WHERE IS HOWDEN - LE - WEAR ?????
Church and Chapels
Railway at Howden-le-Wear
Streets and Shops
HOWDEN CHURCH CLOSED
ST MARY'S CHURCH PROJECT ENDS
HOWDEN VILLAGE HISTORY PHOTOGRAPHS BOOK
TRADITIONAL CRAFTS GROUP
Contact Information for Howden-le-Wear Local History Society
Links for Howden-le-Wear Local History Society
A comparison of photographs from yesteryear and today. The 'old' prints are a few selected from the Howden-le-Wear History Society Collection.
An old postcard view of Bridge Street from the Railway Bridge/junction with High Street.
This part of Howden-le-Wear has always been a favourite meeting place,- many people still refer to 'on the bridge'- although the actual stone bridge was demolished shortly after the railway closed in 1965. To this day, groups of people still tend to meet and congregate in this central area of the village.
Bridge Street remains the main A689 road passing through Howden-le-Wear. The name derived from the substantial stone bridge once spanning the railway cutting. Few shops now remain but people can recollect with affection Bell's Bakery, Mary Jane's, the Co-op, Gibson's Hardware/Joiners Shop and Calvert's then Findlay & Wilks Garage/Petrol Station where fuel was dispensed over the pavement.
High Street likewise was always a busy place. Many of the shops have now closed, the original Post Office is now a dwelling house, Dougie Baines Shoe Shop likewise. Balmer's, now Chamber's, Butchers still trades from the original premises.
High Street remains a very busy street, although the numbers of shops has declined considerably, road traffic has increased. Parkins - Waggott's - Peart's General Dealers is now the village P.O. and SPAR shop. The old Trinity Methodist Chapel is now The New Victoria Centre housing a magnificent, restored Wurlitzer Organ.
Denebridge, at the bottom of Rumby Hill Bank,is a narrow, stone, road bridge over the 'Beechburn Beck' Recently strengthened to carry modern traffic but, thankfully, its original character and appearance maintained.
Village feature in the 21st century
Denebridge remains relatively un-changed and is perhaps the most picturesque area of the village. The Plantation Inn is in this region together with more recent housing development. The old Working Mens Club/Sunnydene is demolished and the site vacant. Jubilee Park ( on the right ) remains open to the public but in a rather neglected state.
The 'Australian' Corner.
The Australian Hotel, famously connected to the exploits of a local miner, William Walton, who went to Australia during the Gold Rush to seek his fortune. He was sucessful and upon his return acquired this hotel,and named it 'The Australian'- one of only two such named public houses in the UK.
Hargill Road Junction
Little has changed here except the 'car' and loss of shops. The Australian remains a public house. Fleet's - Dunn's Corner Shop, once a great favourite with passing schoolchildren, is now a dwelling house. The village seat (on left) has been here for generations and is still well used.
As the roads and streets were improved to cope with increasing traffic, the sight of the Steam Roller always caused great interest, especially among the young people. Here the Roller is working at the top of Bridge Street just before the junction with High Street.
Decades of Development
|Although retaining many of the original Victorian village streets, it is clear that Howden-le-Wear has not stood still in time. There has been gradual expansion over the last 50 years and it is interesting to note some of the housing developments that have taken place during that time.
1950's originally Council Housing provided by Crook and Weardale District Council - now many privately owned.
1960'sPrivate housing estates built at Parkside and Fir Tree Drive in Hargill.
1970's Private and Local Authority developments at Denebridge and Plantation View.
1980'sAn extensive estate of private houses at Deneside, adjacent to the Beechburn Beck and Jubilee Park.
1990's Two smaller exclusive developments at Vicarage Close and the former Sunnydene Farm site.
2000's More private houses at Milburn Way, adjacent to High Street and current building at 'Village Gate' on land adjacent to Jubilee Park in lower Bridge Street.
Projects for further housing developments are planned for:
The former Working Mens Club/Sunnydene Lodge site on Rumby Hill.
On land adjacent to St Mary's Church in lower Railway Street.
On Durham County Council / former Railway Company land to the rear of Bridge Street and Station Road.
and, controversially, the village Allotment Gardens site at Bridge Street.
It appears that Howden-le-Wear is about to rapidly expand in size if, all of these plans are carried out. From a small Durham mining village to substantial rural, residential community.