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Yet again people claim the date of 12th Dec 1069 as the only reason for our church being here in Bedlington.

From the writings of Rev Alexander Campbell -Fraser MA who wrote and published a history of Bedlington Church in 1924; it is stated that Bedlington Church reaches back to the seven years wanderings of the monks with the body during the period 875/882.

One of these people was Eilaf .

This man and his descendants are associated with Bedlington for many generations.

Bishop Cutheard purchased the town about the year 900.

We need a Time Team investigation or a follow on from the Walking through history programme about Saint Cuthbert.

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HPW,

I am working on a heritage project, can you tell me where the 611AD date comes from and can it be substantiated?

Also who was the recent vicar?

Hi Malcolm!

The 611 AD date is given in a blue "Queen Elizabeth 's Coronation" presentation book,which was given to the senior classes at the Whitley Memorial,and I suppose all other schools,in 1953.

Us younger kids got a lovely Coronation Mug.

Well ,the book was called..." A history of Northumberland",and as I grew up,that book was,to us kids,[who had nowt,and our parents were hard up],the

bible of knowledge!

The Teacher ,Mr Davidson,who took us for social studies,at the old Whitley,also taught us the history of Saint Cuthbert's church..verifying the same date as being 611 AD...[mind,that is the recorded date of the monks settling there and building the earliest form of a meeting place for worship....it might have been made of tree branches like a bird hide,for all we know,but the ground was consecrated then,which is the most important point,not so much the actual building.]

The window to the right of the pulpit,was known as .."the Leper's window",cos those people who were smitten with leprosy,or other contagious diseases,were not allowed into the church!![so much for christianity....Jesus walked among all men,no matter what they suffered from!]

So the lepers had to watch the service through that window.

A canna mind the vicar's name, who wanted to bury the ancient font,but it's only a few years ago,fairly recently,and a kinda think it was thi same guy who changed from being a man,to being a woman,with his Wife's total support...not a secret,the press carried a full article,the T.V media also covered the story,so no rats nest being raked here, a might be wrong on he/she being the one,but anyway,due to it being fairly recent,it shouldn't be too hard to research these facts.

This vicar was an archaeologist,and so wanted to do this for the benefit of future digger's!!!

Anybody who is half-decent,and very respectful of the church,would have been horrified if this person had had his /her way.

Vicar Ward was a very cool guy!

His Son and My Son,were good friends,when they attended the West Sleekburn middle school,in the 1970's.

He allowed the lads who had formed a small music group,to play in the church,at one of the services,a canna mind which service it was,maybe the carol service,but a remember the lads playing the Shadows's "Apache",instrumental,from 1960,as well as other tunes.

It was great seeing guitars being played in church,cos in the sixties,we were regarded by a lot of the religious fraternity,as instruments of the devil...with all that gyrating and hideous noise coming from our speakers......!

Vicar Ward was well-liked by everyone cos he was such a pleasant fella,like one of us,nae snootiness.

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....thi same guy who changed from being a man,to being a woman....

 

The Rev Savage; can't recall the male name, but it's now Helen, and she is a wine correspondent who often appears on Radio Newcastle.

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The Rev Savage; can't recall the male name, but it's now Helen, and she is a wine correspondent who often appears on Radio Newcastle.

 

He / she also had the wine review column in Saturdays Journal

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The youngin was Lawrence ["Lol"] Pattison,and his Sister Ann was in  my class at school..[real canny lassie she was].[Lol was a canny lad an aal..]

When we were kids,we used ti often see Lol reversing his Father's big haulage truck into thi narrow opening,and into the yard at the rear of their property.

It was an amazing feat of driving skill,and we always watched with open mooths,cos it always seemed as if thi lorry was gonna come doon owa onto the road on it's side!!

Even when a was in me teens,and a understood better,a wud stop,on me way up the street,and notice hoo little leeway Lol had for error,and when it had been raining heavy,his tyres used ti slide doon the grassy embankment,tipping the body and cab ti a very precarious level!

Can anybody else mind o' this,or aam aa thi dinosaur of thi family heor nooo?!

Symptoms,forgive my ignorance,but you often mention the "peelers"........er.......educate me please.......[ignorance is bliss!!!!]

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Has anybody seen the small gravestone behind the church,depicting a skull and cross-bones in the middle of the headstone,with gargoyles at either side,

supposedly to ward off evil spirits.

I have photo's of it,which I took in the mid-1960's,when I learning myself how to use my new camera.[35mm film..manual focus-aperture-and shutter speed settings....no batteries then!!] 

The stone is dated around 1790 [i think].

It wud be interesting to know how the poor soul died,but I wouldn't mind betting that he died from the plague or something similar.

