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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Seaham village

Seaham is a small town in County Durham, England. Located on the Durham Coast, Seaham is situated 6 miles (10 kilometres) south of Sunderland and 13 miles (21 km) east of Durham. Its parish church is one of the 20 oldest surviving churches in the UK. The town grew from the late 19th century onwards as a result of investments in its harbour and coal mines. The town is twinned with the German town of Gerlingen.

History

The original village of Seaham has all but vanished; it lay between St Mary's Church and Seaham Hall (i.e. somewhat to the north of the current town centre). The parish church, St Mary the Virgin, has a late 7th century Anglo Saxon nave resembling the church at Escomb in many respects and is one of the 20 oldest surviving churches in the UK.

Until the early years of the 19th century, Seaham was a small rural agricultural farming community whose only claim to fame was that the local landowner's daughter, Anne Isabella Milbanke, was married at Seaham Hall to Lord Byron, on 2 January 1815. Byron began writing his Hebrew Melodies at Seaham and they were published in April 1815. It would seem that Byron was bored in wintry Seaham, though the sea enthralled him. As he wrote in a letter to a friend:

Upon this dreary coast, we have nothing but county meetings and shipwrecks; and I have this day dined upon fish, which probably dined upon the crews of several colliers lost in the late gales. But I saw the sea once more in all the glories of surf and foam.”

The marriage was short-lived, producing as its only child the mathematician Ada Lovelace, but it was long enough to have been a drain on the Milbanke estate. The area's fortunes changed when the Milbankes sold out in 1821 to the /wiki/Charles_William_Vane,_3rd_Marquess_of_Londonderry">3rd Marquess of Londonderry, who built a harbour, in 1828, to facilitate the transport of goods from locally encouraged industries (the first coal mine was begun in 1845). However, this harbour later proved inadequate to deal with the millions of tonnes of coal and the 6th Marquess commissioned engineers Patrick Meik and Charles Meik to reclaim land and extend and deepen the dock. It was officially opened in 1905. The harbour is of particular interest because it consists of a series of interconnecting locks, rather than the more typical two wall construction.

As early as 1823, the 3rd Marquess had approached the architect John Dobson with a view to his drawing up plans for a town to be built around the harbour. Dobson did so, but the planned approach foundered for lack of funds, and the town instead grew in a more piecemeal fashion. To begin with, the town was itself called Seaham Harbour (to differentiate it from the ancient village); in time, though, the settlement as a whole came to be known as Seaham.

In 1928, production started at the last town colliery to be opened, Vane Tempest. By 1992, however, all three pits (Dawdon Colliery, Vane Tempest Colliery and Seaham Colliery – known locally as "the Knack") had closed, a process accelerated by the British miners' strike and cheap coal imports from Eastern Europe.[citation needed] The pit closures hit the local economy extremely hard, and Seaham sank into a depressed state in the 1980s and 1990s.

Seaham Colliery suffered an underground explosion in 1880 which resulted in the loss of over 160 lives including surface workers and rescuers.

Many local families were affected by the tragic loss of eight men and one boy in the 'Seaham Lifeboat Disaster', when the RNLI lifeboat, the George Elmy, foundered on 17 November 1962. To commemorate the event, the new coast road was named George Elmy Lifeboat Way

Governance and politics

An electoral ward with the same name exists. The population of this ward taken at the 2011 census was 8419]

Seaham is part of the Easington parliament constituency and is currently represented in the House of Commons of the Parliament of the United Kingdom by Labour Member of Parliament, Grahame Morris, who has served since the 2010 general election.

Today

The coast at almost the Northernmost point of Seaham, looking towards Sunderland
Church Street, Seaham town centre

Seaham has fine beaches and transport links to the eastern coast. From 2001 most of the Durham coastline was designated as a "heritage coast" and Seaham beach was entirely restored. In 2002 the Turning the Tide project won, jointly with the Eden Project, the prize for Outstanding Achievement in Regeneration in the annual Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors Awards. Seaham Hall is now a luxury hotel and spa.

The "Byron Place" shopping centre (named from Seham's association with Lord Byron) opened in 2007 and includes Asda, Argos and Wilko stores.

