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Church Street, Houghton-le-Spring: A House by House Guide

Church Street, Houghton-le-Spring, in c1910

Some of the oldest houses in Houghton-le-Spring can be found on Church Street, which, according to the Houghton historian, the late CA Smith, was originally known as Commons Lane. In the 1841 census it is known as Church Row. The north side was recorded as Town Street in the mid-1800s and continued to be referred to as such until 1894 when deeds show the name as Church Street. Article Copyright © Books of the North 2002 - 2011.
The raised section, of which only a few properties remain, was affectionately known as The Quay, because of its similarity to a quayside.

The street is now split in two, separated by the A690 dual-carriageway, and is linked by a pedestrian bridge. The west section of the street has the postcode: DH4 4DN The east section of the street has the postcode: DH5 8AA Article Copyright © Books of the North 2009.

A plan of the historic Church Street, Houghton-le-Spring, as it was around 1958, with modern buildings overlapped
Article Copyright © Books of the North 2009.

SOUTH SIDE OF THE STREET

The historic Church Street, Houghton-le-Spring

1 CHURCH STREET - THE RED LION PUBLIC HOUSE
(West section, South side)

This building was originally The Red Lion Inn.
For the full history and occupants of this public house visit the
Public Houses section.

 

1A CHURCH STREET
(West section, South side)

1993 – advert – George Whitfield Ltd – Old Red Lion Building.
2003 – advert – George Whitfield Ltd – 1A Church Street.
Currently occupied by G Whitfield Ltd, chemists.

 

The historic Church Street, Houghton-le-Spring

2 CHURCH STREET
(West section, South side)

1841 & 1851 – William Stokoe, grocer and draper.
1861 – John Wailes, grocer draper and provision dealer employing two hands.
1871 & 1881 – Jeremiah Fatherly, grocer and master draper employing one man and one apprentice.
1891 – William Shotton, grocer.
1901 – Edward Purvis, coachman.
1911 – No entry on the Census.
1914 – Frederick Robinson, grocer.
February 1944 – advert – Gammie & Son for clothes of character.
1951 – Gammie & Son Tailors & Outfitters
1954 – advert – Gammie & Son, 2 Church Street, Tel 2203.
1966 - Sign Post Church Magazine advert – Gammie & Son, tailors, hatters, hosiers.
1971 - Sign Post Church Magazine advert - Caslaw Bros (Houghton), gents tailors & outfitters. Telephone: Houghton 2203.
1975 - advert - Caslaw Bros (Houghton).
1975 – newspaper advert – Caslaw Bros, 2-3 Church Street.
1977 – advert – Caslaw Bros (Houghton), gent’s tailors and outfitters. Telephone 842203
1978 - advert - Caslaw Bros (Houghton).

 

The historic Church Street, Houghton-le-Spring

3 CHURCH STREET
(West section, South side)

1901 – George Ronaldson, brewery drayman.
1911 – Elizabeth Annie Adamson, widow, plus family.
June 1906 - Michael Thompson, aged 68 years, of 3 Church Street, was buried at Houghton Hillside Cemetery.

 

4 CHURCH STREET
(West section, South side)

After demolition, the land of 4 & 5 Church Street was used by Mr Lawson, stonemason and memorial mason (1935) and for a small road to the health centre in the 1970s.
1938 – 4 & 5 Church Street - Lawson & Son, monumental masons.
February 1944 – advert – Lawson & Smith Monumental Sculptors. Telephones: Houghton 188 Durham 867.
c1966 – Number 4 Church Street was demolished.

 

5 CHURCH STREET
(West section, South side)

c1966 – Number 5 Church Street was demolished. Afterwards, a road was put through the plot of land leading to Houghton Health Centre.

 

HOUGHTON HEALTH CENTRE

Completed in 1979, the health centre is located behind Church Street and is accessed via a road which crosses through the former location of numbers 4 and 5 Church Street. It was sensitively built in the style of the nearby Brewery building.

