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Encyclopedia

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County Durham
EnglandDurham.png
Geography
Status Ceremonial county & (smaller) Unitary district
Origin Historic
Region North East England
Area
- Total
- Admin. council
- Admin. area
Ranked 19th
2,676 km2 (1,033 sq mi)
Ranked 6th
2,226 km2 (859 sq mi)
Admin HQ Durham
ISO 3166-2 GB-DUR
ONS code 00EJ
NUTS 3 UKC14
Demography
Population
- Total (2008 est.[1])
- Density
- Admin. council
Ranked 23rd
508,500
228 /km2 (591/sq mi)
Ranked 5th
Ethnicity 98.6% White
Politics
Arms of Durham County Council
Durham County Council
http://www.durham.gov.uk/
Executive Labour
Members of Parliament
Districts
Durham Ceremonial Numbered 2009.png
  1. Durham (Unitary)
  2. Hartlepool (Unitary)
  3. Darlington (Unitary)
  4. Stockton-on-Tees (Unitary) *

* Only the part of the borough to the north of the River Tees is within the ceremonial County Durham.

County Durham (pronounced /ˈdʌrəm/) is a ceremonial county[2] and (smaller) unitary district in North East England. The county town is Durham.The largest settlement in the ceremonial county (in the unitary Borough of Darlington) is the town of Darlington.[3] The county has an industrial heritage and its economy was historically based on coal and iron mining.[4] It is an area of regeneration and promoted as a tourist destination.[4]

The ceremonial county borders Tyne and Wear, North Yorkshire, Cumbria and Northumberland and forms part of the North East England region.[5]

Contents

Etymology

Many counties are named after their principal town, and the expected form here would be Durhamshire.[3] The county is commonly known as County Durham but was officially named Durham until at least 1997.[6] The structural change legislation in 2009[7], however, referred to the county of County Durham. The former postal county was known as "County Durham" to distinguish it from the post town of Durham. Durham is the only English county name to be prefixed with "County" in common usage - a practice more common in Ireland.

Politics

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Local government

The ceremonial county of Durham is administered by four unitary authorities. The ceremonial county has no administrative function, but remains the area to which a Lord-Lieutenant and High Sheriff are appointed.

Emergency services

Durham Constabulary operate in the area of the two unitary districts of County Durham and Darlington.[13] Members of Darlington and Durham councils appoint members to the Durham Police Authority.[10] The other areas in the ceremonial county fall within the police area of the Cleveland Police.

Fire service areas are follow the same areas as the police with County Durham and Darlington Fire and Rescue Service serving the two unitary districts of County Durham and Darlington and Cleveland Fire Brigade covering the rest. County Durham and Darlington Fire and Rescue Service is under the supervision of a combined fire authority consiting of 25 local councillors: 21 from Durham County Council and 4 from Darlington Borough Council.[14]

The North East Ambulance Service NHS Trust are responsible for providing NHS ambulance services throughout the ceremonial county.

Air Ambulance services are provided by the Great North Air Ambulance. The charity operates 3 helicopters including one at Durham Tees Valley Airport covering the County Durham area.

Teesdale and Weardale Search and Mountain Rescue Team, based at the Durham Constabulary base in Barnard Castle, respond to search and rescue incidents in the county.

History

Ancient origins

The territory that became known as County Durham was originally a liberty under the control of the Bishops of Durham. The liberty was known variously as the "Liberty of Durham", "Liberty of St Cuthbert's Land" "The lands of St. Cuthbert between Tyne and Tees" or "The Liberty of Haliwerfolc".[15]

The bishops' special jurisdiction was based on claims that King Ecgfrith of Northumbria had granted a substantial territory to St Cuthbert on his election to the see of Lindisfarne in 684. In about 883, a cathedral housing the saint's remains was established at Chester-le-Street and Guthfrith, King of York granted the community of St Cuthbert the area between the Tyne and the Wear. In 995 the see was moved again to Durham.

Following the Norman invasion, the administrative machinery of government was only slowly extended to northern England. In the twelfth century a shire or county of Northumberland was formed, and Durham was considered to be within its bounds.[16] However the authority of the sheriff of Northumberland and his officials was disputed by the bishops. The crown still regarded Durham as falling within Northumberland until the late thirteenth century. Matters came to a head in 1293 when the bishop and his steward failed to attend proceedings of quo warranto held by the justices of Northumberland. The bishops' case was heard in parliament, where he stated that Durham lay outside the bounds of any English shire and that "from time immemorial it had been widely known that the sheriff of Northumberland was not sheriff of Durham nor entered within that liberty as sheriff. . . nor made there proclamations or attachments".[17] The arguments appear to have been accepted, as by the fourteenth century Durham was accepted as a liberty which received royal mandates direct. In effect it was a private shire, with the bishop appointing his own sheriff.[15] The area eventually became known as the "County Palatine of Durham".

