Tower House, also known as the Pinnacle or Robson’s Folly, has been the subject of much speculation over the years.
A local character called George Robson more commonly known as ‘Tatie’ Robson because of his great knowledge and expertise on the growing of potatoes is said to have built the Tower House in 1879. His original intention was to build along the west side of Billingham Green but on being denied permission by the local authorities he is reputed to have said ‘If they won’t let me build along, then I’ll build up’.
In 1874, Robson paid Thomas Battensby £40 for Church View – then a blacksmiths shop – and planning permission was granted in 1879 for alterations. At the same time, permission was given to build on the site next to the blacksmith’s shop and, true to his word, George built up. The result was a white brick building 60 feet high consisting of a ground floor kitchen, a first floor living room and a bedroom on each of the second and third floors, all joined by a steep staircase. A small yard adjoining the Tower contained the toilet and coalhouse. In the same year it was built, George took out a mortgage for £400 and completed the repayments in 1886.
Tower House and Church View were demolished in 1963.