 

Sancroft House on the historic Church Street, Houghton-le-Spring, in around 1900

6 CHURCH STREET - SANCROFT HOUSE
(West section, South side)

Sancroft House consisted of twelve rooms, a stable, garage, and large garden.
1881 – William Elstob, master joiner, or Thomas Puriple, engineman at brewery.
1891 – Anthony Donthavite, inland revenue officer, excise branch. Erroneously recorded in the census as Transcroft House, instead of Sancroft House.
1901 – Avery Norman Robinson, brewery manager, widower, plus two.
1911 – Norman Robinson, brewery manager.
1914 - Number 6A Church Street was occupied by Norman Robinson, managing director of the Houghton brewery, in 1914.
1938 – John Gammie, private resident
Number 6 was home to Mr & Mrs Crosthwaite Snr, who bred white highland terrier dogs in kennels at the rear of the house, in the 1950s. In 1966, the garden to the rear of Number 6 was to be compulsory acquired as part of the A690 dual-carriageway and town centre redevelopment scheme.
Number 6 is currently occupied by JTH Tang, Church Street Dental Practice.

 

The historic Church Street, Houghton-le-Spring

7 CHURCH STREET
(West section, South side)

1901 – James Ferguson, brewery drayman, plus five others.
1911 – James Ferguson, labourer sewerage farm, plus three others.
This property (as of June 2009) is available to let. Rent per calendar month is £500. The property was described as “a charming 2 bedroom period cottage located in the heart of a conservation area very close to Houghton town centre” and featured a lounge, kitchen and bathroom in addition to the two bedrooms, one of which is en suite. The property is thought to have belonged to the Brewery and was lived in by an Annie Ferguson until recently.

 

The historic Church Street, Houghton-le-Spring

8 CHURCH STREET
(West section, South side)

1911 – 8 Church Street – Charles Green, brewery fireman.
1971 – advert – 8 Church Street - Stappard & Hill chartered surveyors and estate agents. Tel 2105.
1975 – advert – Stappard & Hill. Tel: 842105
1977 – advert – 8 Church Street - Stappard & Hill chartered surveyors and estate agents. Tel 842105.
1978 - advert – 8 Church Street - Stoppard & Hill.
Numbers 8 & 9 Church Street are now thought to be one single property, with the door to Number 8 bricked up. Number 8 was occupied by Mr Green, who worked for the Brewery. Number 9 was occupied by a Mrs Tone, but she exchanged houses with Arthur Jordison of Outram Street.

 

The historic Church Street, Houghton-le-Spring

THE KING'S HEAD PUB, 9 CHURCH STREET
(West section, South side)

On early photographs, 9 Church Street appears to have been a single storied building, while photos from around 1900 show it as two stories. None of these photographs show the presence of a sign for the King’s Head pub!
1827 & 1834 – William Makepeace, agricultural labourer
1841 – William Makepeace, agricultural labourer.
1847-1848 – Thomas Steel.
1851-1865 – Mary Binks, publican.
1861 – Listed as the King’s Head, Church Street: Mary Binks, innkeeper.
1871 – Listed as the King’s Arms, Church Street.
1871-1872 – Thomas Mowbray, licensed victualler.
1873 – Mrs M Mowbray.
1877 – William Swales.
1881 – Johnson Prest, licensed victualler.
1891 – The King’s Head pub was described as being adjacent to and west of Glendale House.
1884-1891 – William Place, mason and publican.
1901 – Henry Oswald, maltster.
1911 – Robert Hogarth, brewery labourer.

 

Glendale House on the historic Church Street, Houghton-le-Spring

GLENDALE HOUSE, 10 CHURCH STREET
(West section, South side)

Glendale House is currently used by Hodgson, Coulthard & Co solicitors.
1881 – Home to John Hately, bank manager, his wife Margaret, son William, granddaughter Jane, step-daughter Jennie Robson, grandson James Robson, a domestic servant and nurse.
1888 – John Hately passed away at the age of 72 years, abode: Glendale House. He was buried at Hillside Cemetery on September 10th 1888.
1891 – Thomas Mente, mechanic, plus four others.
1901 – Roman Catholic Institute, Arnold Pearson, coal miner, his wife Mary, caretaker of the Institute, plus their daughter and nephew.
1911 – Michael Swift, caretaker at the Institute.
1914 – Catholic Institute, secretary was Denis Lyons.
1938 – Glendale Social Club Ltd, Church Street - Peter Hoey, Secretary.
1950s - This was Glendale Social Club
1966 - By 1966 it was occupied by St John Ambulance Brigade. In a written analysis document for the proposed A690 dual-carriageway system, this was the only building on Church Street to have been identified as of architectural or historic interest on the supplementary (non statutory) list.
1994 – advert – Hodgson Coulthard & Co solicitors.

