Author Archive

Classroom notes

September 5, 2014 1 comment

Do you remember doing this and hopefully not getting caught.
No SMS or texting back then lol.Sending an SMS in the sixties.

Categories: Memories

Ushaw Moor Colliery / Broompark colliery.

February 14, 2013 14 comments



I found this article very interesting.Last paragraphs mention broompark, but also interesting to note that both Broompark and ushaw moor collierys opened at the same time.



 Archive – Friday, 6 February 2004

Discovery of coal on moors leads to development of village

USHAW Moor is a former mining village on the north side of the River Deerness, half way between Durham and Esh Winning.

Centrally located among the mining communities of the Deerness and Browney, roads from neighbouring places converge upon a crossroads at the village centre.

The crossroads was there long before Ushaw Moor came into being, although there was no housing in the 1850s when the nearest structures were Cockhouse

Farm, half a mile west and Broom Hall on a hill to the east.

Ushaw Moor’s mining community was born in the second half of the 19th Century on previously empty moorland. Some settlement had come in the early 19th

Century when Ushaw College opened, but this famous institution existed half a century before Ushaw Moor itself.

There had been an earlier farming settlement called Ushaw, first mentioned in 1312. Now gone, it was possibly located where College Farm stands.

 Early spellings suggest Anglo-Saxons called Ushaw “Ulfs Shaw” meaning Wolf’s Wood but it may be named after Ulf, a man who held land west of Durham in

the 12th Century.

Little is known of early Ushaw, except that a bake-house belonging to the Batmanson family existed here in the 17th and 18th centuries, perhaps where the

college now stands. It was a communal establishment used by the poor and needy for a small fee.

Ushaw’s moorland, originally called Middlewood Moor, lay mostly east of the early settlement. For centuries small-scale drift mining was undertaken at nearby

places such as Esh, but in 1755 attempts to reach coal on the moor ended in failure.

In 1858, the Pease family opened a railway through the Deerness Valley to serve the colliery at Waterhouses which stimulated the development of more mines.

After the successful finding of coal, Ushaw Moor Colliery opened about 1870. Its first owners were probably the Holliday family who owned drift mines near

old Esh and Hilltop. By 1873 it belonged to John Sharp but passed to the aristocratic Henry Chaytor of Witton Castle in 1879.

Ushaw Moor’s first colliery village developed on the north side of Cockhouse Lane (the B6302), three quarters of a mile west of the present village.

The early colliery village included West Terrace, East Terrace and Double Row while the colliery lay on the opposite side of the road, overlooking the

 Deerness. The colliery and terraces were demolished in the 1950s and 1960s and are now empty fields.

Deerness View, a lonely hamlet on the B6302, now stands near the site. This came later, in the mid-20th Century, but the terraces of the first colliery

 village lay in the fields to its east.

There had been development of buildings around the crossroads in what is now the centre of Ushaw Moor before the 1890s.

 Buildings included a pub called the Flass Inn, but the population was concentrated in the terraces further west.

Cockhouse Lane leads to Esh Winning and Waterhouses, but before those collieries developed it terminated at Flass Hall, a mile east of Ushaw Moor.

The hall’s name derives from an Old Danish word, Flask, meaning swamp and has the same meaning as Flass Vale in Durham.

Established in the 1570s, it lies on the site of a medieval farm and is marked on Saxton’s map of Durham in 1576.

The hall’s first occupant was William Brass who was succeeded by his son, Cuthbert in 1600.

The last Brass at Flass still lived there in 1697 when it became the hall of the Hall family.

By the 19th Century, Flass belonged to Jane Smythe, of Esh Hall, who married Sir Robert Peat, a friend of the Prince Regent.

Robert had serious gambling debts and probably married Jane for money.

Later, they were estranged, partly because of Jane’s kleptomaniac tendencies. She chose to live in Sunderland, renting Flass Hall to the Reverend Temple

Chevalier of Esh village while her property at Cockhouse Farm was leased to John Leadbiter of Gateshead.

Flass Hall became a property of the Peases in the 1920s before passing in the 1930s to a local farmer who kept pigs in the house. It was taken over by the

National Coal Board in 1947 and converted into private houses in the late 1960s. Locally it is called “haunted house”, but the identity of its spectral

resident, if indeed there is one, remains a mystery.

Broom Hall is another notable hall. Once situated in empty fields east of the village until almost swallowed by Ushaw Moor’s housing developments in the

1960s, it belonged to the Batmanson family in the later half of the 16th Century.

Broom Hall is really associated with the little village of Broom to the east. Broom is now called Broompark but this was really the name for an adjoining

colliery village that developed in the 19th Century.

