Home > Memories > Broompark County Durham 1962

Broompark County Durham 1962

Broompark County Durham 1963

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  1. January 8, 2013 at 1:54 pm

    I lived at Broompark for several years until we left for Australia in febuary of 1962.
    Now retired due to shoulder operations i decided to do some research on the old village.
    After discovering that there is hardly any old maps or photos etc i decided to hand
    sketch this map showing Broompark how it was when we left in 1962.
    The Durham council has some old hand drawn maps that are worse than mine and some street
    names are unreadable. Also no service roads are shown and all streets in Broompark
    were pretty much the same. Each street had a back yard and in the corner of each yard
    was a toilet,coal locker, and a laundry which consisted only of a trough to hand scrub
    your washing.
    The service roads were essential to allow the toilet pans to be emptied and coal delivery.
    The 2 streets that were different were the 2 in the south West corner which was garden st
    and Grant street.
    These 2 streets had a laundry and coal room built onto the back of the house when the
    houses were originally built but had no back yard. They also both had their own service
    street but to go to the toilet you had to walk out the back door and walk across your
    street and there were toilet blocks all the way up the street – one for each house.
    You could walk between these small toilet blocks and across the next service st to
    the persons house in the other street. The neighbour opposite shared the same toilet
    unit but there was a door on each side and the unit was divided by a wall inside.
    Never the less, it was often embarrassing when you were on the toilet and someone from
    the house across the road went to the toilet as you could hear everything.
    I believe these may have been the first 2 streets built for the pit workers and then they
    saw it more practical to only have the 1 street servicing the other streets and also
    giving each house its own yard with at least a bit more privacy. we originally lived in
    Grant st but were fortunate that it was my Uncle Albert Turner and my Aunty Dorothy and
    Their son Kevin that lived opposite and shared the other half of the toilet.
    My uncle was also keen on taking photos and this is the one and only photo i have been
    able to find of the older Broompark buildings on the internet and it is in the Beamish
    Museum. I believe my uncle took the photo and my aunt Dorothy is also in the photo and it
    Has been taken in Garden st and the photographer was facing Westerly. ~link to photo~


    In the map i have drawn i have showed those service streets in Black and as you can see
    there was really only one way in for vehicles which was entering at East street although
    You could enter at the loves hotel but that street takes you back down to East street.
    I have coloured all the rooftops of the streets and buildings light blue as the roofs
    were actually old greyish blue slate tiles.
    I have left the back yards in white and just drawn in a couple of lines on the end of
    each street which indicate back yards but cannot remember how many houses to each street.
    Each street had garden space opposite their front door and only some bothered with gardens
    as most in my time had their own allotments which i have drawn on the Eastern side along
    with the tracks coloured in brown.
    There was the Co-op store shown in Albert st and another small building i don’t remember
    what it was. Behind the Co-op was 2 underground air raid /bomb shelters and behind that
    was the school which had a 6 foot wall around the whole area.
    On the West side of the school wall i show a small brown track running alongside some
    building which i remember they might have been made of timber and were divided inside
    and used for various activities or groups like boy scouts etc.??(vague on that).
    But that track was the main walk through to the loves Hotel and the front street where
    You had the fish and chip shop and a post office and another little shop. (now been informed this was called Walter Wilkinson’s)
    The Loves hotel was where the bus stopped if you were going to Ushaw moor or if you were
    Heading for Stone bridge or Durham you would cross the road and catch the bus East in
    front of broom farm which at that time we called Welches farm because the family surname
    was welch.
    The Love family still owned and ran the hotel when i left in 1962, and i sometimes played
    with their son who i think was called Johnny but again unsure.
    Note i have shown the Loves hotel to have a large back yard. this had a very high wall
    around it and 2 big wooden doors which may have been to originally house horse and carts
    for travelers that may have stayed there overnight. But in my time the Loves had their
    vegetables and poultry in there and also were breeding wild rabbits and there was lots
    of them and rabbit holes all over the place. I am guessing that rabbit stew might have
    been popular on the menu.
    The 2 houses on the front North east corner must have had some significance and from what
    i see using Google earth they still stand.The allotments close to them and the egg
    collection shed was originally ran by my Grandfather- Albert Turner (senior) and his wife
    Agnes.This was the bigger allotments and it had lots of chickens and produced most the
    eggs as well as breeding chickens and a big vegetable garden. Other allotment owners that
    had eggs took them to the egg shed and were paid for the eggs and the eggs were sorted
    into trays and were picked up regularly for market. Grains for chickens and other
    poultry and livestock could also be bought from the egg shed and was weighed out there.
    I have marked the area where every year we had the guy Fawkes fireworks and bon fire.
    Also the Church hall half way up the back of front street where we had a dance on
    Friday nights occasionally.
    The farm land South where i have said – originally old shafts was where we annually had
    a potatoe picking weekend and all us kids would work pretty hard walking behind the
    tractors picking up the potatoes with buckets and transferring them into sacks which were
    then picked up by another tractor with a carrier on the back. We all earned a few bob.
    Happy memories.