 

Lilburn House on the historic Church Street, Houghton-le-Spring

LILBURN HOUSE, 11 CHURCH STREET
(West section, South side)

Lilburn Houses was built around 1800, and was once an exclusive ladies’ school and then a bank.
1841 – Lilburn House, Quality Hill, was occupied by Elizabeth H Taylor, teacher, her son, two servants, and 11 girl boarders aged 9 – 16 years.
1851 – Lilburn House, Quality Hill, was occupied by Elizabeth Dixon, widow, head of school, with a governess, house servant and seven girl boarders aged 7 – 14 years.
1861 – Not found on the Census.
1871 – Lilburne House – Francis Widowfield, colliery agent and clerk, his mother Hannah, teacher, Marg Franklin, governess, aged 25 years, Emma Franklin, aged 21 years, governess, four girl boarders aged 15, 16, 17 and 19 years.
1881 – Home to Sarah Booth (72, widow) and two other teachers, Margaret and Emma Franklin, seven scholars (all girls), and a housemaid and domestic servant.
1891 – Richard H Gates, bank manager.
1901 – Robert Mackie, bank manager.
1911 – John Robert Mitchell, manager at bank.
1914 - Occupied by John Soulsby in 1914, but named as ‘11’ not Lilburn House. The Barclay & Company (late Woods & Co) manager was named as John Soulsby.
1938 – Sam Todd OBE, LDS Glas, dental surgeon.
1938 – Sam Todd OBE, private resident.
1966 – Mr S Todd, owner, objected to the A690 road proposals, as the redevelopment would encroach on the rear of his property, resulting in the loss of some of his garden and privacy.
1985 – The house became a listed building, the entry being as follows:

List Entry Number: 456/7/24
Date Listed: 15.07.85
Building Type: House
Conservation Area: No. 8
Occupied: Yes 3
Ownership: Private 1
Grade: II
Description: House circa 1800.
Exterior: Coursed squared limestone, with sandstone dressings; roof of Welsh slate. 2 storeys, 5 sash windows with projecting stone cills and stone lintels. 4-panelled door, in second bay from left, in deep panelled reveals and plain doorcase of pilasters and entablature. Carriage entrance at right: boarded doors in rusticated elliptical-headed opening with voussoirs. Iron footscraper on stone step at door. Flat stone coping on left end of roof resting on curved stone kneelers. Rendered transverse ridge chimney at left, brick transverse ridge chimney between fourth and fifth bays.

 

The historic Church Street, Houghton-le-Spring

DENTIST SURGERY, 13 CHURCH STREET
(West section, South side)

1901 & 1911 – Not mentioned in the Censuses.
2001 – advert – Gavin Maw & Associates Dental Practice.
Currently occupied by GW Maw, dentist. Following the demolition of parts of Church Street for the A690, this property currently marks the end of the south side of the west section of the street, before the pedestrian bridge. It was previously owned by Major Sam Todd and then Geoffrey Oliver.

 

15 CHURCH STREET
(Demolished section, South side, TBC)

September 1903 – Martha Eleanor Wilson, aged 15 years, of 15 Church Street, was buried at Houghton Hillside Cemetery.
1901 – Occupied by William Wilson, butcher, plus five others.
1905 – Vintage photo shows the premises to be occupied by W.Wilson, butcher.
October 1907 – William Wilson, aged 15 days, of 15 Church Street, was buried at Houghton Hillside Cemetery.
1911 – Occupied by George William Smith, butcher, plus three others.
1914 - Occupied by Henry Johnson, butcher.

 

The Mechanics Institute on the historic Church Street, Houghton-le-Spring

MECHANICS INSTITUTE, 17 CHURCH STREET
(Demolished section, South side)

The Mechanics Institute opened in 1852 and was built on land donated by Thomas William Usherwood Robinson, Chairman of the Board of Guardians. It was demolished in the 1960s when the A690 road was put through.
1852 – built as the Mechanics Institute, featuring a library of 800 books.
1853 - a print shows cows wandering around on the land behind the building.
1858 – Secretary: Dixon Burn.
1898 – March 7th – renamed by deed poll as Houghton-le-Spring Church Institute.
1901 – William Hossan, labourer coalmine, and wife Caroline, caretaker of Institute.
1911 – Occupied by William Whitworth, caretaker, and his wife.
1914 – Church Institute & Reading Rooms, secretary: Surt Taylor).
1957 – Mr Morley, who served on the Church Institute Committee for many years, dropped down dead from a cardiac infarct when entering the building one evening in January 1957.