Sadberge was a liberty, sometimes referred to as a county, within Northumberland. In 1189 it was purchased for the see but continued with a separate sheriff, coroner and court of pleas. In the 14th century Sadberge was included in Stockton ward and was itself divided into two wards. The division into the four wards of, Chester-le-Street, Darlington, Easington and Stockton existed in the 13th century, each ward having its own coroner and a three-weekly court corresponding to the hundred court. The diocese was divided into the archdeaconries of Durham and Northumberland. The former is mentioned in 1072, and in 1291 included the deaneries of Chester-le-Street, Auckland, Lanchester and Darlington.

The term palatinus is applied to the bishop in 1293, and from the 13th century onwards the bishops frequently claimed the same rights in their lands as the king enjoyed in his kingdom.

Early administration

Durham palatinate plaque.

At its historic extent, Durham included a main body covering the Catchment of the Pennines in the west, the River Tees in the south, the North Sea in the east and the Rivers Tyne and Derwent in the north.[18] The county had a number of exclaves: Bedlingtonshire, Islandshire[19] and Norhamshire[20] within Northumberland, and Craikshire within the North Riding of Yorkshire. In 1831 the county covered an area of 679,530 acres (2,750.0 km2)[21] and had a population of 253,910.[22] The historic boundaries were used for parliamentary purposes until 1832, and for judicial and local government purposes until the coming into force of the Counties (Detached Parts) Act 1844, which merged most remaining exclaves with their surrounding county.

Until the 15th century the most important administrative officer in the palatinate was the steward. Other officers were the sheriff, the coroners, the Chamberlain and the chancellor. The palatine exchequer was organized in the 12th century. The palatine assembly represented the whole county, and dealt chiefly with fiscal questions. The bishops council, consisting of the clergy, the sheriff and the barons, regulated the judicial affairs, and later produced the Chancery and the courts of Admiralty and Marshalsea.

Durham city was captured by a Norman army in 1069. There was a rebellion against the new Norman earl Robert de Comines, who was killed. However, County Durham largely missed the Harrying of the North that was designed to subjugate such rebellions.[23] The best remains of the Norman period are to be found in Durham Cathedral and in the castle, also in some few parish churches, as at Pittington and Norton near Stockton. Of the Early English period are the eastern portion of the cathedral, the churches of Darlington, Hartlepool, and St Andrew, Auckland, Sedgefield, and portions of a few other churches.

The prior of Durham ranked first among the bishop's barons. He had his own court, and almost exclusive jurisdiction over his men. There were ten palatinate barons in the 12th century, the most important being the Hyltons of Hylton Castle, the Bulmers of Brancepeth, the Conyers of Sockburne, the Hansards of Evenwood, and the Lumleys of Lumley Castle. The Nevilles owned large estates in the county. Raby Castle, their principal seat, was rebuilt by John Neville, 3rd Baron Neville de Raby in 1377.

Edward I's quo warranto proceedings of 1293 showed twelve lords enjoying more or less extensive franchises under the bishop. The repeated efforts of the Crown to check the powers of the palatinate bishops culminated in 1536 in the Act of Resumption, which deprived the bishop of the power to pardon offences against the law or to appoint judicial officers. Moreover, indictments and legal processes were in future to run in the name of the king, and offences to be described as against the peace of the king, rather than that of the bishop. In 1596 restrictions were imposed on the powers of the chancery, and in 1646 the palatinate was formally abolished. It was revived, however, after the Restoration, and continued with much the same power until July 5, 1836, when the Durham (County Palatine) Act 1836 provided that the palatine jurisdiction should in future be vested in the crown.[24]

During the Wars of the Roses, Henry VI passed through Durham. On the outbreak of the Great Rebellion Durham inclined to support the cause of the Parliament, and in 1640 the high sheriff of the palatinate guaranteed to supply the Scottish army with provisions during their stay in the county. In 1642 the Earl of Newcastle formed the western counties into an association for the kings service, but in 1644 the palatinate was again overrun by the Scottish army, and after the Battle of Marston Moor fell entirely into the hands of the parliament.

In 1614 a bill was introduced in parliament for securing representation to the county and city of Durham and the borough of Barnard Castle. The movement was strongly opposed by the bishop, as an infringement of his palatinate rights, and the county was first summoned to return members to parliament in 1654. After the Restoration the county and city returned two members each. By the Reform Act of 1832 the county returned two members for two divisions, and the boroughs of Gateshead, South Shields and Sunderland acquired representation. The boroughs of Darlington, Stockton and Hartlepool returned one member each from 1868 until the Redistribution Act of 1885.

Modern local government

High Force waterfall on the River Tees

The municipal boroughs of Durham, Stockton on Tees and Sunderland were reformed by the Municipal Corporations Act 1835. In 1875 Jarrow was incorporated as a municipal borough,[25] as was West Hartlepool in 1887.[26] At a county level, the Local Government Act 1888 reorganised local government throughout England and Wales.[27] Most of the county came under control of the newly formed Durham County Council in an area known as an administrative county. Not included were the county boroughs of Gateshead, South Shields and Sunderland. However, for purposes other than local government the administrative county of Durham and the county boroughs continued to form a "county of Durham" to which a Lord Lieutenant of Durham was appointed.