    • frank clarke
      January 9, 2013 at 2:25 pm

      Hi Ron I am surprised that i do not remenber you as i spent alot of time in broompark in the early 60s some names you should know, malcolm (hoss) clark terry and david lewis (terry also spent some time down under. joe and john ditchburn. john (shorty )richards (his sisters joan and margaret. trevor jopling. trevor. alan and eric welch and their cousin from west moor ian barras sheila clark (sister of hoss) As for the loves in approx 1963/4 a couple called ralph and doris ran it (she had a beautiful singing voice Hope this triggers a few memories regards frank clarke

      • January 10, 2013 at 3:35 am

        Hi Frank, i am guessing you might be a couple of years older and might have mixed more with the older kids. We all mixed at certain times and one of them was at night we often played a game called – kicky the tin were a tin can was placed in the middle of the road at the bottom of the hill between Garden Grant George and Eastway streets. One person was elected to be it and the tin was kicked and the person who was – IT had to get the tin and put it back on the spot while all the rest ran to hide.That person then had to find others and touch /Tag them and every person then Tagged became a helper in finding but if someone came out and kicked the tin again it had to be put back on the spot.Some of the older kids found an opportunity to play a game of their own but i wont go there LOL.
        I recall all the names you list and terry (Terrance Lewis was courting my sister Theresa (also known as Terri) up until we left for Australia in February of 1962. We were given a farewell send off outside our house in Albert st and i recall them both in tears and Terry was holding onto her hand through the taxi window and running down the street with the taxi. Yes Terry came over to Australia and stayed with us for a long time.My dad was friends with a Clark or Clarke.The Richards sisters and shorty were cousins to the Wighams and there was 2 Wigham families there. I mostly hung around with John as he was my age but George his cousin often was with us younger ones. George always wore a thick studded black belt and the studs were arranged to say PALADIN (have gun will travel) TV series. As for Ralph and Doris at the Loves hotel. Well i only remember adults as Mr and Mrs and my memories stopped in 1962 where as you kids kept growing up there and learnt to know most the first names.I recall that Jean Tuck had a brother called Trevor but he had a different surname as he was her step brother.

  2. Olga Bradley nee Jones.
    January 8, 2013 at 2:49 pm

    I used to hang around with a girl who lived in Railway cottages at Relly Bridge and I think they moved to Broompark at a later date. She is called Joan Grimes and she has a brother called John Grimes. I still see her occasionally and I sit with John in our local club on a Friday night. My sister Joy is married to a Broompark lad called Jim Campbell. Jims dad used to manage a shop on the front street at Broompark, I think it was called Walter Wilsons. Our Joy and Jim lived in the flat above the shop when they first got married.
    I did go to Ushaw Moor Secondary modern school, I remember some of the girls I used to hang around with were, Rosalind Hurst, Etta Wingfield, Joan Grimes, Margaret Glenden, Joyce Stowells, Ann Blades and many more. Do you remember Jean and Maisie Clark, they lived at Broompark, I remember their Mam died while they were still very young.

    • April 5, 2015 at 9:06 am

      Hi Olga, I remember you well. My married name is Blackmore, but my maiden name was Blades. It has brought back happy memories reading all the posts on the Broompark website. I remember all the girls you mentioned. I married my husband in 1971 who was serving in the RAF. After leaving the RAF in 1986 we moved to Barrow in Furness Cumbria where we have lived for the last 30 years. I have visited Ushaw Moor from time to time to visit family and used to see Rosalind Hurst as she lived next door to my sister.

