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Sunderland’s historical roots are very extensive.

The name “Sunderland” is reputed to come from Soender-land (soender/sunder being the Anglo-Saxon infinitive, meaning “to part”, (cf. “(a)sunder”), likely to be reference to the valley carved by the River Wear on whose south bank the original settlement of Sunderland was founded.

Historically a part of County Durham, there were three original settlements on the site of modern-day Sunderland. On the north side of the river, Monkwearmouth was settled in 674 when Benedict Biscop founded the Wearmouth-Jarrow monastery. Opposite the monastery on the south bank, Bishopwearmouth was founded in 930. A small fishing village called Sunderland, located towards the mouth of the river (modern day East End) was granted a charter in 1179.

Penshaw Monument

Over the centuries, Sunderland grew as a port, trading coal and salt. Ships began to be built on the river in the 14th century. By the 19th century, the port of Sunderland had grown to absorb Bishopwearmouth and Monkwearmouth.

The earliest inhabitants of the Sunderland area were Stone Age hunter-gatherers and artifacts from this era have been discovered, including microliths found during excavations at St Peter’s Church, Monkwearmouth. During the final phase of the Stone Age, the Neolithic period (c.4,000-c.2,000 BC), Hastings Hill, on the western outskirts of Sunderland, was evidently a focal point of local activity and a place of burial and ritual significance. There has also been a long-standing local legend that there was a small Roman settlement standing on the south bank of the River Wear on what is currently the site of the former Vaux Brewery, although no archaeological work has yet taken place to explore this. Recorded settlements on the mouth of the Wear date back to 674, when an Anglo-Saxon nobleman named Benedict Biscop, granted land by King Ecgfrith of Northumbria, founded the Wearmouth-Jarrow (St. Peter’s) monastery on the north bank of the river Wear – an area that became known as Monkwearmouth.

Biscop’s monastery was the first built of stone in Northumbria. He employed glaziers from France and in doing so he re-established glass-making in Britain. In 686 the community was taken over by Ceolfrid, and Wearmouth-Jarrow became a major centre of learning and knowledge in Anglo-Saxon England with a library of around 300 volumes.

The Codex Amiatinus, described by some as the ‘finest book in the world’, was created at the monastery and was likely worked on by Bede, who was born at Wearmouth in 673. While at the monastery, Bede completed the Historia ecclesiastica gentis Anglorum (The Ecclesiastical History of the English People) in 731, a feat which earned him the title: The Father of English History.

Sunderland is a really diverse mix of old and new, but our vast experience ensures that our heating systems and boiler installations not only fit beautifully with your home and its surroundings but also save you money (and keep you cosy) with their cost-saving performance.


We know how proud this city’s inhabitants are of their surroundings and we also know that they will not compromise on quality, which is one of the reasons why our remedial and replacement boiler projects are so well received by our cutomers in the area and why our testimonials and return visits to the city are so high.

We look forward to hearing from you.

If you are looking for a cost-effective heating upgrade to your home or boiler repair work, then you need look no further than the professionals at Arktek – we have a sterling reputation and offer a no-fuss, hassle-free gas boiler installation and commissioning service

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