Over its existence, the administrative county lost territory, both to the existing county boroughs, and also due to the municipal borough of West Hartlepool becoming a county borough in 1902[26] and Darlington in 1915.[28] In 1967 the former area of the borough of Hartlepool was removed from the administrative county when it merged with West Hartlepool to form a new county borough of Hartlepool. The county boundary with the North Riding of Yorkshire was adjusted: that part of the town of Barnard Castle historically in Yorkshire was added to County Durham,[29] while the portion of the Borough of Stockton-on-Tees in Durham was ceded to the North Riding.[30] In 1968, following the recommendation of the Local Government Commission, Billingham was transferred to the county borough of Teesside, in the North Riding.[31] In 1971 the population of the county including all associated county boroughs (an area of 634,000 acres)[22] was 1,409,633 and the population outside the county boroughs was 814,396.[32]

In 1974 the administrative county and the county boroughs were abolished by the Local Government Act 1972 and County Durham was reconstituted as a non-metropolitan county.[27][33] The reconstituted County Durham lost territory[34] to the north east (around Gateshead, South Shields and Sunderland) to Tyne and Wear[35][36] and to the south east (around Hartlepool) to Cleveland.[35][36] At the same time it gained the former area of Startforth Rural District from the North Riding of Yorkshire.[37] The area of the Lord Lieutenant of Durham was also adjusted by the Act to coincide with the non-metropolitan county[38] (which occupied 745,995 acres (3,018.93 km2) in 1981).[22]

In 1996, as part of the 1990s UK local government reform, Cleveland was abolished[39] and its districts were reconstituted as unitary authorities.[40] Hartlepool and Stockton-on-Tees (north of the River Tees) were returned to Durham for the purposes of Lord Lieutenant. In 1997, Darlington became a unitary authority and was separated from the shire county. The change in area for Lord Lieutenant to include all these places was reconfirmed by the Lieutenancies Act 1997.[6] Cleveland was adopted as a postal county in 1974 and by the time of its abolition, Royal Mail had abandoned the use of counties altogether;[41] the County Durham former postal county therefore has not been adjusted to the new ceremonial boundary.

As part of the 2009 structural changes to local government in England initiated by the Department for Communities and Local Government[42], the seven district councils within the County Council area were abolished. The County Council assumed their functions and became a unitary authority. The changes came into effect on 1 April 2009.[43]

Modern national government

See List of Parliamentary constituencies in County Durham

Climate

County Durham
Climate chart (explanation)
J F M A M J J A S O N D
 
 
56
 
6
1
 
 
39
 
7
1
 
 
51
 
9
2
 
 
52
 
11
3
 
 
50
 
15
6
 
 
55
 
17
9
 
 
45
 
20
11
 
 
61
 
20
11
 
 
58
 
17
9
 
 
57
 
13
6
 
 
62
 
9
3
 
 
59
 
7
2
average max. and min. temperatures in °C
precipitation totals in mm
source: [44]

The following climate figures were gathered at the Durham weather station between 1971 and 2000.

Weather data for Durham
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °C (°F) 6.2
(43)
6.7
(44)
9.0
(48)
11.2
(52)
14.5
(58)
17.2
(63)
19.8
(68)
19.6
(67)
16.7
(62)
13
(55)
9.0
(48)
7.0
(45)
12.5
(55)
Average low °C (°F) 0.6
(33)
0.8
(33)
2.1
(36)
3.3
(38)
5.7
(42)
8.5
(47)
10.7
(51)
10.6
(51)
8.6
(47)
6.0
(43)
3.1
(38)
1.5
(35)
5.2
(41)
Rainfall mm (inches) 56.2
(2.21)
38.8
(1.53)
51.1
(2.01)
52.0
(2.05)
49.5
(1.95)
54.8
(2.16)
44.5
(1.75)
61.3
(2.41)
57.5
(2.26)
56.9
(2.24)
61.5
(2.42)
59.2
(2.33)
643.3
(25.33)
Source: Met Office

Demography

Population

Historic population of the current area of County Durham between 1801 and 2001

At the 2001 Census, Easington and Derwentside districts have the highest proportion (around 99%) of resident population who were born in the UK.[45] 13.2% of County Durham residents rate their health as not good, the highest proportion in England.[46] This table shows the historic population of the current area of County Durham between 1801 and 2001.