  3. January 9, 2013 at 1:09 am

    Joan Grimes should remember me as she was also friends with my sister Terri (Theresa Nightingale).
    I mention the Grimes in one of my posts on the facebook site as i talk of Brian Grimes as being the guy who put up the tarzan swing over near the railway cottages where they lived.
    I think Joan also sometimes stayed over night at our house in Broompark.
    Annie Blades was also a Broompark kid and i remember her well. She lived in either George st or Eastwell and was friends with the Hewitt Girls Margaret and Irene. I recall the name Jean Clark and also Jean Tuck. I have posted a picture of myself and my 2 sisters on the facebook page. Ask john Grimes if he remembers me. I mainly hung around with John Wigham. Brian Grimes also lives in Australia now and i got a surprise when his daughter michelle replied to my post.

    • frank clarke
      January 10, 2013 at 11:58 am

      hello again Ron I have been trying to figure out where I knew the name Theresa Nightingale from ;your last comment has explained it Terry Lewis and I were close friends at that time and hung around together( often in his mothers fish shop Obviously He must have talked fondly of your sister

      • Ron Nightingale
        January 10, 2013 at 1:24 pm

        Still trying to contact Terry Lewis, can you help there.??

  4. Olga Bradley nee Jones.
    January 9, 2013 at 8:36 am

    I will see John Grimes tonight and mention you. I remember John Wigham he was a big lad wasn’t he? and the Hewitt girls. I still see Jean Tuck quite regularly. She’s a lovely person, she was married and had 2 kids then she got a divorce and started a relationship with a woman. Jean and her partner still come in the club. Hope we dont lose touch cos I’m so enjoying recalling all these memories. Oh and I also remember the barn dance at school. Its still my favourite dance now lol.

    • sarah
      January 9, 2013 at 9:32 am

      Joan grimes now hall is my other halfs mam lol my son had a project on ushaw moor history and she was telling us about railway cottages, funny wev done the project and I noticed her name on here.

    • January 10, 2013 at 4:05 am

      I dont know why but i keep thinking there was a Betty Grimes.? John Wigham was not a big lad in my days, he was bigger than me because i was a runt as you can see in the photo i posted. George -Johns cousin was a big lad and always wore a studded belt. Say hello to Jean Tuck if you see her. She was good friends with my younger sister. I recall once some concrete pipes were dropped off at the end of the street and we played on and in them. Jean got stuck half way LOL.

      • frank clarke
        January 10, 2013 at 4:13 pm

        hi ron one of your articles mentions looking for Terry Lewis I have seen him fairly recently and he was driving buses out of durham bus stationon local routes hope this helps

  5. Olga Bradley nee Jones.
    January 9, 2013 at 4:19 pm

    Tell Joan I am asking after her will you Sarah. I saw Eddie in the club a couple of weeks ago but havn’t seen Joan in ages. We used to have some good Sunday nights in Bearpark club.
    Even their John said he had’nt seen her for a while. Me and Joan kept up with each other having babies, did Joan have 6 or 7. I have 7 but not sure if I beat Joan by one or not. Give her my love. x

  6. Paul Fullard
    January 13, 2013 at 10:29 am

    The scrap yard belonged to my fathers uncle Denny Fullard

    • January 13, 2013 at 11:00 am

      Hi Paul, yes i remember the scrap yard well. Denny always had a nice warm fire in his shed and it was a great place to head for in the winter. There was another person who was involved in it and i am thinking his name may have been Bill Fullard and he wasnt there as much but had a vehicle and was in and out a lot. Thinking this was his brother and a bit older than Denny.?

      • linda smith ne fullard
        March 23, 2014 at 7:46 pm

        HI RON just to let u know you are right BILL Fullard but known as Billy what u say hear is correct I am billy fullards daughter and dennymy uncle my name is LINDA fULLARD but sadly thay are no longer with us any more

  7. terry fullard
    January 13, 2013 at 11:23 am

    hi ron dont know if you remember me but you were in my class at school just befor you left for australia and the billy fullard you remember was my dad

    • January 14, 2013 at 3:14 am

      Hi Terry, you must have a better memory than i do. i only remember you now that you have posted here but can recall that you sometimes came to the scrap yard, probably on a weekend or holidays. I cannot remember any of the names of kids in my class except for one girl with the surname Mclean. Only reason i remember her is because someone would touch her and then touch someone else saying – Mcleans pass it on.
      I felt sorry for her as she was such a quiet kid and i ended up walking her home after school.
      I am retired now after having both shoulders operated on. so i decided to track a bit of history and was disappointed to discover that the Durham council or historical group had not kept any records or photos when the old house were knocked down.
      I am wondering if the scrap yard would have remained until the end for any scrap. Maybe you could give me an idea of when the village got demolished.
      Hope your keeping well.

