Chester-le-Street in old picture postcards volume 2

Chester-le-Street in old picture postcards volume 2

:   Gavin John Purdon
:   Durham
:   United Kingdom
:   978-90-288-5487-1
:   80
:   EUR 16.95 Including VAT *

Delivery time: 2-3 weeks (subject too). The illustrated cover may differ.


Fragments from the book 'Chester-le-Street in old picture postcards volume 2'

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29. View from the footbridge of Beamish Wagonway in 1920, when that railway track was a major route for shipping coal across the District. With the closure of the local collieries the track feil into disuse and eventually became a bramble-lined footpath, where you could take your dog for a quiet walk and piek a few blackberries along the way. After a few years of retirement, however, the overgrown wagonway was called back into service as the foundation for a new improved road link between the AlM motorway and north-west Durham.

30. The Shepherd and Shepherdess public house at Beamish is one of those quaint corners of Chester-Ie-Street District that has alm ast managed to stay very much as it has been for as long as anyone can remember and hopefully always will.

31. St. Paul's Vicarage West Pelton in August 1905, with the church in the background and the vicar and his mot her in the foreground. Today, many such old vicarages around County Durham have been given over to use as residential care homes for older people. Local records make mention that West Pelton Church was paid for by the Joicey Coal Company. Walk around the churchyard and headstone after headstone teils of the price that local miners also had to pay for the privilege of working for the Joicey Co al Company.

We t Pelton from Vicara e Beami b. R. ..0.

32. Allotment gardens in the heart of West Pelton. Today, the spot is covered by modern housing development, but leek, chrysanthemum and tomato growing are as popular as ever elsewhere in the village. Behind tall thorny hedgerows the secretive arts are still practised, conjuring up leeks you could use as pit props, chysanthemums you could play football with and tomatoes redder than the Bewick Main Colliery banner.

33. Colliery Row, Grange Villa, better known as the Stone Row. This photo was taken from the entrance to the old Alma Colliery. One elderly lady recalled her arrival at the Stone Row as a pitman's bride and how basic the late 19th century buildings were. Instead of the staircase she expected there were open wooden rungs little better than step ladders to get upstairs. In 1909 the disaster bang from the Burn's Pit explosion was said to have been heard by some people at Stone Row, although the Burn's Pit was several miles away up at West Stanley. A number of miners from Stone Row were killed underground in that explosion.

34. In its time Edmondsley bank must have defeated more pedal bik ers than Mount Everest did mountaineers. In Sepp and Jossy's day, when cyclists were fearless but gearless, it was definitely get off and push territory. No doubt our two cyclists would 'tack their pipe' when they got to the top, as having a short rest was called by pitmen in those days. The crest between Edmondsley bank and the drop down Daisy Hill on the other side gives you a grand view, not only of Chester-le-Street District, but also of Durham County and beyond. This postcard was posted on 6th October 1904.

William Street, Valdridge Fell.

35. William Street Waldridge Feil. This old pit row, long since demolished, explains why set among the heather and braeken of a local beauty spot there should be a visitors' car park called William Street, when there isn't a house in sight.

36. A Johnston series postcard of the Victoria Pit at Sacriston. This colliery was the last deep coal mine to be worked in Chester-Ie-Street District. As the other collieries thinned out, Sacriston somehow seemed to avoid the axe , but eventually its luck ran out like all the rest's, The photo was taken at the turn of the century and the numbers one nine two nine are in fact a postcard serial number, not the date ofthe photo.

37. The Shield Row Drift Sacriston Colliery in July 1904. This photo strongly echoes the work of Thomas Hair, an artist who painted colliery scenes in Chester-le-Street District during the early nineteenth century. The thickly-treed slopes, the ramshackle wooden-clad buildings, the row of laden wagons and the two or three workmen busy in the foreground are just as he would have painted them for his delightfullittle book 'Sketches ofthe Coalfields of Northumberland and Durham' .


38. No prizes for guessing where Sepp and Jossy are. It's thirsty work, this pedalling around the western hills and dales of Chester-Ie-Street District, and there's nothing for it but to refresh and fortify themselves before leaving Sacriston and heading through Nettlesworth, Kimblesworth and Plawsworth on their journey to lands east of the Wear.

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