Year Population Year Population Year Population
1801
59,765
1871
273,671
1941
511,590
1811
64,781
1881
329,985
1951
504,943
1821
74,366
1891
360,028
1961
506,070
1831
86,267
1901
419,782
1971
509,307
1841
121,602
1911
492,503
1981
501,639
1851
161,035
1921
503,946
1991
505,625
1861
217,353
1931
518,581
2001
493,470
Source: A Vision of Britain through Time.[47]

Employment

The proportion of the population working in agriculture fell from around 6% in 1851 to 1% in 1951; currently less that 1% of the population work in agriculture.[22] There were 15,202 people employed in coal mining in 1841, rising to a peak of 157,837 in 1921.[22] As at 2001, Chester-le-Street district has the lowest number of available jobs per working-age resident (0.38%).[48]

Economy

Economic history

Graph showing unadjusted gross value added (GVA) in County Durham across 3 industries at current basic prices from 1995 to 2004.
Legend      Agriculture, hunting and forestry      Industry, including energy and construction      Service activities      TotalSource:[49]

The economic history of the county centres round the growth of the mining industry, which at its heights employed almost the whole of the non-agricultural population, with large numbers of pit villages being founded throughout the county. Stephen possessed a mine in Durham which he granted to Bishop Pudsey, and in the same century colliers are mentioned at Coundon, Bishopwearmouth and Sedgefield. Cockfield Fell was one of the earliest Landsale collieries in Durham. Richard II granted to the inhabitants of Durham licence to export the produce of the mines, the majority being transported from the Port of Sunderland complex which was constructed in the 1850s. The port was the largest in Durham and the fourth biggest in Britain. Among other early industries lead-mining was carried on in the western part of the county, and mustard was extensively cultivated. Gateshead had a considerable tanning trade and shipbuilding was undertaken at Sunderland, which became the largest shipbuilding town in the world - constructing a third of Britain's tonnage.

Economic output

The chart and table summarise unadjusted gross value added (GVA) in millions of pounds sterling for County Durham across 3 industries at current basic prices from 1995 to 2004.

Gross Value Added (GVA) (£m)
1995 2000 2004
Agriculture, hunting and forestry 45 33 48
Industry, including energy and construction 1751 1827 1784
Service activities 2282 2869 3455
Total 4078 4729 5288
UK 640416 840979 1044165

Culture

The culture of coal mining found expression in the Durham Miners' Gala, which was first held in 1871,[50] developed around the culture of trade unionism. Coal mining continued to decline and pits closed. The UK miners' strike of 1984/5 caused many miners across the county to strike. Today no deep-coal mines exist in the county and numbers attending the Miners' Gala have decreased significantly over the period, although recent years have seen numbers increase, and more banners return to the Gala as former collieries restore former banners.[50][51]

Settlements

Education

Durham LEA has a comprehensive school system with 36 state secondary schools (not including sixth form colleges) and five independent schools (four in Durham and one in Barnard Castle). Easington district has the largest school population by year, and Teesdale the smallest with two schools. Only one school in Easington and Derwentside districts have sixth forms, with about half the schools in the other districts having sixth forms.

The University of Durham is based in Durham city.

