Tudhoe Village

Tudhoe & Spennymoor Local History Society

Spennymoor High Street


22nd Jan 2018 at 7.30pm - John Yeomans - Bishop Auckland in Photographs.

Talks are normally held at 7:30pm on the fourth Monday of each month at St. David's Church Hall, Tudhoe, DL16 6LL. Meetings are open to non-members at a charge of £2.00. See our Full Programme for 2017.

The diploma issued by the International Red Cross in Geneva on the award of the Florence Nightingale Medal to Kate Maxey.

GOOD NEWS: Behind the Lines is in production. In May 1920 Sister Kate Maxey, a shopkeeper's daughter from Spennymoor, who served in casualty clearing stations and hospitals behind the Western Front for three and a half years before being wounded in a German air raid, was honoured as one of the first recipients of the International Red Cross’s Florence Nightingale Medal.

To celebrate Sister Maxey’s service during World War I, the Society, with the support of a £10,000 National Lottery Grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF), have commissioned Lonely Tower Film and Media to make a film, entitled Behind the Lines, about the importance of medical services in the First World War and how a diverse range of Spennymoor people contributed to these.

John Banham, who is coordinating the project for the Society, said :We are very pleased to be working with experienced heritage filmmakers Mark and Marie and very grateful to the National Lottery for supporting what we hope will be an important insight into an often overlooked part of the War. The nation had to mobilise tremendous resources to help wounded soldiers on the Western Front and the historical material available relating to Kate Maxey and other Spennymoor people will, I believe, allow the film to show this. Research by Spennymoor residents and the cooperation of Kate Maxey’s family in making her personal archive material available will be supplemented by expert testimony about First World War medical services.

Ivor Crowther, Head of HLF North East, said: Thanks to money raised by National Lottery players, we’re pleased to support this project which will share the story of Sister Kate Maxey and explore the legacy of the First World War from the perspective of those who served in medical support services during the First World War.

Filmmaking will be starting shortly. Mark Thorburn from Lonely Tower Film and Media said :The research and hard work that the Tudhoe & Spennymoor Local History Society have done, and indeed will be doing, through the course of this project will highlight an essential and rapidly evolving aspect of the First World War as medical services adapted to cope with conflict on a mechanised scale. By telling the stories of local people in extreme circumstances, we hope to bring their lives out of the shadows and onto the big screen for all to see and engage with, creating a lasting and fitting tribute.

More information on the project is available at Behind the Lines or Contact: John Banham 01388 816209

Other Events

Auckland Castle Mining Art Gallery is now open at Market Place, Bishop Auckland, DL14 7NP.

The Cornish exhibition, including his studio, has recently opened at the Bob Abley Gallery at Spennymoor Town Hall. Beamish Museum are currently building a copy of his house and studio in the new 1950s section of the museum. To see more details of his exhibitions and examples of his work go to the Official Norman Cornish website.

Spennymoor Probus Club has an interesting range of talks for retired professional gentlemen.

Events at Durham Cathedral.

Events at North East Labour History Society.


Full Members - £12.00

Concessions - £10.00
(retired, students and unwaged)

See our Membership page for details of how to join or contact the Society.

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HELP Harriet Lloyd We have had a request from Ellie for information relating to Harriet Lloyd (nee Elwell, born 1881), her husband Albert Henry Lloyd (a miner, born 1878) and their family who lived in Mount Pleasant after 1901. For further information go to our requests for information page.

St. John's Ambulance Brigade We would also be interested in hearing from anyone who has links to the original members of either Spennymoor or Ferryhill St. John's Ambulance Brigade. We are particularly interested if they served in medical services during the First World War.

If you have any information please email us at TSLHS.

Photograph of the month

York Hill House.York Hill House - This month we had a request for a photograph of York Hill House. We were able to supply this picture from the William Fleming papers, which were recently left to the Society. To see more details relating to the history of the house go to our requests for information page.

Click to see a larger image. If you have any information relating to our photos or any photos we could add to the archive please email us at TSLHS.

These images are protected by copyright licensing regulations and are for personal use only, they cannot be copied, published or distributed.

The Society

The Society was formed in 1988 and its aims are to organise an annual programme of talks and outings and attend events promoting local history.

Situated on the south side of the Wear Valley, midway between the ancient settlements of Bishop Auckland and Durham, Spennymoor only came into existence during the mid 19C. Previously, eight villages, all now satellites of this small market town, surrounded the open common known as the Spenny Moor. Most of these, including Tudhoe, already existed when the Boldon Book, the North East’s equivalent to the earlier Domesday Book, was compiled in 1183.

650 years later, exploitation of County Durham's mineral wealth, principally its huge reserves of coal, began to help satisfy the needs of Britain's industrial revolution. This resulted in the creation or expansion of many towns and villages in the eastern half of the County. Spennymoor is one such example of this change.

By 1840, coal pits were being sunk around the Moor, soon accompanied by houses to accommodate the ever growing number of miners. An iron and steel works quickly followed, established here to exploit the large quantities of coal now being produced around the expanding settlement. While never completely absorbing any of the villages, it is now physically linked to Tudhoe.

By the turn of the 20th Century coal and steel had long given way to service and manufacturing industries while the expanded town now also functioned more widely as a dormitory to the large coastal conurbations set around the mouths of the Tyne, Wear and Tees.


Research into the history and people of Tudhoe and Spennymoor.

Photographic Archive

Photo Archive - over 1,000 photographs of Tudhoe, Spennymoor and surrounding areas.

Hosted by DurhamWeb.