Murray Engine Works
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The DLI & Chester
Gt. North Road
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CAN YOU HELP?
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Donald O Clarke
A Brief History
Murder at Mill
Vincent "Bush" Parker
The Cestrian Club
A Dastardly Deed
The Lumley Warriors
CLS Cricket Club
Meet the Members
WOOLWORTHS - End of an Era
NEWS & EVENTS
THANKS FOR THE MEMORIES
100 Years Ago
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Would you like to see a Heritage Centre in Chester-le-Street
The Lost Village of Eden Place
|Many people will be unaware that the village now with an association to a famous museum,Beamish, was not originally called Beamish. It was known by the name of Pitt or Pit Hill.
The name Beamish referred to the lands surrounding Beamish Hall and originally was a township of Tanfield. In August 1873 by Order of Council a separate and distinct parish was formed called Beamish and comprised the following villages and hamlets, - Stanley, Shield Row, Kip Hill, Ox Hill, East Kyo, East Stanley, Beamish Stables and Mutton House.
The land around Beamish and the manor house or Hall abounds in coal deposits. Many of the seams were particularly thick and the total thickness of them all exceeded 40 feet. The whole area has many disused shafts and holes from which coal was extracted. By the 1880s there were a number of pits working within the parish. Many were owned by James Joicey and Co. and they included Stanley East Colliery, Air Pit and Beamish Mary.
The East Stanley pit was started in 1833, the Air Pit in 1849 and the "Mary" sunk in 1883. The latter pit became not only the largest pit in the area but one of the longest lasting by operating into the 1960s.
The three collieries together with associated coke ovens employed 1200 men and boys in 1894, and worked very rich seams of coal. Many of the coal miners lived in the nearby village of "CO-OPERATIVE VILLAS" or "NO PLACE" although the major housing development did not start there until 1893.
However, there was another colliery in the locality and a village associated with it. The car park and picnic area now called Eden Place, was once the location of a thriving community with a colliery known as Chophill or Beamish 2nd Pit. Altogether there were some 70 houses, a school and a chapel in the community.
|Beamish Colliery 2nd Pit Winding House, which following demolition, was transferred to Beamish Museum and Rebuilt.
The settlement at Eden Place comprised initially, a street of houses called Eden Row, built close to the Stanhope & South Shields Railway line. Nearby at a later date, Eden Square and then Eden Place were built further to the north. The school was close to Eden Place, while a small group of houses referred to as Quality Row adjacent to the colliery, probably housed the colliery officials.
The houses and the schools were built by James Joicey starting around 1878. The schools, one for infants and the other a mixed age school were built to accommodate 420 children . The average attendance by 1894 was 274 children, thus it supported a sizeable community.
|Nearby was Beamish Station, which provided access for passenger services along the South Pelaw to Annfield section of the Consett to South Shields Railway. The station also had a small goods yard siding.
To the east of the car park is a bridge built to allow the coal wagons from 2nd Pit to pass over the line and join the mineral only Beamish Waggonway which ran down to Pelton and on to Fatfield.
Today little remains of the village or the 2nd Pit, since the area was cleared and landscaped when the new Stanley to Chester-le-Street road was built.
Careful examination of certain areas will yield remains of the original houses since bricks stamped "Joicey" or "Joicey West Pelton" will turn up beneath the grassed areas. These bricks most certainly would have been made at the brickworks at Alma Colliery (Grange Villa), another Joicey Pit.
|Two bricks found at the Eden Place Site, clearly display the stamp markings of "Joicey - West Pelton"
Section of 1895 Ordnance Survey Map showing the layout of "Eden Place".
"NO PLACE" How did it get that name?
The origins of the name have been argued over for many years, however, there are various theories that have been put forward as to how the name "NO PLACE" came about.
It is clear that the name originally referred to four, long since demolished cottages, but how they got their name is a matter of dispute. One view is that the houses stood on a boundary between two parishes and that neither parish would accept responsibility for them.
Historical archives suggests that "No Place" probably attracted the name due it being at the extreme limits of the Parish of Chester-le-Street, a boundry that has existed for at least 1,000 years.
Another theory is that the name was once "Nigh Place" or "Near Place" and has been shortened or corrupted to its present form.
In 1983 signs were erected renaming the hamlet Co-operative Villas, but the angry "No Place" inhabitants protested and it soon regained its old name on the signpost, although Co-operative Villas still remains on the signpost as an option.
So whatever you would like to believe one fact remains, the name "No Place" must have been around for a very long time, but nevertheless still intrigues people to this very day.
|Section of 1895 Ordnance Survey Map showing "No Place" and "Co-operative Villas".|
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