The Collingwood Society is a special interest group whose focus is the life, times and legacy of Vice Admiral Cuthbert Collingwood (1748-1810), 1st Baron Collingwood of Caldburne and Hethpoole in Northumberland.
Perhaps best-known to most simply as Vice-Admiral Horatio Nelson’s friend and second-in-command at the battle of Trafalgar, Collingwood has arguably been undersold by history. He was, in his own right, an inspirational leader, a dedicated naval officer, a devoted husband and father, a shrewd strategist and a highly capable diplomat. He was a man gifted with sound judgement, a dry humour and a wonderful way with words, many of which have fortunately survived. His life was characterised both by great achievement and ultimately, great sadness.
The Society grew directly out of a highly successful, year-long Festival in 2010, which commemorated the 200th anniversary of his death.
Our home is in Newcastle upon Tyne, only some 400 metres from where Cuthbert Collingwood was born in September 1748. Through the generosity and support of the Brethren, its postal address and the venue for many of its meetings is the Newcastle upon Tyne Trinity House, just off the city’s famous quayside. While based in the North-East of England however, the Society has a world-wide membership.
The focus is easily defined but widely interpreted and tag words such as ‘The Georgian Navy’, ‘British naval history (Napoleonic Era)’, ‘Collingwood’s fellow officers’, (Collingwood in) ‘Newcastle’ and ‘Northumberland’, ‘warships of the period’, ‘Collingwood’s family’, ‘music of the time’, ‘Collingwood Ale’ and ‘a dog called Bounce’ give a representative indication of the range of our activities.
We run a programme of talks, visits and other events and engage with other like-minded organisations to share our interests. We are developing an educational archive and look to engage with works to preserve the monuments to Collingwood and those who sailed with him. This website is (and will always be) a developing asset.
We invite you to browse these pages and discover for yourself the character who inspires the fascination of our members. If you would like to join the Society, please click here to download a membership application form. If you would like more information, please click here for contact details.