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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59. In the swim at Chester-Ie-Street. Members of the town amateur swimming club ready for a quick dip. Swimming in the Wear at Chester-Ie-Street was a very popular sport and pastime, but of ten a dangerous one too. Many a daredevil that took the plunge into the calm-Iooking depths was drowned.

60. Lumley CastIe against the Durham skyline, a famous silhouette th at stamped a million bricks, and probably as many picture postcards. The turretted battlements were the trade mark of the Lumley Brick Company and a favourite subject for artists and photographers. The castIe is one of the most familiar landmarks of Chester-Ie-Street District visible for miles around. For many years the River Wear could only be crossed at this point by ferryboat, or at the Iittle iron footbridge nearby if you wanted a closer look. The grand oid building is a splendid backdrop to Chester-Ie-Street and adds much to the charm and character ofthe District.

61. On your bikes! Riding ful! pelt down the golf course bank from Lumley Road Ends to the river isn't the kind of fun enjoyed by the feint of heart but this cycling duo riding an unofficial tandem seems to be in its element. No doubt some old, golfing colonel at the window of the nearby club house would have launched into his favourite monologue on the fol!y of youth as he saw them whizzing past.

62. St. Cuthbert's Church and Presbytery, Ropery Lane , built before the Great War in a northern European fashion that harks back to the days of the Emperor Charlemagne. Quite appropriately for a Catholic church, this kind of 'Dark Age' architecture is known as the Romanesque style. The large Catholic congregation was quite a late addition to the many denominations al ready found in Chester-Ie-Street District, swelled in size by the big influx of Irish Catholic coal miners and their families into the area at the end of the last century.

63. The Parade. This fine row of double-fronted terraeed housing was added to the south end of the town just before the turn of the century. Some of the 'Blyth's Best Birtley Bricks' the Parade was built with, were stamped with the veiled head stamp of Queen Victoria, just like the old Boer War pennies that were still in circulation before decimilisation. lt was always fun for children playing at the corner end to try and find as many of them as they could dotted here and there about the walls.

64. The ornamental gardens surrounding the Hermitage, a country house on the southern approaches to Chester-Ie-Street. The very pleasant autumn day pictured isn't reflected in the brief wintry-sounding tale written on the back of the card: '13th September 1918. Having very cold weather it rains every day. '

65. The Grove on Chester-Ie-Street Front Street, from a picture postcard sent to Germany in December 1904. If local tales be true, Vanbrugh took a little bit of time off from his commission at Lumley Castle to design this quaint little town house. Whoever the architect was, the building has stood the test of time, not to mention a runaway lorry once crashing through the garden wall and demolishing the left-hand bay window. Today The Grove serves as headquarters for the Durham Aged Miners' Homes Association.

66. The modernist-style post office on Chester-le-Street Front Street. During the 1930's a handful of buildings we re constructed in what was then the late st fashion, along very simple lines, using rounded-off corners and iron window frames. Chester-Ie-Street post office has the rare distinction of carrying the royal cypher of King Edward VIII on its stairwell window. No doubt the cycli st on the right was pleased when the bone-shaking cobble-stone paving of the Front Street was replaced by smooth tarmac.

67. The King's Head pub stood on Chester-le-Street Front Street just opposite the entrance to High Chare. Page Gibson, the landlord, was a famous Chester-le-Street character. Two finely carved heads of a bearded and moustached King wearing a coronet formed part of the outside woodwork of this pub, and children passing by were fascinated by, if not a !ittle wary of, these two green men staring down atthem.

68. Today St. Mary and St. Cuthbert's Church stands in an open space surrounded by lawns and a few rose bushes, so this rare glimpse of the original churchyard with its avenue of trees and ancient tornbstones gives people an insight into its earlier character.

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