Places of interest

References

  1. ^ "Population estimates for UK, England and Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland, Mid-2008" (ZIP). National Statistics Online. Office for National Statistics. 27 August 2009. http://www.statistics.gov.uk/downloads/theme_population/Mid_2008_UK_England_&_Wales_Scotland_and_Northern_Ireland_27_08_09.zip. Retrieved 26 September 2009.  
  2. ^ Boundary Commission for England (2007). Mapping for the Non-metropoltian Counties and Unitary Authorities; fifth periodical report. Boundary Commission for England. ISBN 0101703228.  
  3. ^ a b John Marius Wilson, Durham, Imperial Gazetteer of England and Wales, (1870-72). Retrieved 30 November 2007.
  4. ^ a b Durham County Council - History and Heritage of County Durham. Retrieved 30 November 2007.
  5. ^ North East Assembly - About North East England. Retrieved 30 November 2007.
  6. ^ a b OPSI - Lieutenancies Act 1997. Retrieved 30 November 2007.
  7. ^ County Durham (Structural Change) Order 2008
  8. ^ "The County Durham (Structural Change) Order 2008". Office of Public Sector Information. 2008. http://www.opsi.gov.uk/si/si2008/uksi_20080493_en_1. Retrieved 2009-04-18.  
  9. ^ Durham County Council - Districts of Durham map. Retrieved 30 November 2007.
  10. ^ a b "The Durham (Borough of Darlington) (Structural Change) Order 1995". Office of Public Sector Information. 1995. http://www.opsi.gov.uk/SI/si1995/Uksi_19951772_en_1.htm. Retrieved 2009-04-18.  
  11. ^ a b "The Cleveland (Structural Change) Order 1995". Office of Public Sector Information. 1995. http://www.opsi.gov.uk/si/si1995/Uksi_19950187_en_1.htm. Retrieved 2009-04-18.  
  12. ^ a b "Lieutenancies Act 1997". Office of Public Sector Information. 1997. http://www.uk-legislation.hmso.gov.uk/acts/acts1997/ukpga_19970023_en_2. Retrieved 2009-04-18.  
  13. ^ Durham Constabulary - Force Geography. Retrieved 1 December 2007.
  14. ^ "Combined Fire Authority". Durham and Darlington Fire and Rescue Authority. 25 February 2009. http://www.ddfra.co.uk/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=6&Itemid=155. Retrieved 2009-04-18.  
  15. ^ a b Jean Scammell, The Origin and Limitations of the Liberty of Durham in The English Historical Review, Vol. 81, No. 320. (Jul., 1966), pp. 449-473.
  16. ^ W. L. Warren, The Myth of Norman Administrative Efficiency: The Prothero Lecture in Transactions of the Royal Historical Society, 5th Ser., Vol. 34. (1984), pp. 113-132
  17. ^ C. M. Fraser, Edward I of England and the Regalian Franchise of Durham in Speculum, Vol. 31, No. 2. (Apr., 1956), pp. 329-342
  18. ^ Vision of Britain - Durham historic boundaries. Retrieved 30 November 2007.
  19. ^ Vision of Britain - Islandshire (historic map). Retrieved 1 December 2007.
  20. ^ Vision of Britain - Norhamshire (historic map). Retrieved 1 December 2007.
  21. ^ Vision of Britain - Durham (Ancient): area. Retrieved 30 November 2007
  22. ^ a b c d e National Statistics - 200 years of the Census in... Durham. Retrieved 2 December 2007.
  23. ^ Douglas, D.C. William the Conqueror: The Norman Impact Upon England
  24. ^ Durham (County Palatine) Act, 1836 (6 & 7 Will.4 C.19)
  25. ^ Vision of Britain - Jarrow MB. Retrieved 1 December 2007.
  26. ^ a b Vision of Britain - West Hartlepool MB/CB. Retrieved 30 November 2007.
  27. ^ a b Bryne, T. (1994). Local Government in Britain. Penguin. ISBN 0140267395.  
  28. ^ Vision of Britain - Darlington MB/CB. Retrieved 30 November 2007.
  29. ^ Vision of Britain - Yorkshire, North Riding. Retrieved 30 November 2007.
  30. ^ Vision of Britain - Stockton on Tees. Retrieved 30 November 2007.
  31. ^ Vision of Britain - Billingham UD. Retrieved 30 November 2007.
  32. ^ UK Census, 1971
  33. ^ Office for National Statistics (1999). Gazetteer of the old and new geographies of the United Kingdom. Office for National Statistics. ISBN 1-85774-298-2.  
  34. ^ Her Majesty's Stationary Office (1996). Aspects of Britain: Local Government. Stationery Office Books. ISBN 0117020370.  
  35. ^ a b Arnold-Baker, C., Local Government Act 1972, (1973)
  36. ^ a b Young, F. (1991). Guide to Local Administrative Units of England: Northern England. Royal Historical Society. ISBN 0861931270.  
  37. ^ Durham County Council - About Us: Council Logo. Retrieved 1 December 2007.
  38. ^ Elcock, H., Local Government, (1994)
  39. ^ OPSI - Cleveland (Structural Change) Order 1995. Retrieved 30 November 2007.
  40. ^ OPSI - Cleveland (Further Provision) Order 1995. Retrieved 30 November 2007.
  41. ^ Royal Mail, Address Management Guide, (2004)
  42. ^ Durham County Council - Local Government Review in County Durham. Retrieved 30 November 2007.
  43. ^ County Durham (Structural Change) Order 2008
  44. ^ Durham 1971-2000 averages, Met Office. Retrieved on 20 August 2007.
  45. ^ National Statistics - Census 2001 - Ethnicity and religion in England and Wales. Retrieved 2 December 2007.
  46. ^ National Statistics - Health Of The Nation. Retrieved 2 December 2007.
  47. ^ A Vision of Britain through time. "Durham: Total Population". http://www.visionofbritain.org.uk/data_cube_table_page.jsp?data_theme=T_POP&data_cube=N_TPop&u_id=10032933&c_id=10001043&add=N. Retrieved 2007-12-01.  
  48. ^ Hastings, D., Local area labour market statistical indicators incorporating the Annual Population Survey, National Statistics - Labour Market Trends, (2006). Retrieved 2 December 2007.
  49. ^ NUTS3 GVA (1995-2004) Data, Office for National Statistics. Retrieved on 31 August 2007.
  50. ^ a b Miner's Advice - Moving on seamlessly....Retrieved 2 December 2007.
  51. ^ Heritage Lottery Fund - Durham Miners' Gala.Retrieved 2 December 2007.

External links


Travel guide

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikitravel

County Durham [1] is a county in North East England.

Map of County Durham
Map of County Durham
  • Sweet Greetings Shildon, 4 Church Street, Shildon, County Durham, DL41DU, 01388772736, [2].  edit
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Wiktionary

Up to date as of January 15, 2010

Definition from Wiktionary, a free dictionary

English

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Wikipedia has an article on:

Wikipedia

Proper noun

Singular
County Durham

Plural
-

County Durham

  1. A maritime county of England bordered by the North Sea, Northumberland, Cumberland, Westmorland and Yorkshire; county town Durham.
    • Usage note: Sometimes referred to simply as Durham, but never as Durham County.

