Shotley Bridge was a famous sword making centre as already noted by Jim and others although it was only a village but as you know sitting almost on top of the river Derwent which formed the county Durham and Northumberland border in that area. That water power from the river drove the great grinding wheels of the sword factory and quenching, tempering etc which was I understand in Wood Street running parallel to the river 150 feet from the actual Bridge itself. Apart from the House which contained the factory there is little of the original street standing and I believe it was nearly all demolished by about 1960. At intervals water was used in steel production etc in kilns as far up the river as Allensford...about 8 miles... and there was another industrial location about 3 miles up river called the Iron Forge which I believe also manufactured paper. (All disappeared now except for a mansion house) At the end of the village there was a meeting place now a house which was the Cutlers Hall owned by the Sword Makers Owners...who owned a lot of the village including the local hostelry which is still there : THE CROWN AND CROSSED SWORDS. (Two minutes stroll from the Sword Makers in Wood Street)
As for the Hollow Sword ....I believe the term was used to describe the grinding process concave or convex on the sword edge .. hollow ground being the sharpest. See the second reference below.
You may have read it but others may have not...http://www.the-nut.net/articles/shotley_swords.php
And this is a vital document Please see http://www.rapper.org.uk/archive/shotley_swords.pdf
Ibrahiim al Balooshi.