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Seaham Beach

England's sea glass treasure trove - reports, photos, history

Rundle family sea glass from Seaham Beach

Let's start with Charlie Rundle's report. Charlie and his family live right near Seaham Beach and are regular seaglassers there.

Charlie Rundle's Seaham Report

Seaham Beach Glass

My name is Charlie Rundle and I collect seaglass with my Mam, Dad, Brother and Sister on the north east coast of England on a beach called Seaham.

The kind of seaglass found here are often called 'multis' or 'end of day glass'.

It is often coloured glass with multiple colours swirled or layered in beautiful patterns.

Charlie's Brief History of Seaham Glass

This glass comes from a glass factory that was on the top of the cliffs back in 1850.

The factory was owned by John Candlish and was open from 1850 to 1921.

The scraps and mistakes from the factory would be thrown into the North Sea at the end of the day - that is why it is called 'end of day' sea glass.

A large teal boulder from SeahamA large teal boulder from Seaham

We find many different colours and sizes from small chips to large boulders.

 Multi pieces or end of day glass are very unique pieces they are products of the scrap glass melting together before hardening and then being discarded into the sea.

Most of the larger piece are often very frosted from many years in the salty sea.

Beach Conditions by Charlie

  • Some days seaglassing on Seaham can be very difficult and you might not find very much. Other days can be easier.
  • White, Green, Amber and Aqua/seafoam colours, these are the more common colours.
  • Seaham is sometimes a sandy beach and sometimes very rocky.
  • Spring, Autumn and Winter make for better seaglassing days when the sea is more likely to be rough and churn the beach up.
  • The beach never looks the same it's always changing as the sea moves the stones and rocks around.
Glass Beach - Seaham EnglandGlass Beach - Seaham England

~ by Charlie Rundle, Seaham, England

Thank you Charlie for sending us this well-presented report on Seaham!

Rundle family sea glass from Seaham Beach

Getting to Seaham

Go to Google Map >>>

 From Newcastle International Airport, you can take a bus (in 2 stages) to very close to the beach at Seaham. Total trip from the airport by bus is about 1-1/2 hours.

Airport to Sunderland: Take the bus at Platform 1. In 55 minutes you will arrive at the Park Lane stop in Sunderland. Walk about 1 minute to the Sunderland Interchange.

Sunderland to Seaham: Take the Parkside bus to Seaham at Platform D. In 20 minutes you will be in Seaham.

How to get there - from our viewers:

by: Tom

I go a lot to the beach at Seaham, and pick for my sister who lives miles away! lol...

If arriving by car, there is a car park area called Vine Tempest Viewpoint. Or just walk to the north beach just outside the main front of Seaham.

Weather and Tides

by: Vivian

The best time for sea glass is also the worst time: winter brings the storms that bring in the glass, but it is not for the faint of heart.

I was there late November. It NEVER stopped raining.

I went through several pairs of warm fingerless gloves (so you can pick up the glass and stay somewhat warm!) and hats each day and dried them on their radiators at night.

Also needed: A raincoat with visor to shield off the rain (I ruined two umbrellas in the wind!), rubber boots and WARM pants, sweaters and socks!

And even then there were 2-3 other hunters out each time I went.

You have to time the tides carefully as the waves are ROUGH and hopefully even time it for the weather if you can, but winter is definitely the time to go... the glass was AMAZING!

~ by Tom

Best time to go is NOW winter months, but that also brings you the trouble with rain,snow, but I have also noitced it's always warmer at the north beach than anywhere else in the last couple of weeks.


~ by Vivian

Unlike photos I have seen, every square inch of the beach was covered with rocks making the hunting difficult (especially with rain in your face!) but SO rewarding (and yes my back is still killing me!).

I saw 1-3 other hunters out on even the nastiest of days even so.


~ by Tom

Bit of info on the beach.

    It changes everyday.
    Very strong tide at Seaham.
    One day its a lovely beach, next you need very stong walking boots. Goes from sand to rocky stones every other day.


~ by Rose

The locals are very friendly and helpful with information.

Also, if anyone is looking for black sea glass, definitely make the walking trip south of the main Seaham beach to Blast Beach.

Blast Beach had copious amounts of black glass and proved much better for porcelain pieces.


The original bottle manufacturing done in Seaham area reached its prime under a famous local man, John Candish.

Several of his descendants have contributed to the information found in the comment sections on these pages.

The original bottle manufacturing done in Seaham area reached its prime under a famous local man, John Candish. Several of his descendants have contributed to the information found in the comment sections on these pages.


by: Toni

My entire family grew up in Seaham and I remember many a summer collecting sea glass in all manner of colours.

We are very fortunate in the sea glass stakes as we did indeed have a bottleworks right on the coast line between the docks and the pit where

I'm sure a percentage of the "end of day" glass came from there.


by: Robert Fuller

This is what i know - in the 1800s there were 2 victorian bottle factories there owned by a man called John Candlish.

John and his brother ran the 2 factories. He also had 2 in Sunderland.

All the end of day waste glass was tipped over the cliffs. John Candlish also ended up a MP for Sunderland. His statue is in the city park.

In his early days he also had a shipyard.

Good old John Candlish... wonder what he would think now about his waste glass being gems of the ocean!

There was also a pottery (factory) there.

Hope this helps. You can read this type in Google and search history of John Candlish

For more information: http://www.east-durham.co.uk/londonderrys/londonderry_bottleworks%20ARTICLE%202.htm


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