Genealogy

Up to date as of February 01, 2010

From Familypedia

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Please help to improve this page yourself if you can..
County Durham

<tr><td colspan="2" style="text-align: center; background: white;">File:Flag of Durham.svg</td></tr>

File:EnglandDurham.png
Geography
Status Ceremonial and (smaller) Non-metropolitan county

<tr><th>Origin</th><td>Historic</td></tr>

Region North East England
Area
- Total
- Admin. council
- Admin. area
Ranked 19th
2,676 km² (1,033.2 sq mi)
Ranked 23rd
2,226 km² (859.5 sq mi)

<tr><th>Admin HQ</th><td class="label">Durham</td></tr><tr><th>ISO 3166-2</th><td>GB-DUR</td></tr>

ONS code 20
NUTS 3 UKC14
Demographics
Population
- Total (2006 est.)
- Density
- Admin. council
- Admin. pop.
Ranked 23rd Image:Wp_globe_tiny.gif
493,470 (2001 census)
323/km² (836.6/sq mi)
Ranked 27th Image:Wp_globe_tiny.gif
500,700
Ethnicity 98.6% White
Politics
File:Arms-co-durham.jpg
Durham County Council
http://www.durham.gov.uk/

<tr><th>Executive</th><td>Labour </td></tr>

Members of Parliament
Districts
File:Durham Ceremonial Numbered.png
  1. City of Durham
  2. Easington
  3. Sedgefield
  4. Teesdale
  5. Wear Valley
  6. Derwentside
  7. Chester-le-Street
  8. Hartlepool (unitary)
  9. Darlington (unitary)
  10. Stockton-on-Tees (unitary)*

* Only the part of the borough to the north of the River Tees is within the ceremonial County Durham.

County Durham or officially Durham, is a non-metropolitan county of historic origin in North East England. Its county town is Durham. Ceremonially the county consists of ten districts, three of which are unitary authority areas.

It is a county of contrasts; the remote and sparsely populated dales and moors of the Pennines characterise the interior, while nearer the coast the county is highly urbanised, and was once dominated by the coal mining industry.

The form of the county name is unique in England. Many counties are named after their principal town, and the expected form here would be Durhamshire. The reason it is called County Durham is that it did not become a Shire/County until after the language of government was changed from Anglo-Saxon to Norman French in 1066. Previous to that it was a semi-independent Bishopric[1].

Durham County Council promotes the non-metropolitan county for tourism purposes as "The Land of the Prince Bishops" in reference to the former palatine jurisdiction of the bishops.[1]

According to a marketing campaign by the charity Plantlife, County Durham's county flower is the Spring Gentian.

Contents

History

Main article: History of County Durham

The County Palatine of Durham and Sadberge was a County Palatine by immemorial custom, with the Bishops of Durham being princes until 1836. Until 1971 there were a series of courts in the county, and the offices of Chancellor, Attorney-General, Solicitor-General, Steward and Clerk of Halmotes, Deputy Steward, and Registrar of Halmotes. The Court of Chancery of Durham existed from the 13th century to 1971. In 1836 the separate Court of Exchequer and the Court of Admiralty were abolished. The Durham Court of Pleas survived until 1873.

Historic County

The historic county boundary of Durham includes a main body covering the watershed of the Pennines in the west, the River Tees in the south, the North Sea in the east and the Rivers Tyne and Derwent in the north. The county several had a number of exclaves: Bedlingtonshire, Islandshire and Norhamshire within Northumberland, and Craikshire within the North Riding of Yorkshire. The historic boundaries were used for parliamentary purposes until 1832, and for judicial and local government purposes until the coming into force of the Counties (Detached Parts) Act 1844, which merged most remaining exclaves with their surrounding county.

Administrative county

In 1889, under the Local Government Act 1888 England and Wales was divided into administrative counties and county boroughs. Administrative counties, governed by an elected county council, were based on the historic boundaries, less larger towns which became self-governing as county boroughs.

In 1889 the administrative county of Durham consisted of the historic county less the county boroughs of Gateshead, South Shields and Sunderland. The boundary with the North Riding of Yorkshire was adjusted: that part of the town of Barnard Castle historically in Yorkshire was added to County Durham, while the portion of the Borough of Stockton-on-Tees in Durham was ceded to the North Riding. For all non-administrative purposes, such as lieutenancy, the County of Durham comprised the administrative county and associated county boroughs.

Over its existence, the administrative county lost territory, both to the existing county boroughs, and also due to the creation of county boroughs at West Hartlepool in 1902 and Darlington in 1915. In 1967 the borough of Hartlepool was removed from the administrative county when it merged with West Hartlepool to form a new county borough of Hartlepool, and in 1968 Billingham was included within the boundaries of the county borough of Teesside, associated with the North Riding.

The administrative county was abolished in 1974.

Non-metropolitan county

In 1974, with the implementation of the Local Government Act 1972, the administrative county (and the Durham County Council that governed it) were abolished. The Act created three new non-metropolitan/metropolitan counties to act as government administration areas in its place: the non-metropolitan counties of Durham and Cleveland ( the latter containing the boroughs of Hartlepool and Stockton-on-Tees), and the metropolitan county of Tyne and Wear (containing the boroughs of Gateshead, Sunderland and South Tyneside.)[2] The new non-metropolitan county of Durham also covered the former area of Startforth Rural District, a part of the historic North Riding of Yorkshire, and south of the historical boundary of the River Tees.