 

The historic Church Street, Houghton-le-Spring

19 CHURCH STREET
(East section, South side)

The first of the three townhouses.
1881 & 1891 – George Howe, brewery manager.
1901 – Occupied by Jas Will Howe, clerk brewery, and his wife.
In July 1908, a French visitor was staying at 19 Church Street, Houghton-le-Spring. The visitor decided to send a message home on a postcard featuring a view of the domineering St Michael's Church. The recipient’s address was: Madame Marie Morvan, 1 Passage Chatelet XVIIe, Paris, France.
1911 – Occupied by Joseph William Howe, brewery clerk, plus three others.
Number 19 was home to a Miss Ella (tbc) Carr, one of the directors of Pallisters Store, Sunderland Street. In c1939 Mr Alan Priddin and his wife moved in. Mr Priddin was a solicitor, based at Scruton House, Newbottle Street, and attended Mautland Street chapel, where he was a Local Preacher and Sunday School President. In April 2002, the property sold for £107,000.

 

The historic Church Street, Houghton-le-Spring

THE MANSE, 21 CHURCH STREET
(East section, South side)

The second of the three townhouses.
May 4th 1854 - The land upon which 21 and 23 stand was sold by Elizabeth Robibson (widow), Thomas Young Hall (colliery viewer), and William Shepherd (woollen manufacturer) to Thomas Hewitt, a builder, for £112 7s. The land was part of a field called North Captain’s Close and part of the premises of John Thompson.
December 15th 1854 – Houghton-le-Spring Benefit Building Society paid £200 for the land and dwellinghouses (21 and 23) to Thomas Hewitt, Alexander Nowley (inn keeper) and John Liddell (butcher).
1881 – James Milligan, Minister of Pres Church of England.
1891 – James Milligan, Presbyterian Minister.
March 16th 1894 – Number 21 was occupied by John Todd.
c1897 – Known as ‘The Manse’, Mary Gill Brass moved into number 21 Church Street, with some of her children and remained there until 1904, when she moved to Edwin Street.
1901 – census – Mary G Brass (52), children Mary (20), Daisy (25), Primrose (15), Gladstone (12) and Meggie (10).
1904 – Number 21 was owned by Maria Greenhow.
1914 – Number 21 was occupied by William Greenhow in 1914. Mr Fisher, head of Bernard Gilpin School, lived here in later years (he was thought to have committed suicide after an incident regarding a pupil). It was then occupied by Jack Veitch of Durham, who worked at Myre Hall when it was an Education Office.
1938 – William John Fisher, private resident.

 

The historic Church Street, Houghton-le-Spring

ST OLAVES, 23 CHURCH STREET
(East section, South side)

The third of the three townhouses, currently occupied by Peter Thompson of Synergy Compliance, an environmental consultants.
May 4th 1854 - The land upon which 21 and 23 stand was sold by Elizabeth Robibson (widow), Thomas Young Hall (colliery viewer), and William Shepherd (woollen manufacturer) to Thomas Hewitt, a builder, for £112 7s. The land was part of a field called North Captain’s Close and part of the premises of John Thompson.
December 15th 1854 – Houghton-le-Spring Benefit Building Society paid £200 for the land and dwellinghouses (21 and 23) to Thomas Hewitt, Alexander Nowley (inn keeper) and John Liddell (butcher).
1881 – Walter Lyon, general practitioner MD.
October 9th 1885 – Number 23 was occupied by Mrs Hodgson.
1891 – Uncertain.
April 17th 1894 – Number 23, occupied by William Stokoe, was sold to William Lamb for £560.
1901 Census – Arthur Ernest Pridden.
May 13th 1904 – Mr Lamb sold the house to Arthur Ernest Priddin, solicitor, for £520.
1911 – Arthur Ernest Pridden plus three others.
June 27th 1952 – EAB Priddin and ARB Priddin, executors of the estate of AE Priddin, sold number 23, which was now known as St Olaves, to Jane Annie Jackson, spinster, for £1300.
August 8th 1953 – Elizabeth Minto Wood purchased Number 23 from Miss Jackson for £1700. Elizabeth, and her husband Leslie Davidson Wood (electrical engineer) moved in from 51 Newbottle Street, the sweet shop.
August 17th 1992 – The house was purchased by the current occupants.

 

HOLLY HOUSE, 25 CHURCH STREET
(East section, South side)

1901 – David Scott Park, surgeon.
1911 – David Scott Park, surgeon.
According to mouseprice.com, 25 Church Street was built in 1985. It appears to be located on Church Street, alongside Holly House care home.

