Those who have been following us since the start of December last year may recall that we reported having been shown round several aged miners’ homes by the Durham Aged Mineworkers Homes Association.
Six months later, and today the Museum has been able to announce that we’re intending to replicate a block of four homes from the complex at Marsden Road in South Shields. These homes were opened in 1915 and were extremely well equipped for the time – even including an indoor toilet! The way that this demonstrates the Association’s clear concern to provide top-quality social housing, before the Council built social housing movement really got started, was one of the main reasons for choosing these homes. We think they look very attractive with their lovely Edwardian detailing too. They’re also both a nice link with the period of exhibits in Beamish’s current town, as well as a good contrast with the more minimalist styling of the later 1950s built buildings we’re planning.
In order to represent the Buildings Team at the press call at Marden Road, John grabbed his absurdly large 50s glasses, donned a nylon cardigan and a woollen tie and headed down towards the seaside!
Michelle, who heads Beamish’s work with elderly people, and John at the Marsden Road Aged Miners’ Homes
To read more about the intended use of the buildings as a centre for our work with elderly people and those living with dementia and other disabilities, visit the museum’s website here.
Last week Jim, Clara and John were joined by Beamish’s Active Aging Officer, Michelle Kindleysides in a visit to some of Durham’s Aged Mineworkers’ Homes (www.durhamhomes.org.uk), with Damha CEO, Paul Mullis, and Head of Asset Management, Brian Stobbs.
Jim’s initial drawing of what the Aged Miners’ Homes might look like at Beamish.
We’re planning to construct several Aged Miners’ Homes in our 1950s area as part of the Remaking Beamish project, and Paul and Brian, and some of their tenants, were kind enough to show us round some examples.
High Spen Aged Miners’ Homes.
Stargate Lane Aged Miners’ Homes.
We especially liked the idea of gas lighting over the entrance gate, the remains of this can still be seen at Stargate Lane.
We had a really insightful day, visiting several complexes of Aged Miners Homes dating from the First World War through to the late 1930s. We even had fish and chips for lunch! We’ll now continue to research and draw our designs together before determining which set of homes to replicate.
Clara and John with some Gnomes at Stella AMHs– which seem to be a very common feature of Aged Miners’ Homes!
Marsden Road Aged Miners’ Homes, South Shields
A photograph of the Officials and Committee of the Marsden Road Aged Miners’ Homes, kindly loaned to us by DAMHA.