Archive for the ‘Historic’ Category

German Sword-Smiths in Shotley Bridge

July 29, 2022

This is an updated post from September 2020 when Keith Fisher, a north east historian, having researched sword making for many years had then published his research.

He kindly gave the Village Trust permission to post a compressed .pdf version of his book, as a free download.

Since then the book has had many substantial updates and is now paginated with a table of contents.

There are a limited number of printed copies, purely for the printing cost of £20.00. Please email Keith [keithfisher@blueyonder.co.uk] to check on availability. [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.”

Revised version 10 uploaded 29/7/22.

NB: The original title of the book was “The Sword in the Hat” – Shotley Bridge and the Bushy Tailed Fox.

Local Heritage List

November 3, 2021

Shotley Bridge is one of eight pilot areas in County Durham where the County Council is seeking nominations to add to a new Local Heritage List.

This is a new national project known as the Local Heritage Listing project, a partnership project supported by Government and Historic England. The main purpose of the project is to begin to compile a list of County Durham’s heritage assets which are not currently protected either through legal or planning processes. These could be buildings, structures, items of street furniture, landscapes, open spaces or street signs, for example.

The Village Trust has been asked to promote the project and will itself be nominating potential sites.
If you wish to be involved and have suggestions of what to include on the Local List you can nominate them on the project website. The website gives a thorough overview of the project as well as the nomination form and associated guidance. 

You need to either use a grid reference or ‘what3words‘ to precisely identify the location of a site. Just click on the map and note the 3 words in the top left corner. Or you could use the app on your phone.

Deadline for submissions is 5.00pm on Sunday 21 November 2021.

Deadline now extended until 17th December 2021.

Nominations that meet the established criteria will go to a panel made up of representatives from each pilot area, which will have an independent chair. Once the panel have made their decision, nominations that have made it to the Local Heritage List will be put on the Keys to the Past website.

AGM & Open Meeting

October 11, 2021

The AGM of the Trust is to be held on Thursday 14th October at 7.00pm, followed by an Open Meeting at 7.30pm.

As our usual venue is not yet available, we are holding the meetings at St Cuthbert’s Church Hall

Members, guests and residents are all welcome.

Stained Glass Windows

October 10, 2020

St Cuthbert’s Church on Church Bank is well known architecturally as a John Dobson masterpiece. But few know about its wonderful stained glass windows, that were a gift of donors to remember those who have worshipped at the church or lived and/or worked in the parish.

Paul Heatherington has recently published an illustrated guide about the windows. The booklet offers helpful explanations of the scriptural background and religious meaning of the various windows. It also provides information about some of the people in whose memory the windows were produced. If you wish to purchase a copy email him at  paul@heatherington.me 

Copies are also on sale for £5 at Cafe Shrub, in the Land of Oak & Iron Heritage Centre at Winlaton Mill.

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.”

Revised version 8 uploaded 18/7/22.

Note: The title of the book has been changed from “The Sword in the Hat” – Shotley Bridge and the Bushy Tailed Fox

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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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.

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.

 

October Open Meeting

October 2, 2018

The next meeting of the Trust will be on Tuesday 16th October. Susan Nolan from CEED will be explaining about their ‘Street Trees’ project. Members and residents all welcome.

Exhibition of local interest

September 28, 2018

The Consett & District Local Heritage Initiative are holding another exhibition at the beginning of October and the Village Trust will be displaying old photographs of Shotley Bridge.

History Walks

August 27, 2018

Again, the Trust is taking part this year in the Heritage Open Days Festival this September. The same walks as last year are being offered, but over 2 weekends. Volunteers from the Heritage Group will be guiding visitors around the heritage of the village.

AGM 2018

May 25, 2018

The next Open Meeting of the Trust on 5th June will be preceded by the Annual General Meeting. Everyone welcome.

Open Meeting – 20th March

March 13, 2018

The Trust’s next ‘Open’ meeting is being held next Tuesday at the Catholic Church Hall on Snows Green Road.

The meeting starts at 7.30pm with coffee/tea & biscuits served from 7.15pm.

The main item on the Agenda is a discussion about ‘dog fouling’, which appears to be getting worse.

Open Meeting – 24 October

October 22, 2017

The Trust’s next ‘Open’ meeting is being held this Tuesday at the Catholic Church Hall on Snows Green Road. Meeting starts at 7.30pm with tea & biscuits before at 7.15pm.

There will be an illustrated talk about the Listed Buildings in the village. Did you know that there are around 30 buildings of architectural or historic interest that have been listed by English Heritage [now Historic England].

Heritage Exhibition

October 7, 2017

The Heritage Initiative are holding another Exhibition next week in Consett, which will include ‘now & then’ photos of Shotley Bridge.

History Walks

September 10, 2017

Despite the weather, two dozen people enjoyed the HOD walks in Shotley Bridge this weekend.

Thank you to the members of the Village Trust Heritage Group who led the guided walks.

Copies of the Trust’s History booklet can be purchased from Harrington Brown Estate Agents, in Shotley Bridge, or on-line from eBay.