Shotley Bridge sword makers novel

September 20, 2020

Helen Steadman’s third historical novel “The Running Wolf”, about the Shotley Bridge sword makers, is being  published on 10 November, this year.

Although her book is a work of fiction, it is based on many years of research.

Her research findings, including a review of the existing literature and a comprehensive list of books, articles and archive documents read, are on her website.

 

Thread of Iron book launch

September 11, 2020
Douglas Vernon, who was a founder member of the Village Trust and its first chairman, published ‘Thread of Iron’ in 2003.
For anybody interested in the industrial history of the Derwent Valley this book is a must. Written in two parts; the first focuses on the history of Shotley Bridge where the famous Sword makers were based. The second part details the history of the Consett Iron Company, from formation until closure in 1980.
The book, which has been out of print for many years, has now been reprinted by the Land of Oak & Iron Trust. To mark the occasion a virtual launch event is being held tomorrow afternoon, via YouTube. Log-in now for a seat at the Premiere.
Find out more about the launch event and where to purchase the book at the Land of Oak & Iron Trust.
This event has been arranged in association with the History of Consett Steelworks Project group who are staging a week long series of activities to commemorate the 40th Anniversary of the closure of the works.

Shotley Bridge Sword Makers

September 9, 2020

Keith Fisher, a north east historian, has been researching sword making for many years and has now published his research.

He has kindly given the Village Trust a compressed .pdf version of his book to post as a free download.

If you prefer a hard copy it can also be acquired as a fine book, purely for the printing cost of £15.00, and will be available from Newcastle Cloth Market print-shop Photoline: call 0191 232 5454 to order; the book can be collected, or posted to you [in a stiff cardboard package] for an additional £5. [NB: The resolution of the images has been reduced to allow it to be downloaded, while images in the hard copy book are much more detailed.]

Keith explains:

“A request from my friend Yvonne Young (who is a local historian, lecturer and publisher of books on North Eastern heritage) to suggest a topic she could use at men’s clubs and associations, prompted me to give her David Richardson’s famous book on the German swordmakers of Shotley Bridge.

As I attempted to precis the book for her, and studied others like it, I realised this was a huge story that could finally be fully researched given modern information access.

As the story grew it became obvious there were all the ingredients for a TV documentary and I pursued my research with this end in view.  None-the-less, the story makes a splendid local history book; so while we wait for TV production to resume, I have converted my research into just such a narrative.

Ultimately, it will end up as a national companion publication to the TV documentary, but until then I am making it freely available to all interested parties, in particular the residents of the Derwent Valley.”

Download here: The SWORD in the HAT [edited for web]

Flowers and Seats

August 2, 2020

At the beginning of August the summer bedding in the tubs and barrier baskets were looking very colourful.

Also two new seats have been put in the ‘triangle’ to replace the deteriorating wooden seats. The bespoke design of the new seats commemorate the lives lost in the First World War and the industrial past of Shotley Bridge. They were paid for with the remaining S106 monies from the Story Homes housing development at the hospital.

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Planting after the rain

June 10, 2020

Last Sunday morning volunteers planted the summer bedding in the village, which had been postponed from the day before due to the wet and windy weather forecast.  All the Trust’s tubs and planters were successfully planted with a mixture of Salvia, Geraniums, Dahlia, Petunia, Bidens and Lobelia from Beverages Nurseries.

Thank you to the 24 volunteers and to George Ledger for taking the photographs, who is currently trying to record the Covid-19 Lockdown and its affects on people locally. This year, to ensure social distancing, the committee of 6 decided to sort then transfer the plants to each of the tubs to make it safer for the volunteers to plant.

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Spring blooms

April 3, 2020

To add a little cheer during the coronavirus outbreak here are a few photos of the beds and tubs in the village that were planted by the Village Trust volunteers, in bloom with spring bulbs and flowers …

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Spring Litter Pick Cancelled

March 20, 2020

Due to the Coronavirus outbreak it has been decided to cancel the litter pick arranged for 28 March. We may reorganise it for September if the situation improves.

Open Meeting and Litter Pick

March 9, 2020

There will be no Village Trust Open Meeting in March this year. The next meeting for members and residents will be on 19th May at 7.30pm in the Catholic Church Hall, after the AGM that evening.

The annual spring litter pick is being held on Saturday 28 March this year, in association with Litter Free Durham’s ‘Big Spring Clean’. Volunteers who can spare an hour or two are meeting at the car park next to the Golden Flower at 10am. We aim to tidy up the village centre and along the roads leading out from it. Litter pickers, gloves, hi-viz vests and sacks are provided.

The Big Spring Clean is LitterFree Durham’s annual campaign, operated and delivered by Durham County Council and Darlington Borough Council.

Both councils work in partnership with LitterFree Durham to plan and execute the campaign every year.

