The Sportsmans Arms

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The Sportsman’s Arms now Known as the Scullery

The Sportsman’s Arms closed on the 05-02-2010 when it closed it was left empty for a few years until a plumbing business opened up a showroom and office in the premises the company owners decided as they were not using all of the building so decided to rent out the old lounge at the rear of the pub

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The Sportsmans Arms Silksworth was once one of the most important buildings in Silksworth

Images taken by Dave Bell

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I took these images from the bottom of High Newport Allotments in May 2010 when the Sportsman’s Arms sadly closed and ended one of the last places that was used and built for the miners and their families of Silksworth very little remains of the miners heritage in Silksworth nowadays

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The once proud sign of the Sportsman’s Arms now looks tired and weary

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Notice the boarded up windows and The Sportsmans Arms sign still swinging as if everything was ok image taken on a wet and windy very cold day

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Close up of the sign on the rear wall of The Sportsmans Arms which closed in May 2010 because of lost revenue caused by very few local people using the public house

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The Sportsmans Arms puplic house built for the miners of Silksworth in 1871 as Silksworth Colliery grew new houses were built for the miners and their families and not forgetting why The Sportsmans Arms built for the miners when they had finished their shifts and to socialise when not working

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Silksworth Colliery shaft was sunk in 1869 In 1871, according to the Census there were approx 800 people living in the Silksworth and Tunstall areas, the local area was mainly farmland and where most people worked on the land.

Tomato’s Grown on High Newport Allotments

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Gardeners Delght seedlngs sown on the 23-02-18 seed bought from Wilkos

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Image of the aluminium greenhouse where I grow my tomato’s the greenhouse is very old and I have been using it for about fifteen years

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I was preparing the tomato’s for the coming season and you can see I have got about half of the greenhouse planted out the seedling are in the background amongst the chaos I have created

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The tomato’s in this image have been planted in their grow pots for about two weeks

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Notice the grape vine growing on the right hand side

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Close up of the tomato’s which have been planted in their grow pots for about two weeks

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The tomato variety shown in this image are my favourite Gardeners Delight which to grow very well and are not suspetable to many growing problems or diseases

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The tomatos look happy enough and seem to be growing well in their grow pots I always use grow bags as the base component for gowing them in

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Notice the grape vine which is a strawbery tasting type in the back ground its looking really healthy and the main thing it tastes great and there are no pips

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It normally takes about a week to get all the tomato plants into their grow pots and the other containers I use

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Sunday, 25 October 2020

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Mining in the North East

Although lead ore has long been mined in the hilly district that forms the western portion of Durham, and although iron ore has been worked in several places within the county, these branches of the mining industry are reduced to utter insignificance in comparison with the enormous development of coal-mining, which may be said now to form the staple industry of Durham.

Here, as elsewhere, the origin of coal-mining is lost in obscurity, and it is quite uncertain when coal was first used as fuel. It is highly probable that the first coal used in this coalfield consisted of the rounded lumps of coal washed up on the beach from the seams that outcrop along the sea-shore in Northumberland, and that these were collected and used as fuel, just as they are used to-day by the poorer fishing folk along the Northumbrian coast. It could not be very long before the outcrops of similar material in the valleys of the Derwent and other rivers also attracted attention, and these coal seams would then have been attacked and gradually followed downwards, thus forming the commencement of the industry of coal-mining. It is probable that the coal picked up along the shores was originally known as ‘sea-coal,’ and that which was dug out of the ground as ‘pit-coal,’ the words ‘sea-coal’ and’ pit-coal’ that so frequently occur in documents of the seventeenth century showing apparently that the two terms bore somewhat different meanings at one time, although the material described by them was also recognized as being identical.

One of the difficulties of determining the real beginning of the use of coal lies in the indiscriminate use of the word ‘carbo’ to designate both charcoal and mineral coal. The notices preserved in the Boldon Book of the smiths at Wearmouth and Sedgefield and of the colliers at Escombe who in Bishop Pudsey’s time were bound to provide coal (carbonem) for the making of plough-shares relate more probably to charcoal fuel, as is certainly the case in the almost parallel though rather later record in the register of Worcester Priory of the holding of one John the collier who was to make each coke of coal for 1d.

There is however no doubt that the rich and powerful bishops of Durham in their capacity as counts palatine favoured the development of coal-mining in their principality at a very early period, and it is to this fact that we owe the greater completeness of the records of the industry in this part of the country as compared with other portions of Great Britain.