School of History, Classics and Archaeology

Staff Profile

Dr Peter Wright

Visiting Fellow


Peter D. Wright, M.B.,B.S., M.D., Ph.D., F.R.C.S.(Eng).

Having retired from Newcastle University after a career as an Academic Consulant Surgeon in the Newcastle Hospitals, punctuated by a lifetime of recreational boating, I joined the School of History, Classics and Archaeology in 2004 to pursue further a long held interest in the history of the riverside communities along the lower River Tyne. This ultimately resulted in the award of a PhD in 2011 and the subsequent publication of a monograph in 2014, followed by a chapter in an edited volume in 2018. My current interest is in exploring the Ballast Trades along the Tyne in the 17th and 19th Centuries.

P.D. Wright, Ph.D. Thesis, Newcastle 2011: 'Water Trades on the Lower River Tyne in the Seventeenth and Eighteenth Centuries'.

P.D. Wright, 'Life on the Tyne, Water Trades on the Lower River Tyne in the Seventeenth and Eighteenth Centuries, a Reappraisal' (Farnham: Ashgate 2014).

P.D. Wright,  'Shipping on the Tyne: The Growth and Diversification of Seaborn Trade in the Eighteenth Century', in; 'Economy and Culture in North-East England 1500-1800', Eds. Adrian Green & Barbara Crosbie, (Woodbridge: Boydell & Brewer 2018) p156-81.

Paper Submitted for publication:

P.D. Wright, 'The Ballast Trade, - An Economic Driver in Seventeenth and Eighteenth Century Newcastle upon Tyne'.



A number of lectures and presentations have been given over the period of study.


The Social and Economic aspects of the Water Trades communities  along the lower River Tyne during the 17th and 18th Centuries. This being based on an examination of several previously under explored primary sources which is improving our understanding of the dynamics of the various parts of the community, and the associated economic changes that were occurring during this rapidly changing period.