Bespectacled & irrelevant
After seeing a few reports on this recently I had to go and see it for myself. Two hours later and I was glad I'd made the effort. This really is an amazing place, the engines and ironwork are stunning!
Thanks must go to The Rt. Hon jST for intel
Dalton pumping station is one of 150 designed by Thomas Hawksley and one of five in the North East. It has a number of peculiarities that make it stand out. It is uniquely built in the Gothic Revival style and also uses Cornish beam engines due to the depth of the borehole the water was being raised through, almost double that of the nearby Ryehope at an impressive 450ft. Dalton engines are generally accepted to be the only Cornish engines to have used superheated steam and the engine house has one of the earliest examples of a gantry crane.
The pumps ran until 1932 when subsidence from coal mining started to cause problems, repairs took five years to complete and allowed the station to run for three more years before WW2 bombing cut the power and caused permenant damage. The site has had Â£500,000 worth of restoration from English Heritage, but is now sat vacant due to planning problems.