Tynemouth station closes its doors

Tuesday, 02 December, 2008

A piece of ambulance history was made last month when Tynemouth Ambulance station closed its doors after 49 years of serving the local population.

Since the station opened as a purpose built ambulance station in 1959, three different organisations have co-ordinated ambulance services. The original County Borough of Tynemouth Ambulance Service became part of the Northumbria Ambulance Service in 1974 - and also part of the NHS. In 2005 Northumbria and Durham County Ambulance Services joined with Tees East to become the North East Ambulance Service.

The building, which is now owned by Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Service, will be
refurbished and turned into a Community Fire Station. The thirteen full time A+E
staff and one PTS crew who worked out of Tynemouth will be relocating to Hawkey's Lane Station in North Shields, which was was recently converted from an old hospital ward. Some of the staff will be relieved to be moving to a new station, after reports of spooky goings on.

Paramedic Patrick Rogan has been based at Tynemouth since 1976. "It's a great station and I've always loved my time here, you were treated like a gentleman and all the uniforms were tailor made, but it has always been a bit creepy," he said. "I'd heard other people talk about seeing a man wearing an old style paramedic uniform but I'd never thought anything of it until three or four years ago I was lying down in the rest room and somebody, or something, punched me in the face! There was nobody else in the room."

Lynn Bland, 37 who used to be based at Tynemouth first noticed something was amiss a few weeks into joining the service in 1987 when she was just sixteen. She said, "There were footsteps that would come right up to the door of the room you were sitting in and then disappear and upon inspection strange hazes could be seen."

"The station definitely has a creepy vibe to it, and sometimes when you're in the office upstairs you can hear children singing in the garage, a lot of the other staff have heard it as well."

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