Dove Marine Laboratory

The Dove Marine Laboratory is a research and teaching laboratory which forms part of the School of Marine Science and Technology within Newcastle University in the United Kingdom.

Dove Marine Laboratory
Research typeMarine research and teaching
FacultyFaculty of Science, Agriculture and Engineering
LocationCullercoats, North Shields, Tyne and Wear, NE30 4PZ
AffiliationsNewcastle University


The original Laboratory was established in October 1897.[1] It comprised a small wooden hut sited next to the Saltwater Baths on Cullercoats Bay, and was used by Armstrong College to study the waters of the north east UK coastline.

On the 28 March 1904 the Laboratory and Baths were destroyed by fire, but it was agreed that the work of the Laboratory should continue. In 1906 the local landowner, geologist Wilfred Hudleston, FRS, offered not only to make the site of the old Baths available for newer, larger, facilities, but also offered to finance their construction. He was reluctant to publicise his generosity, and asked that the building be named after one of his ancestors, Eleanor Dove, when it was opened by the Duke of Northumberland on 29 September 1908. In 2008 the laboratory celebrated its centenary, where the current Duke of Northumberland led festivities.[2]

The Laboratory became a department of Armstrong College when the building and land were purchased by the college following Hudleston's death in 1909, and soon grew in reputation, acquiring its first boat in 1911. The Laboratory also operated a public aquarium and once housed the coble in which Grace Darling and her father rescued passengers from the SS Forfashire in 1838.[3]

In 1967 responsibility for the Laboratory was transferred to Newcastle University.[4]

Present Day

As a research facility the Laboratory is normally closed to the public, but holds open days during the summer months and as part of other events such as Cullercoats Harbour Day and Heritage Open Days.[5]

A Marine Science distance learning course, Delve Deeper, run by the University includes a field course component based at the laboratory.[6]

Research Vessels of the Dove Marine Laboratory


  1. "Tyne and Wear HER(5058): Cullercoats, Dove Marine Laboratory & Salt Water Baths - Details". Sitelines. Retrieved 16 November 2014.
  2. "Centenary Celebration 2008". Newcastle University Marine Biology. Archived from the original on 2011-05-19. Retrieved 2010-10-11.
  3. Whiting, C E (1932), The University of Durham 1832-1932 London, The Sheldon Press
  4. "Landmark for marine laboratory". BBC Tyne. 1 October 2008. Retrieved 16 November 2014.
  7. "The Naming of the RV The Princess Royal". Newcastle University. 2011-09-15. Archived from the original on 2013-01-03. Retrieved 2012-12-19.

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