In 2006, a survey conducted by Halifax revealed that Seaham was, at the time, the top property price increase hotspot in England and Wales as average prices had risen by 172% since 2003 although the average price remained well below the national average. It is believed this surge had been greatly helped by regeneration work in the area and in particular the new housing estate East Shore Village, built on the site of the former Vane Tempest Colliery.

Today, the town has a population of around 22,000 and is served by Seaham railway station, which lies on the Durham Coast Line, running from Middlesbrough to Newcastle, via Hartlepool, Stockton and Sunderland. Local bus services operated by Arriva North East and Go North East also provides access to the nearby towns of Murton, Peterlee and Houghton-le-Spring, as well as further afield to Sunderland, Newcastle upon Tyne, Durham, Darlington, Stockton-on-Tees and Middlesbrough.

Seaham has one secondary school, without a sixth-form, called Seaham High school, before 2016 known as Seaham School of Technology.

Sport

In the 2019-20 rugby season, Seaham RUFC were promoted from Durham Northumberland 3 into Durham Northumberland

 

Media coverage

The rich mining history of the town was highlighted in the 2000 film Billy Elliot, which was set during the 1984–85 UK miners' strike in the fictional County Durham town of Everington but which displayed characteristics particular to East Durham pit communities such as Seaham and Easington Colliery. Both towns feature as locations in the film, notably Dawdon Miners' Club, into which Elliot's dad runs when he learns his son has won an audition at dance school. Elliot's "angry dance" scene takes place in Dawdon between Embleton Street and Stavordale Street West.

The opening scene in Alien 3 (1992) was filmed on Blast Beach, at Dawdon, released 1993.[11] The town has also served as a location for the BAFTA-nominated film Life For Ruth (1962) starring Janet Munro and Patrick McGoohan.

The town appeared in the BBC Three sitcom Live! Girls! present Dogtown which premiered on the channel in autumn 2006. According to the Sunderland Echo (11 February 1999), scenes from Saving Private Ryan (1998) were also going to be filmed in Seaham, but government intervention moved production elsewhere.

According to Tom McNee's 1992 portrait of the town The Changing Face of Seaham: 1928–1992, St. John's parish church was used as the setting of a 1985 service recorded for BBC Radio 3. Also, a two-part Channel 4 documentary profiled the town in 1991.

 Landmarks

To the south, beside the road to Dalton-le-Dale, are the remains of Dalden Tower, comprising the ruins of a 16th-century tower and fragments of later buildings.

The harbour itself may be said to be the principal landmark of the nineteenth-century town; though the Londonderry Institute in Tempest Road (1853 by Thomas Oliver) with its monumental Greek-style portico provides something of a glimpse of the Marquess's original vision for the town. Of a slightly later date, the former Londonderry Offices on the seafront once served as headquarters for the mining and other businesses of the Londonderry family. A statue of the 6th Marquess stands in the forecourt. Also dating from an early stage in the town's development is the town-centre church of St John, Seaham Harbour (1835–40). For the very much older St Mary's, Seaham, and its neighbour Seaham Hall, see above.

For just over a hundred years the harbour was towered over by a 58 ft (18 m) lighthouse on Red Acre Point, immediately to the north, designed by William Chapman. Erected in 1835, it displayed a fixed white light above a revolving red light (an unusual configuration, provided so as to distinguish it from the north pier light at Sunderland);[12] both lights were displayed from the same tower, the upper being 100 feet (30 m) and the lower 54 feet (16 m) above mean sea level.[13] The lighthouse was gas-lit, with an arrangement of third-order catadioptric lenses provided by Chance Brothers & Co.[ It was decommissioned in 1905, when the harbour was expanded and the current black-and-white striped pier-head light was constructed. Red Acre lighthouse was left standing, however, to serve as a daymark, until 1940 when the whole structure was swiftly demolished in case it should serve to assist enemy navigators.

A steel statue, 1101 (locally also known as Tommy) by local artist Ray Lonsdale, commemorating World War One and initially erected temporarily for three months, was the subject of a local fund-raising drive in 2014 to retain it on the town's seafront.