Murray Engine Works
The Round School
The DLI & Chester
Gt. North Road
The Great Flood
CAN YOU HELP?
Shrove Tuesday Football
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
Links for Chester-le-Street Heritage Group
Would you like to see a Heritage Centre in Chester-le-Street
The New Market Place
The major refurbishment work of the Market Place was completed ready for the grand opening ceremony on Saturday 2nd June 2007.
The scheme has cost £1.7 million and is designed to give the town centre a focal point or “Civic Heart” that will be a public space for all to enjoy and will be used as a place for special events, festivities and celebrations.
The number of market stalls has been reduced from 220 to 100 permanent stalls, although there is space for about 50 self erected stalls.
The main feature of the refurbishment is the Terracotta Archway, which was designed by artist Jo Fairfax and is made up of hundreds of hexagonal shaped tiles. There is also the “red carpet” paving, which incorporates the St. Cuthbert Cross, and the open space is surrounded by “coal seam” seating. These have inscriptions in memory of the four mines associated with the surrounding villages. The arch, along with the seating, have lighting installed, however, as an added feature, the lights located in the pavement are designed to reflect the Cong Burn stream running underneath.
The reason for the removal of the concrete covering over the Cong Burn was seemingly necessary due to its limited strength (it had a maximum load carrying weight of 2.5 tons), although to look at the thickness of the concrete which was removed, it is hard to believe that the structure would not have been capable of handling much more weight.
The last time that the Cong Burn was visible in this part of the town, was way back in 1932. This old photograph shows in the background the old “Fighting Cocks” public house, which was rebuilt to the present day design and is now called “G.W. Horner’s” and further up the street is the “Red Lion” now the “Barracuda” with Doggarts department store just visible, before reaching Woolworth’s.
|Taken in 1932, this photo shows the culvert being built over the Cong Burn.|
|This photograph was taken 1st December 2006.|
First Pictures of the new Arch
|First sight of the new Market Place Arch March, 2007|
|The New Arch starting to take shape - April, 2007.|
|The hexagonal shaped Terracotta Tiles being installed.|
|The New Market Kiosk|
The Opening Ceremony
|The Official opening of Chester-le-Street new Civic Heart took place at 10.30am on Saturday 2nd June, 2007.
Linda Ebbatson (Leader of the District Council) performed the opening ceremony giving access for the first time to what is claimed to be the largest public work of art in County Durham.
A time capsule containing various items provided by local schools and the Heritage Group was installed. Music was provided by the Riverside Brass Band and following the opening speech entertainment included Irish Dancing, Northumbrian Pipes, fun rides, face painting and there was a prize draw.
Civic Heart Arch -
with the Heritage Walk display board in the foreground.
|Riverside Brass Band|
|Chester-le-Street's Town Crier, Marjorie Dodds, opened and closed the proceedings. |
|Leader of the Council - Linda Ebbatson provided the opening speech, supported by Council Chairman Allen Humes. |
|Chester-le-Street Residents Mary Bewick, 98 and Norah Blumfield 92, were each presented with a Bouquet of Flowers.|
|Entertainment was later provided by a Northumbrian Piper and Irish Dancers.|
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