coal. In 1859 a colliery was opened, causing huge changes in the geography of the village. the settlement of Ryhope extended west toward the area of Tunstall, creating two distinct areas of Ryhope; the 'Village' and the 'Colliery' (the post-WWII, council-built estate of 'Hollycarrside' forms a third section.) Railway lines were introduced to the area, linking Ryhope to Sunderland, Seaham and other Durham Coalfield mining villages. Now only a single railway line runs through the village, although there is no longer a station. The colliery was closed in 1966.

Notable "Ryhopeans" include former Sunderland AFC manager Mick Buxton, pop-music TV producers Malcolm Gerrie and Chris Cowey (both of the latter taught at Ryhope Comprehensive School - formerly Ryhope Grammar School, which closed in the late 1980s) and John Burdon, a former miner who became a director of Darchem, a major North Eastern industrial company.

The village's most-visited man-made landmark is Ryhope Engines Museum, based on the Ryhope Pumping Station which was built in 1868 to supply water to the Sunderland area.

Among natural features, Ryhope adjoins Tunstall Hills which afford spectacular views of the entire city of Sunderland and far beyond (on a clear day, down the coast almost to Whitby.) The Tunstall Hills are located on the southern outskirts of Sunderland between (New) Silksworth and Ryhope. The disused quarries and cuttings at Tunstall Hills provide exposure through part of the Magnesian Limestone succession of Permian age. Gentle slopes on the "Maiden Paps" section support species such as blue moor-grass, common rock-rose, perennial flax and locally uncommon plants such as Frog Orchid, Autumn Gentian and Purple Milk-Vetch. These areas have been designated a "site of special scientific interest" (SSSI).

Ryhope has a large number of public houses for a village of its size. These include the Blue Bell, Railway Inn, Guide Post, Top House, Prince of Wales, Albion, and Wellington - in addition to several private clubs.


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