 

NORTH SIDE OF THE STREET

Kepier Cottage on the historic Church Street, Houghton-le-Spring

KEPIER COTTAGE, CHURCH STREET
(West section, North side)

Formerly known as ‘Roanoak’, the premises were used as the laundry for the Royal Kepier Grammar School.
c1928 - planning permission was sought for change of use from laundry to residence and a door was installed leading onto Church Street.
1992 & 1997 – advert – Alex Scullion Electrical contractors.

 

Gilpin House on the historic Church Street, Houghton-le-Spring

GILPIN HOUSE, THE QUAY, 12 CHURCH STREET
(West section, North side)

This building was recorded in the Kepier School statutes as the White House, and was for married headmasters of the Kepier. Deeds for this property state that the street was Commons Lane. It was built c1830.
1851 – Occupied by William Melbourne, curate of Houghton-le-Spring, wife Elizabeth, five children, two servants and washerwoman.
1861 – Occupied by Gilpin House, Church Street, Elizabeth Dickson (widow and teacher), Hannah Dickson (widow and teacher school mistress), Isabella Dickson (teacher of music and French), Francis Dickson (son and colliery clerk), Sarah Booth (sister-in-law and widow of ship master) [see 11 Church Street, 1881], Elizabeth Allison (governess), seven girl pupils aged 10-15 years, a cook, kitchen maid and a house maid.
1871 – Eliz Dickson, head teacher and school administrator; Mary A Dunhilly, aged 21 years, governess teacher; Emily Finlay, governess teacher; Eleanor Huntly, aged 36 years, housekeeper; ten girl pupils aged 5 – 17 years; cook; housemaid; and kitchen maid.
1881 – Home to Joseph Stokoe, coal mine manager; his four sons, Charles, Joseph, and Benjamin; daughter Alice, and servant Margaret A Bell.
1891 – Joseph Stokoe, colliery manager, and son John G Stokoe, mining student, daughter Elizabeth F Palmer, son-in-law Edwin T Palmer (chemist and druggist) and granddaughter Ida M Palmer.
1901 – Gilpin House, 12 The Quay, William Ridley, colliery manager.
1911 – Dr Frederick Ridac Van Langenberg, medical practitioner. Dr Langenberg had consulting rooms in Sunderland.
1914 - Home to William Edward Balmer.
1938 – Unemployment Assistance Board Area Office, Edward Egan, manager.
c1950 – Gilpin House was taken over by the local health department and was a clinic where parents could get dried milk and orange juice for infants. Mr Harry Crosthwaite Jnr (whose dental practice was above Number 1 Church St) bought this house and moved in with his wife and young family in 1956. It had a large garden (and apple trees) with a drive in from Church Street and double gates to access.
1966 - Mr Crosthwaite objected to the proposed A690 road scheme, as most of his garden would be taken and he would lose access to his garages; the Council’s solution was to offer him land on the opposite side of Church Street for two garages.
1985 – Gilpin House became a listed building, the entry being as follows:

List Entry Number: 456/2/23
Date Listed: 15.07.85
Building Type: House
Building Name: Gilpin House
Conservation Area: No. 8
Occupied: Yes 3
Ownership: Private 1
Grade: II
Description: House circa 1830. Exterior: Incised render with plinth; Welsh slate roof has flat stone gable coping. 2 storeys, 3 sash windows in plain reveals with projecting painted stone cills. 2 stone steps and deep reveal to 6-panelled door under oblong fanlight; tall flat Tuscan doorcase, with projecting cornice, rests on the lower step. 2 end brick chimneys with bands and one rear brick chimney to roof hipped at left. Painted inscription GILPIN HOUSE at extreme right of first floor.