  8. terry fullard
    January 14, 2013 at 10:28 am

    hi ron, like you i was born in broompark in garden street 454, the house was my uncle georges, shortly after being born we moved to ushaw moor broom crescent.sorry i dont know when they demolished broompark as i have spent 12 years away in the Royal Air Force and i think it was then they must have pulled it down. just like you i would love to get hold of some photo’s . i am also retired now after 30 years as a truck driver, and am doing my family tree.Like you i went to both schools st.Josephs, and the secondry modern school i remember you on your last day at school before you left for oz being told to pull your socks up by the teacher. there was another girl in our class that went to oz , Pat scully, i can remember a few names like Arther Thompson,charlie hope, tommy Bewick, Billy Ward, some of the girls Joyce Kirby, Maureen Kerwin, Maureen Gallager, do you remember ? John Wigham, Walter Lincoln,Ron Moralee, Charlie Sykes, or how about John howarth, Jimmy Bartlett, Jimmy keelty,.if i find any info i will send it to you hope all that hot weathers afecting you too mutch and you and your family areall well …regards terry.

    • January 14, 2013 at 2:34 pm

      Bugger, i remember that day when i was told to pull my socks up.
      I bent down to check my socks and the whole class burst out laughing.Ha Ha
      John Wigham was my best friend. Maureen Gallager rings a bell and also the name Keetly.
      Was Pat Scully Irish.I met Scullys here when i arrived.
      I recall that the scrap yard had a shed that also housed a car that was very old.
      Buggered if i remember what it was but it must be worth a fortune now.
      I was never born in Broompark, i was born in Birtley. Moved there at the age of 5.
      How did we get numbers like 454 Garden st when there wasn’t even 454 houses in the whole of Broompark.??Guessing they were more like pit house records that might have been included to Bearpark, Brandon and Ushaw pits.??
      My research through mining records surprised me.
      No working pit at Broompark. – They decided to close the mine after a fire broke out in the shafts before it started mining and Broompark became a siding (Lay down area for coal).
      my next area for Gathering photos was going to be the R.A.F.

  9. January 21, 2013 at 12:39 pm

    You can see some maps of Broom park here http://www.old-maps.co.uk/maps.html Type Broompark in and scroll down the right hand side to see the age of the maps. To be honest though Ron your drawing is much more detailed! I wasn’t aware that the Loves had closed. Times really must be tough, sad.

  10. charlene welsh
    October 19, 2015 at 10:20 am

    Did anyone no my grandparents they lived in the farm house in broom park my uncle alan still dose I know very little about them if anyone dose let me know

  11. charlene welsh
    October 19, 2015 at 10:22 am

    Did anyone no my grandparents they lived in the farm house in broom park my uncle alan still dose I know very little about them if anyone dose let me know I have no photos or anything

  12. ron nightingale
    October 20, 2015 at 1:53 am

    Hi Charlene, i think everyone who lived in broompark would remember the Welch family.
    i doubt if there would be any kids that lived there that could say they never played up at the farm.
    We are hoping to see some photos from the old village from Alan and Elizabeth as i heard they do still have some photos which are most likely in the guest house.
    do you live in the Durham area.?
    being family they might allow you to scan any photos to a laptop or USB and you could post them on here and also there is a broompark memories, wordpress, as well as a Broompark memories on facebook which you might find interesting.

  13. jess
    October 20, 2015 at 9:07 am

    my grandparents had the farm call broom farm west when i was little .

    • ron nightingale
      October 21, 2015 at 1:26 am

      Hi Jess, i remember that farm also, we used to cut through that property from the main road and walk through the cow fields and over the styes to gain access to the railway line and the beck (river deerness)
      happy old memories of a lovely countryside.

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