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Video of the month

Pit Village


Explore our Pit Village, set in the early 1900s, a golden era for the North East coal industry. See how families in colliery communities used to live.

Francis Street: Colliery houses and coal were provided free to miners. This row of pit cottages was moved to Beamish from Hetton-le-Hole, on Wearside. Step into mining families’ homes with their cosy, coal-fired ranges, outside “netties” and tin bath hanging in the back yard.

The School: Practise the three Rs under the watchful eye of the strict teacher at the Beamish Board School, which came from nearby East Stanley. Up to 200 pupils could have been taught in the three classrooms that have been rebuilt at the Museum.

The Chapel: Methodism flourished in the North East’s pit communities. The Chapel at the Museum often hosts traditional services and events, including for Christmas and Harvest Festival.

Davy’s Fried Fish and Chip Shop: Enjoy a real taste of the past, with fish and chips cooked the traditional way, using beef dripping in coal-fired ranges. Always a popular exhibit!

Hetton Silver Band Hall: Hetton Silver Band Hall has been moved, brick by brick, from Hetton-le-Hole to Beamish, where it will once again be alive with the sound of brass band music.

Pit Pony Stables: New for 2014, the Beamish pit pony stables are a replica of an existing block which served Ricklees drift mine in Gateshead and serve to illustrate the role played by horses in a North East colliery in the years leading up to the First World War.

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Pit Village