 

The historic Church Street, Houghton-le-Spring

14 CHURCH STREET, THE QUAY
(Demolished section, North side)

Number 14 was located to the left of Swiss Cottage, and housed GH Stevens Solicitors.
1881 – Occupied by Henderson Stokoe, assistant overseer and wife Charlette, plus five others.
1891 – Robert H Rowell.
1901 – Occupied by Sydney Booth, general medical practitioner, plus five others.
1906 – photo – The property had an illuminated sign outside proclaiming “DR BOOTH”.
1911 – Occupied by George Hunt Stevens, solicitor, plus three others.
1914 - George Hunt Stevens occupied this property. He died on December 14th 1950 and was buried at Houghton-le-Spring Municipal Cemetery, Durham Road.
1938 – George Hunt Stevens, private resident.
1966 – Mr JR Stevens, Miss M Rowell and Mrs Gibson, owners of Number 14 Church Street, spoke at the public inquiry into the A690 road proposals. Their objections included: Miss Rowell is a life tenant and it would cause personal hardship to disturb her; and the house has been in the family for four generations. Mr Stevens also offered an alternative route for the A690, which would be less disruptive and less destructive; his granddaughter claims that this alternative route would have led to the demolition of several council houses, something which apparently was considered as ‘sacrosanct’ (history shows us that his proposal was sadly ignored).

 

SWISS COTTAGE, 16 CHURCH STREET, THE QUAY
(Demolished section, North side)

Located to the left of Church House, the premises were occupied by Turnbull (greengrocer) and others yet to be confirmed. In 1914, Robert Bolam Marby occupied the property.
1881 – Alfred G Cuffe. Born 1847 in Jamaica, LRCP London, MD asst.
1891 – Margaret Pallister.
1901 – 16 The Quay, Margaret Pallister.
1911 – Martha Dobson (sister of Margaret Pallister).
1938 – Robert Turnbull Jun, private resident.

 

The historic Church Street, Houghton-le-Spring

CHURCH HOUSE, 18 CHURCH STREET, THE QUAY
(Demolished section, North side)

1871 – Listed as White House: occupied by Harriet Taylor, school teacher, with her two daughters and three sons; Eliz Boucher aged 29 years, teacher asst; Isabella Hutton, aged 22 years, teacher; 13 boy boarders; laundress; housemaid; and a cook.
1881 – Referred to as White House: Mary A Wooley, lady, principle of boys’ boarding school, plus sixteen boarders.
1891 – Referred to as White House: Amy G Hutt, diocesan church worker.
1901 – Church House, 18 The Quay, was occupied by Sofia Garnell, diocesan church worker, plus three others.
1912 – 18 Church Street was the residence of Mr Sam Todd, dentist (according to the Church Street fire report). He was still there in 1914 according to the directory.
1926 – The Rural District Council moved from William Street into new offices at 18 Church Street.
1938 – William Walter Plews, clerk to the Urban District Council, telephone number 222.
1938 – Mr R. T. Brain, rating and valuation officer. Thomas Baggott, financial officer to Urban District Council.
1937 – Houghton Rural District and Urban District Councils amalgamated; 18 Church Street became the main new Urban District Council offices. The Clerks Dept (Walter Plews), Finance Dept (Thomas Morley), Rates (Thomas Baggott) and the Council meeting room (chambers) were sited here, while the Health Dept (Thomas Morley), Rates (JJ Morley) and Surveyor Dept (V Hunter) were located on Newbottle Street.
1940s - Jack Jordison recalls that there was an air raid shelter built out the back during World War II. It was a control centre for the ARP. The siren was on the top of two telegraph poles. All messages went to and were issued from there.
1942 - Paperwork from GH Stevens from 1942 on behalf of HUDC states the address as 18 Church Street.
1949 – HUDC Official Handbook – Clerk: W.W.Plews, Tel: 3222/4
1949 – HUDC Official Handbook – Chief Financial & Rating Officer: T.Baggott, Tel: 3222

 

The historic Church Street, Houghton-le-Spring

DURHAM HOUSE, 20 CHURCH STREET, THE QUAY
(Demolished section, North side)

1881 – Occupied by Matthew H Earle, draper, wife Botsey and six children.
1891 – Occupied by Botsey E Earle (widow), living on own means, plus two children, her mother, sister and three lodgers (including William Morley [see 100 Sunderland St]).
1901 – 20 The Quay, was occupied by Alfred E Dawson, druggist.
1911 – Durham House: Alfred Edward Dawson, druggist and confectioner. 20 Church Street: Thomas Craggs, coal miner hewer, and five others.
1912 - Durham House was the location of a huge fire on Sunday November 24th 1912; the building lost its third storey. The lower window was replaced by a door to the relocated shop, with the shop window to the left of the new door.
1914 – Alfred E Dawson, drug stores.
Latterly occupied by W.Wilkinson’s general dealers shop, with a doorway to the left leading into the YMCA which was behind and above 24 Church Street.