As established in 1974 the non-metropolitan county had a two-tier structure. A new Durham County Council, and eight districts (each governed by a district council) were formed. In 1997 the district of Darlington was removed from jurisdiction of the county council, becoming a Unitary Authority. There are currently seven local government districts in the county. They are:

See also: Districts of Durham and List of civil parishes in County Durham

The Department for Communities and Local Government has announced that the seven district councils and the County Council will be abolished and a new unitary authority for the whole of the existing County Council area will be created. The changes are planned to be implemented no later than 1 April 2009.[3][4]. The successful Durham County Council bid referred to the new authority as County Durham Council.

Ceremonial county

In 1997 the non-metropolitan county (including unitary Darlington), together with that part of the former county of Cleveland north of the River Tees became a county for 'ceremonial purposes' (reflecting the southern historic and administrative county boundaries). The ceremonial county of Durham is the area to which lord-lieutenants and high sheriffs are appointed, and has no role in local government.

The term "County Durham" has no strict definition. It should be noted that no government Act has ever named any entity "County Durham": this has arisen out of common usage and despite this has been, and is, widely used even within government to refer to any one of the government administrion areas defined above.

Settlements

For more details on this topic, see list of places in County Durham.

This is a list of the main towns in County Durham. The area covered is the entire ceremonial county, hence the inclusion of towns which are no longer administered by Durham County Council.

Education

Durham LEA has a comprehensive school system with 36 state secondary schools (not including sixth form colleges) and 3 independent schools (two in Durham and one in Barnard Castle). Easington district has the largest school population by year, and Teesdale the smallest with two schools. Only one school in Easington and Derwentside districts have sixth forms, with about half the schools in the other districts having sixth forms. In England, 45.8% of pupils gain 5 good GCSE grades including English and Maths; for Durham's 5800 pupils taking GCSE at 16 it is 40.4 - well under the average. There is variety across the county with schools in the former mining areas performing the lowest, and schools in Durham City performing the best, and one in Chester-le-Street. There are no good schools in the Easington district. The best state school at GCSE is St Leonard's RC School in Durham City, which is also as good as the Hurworth School in Darlington. The catholic schools do particularly well at GCSE. The worst school is Sunnydale Community College in Shildon. The schools in Darlington either perform very well or much worse. At A level, the county performs well under the England average, with even Hartlepool getting a better average result. The best school at A-level is Durham Johnston Comprehensive School, getting respectable results for a comprehensive (and higher than the independent schools), followed by Park View Community School in Chester-le-Street. Darlington gets much better results at A-level - well above the England average, thanks to the Queen Elizabeth Sixth Form College.

GCSE results by district council (%)

% of pupils gaining 5 grades A-C including English and maths at GCSE in 2006; compare to average house price by district.

  • City of Durham 54.3
  • Teesdale 52.0
  • Chester-le-Street 47.7
  • (Darlington Unitary Authority 44.7)
  • Derwentside 42.0
  • Wear Valley 39.8
  • (Hartlepool Unitary Authority 37.5)
  • Sedgefield 36.8
  • Easington 29.0

Places of interest

Key
Image:AP_Icon.PNG Abbey/Priory/Cathedral
Accessible open space Accessible open space
Amusement/Theme Park
Image:CL_icon.PNG Castle
Country Park Country Park
Image:EH icon.png English Heritage
Image:FC icon.png Forestry Commission
Heritage railway Heritage railway
Historic house Historic House
Museum (free)
Museum
Museums (free/not free)
National Trust National Trust
Zoo

External links

[http:www.myersnorth.co.uk www.myersnorth.co.uk] contains exhastive information on hundreds of famous deceased people of Durham, as well as much ancillary information

References

  1. ^ Welcome to County Durham (Durham County Council)
  2. ^ Local Government Act, 1972
  3. ^ Durham County Council - Local Government Review in County Durham
  4. ^ Communities and Local Government - Proposals for future unitary structures: Stakeholder consultation


County Durham
About County Durham
Buildings | Culture | Economy | Geography | History | Famous Residents | Sport | Durham University | Transport | Timeline
Districts of County Durham
Chester-le-Street | Derwentside | City of Durham | Easington | Borough of Sedgefield | Teesdale | Wear Valley
This page uses content from the English language Wikipedia. The original content was at County Durham. The list of authors can be seen in the page history. As with this Familypedia wiki, the content of Wikipedia is available under the Creative Commons License.


This article uses material from the "County Durham" article on the Genealogy wiki at Wikia and is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike License.