The colliery village has gone and is now occupied by housing development called Cookes Wood, but older parts of Broom including several old farmhouses


Broompark is only separated from Ushaw Moor by a road and recreation ground. Mining had taken place on a small scale here since the 1300s when its coal was

sold to the Prior of Bearpark. North Brancepeth Colliery Company which also operated Littleburn colliery opened the colliery about 1870 on the site of a

mysterious medieval moat. The colliery closed in 1904 after a major fire from which the miners escaped by means of an old drift.

One intriguing feature of Broompark is the Loves public house. Built in the 19th Century it was originally called Love’s Hotel after Joseph Love,

a Durham coal owner who owned a brick foundry. He is thought to have built the pub with his bricks, each perhaps inscribed with the word Love.

* In next week’s Durham Memories we look at the troublesome history of Ushaw Moor Colliery.

Published: 06/02/2004

If you have any memories of Durham City, Chester-le-Street, Derwentside or the Durham coast, including old photos or stories of people and places you would

like to share with readers of The Northern Echo, write to David Simpson, Durham Memories, The Northern Echo, Priestgate, Darlington, DL1 1NF or

email All photos will be returned.

Bogey Cart Racing

February 7, 2013 5 comments

Bogey Cart Racing

Hill cart racing.

Categories: Memories

Harrys Half Crown 1963

February 1, 2013 8 comments

Harrys Half Crown 1963

Durham County Advertiser- May 4th  1962.

The boys and girls of Form 3A at Ushaw Moor secondary modern school have just completed an interesting and comprehensive project. They have made a film.
The project started in October and the exposed film was sent in for processing Last month.
The entire job of writing and making up the story shows the natural development of secondary modern education and shows the character of the schools broad education.

Categories: Memories

Old School Broompark County Durham Broompark school county durham

January 30, 2013 8 comments

Old School Broompark County Durham Broompark school county durham

Broompark infant school county durham uk

I remember the school well. All the upper levels were blocked off as it was only used for infants on the lower ground level.
Seems it was turned into apartments.??
More photos here ~~

Any other input ` Thanks.

Categories: Memories Tags: , ,

Back Street-Grant Street- Broompark County Durham.

January 23, 2013 31 comments

Back of Garden st Broompark number 431Broompark County Durham Circa 1962w810H
Back street -Garden street Broompark.the kids broomparkBack of Grant st Broompark number 431Back Street-Grant Street- Broompark County Durham.

Back of Grant Street Broompark County Durham
11th of September 1959

Pied Piper Bus Driver?

January 18, 2013 13 comments

In my quest to find out when the old village of Broompark was demolished
i found this~ ???.I attended that school as a toddler and went on to St Josephs.
The article was in the northern echo and is dated  April 17 2009.
50 years ago from that date in my calculation would make the year 1959.
Yet i have no recollection of a pied piper bus driver tooting his horn.
We walked to the main bus stop near Loves hotel and caught the bus there.

April 17th, 2009

From the Durham County Advertiser 50 years ago.

The driver of a bus which arrives in Broompark each weekday morning has become known as the modern Pied Piper.
 When he toots his horn, children of the village skip out of their homes and are not seen again until early evening.
 “Very soon their parents will be leaving, never to return,”.
 A villager remarked bitterly to an Advertiser reporter this week.. “A village which loses its school begins slowly to decay.”

At Broompark School, focal point of the life of the village since the beginning of the century, only one of three classrooms is now in use.
 Thirty older chldren were transferred to Ushaw Moor a fortnight ago, but there is still a class for toddlers.
 After the summer holidays, however, even they will probably have to make the mile and a half trip to Ushaw Moor.

As reported in the Advertiser last week, a petition protesting against the closure of the school has been signed by over 200 villagers.
 Parents have already seen the county authorities and the Central Executive Education Committee.
 They intend to fight resolutely to save the school.

It is doubtful, however, whether a reprieve will be granted, for the problem at Broompark is that of many villages throughout the county.

? Compiled with the help of Durham County Council’s Clayport library

Categories: Memories

Wilf B might be able to enlighten us on this.

January 13, 2013 1 comment
Categories: Memories

Somewhere in the Deerness Valley??

January 10, 2013 6 comments

Somewhere in the Deerness Valley??

My grandfather Albert Turner with My Grandmother Agnes. I cannot give the location. Possibly in the entrance of the Loves hotel in Broompark, but i am thinking some other location in Ushaw Moor. No buildings in Broompark had a double door and brickwork like that except perhaps the Loves hotel.???? Albert was a very distinguished gentleman and a very good businessman who lent money and also a collector of fine antiques and collectables.
But also a maker of fine whiskey and loved a drink.
Some said that he was one that could turn a sows ear into a silk purse. But he was a worker and worked his gut out just as the rest.

Broompark-Deerness valley-County Durham

January 9, 2013 16 comments

Broompark-Deerness valley-County Durham

The Nightingale Kids -Shirley (5) – Ronnie (9) – Theresa (13)
Taken 1959 outside our front door in Albert street

Categories: Memories