Search is on for historic painting

A RELATIVE of one of Morpeth’s most famous residents is asking the public to help his research.

Tommy Longstaff, who was born in about 1787 and died in 1862, ran a tannery business in the town centre and the Prince Albert Inn on the banks of the Wansbeck during his life. He also established the first museum in Morpeth at the pub.

After his death, the Prince Albert site and other fields that he owned became known as Tommy’s Field. Part of the four-acre area was allocated for allotments in 1940 so residents could grow their own vegetables and flowers and it is still being used for this purpose today.

Mr Longstaff is the great, great, great grandfather of Trevor Longstaff, who lives in Poole, Dorset. He and wife Megan have been doing research into their family tree for a number of years.

They are hoping that people living in Morpeth can provide them with further details and information to help them track down a particular artefact.

“It was fascinating to discover that Tommy was so well known in the town and that he was involved in all sorts of things,” said Trevor.

“We found some useful details from Harry Rowland’s history columns in the Herald and the Morpeth Antiquarian Society has also been very helpful. An interesting aspect is the museum that displayed among other things ‘portions of exhausted thunderbolts’.

“Hopefully, there are people out there who could provide us with more information about him. In particular, we would like anyone who has any knowledge of what has happened to an oil painting of the inn – which was mentioned in the Herald on May 12, 1944, as it was auctioned in aid of the war effort – to get in touch.”

Trevor can be contacted by telephone on 01202 267338 or email