Simple English

County Durham
[[File:]]
Geography
Status Ceremonial and (smaller) Non-metropolitan county

OriginHistoric
Region North East England
Area
- Total
- Admin. council
- Admin. area
Ranked 19th
2,676 km² (1,033 sq mi)
Ranked 23rd
2,226 km² (859 sq mi)

Admin HQDurham
ISO 3166-2GB-DUR
ONS code 20
NUTS 3 UKC14
Demography
Population
- Total (2005 est.)
- Density
- Admin. council
- Admin. pop.
Ranked 23rd
493,470 (2001 census)
321/km² (831/sq mi)
Ranked 26th
499,800
Ethnicity 98.6% White
Politics

Durham County Council
http://www.durham.gov.uk/

ExecutiveLabour
Members of Parliament
  • Hilary Armstrong (L)
  • Roberta Blackman-Woods (L)
  • Phil Wilson (L)
  • Frank Cook (L)
  • John Cummings (L)
  • Helen Goodman (L)
  • Kevan Jones (L)
  • Alan Milburn (L)
  • Dari Taylor (L)
  • Iain Wright (L)
Districts
File:Durham Ceremonial
  1. City of Durham
  2. Easington
  3. Sedgefield
  4. Teesdale
  5. Wear Valley
  6. Derwentside
  7. Chester-le-Street
  8. Hartlepool (unitary)
  9. Darlington (unitary)
  10. Stockton-on-Tees (unitary)*

* Only the part of the borough to the north of the River Tees is within the ceremonial County Durham.

County Durham is a county in north-east England. There are four different types of county:

Its county town is Durham.

The form of the county name is unique in England. Many counties are named after their principal town, and the expected form here would be Durhamshire. But County Durham did not become a Shire/County until after the language of government was changed from Anglo-Saxon to Norman French in 1066. Previous to that it was a semi-independent Bishopric [1]. Durham County Council promotes the non-metropolitan county for tourism purposes as "The Land of the Prince Bishops" in reference to the former palatine jurisdiction of the bishops.[2]

Contents

Definitions

1.Historic County

The historic county covered from the Pennines in the west, the River Tees in the south, the North Sea in the east and the Rivers Tyne and Derwent in the north.

The county several had a number of exclaves: Bedlingtonshire, Islandshire and Norhamshire within Northumberland, and Craikshire within the North Riding of Yorkshire. The historic boundaries were used for parliamentary purposes until 1832, and for law courts and local government until the Counties (Detached Parts) Act 1844, which merged most remaining exclaves with their surrounding county.

2.Administrative county

In 1889, under the Local Government Act 1888 England and Wales was divided into administrative counties and county boroughs. Administrative counties, governed by an elected county council, were based on the historic boundaries, less larger towns which became self-governing as county boroughs.

In 1889 the administrative county of Durham consisted of the historic county less the county boroughs of Gateshead, South Shields and Sunderland. The boundary with the North Riding of Yorkshire was adjusted: the part of the town of Barnard Castle that was in Yorkshire was added to County Durham, but the part of the Borough of Stockton-on-Tees in Durham was given to the North Riding. For all non-administrative purposes, such as lieutenancy, the County of Durham comprised the administrative county and associated county boroughs.

Over its existence, the administrative county lost territory, both to the existing county boroughs, and also due to the creation of county boroughs at West Hartlepool in 1902 and Darlington in 1915. In 1967 the borough of Hartlepool was removed from the administrative county when it merged with West Hartlepool to form a new county borough of Hartlepool, and in 1968 Billingham was included within the boundaries of the county borough of Teesside, associated with the North Riding.

The administrative county was abolished in 1974.

3.Non-metropolitan county

In 1974 Durham was divided between three counties. The boroughs of Hartlepool and Stockton-on-Tees became a part of the new non-metropolitan county of Cleveland. The metropolitan county of Tyne and Wear became responsible for Gateshead, Sunderland and South Tyneside. [3] The new non-metropolitan county of Durham also covered the former area of Startforth Rural District, a part of the historic North Riding of Yorkshire, and south of the historical boundary of the River Tees.

The Department for Communities and Local Government has said that the seven district councils and the County Council will be abolished and a new unitary authority for the whole of the existing County Council area will be created. The change will be on 1 April 2009 at the latest.[4][5]. The successful Durham County Council bid referred to the new authority as County Durham Council.

4.Ceremonial county

In 1997 the non-metropolitan county (including unitary Darlington), together with that part of the former county of Cleveland north of the River Tees became a ceremonial county. Lord-lieutenants and high sheriffs are appointed to the ceremonial county of Durham. they have no job in local government.

Settlements

This is a list of the main towns in County Durham. The area covered is the entire ceremonial county, hence the inclusion of towns which are no longer administered by Durham County Council.

  • Barnard Castle, Billingham, Bishop Auckland
  • Chester-le-Street, Consett
  • Darlington
  • Durham
  • Ferryhill
  • Hartlepool
  • Newton Aycliffe
  • Peterlee
  • Seaham
  • Sedgefield
  • Spennymoor
  • Stanley
  • Stockton-on-Tees
  • Willington

Places of interest

Other Websites

References

  1. [1].
  2. Welcome to County Durham (Durham County Council)
  3. Local Government Act, 1972
  4. Durham County Council - Local Government Review in County Durham
  5. Communities and Local Government - Proposals for future unitary structures: Stakeholder consultation


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