The aim of the campaign is to reduce the amount of litter in the county by engaging with as many members of the community as possible through litterpicking activities and education in schools accross the area.

The campaign was first launched in 2010 to further LitterFree Durham’s work on the Stop the Drop Campaign that had been promoted by the Campaign to Protect Rural England.  Since then it has grown year on year by attracting new groups and by maintaining engagement with previous participants.

Christmas Tree and Carols

December 1, 2019

Yesterday evening the Christmas Tree in the village ‘Triangle’ was switched on and pupils from Shotley Bridge Primary School came to sing carols. Thank you to our County Councillors for providing the funding again.

Winter bulbs & polyanthus

October 27, 2019

On Saturday morning volunteers from the Village Trust planted up over 50 tubs with tulips, daffodils, crocus and grape hyacinth bulbs together with polyanthus plants.

Thank you to our local councillors and the Project Genesis Trust for providing the funding.

The photos show just a few of the volunteers getting wet!

 

Open Meeting – 8 October

September 26, 2019

The next Open Meeting of the Trust is to be held on Tuesday 8th October at 7.30pm. Members, guests and residents all welcome.

Village History Walks

September 10, 2019

For the fifth year running, the Trust is taking part in the Heritage Open Days Festival, over the next two weekends.

Volunteers from the Trust’s Heritage Group will be showing visitors around some of the buildings and sites in the village where new ‘QR’ Plaques are being installed and explaining the history of each.

Community Noticeboard

August 18, 2019

The Village Trust now has a new community noticeboard in the village centre.

The Trust’s old wooden board that was erected in 2002 had become very dilapidated and the opening locks had been vandalised.

Fortunately, our local county councillor, Stephen Robinson, agreed to fund a new board from his Neighbourhood Budget.

It is intended that the left hand side of the board will be used for Village Trust notices whilst the right hand side will be made available for posters of other community organisations in Shotley Bridge.

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Pooper Snooper

August 1, 2019

The Village Trust has started using “Pooper Snooper”: a free mobile app designed to help communities tackle the issue of dog fouling. The Trust has marked all the existing dog waste and litter bins on a map, so that dog owners can find the nearest bin for wrapped waste. 

It is also being used to mark the location of dog fouling. Over time ‘hot spots’ will build up showing the problem areas that will be reported to the council.

Watch the video to find out more … https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jq9ZGcBgkFo&feature=youtu.be

Download the app from Apple …  https://apps.apple.com/gb/app/pooper-snooper/id1371970577 

or Google … https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.natural_apptitude.poopersnooper

 

For further information, Durham County Council’s web site explains the law, how to get rid of dog waste and report problem areas, plus campaigns and schemes to tackle dog fouling … http://www.durham.gov.uk/dogfouling.

A Consett man has recently been prosecuted [with a legal bill of £763] for failing to clean up after his dog and pay the fixed penalty fine … http://www.durham.gov.uk/article/21856/Consett-man-prosecuted-for-dog-fouling-offence

Tidy Triangle

July 23, 2019

This morning volunteers cleared the weeds and cut back the shrubbery in ‘The Triangle’, in the centre of the village. The tubs are now not disgraced by the weeds around them.

 

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Grants for Blooming

May 26, 2019

At the AGM a cheque was presented by John O’Connor, Chairman of the Project Genesis Trust, to Sue Shaw, Secretary of the Trust’s Blooming Shotley Bridge group. The funding was made available from the Project Genesis Trust Small Grants Fund.

A similar amount has also been granted from County Councillor Robinson’s Neighbourhood Budget.

Both grants will now enable the Trust to replant the tubs and planters, throughout the conservation area, with  summer and winter bedding this year.

AGM & Open Meeting

May 5, 2019

The Trust’s AGM is to be held on 21st May 2019.

It will be followed by an Open Meeting at which Sarah Burns, Locality Director for the Clinical Commissioning Group, will be giving a presentation on the future of local NHS Services in the Consett area.

All welcome.

C&DHI Exhibition

May 1, 2019

The Trust will again be displaying old photos of Shotley Bridge at this exhibition next week …

April Open Meeting

March 10, 2019

The next meeting of the Trust will be on Tuesday 9th April.

Members and residents all welcome.

 

The Triangle

March 8, 2019

Half a dozen Trust members spent a couple of hours this morning collecting debris, moss and leaves from the Triangle in the centre of the village. The block paving around the history board has been cleared of moss and weeds. Eighteen  bags of compostable materials were removed, for the council to collect.

Thank you to the volunteers and to Isabella’s who provided complimentary coffees on completion.

The council intend cleaning the moss from the tarmac areas and repainting the fencing and furniture. Two new seats are also to be provided with the last of the S106 money from the Storey Homes development on the former hospital site.

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