 

22 CHURCH STREET (OLD)
(Demolished section, North side)

This property was to the right of Dawson’s Chemist, and is still to be confirmed as being Number 22.
1901 – 22 The Quay, occupied by sisters Jane and Elizabeth Dobson, living on own means.
Around 1910 it was photographed as being Forster’s Grocery Store. It later became Greenwell’s stores.
1911 – John Forster, grocer.
1936 - 22 Church Street was converted to the first public library in Houghton.
1962 – advert - 22B Church Street – A & D Newby, newsagents and tobacconists.

 

The Quay on Church Street, Houghton-le-Spring, as it was in 1949
The area of Church Street known as The Quay

 

CHURCH STREET NEWS, 22 CHURCH STREET (NEW)
(East section, North side)

This house and shop was newly built after the A690 road was put through. The newsagents was initially occupied by W.Wilkinson’s, who had had the original newsagents (thought to be 24 Church Street) ) and was then occupied by Newby’s in the 1970s then Eagleton’s in the 1980s. Between the demolition of the old street and the new building, the newsagents was housed in a temporary cabin.

 

W.Wilkinson's newsagents, The Quay, Church Street, Houghton-le-Spring

24 CHURCH STREET
(Demolished section, North side)

This was the last property on the northern block of buildings.
1901 – 24 The Quay, was occupied by Richard Newbolt, confectioner (shopkeeper) and his wife.
April 1913 – Richard Newbolt, aged 77 years, of 24 Church Street, was buried at Houghton Hillside Cemetery.
October 1918 – Isabella Newbolt, aged 90 years, was buried at Houghton Hillside Cemetery.
Prior to its demolition it was known as W.Wilkinson’s newsagents and general dealers. The YMCA, which was formed in 1952 by the Women’s Auxiliary as a youth club, was behind and above this property. The YMCA vacated Church Street prior to the demolition and moved into Houghton Hall in 1972.

 

THE MYRE HALL, CHURCH STREET / NESHAM PLACE
(East section, North side)

1881 – Occupied by William Pallister, woollen draper, and his sister Margaret.
1891 – Occupied by David Balfour, civil engineer, wife Margaret, and four others.
1901 – David Balfour, civil engineer, and wife Margaret.
1911 – David Balfour, civil engineer, and wife Margaret.
1912 & 1914 - This property was the residence of Mr David Balfour CE, who died there on December 22nd 1914 at the age of 76 years.
1938 – William Chrystal F.A.I, JP
1938 – Wm Crystal, F.A.I, JP, auctioneer and estate agent.
Post WWII – Durham County Divisional Education Offices.
1950s - Myre Hall was the divisional education office.
1960s - It was demolished in the 1960s and was described as being a red bricked and stone building, with a conservatory to the rear.

 

MYRE HALL SHELTERED HOUSING, CHURCH STREET
(East section, North side)

Built in 1978 on the site of the original Myre Hall, the modern building contains 36 sheltered housing flats.

 

PROPERTIES TO BE LOCATED

1851 RESIDENTS
House number not listed

Mrs Mary Bell
Mr Phillip James Dunn (The Quay)
Miss Frances E Ironside (The Quay)
Miss Margaret Spoors
Thomas Horton – blacksmith
William Crofton – boot and shoemaker
Elizabeth Watson – confectioner
John Dobson (The Quay) – corn miller/drapers/grocers
William Earle (The Quay) - drapers
William Stokoe (The Quay) – drapers
John Wailes - drapers
Thomas Wilkinson (The Quay) – grocers
Mary & Jane Hodgson – milliners and dress makers

 

1858 RESIDENTS
House number not listed

Christopher Carr – cooper
William Crofton – shoe maker
Thomas Hewitt – builder and brick maker
Thomas Horton – blacksmith
Wiliam Smith – surgeon
William Stokoe (The Quay) – linendraper and grocer
John Wailes – grocer and draper
Mrs Elizabeth Watson - confectioner

 

 

Article and research by Paul Lanagan, local historian

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Paul Lanagan wishes to place on record his thanks to the following:

This information was somewhat tricky to organise, owing to the piecemeal nature in which Church Street was erected, however memories and information from the following residents was of great help: Jack Jordison, Joan Lambton, Tom Brett, Alan Vickers, Thomas Oliver, Elizabeth Stevens, Vicki Peck; and Linda Rowley. www.RoyalMail.com was useful in clarifying house names and numbers. Archived documents relating to the public inquiry into the A690 dual-carriageway proposals in my possession were also of great use. Thanks are extended to Mrs S.Ellis for clarifying the history of Sancroft House.

