Durham County Record Office, Durham
Mining, Social Reform
1900 – 1945
This plan is a powerful reminder of social change.
The Durham Miners' Association was one of the earliest and most powerful of trades unions, established in 1869 following four key events: Mines Regulation and Inspection Act 1860; Hartley Disaster 1862; Brancepeth 'Rocking Tub' strike 1863; abolition of the annual miners' bond 1869.
In 1873 Thomas Oliver, Newcastle architect, won a competition to build new headquarters. Local builder Robert Robson & Sons completed the hall in North Road in 1875, including a Council chamber seating 238 delegates representing 40,000 members. By 1913, membership had grown to 225,000.
A site on Redhills Lane, Durham was purchased and new headquarters opened in 1915. The impressive Council chamber could seat 400 delegates. Life-size statues of leaders were moved from the North Road building to the grounds. A garden commemorates the victims of Easington Colliery Disaster, 1951. The building is still occupied by the National Union of Mineworkers Durham Division.
Plans for hall, agents' offices etc at Redhills, for the Durham Miners' Association, H. Gradon, architect; submitted to Durham City Council 25 November 1913, approved 3 December 1913
On display at Durham County Record Office
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