Home > Memories > GOOD, BAD AND SAD


Decent media outlets are in short supply but they, more than any other, remind us that corruption is prevalent throughout the world. Don’t get me wrong, there are inspirational people about, it’s just that they are in short supply. That said, is it any wonder that from time to time we dip into the past? Such dipping has its limitations and arguably it is a form of respite little better than burying your head in the magnificent sands at Redcar.

The trouble with the past is that we cannot completely recapture it; however we can get a handle on some of it with reasonable certainty; I have in mind some fundamental characteristics and motivations that make up the human experience in whatever period we examine.If we need guidance Shakespeare may be able to help, but only if we are in the mood for him.

Let us see if we can recapture a bit of the past without William. It can be less confusing that way. Failure, success, comedy, sadness, pain and tragedy have always been with us and it was no different for past residents of Ushaw Moor.

In 1891 Ushaw Moor Cricket Club lost its Durham County Challenge Cup-Final against Consett. Bearing in mind that seventy seven years later I was a member of the South Moor first team that lost an away league match at Consett I can grieve for Ushaw Moor with some realistic feeling.

I am amused and pleased to point out that back in 1900 a Tory candidate, having arranged to give a speech at Ushaw Moor, found that almost all of the residents had gone away on an excursion. He cancelled his speech and left the village. 

In 1911 the Ushaw Moor sub- postmaster, Robert Clemitson Russell, died at the age of sixty seven. The post office opened in 1904 and he had been there from the start.

In 1914 an eight year old boy from Ushaw Moor died, having fallen into one of the tanks near Ushaw Moor sewerage works.

In 1915 a married women from Ushaw Moor was found dead in a colliery reservoir at Esh Winning. In the same year soldier Jimmy Nutter, from Ushaw Moor, was injured fighting in WW1. The incidents are not connected.

Thanks to the Tory candidate’s experience we had a bit of cheer to contrast with the grim sadness and despair.




Categories: Memories
  1. April 5, 2013 at 5:19 am

    Quote~ In 1914 an eight year old boy from Ushaw Moor died, having fallen into one of the tanks near Ushaw Moor sewerage works. ??

    Did Ushaw Moor have sewerage way back then.?
    Most of Broompark still had scrape outs. I was just asking my mother the other day about where they emptied the toilet pans and she reminded me that they were not pans and the toilets were scrape outs and the truck came once a week to scrape them out. She went on to remind me that they did not smell bad because after the scrape out they threw some powder in there that might have been a mixture of lime mixed with something that gave off a lavender type smell which lasted for the whole week until the next scrape out. She also reminded me that also we emptied our ash in there daily when we cleaned and re set the fire and the ash also helped absorb and hide any bad smell. We only had to put up with that in Grant street as we moved to Albert and had sewerage.
    Broompark was still like that when we left in 1963 so i dont know if it was still scrape outs up until the demolishing of the old village.
    Lovely bit of nostalgic history isnt it LOL.

    • April 5, 2013 at 2:52 pm

      Interesting comment Ron. I must admit that I was as surprised as anyone to see a reference to sewage works. Maybe Peter is on to something regarding storage pending disposal.

  2. April 5, 2013 at 12:00 pm

    You are dead right there Ron, there would have been no human waste effluent at this time as all the toilets were earth closets until the council houses started being built. Should speculate that sewage from the colliery in the form of water pumped from the pit and perhaps run-off water from the houses or college would have been treated before being emptied into the beck. This may be one in Brian’s field of expertise

  3. Claire Forster
    April 5, 2013 at 1:56 pm

    My Great Great Uncle, Thompson Jackson was an Ice Cream seller in Ushaw Moor, He married a girl called Sarah Smith and died aged 23 in 1930 a few days after the horse from his Ice Cream cart kicked him. My Nana says it was possibly septicaemia. He was known as Kelly and they had a little girl called FLorence who died as an infant in 1931

  4. Denise
    April 5, 2013 at 7:59 pm

    The Redcar outing comment is interesting, my great grandfather, Robert Pearson married my great grandmother, Sarah Campion, in the 1890’s. He was from Waterhouses, then lived in Ushaw Moor; Sarah has lived in Guisborough from birth up until marrying…..a result of the outing perhaps?

  5. April 6, 2013 at 9:09 pm

    There was a sewage works in the woods down the beck. If you entered the wood at Broughs gable end and turned right, down a small steep ravive and up the other side (man made I think) and followed the edge of the wood for a hundred yards or so there was a small works situated there. It was fenced off and the tanks were circular in designand and a steel circular pipe discharging water and attached to a central column went around continuously. When it was built I don’t know, it certainly was’t a new construction even in those days

    I think there was also a sewage works situated on the Ushaw Moor side of the beck about 300 yards below the road bridge on the Ushaw Moor/New Brancepeth road. I am a bit vague about this works but I would put an even fiver on it being there

    Brian Mc.

  6. April 7, 2013 at 2:36 am

    I stand corrected because i automatically thought of human waste with the word -sewage (also called sewerage). Checked that and it is waste carried by water – also called waste water. And we know that the mines had waste mine water running into the beck. broompark site still had a pipe in the slope of the bank which was still trickling a small stream of water down to the beck when i left there in 63.

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