It's the skull etc that fascinates me,take a look around and see if it's still there,cos it was when I last attended a family wedding there,a year or two back.

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HPW,

 

Depending on the date of the internment the skull and cross bones could signify freemasonry or even a Templar connection.  The image was appropriated by our nefarious seafaring ancestors off the Templars. 

There are one or two up in the Westlea cemetery.      

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Such an interesting time.

The experts argue about dates and facts.

The truth is there but who has the relevant details.

Maybe no one!

Our Gospels from Lindisfarne are not even in our area.

Records and details may have been lost and or changed by various people down the ages.

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Big chinkaplonka on your comments,Malcolm!

I tried to open the link,but a security notice popped up,saying content was blocked due to security certificate errors...etc.

However,the book title suggests it isn't the book that I referred to.[not that that should matter,if history is recorded accurately!]

I was taught this date in social studies class,and never forgot it,as I have always loved St Cuthberts Church,more from a nostalgic,and architectural point of view,as I am not deeply religious,but do believe in Jesus,and our creator,only a bit unorthodox,maybe strange to some people.....[certainly raise the eyebrows of visiting Jehovah's Witnesses,when they call around!]

I knew a lot about the history of the Church,when I was a young lad at school,took a special interest,but whilst I have vivid memories of my childhood,some things have faded due to being a decrepit old sod!

611 AD!!!, I am certain as I know today is wednesday,about being taught this date,but if you are onto the blue Queens Coronation Presentation book,circa    1953-ish and you say there is no mention of it, in that book,then I must concede that I have made a very unusual [said conceitedly!!]..mistake!

Heh heh! We have to get to the bottom of this one,Malcolm,and everyone else on the forum,for all our sakes,trouble is,everthing that we ever read,[including the Bible],about history,was written by Man,and all we can do is accept,or reject,as we think fit!

I will see if my Sister still has her book that she was presented with,in the Coronation year,but I think it will be a difficult task tracing it!

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611 AD would be before Oswald,Cuthbert and Bede.

In which case was our town the perfect place to pray!

Canny Lass has come up with an interesting item on a Swedish word to pray being close to the name Bede and therefore to the name of our town.

In Pagan times sites near water were important.

We have the Wansbeck and the river Blyth nearby.

An old port or landing place at Camus or now called Cambois.

Oswald had to move around to secure his kingdom.

The site of our town could have been important.

Travel by sea would mean our town area was a place of safety and away from any invaders.

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Er..! .....just for the record,Malcolm,and everybody else, I wasn't inferring the date of 611AD as the date St Cuthbert's bones were  rested there,mind,

but as the date that that ground was consecrated.

If that is correct,then it wud be logical for the monks to come back to that place to rest,probably in a mud hut,or similar abode.

What do you think?

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In those far off times buildings would probably be wood in construction.

Pity we have not got a time machine.

One way or another our town was and is important to History.

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"I started this 793-882 AD..."

 

You started it WHEN?? Must say you look great for your age Malcolm....

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Just interested in the 611 AD date HPW.

 

I started this 793-882 AD.  If we can substanciate the 611 even better!  

 

http://bdt.bedlington.co.uk/article/bedlington-timeline

Great [and very interesting !] timeline Malcolm.

The same book I refer to,said King John slept overnight ,as he fled up north,to escape the land Barons,when King Richard [John's Brother] was

away at the Crusades.

He slept in the Old Hall Pele tower,and escaped through tunnels underground,which led first,to the original old post office building,[or the site of the building],down in the neuk,in thi Market Place,and then down to the river Blyth,[which would have been deeper at high tide,in those days..],and finally onto a waiting boat,which took him to France.

He was hauled back to face the consequences of his evil deeds,by Richard,on his return from the Crusades,and beheaded....so the book said.

I learned as a child,[son of a pitman..],to "believe nowt wat yi read,and ownly haaf wat yi heor....youngin..."!

So many things have been written,about our history,and I have seen many contradictions,like Maggie says,if only we had a time machine.....

What the book didn't say was....who mined out the tunnels!! and why?...was it all planned for John's escape?...

..With a box of millisecond delay detonators,and a few thousand pounds of "Polar Ajax",it would have taken me and my marra's a few months ti drive tunnels that distance!!...[oh..!..,I forgot,we wud have needed a windy driller as weel!!]

Anyway,aal that is irrelevant,thi main thing is that John DID  stay in wor toon!

When aa was relating this bit of history ti me Marra's at bait-time,one day,[doon thi Three-Quarter drift,at Bates],me big Marra Bill,who was a joker,

sarcastically shouted ti aal the lads who were sitting listening ti me story...."Howw hae yi hord Alli,[ that was me!],he said King John slept doon at Bacchi's

and had a game o snooker,and an ice cream,afore he buggaad off in a boat...."..!!