Grateful thanks are extended to Dr Jack Morley for perusing the censuses and sharing his memories of Church Street.

Disclaimer about this house-by-house guide
The information in this article is presented in good faith, based on people's recollections and memories. Present dates relate to July 2009, with information obtained from the following websites: Royal Mail, City of Sunderland and other online directories. While every effort is made to ensure this article is accurate and uptodate, some errors may exist, such is the nature of recording local history; all suggestions would be most welcome.

Your attention is directed to the disclaimer as found on the About page.

 

 


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PAGE UPDATED: 27/08/2012

If its any help to you, I’ve found the following about numbers 21 and 23 Church Street: The land was sold by ELIZABETH ROBINSON, widow, THOMAS YOUNG HALL, colliery viewer and WILLIAM SHEPHERD woollen manufacturer to THOMAS HEWITT builder on the 4th May 1854 for £112 7s. The land was described as part of a field called North Captain’s Close and part of the premises of JOHN THOMPSON measuring east to west at the south end 61ft 6 inches and north to south 94ft boundering on the Town Street to the north, by land belonging to MARK ELLIOT to the east, by land lately sold to GEORGE HOWE to the west and lands belonging to the heirs of GEORGE ROBINSON to the south. This is from the first document I have so I don’t know what the ‘premises of John Thompson’ refers to. The street to the north is referred to as Town Street on every document until 1094 when Town Street is stated as being now called Church Street. On the 15th December 1854, THOMAS HEWITT builder, JOHN CARR cabinet maker, ALEXANDER NOWLEY innkeeper, and JOHN LIDDELL butcher appear to receive £200 from the Houghton le Spring Benefit Building Society for the land and two dwellinghouses these I presume are the newly-built numbers 21 and 23. There then appears to be a number of changes due to the deaths of various people; in 1878 THOMAS HEWITT’s will leaves his household furniture and an annuity of £26 to his daughter HANNAH HEWITT (and on her death to his grand daughter DOROTHY WATSON), with the remainder of his income (which from subsequent documents appears to include the houses) to his sons WILLIAM HEWITT and THOMAS HEWITT and daughter MARY JOPLING. Again, there are many changes due to the deaths and wills of people involved but on the 9th October 1885 the house is said to be in the occupation of MRS HODGSON. On the 16th March 1894 the land and houses seem to have been divided as the plot is now described as measuring 37ft 6 inches from east to west, again boundering on Town Street but with a dwellinghouse belonging to JOHN TODD to the west (no 21 is west of no 23). On the 17th April 1894 WILLIAM LAMB brewer of Hetton le Hole was granted copies of the deeds but I don’t understand the rest of the document. Another one, dated the same day, says the house is in the occupation of WILLIAM STOKOE when it is sold to WILLIAM LAMB for £560. On the 13th May 1904 the house was sold by WILLIAM LAMB to ARTHUR ERNEST PRIDDIN solicitor, for £520 (a result of a late 19th Century credit crunch perhaps!). The land is now described as boundering on Town Street, now called Church Street to the north, land belonging to DAVID SCOTT PARK to the east and by a house and land (number 21) belonging to WILLIAM LAMB (previously JOHN DODD) and being sold to MARIA GREENHOW to the west and by land belonging to THOMAS WILLIAM USHERWOOD ROBINSON, deceased, to the south. On the 27th June 1952, ERNEST ALAN BOYSTON PRIDDIN and ARTHUR REGINALD BOYSTON PRIDDIN, executors of the estate of ARTHUR ERNEST PRIDDIN, sold number 23, now called St Olaves, to JANE ANNIE JACKSON spinster for £1300. The location is described as land bordering Church Street to the north (no mention of Town Street) and land owned by WILLIAM BARKES to the south and east and by a house formerly belonging to MARIA GREENHOW and now owned by JOHN VEITCH to the west. On the 8th August 1953 JANE ANNIE JACKSON sold the house to ELIZABETH MINTO WOOD for £1700. ELIZABETH WOOD and her husband LESLIE DAVIDSON WOOD electrical engineer moved from 51 Newbottle Street and I understand she ran a sweet shop on Newbottle Street for many years. We bought the house from ELIZABETH WOOD’s son on the 17th August 1992. One of the documents is for compensation for the ‘extinguishment of manorial incidents’ (?) in 1930, which includes a nicely drawn map. I’ve attached this as it may help in working out who owned what bit from my descriptions above.