Tha's aalwis one..isn't thaa?..!

A forgot ti say that John was forced ti sign the Magna-Carta, which formed the basis of our Constitution..,before he was killed.

Can you confirm any of this,Malcolm,or is it a bit of Author's licence to romanticise....?

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I love this story HPW.

History is all about facts and events often told by 'word of mouth'.

I am reading 'From Store to War' by Linda Mc Cullough -Thew ( Ashington origin.)

The preface to the book comments on the fact that everyone has different memories of the basic facts and events.

Folk Tales of our region include a tale of King Arthur waiting, asleep in the hills, to be woken in time of greatest need.

Little details like a shepherd knitting socks tell us a lot about the past, or someone's version of it.

Fact or fiction both present us with a version of history.

King John escaping from the barons is brilliant.

Who can say it is not true!

Underground tunnels, boats at high tide escape to France.

Good versus bad, beheadings.

Magna Carta.

A tale to get everyone interested in our town and it's history.

There is another folk tale about trying to get the tide to Morpeth!

Bedlington did not need to try.

The old Iron Works and the quays are testament to that being true.

Then there are the first ever metal rails !

We need some writer to develop these ideas into our very own story.

A new generation thinker.

Last week at the Sage the new generation thinkers really impressed me.

Our children are the future and their presentations of ideas ( inspired by modern culture) are far from boring.

The old guard often seemed less inspired.

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"Then there are the first ever metal rails..."

 

Not quite,  Maggie; Birkinshaw came up with a method of producing rails more efficiently and, thus, cheaply, and also enabling them to be longer and stronger, hence cutting down on the time needed to lay them, and the need for frequent replacement. His method also used considerably less in the way of raw materials. It was, as we all know, championed by George Stephenson, and pretty much the same  method is used  to produce extruded rails today. That the Iron Works is not celebrated more notably as an extremely important place in terms of industrial development is a mystery to me.

 

"Folk Tales of our region include a tale of King Arthur waiting, asleep in the hills, to be woken in time of greatest need."

 

This one crops up all over the country; your familiarity with Buxton etc begs the question are you familiar with Alderley Edge, in Cheshire, Maggie? The Arthur story is strong there, too.

Edited by mercuryg

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I believe the cast iron rails were made here in Bedlington before Birkinshaw.

They replaced the wooden rails.

Folk Tales / Folk Music oral history is always fascinating .

By it's very nature it is subject to the fact or fiction debate.

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A forgot ti say that John was forced ti sign the Magna-Carta, which formed the basis of our Constitution..,before he was killed.

 

AHHHH!  We haven't got a Constitution HPW we have some Bills of Rights or what we have been allowed to have by the autocrats.  

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"I believe the cast iron rails were made here in Bedlington before Birkinshaw."

 

They were, but they weren't the first; Wrought Iron rails were a bedlington first, a la Birkinshaw.

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A forgot ti say that John was forced ti sign the Magna-Carta, which formed the basis of our Constitution..,before he was killed.

 

AHHHH!  We haven't got a Constitution HPW we have some Bills of Rights or what we have been allowed to have by the autocrats.  

 

A forgot ti say that John was forced ti sign the Magna-Carta, which formed the basis of our Constitution..,before he was killed.

 

AHHHH!  We haven't got a Constitution HPW we have some Bills of Rights or what we have been allowed to have by the autocrats.  

Eh...Malc!!

A divvent even knaa wat thi word means!!...it was just thi big word used in thi byeuk!

A aalwis thowt it meant thi common law in England as we knaa it...thi Peel reforms an aal that...mind aav got a canny memory from a was 2yrs aad ,wi me little leather reins strapping me inti me pram,and being tugged back as a started waakin,by me Mutha,but a was hopeless at History,so me memory

sometimes lets me doon!!

Magna Carta waas signed in 1215 A.D. wasn't it?

Seriously,Malc,I think you are spot-on with your analysis of what USED to be our Constitution!!

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HPW,

 

Rule of thumb you don't have constitutions in monarchy's, you have them in republics.

 

If there are kings and queens going back 100's of years, and all that divine right rubbish, then any rights the serfs got was either ransomed for or not worth fighting about and so given freely. 

 

In a republic normally, at the start, there is a Constitution written which has some semblance of democracy built into it. (Given the time period!) 

 

As far as I know a monarchy with a constitution is a constitutional monarch and only has powers decreed by something like a parliament.  They are just figureheads and have no bearing on how the country is run.  

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