Our Latest Insights

Here you can read the latest on news, events, stories, and blog posts.

Consett Heritage Project / May 14th, 2024

Brian Harrison - Consett Heritage Podcast

Brian Harrison is a local historian and many of you may know him as the company director for the Consett Heritage and Arts Centre. We sat down with him and discussed the origins of his love for history, his thoughts on the most significant moments of the steelworks, and more!

Consett Heritage Project / April 15th, 2024

Brian Stobbs - Consett Heritage Podcast

Brian Stobbs has a wealth of personal knowledge about living in Consett during the era of the steelworks. Having grown up in the heart of Templetown, then primarily an industrial area, his perspective offers a captivating glimpse into Consett's past. Discover what motivated him to stay in Consett and why he chose not to work in the steelworks.

Consett Heritage Project / April 12th, 2024

History of Consett Q and A – Local Mysteries now Solved!

As part of Building Self-Belief’s series of events about Consett’s heritage, local Historian Brian Harrison agreed to be in the spotlight for our Consett’s History Q and A session.

Consett Heritage Project / March 27th, 2024

John Fox - Consett Heritage Podcast

John has lived his whole life in Consett and tells us all about his experiences working at Consett Steelworks and beyond! He also explains what he has planned for Consett for the future, and how he needs your help to make his dream for Consett a reality.

Consett Heritage Project / March 8th, 2024

Jean Simmons - Consett Heritage Podcast

Our volunteer, Maisie Dobson, conducts an interview with her great-grandma, Jean Simmons, aged 96, discussing life and work in Consett during the peak of the Consett Steelworks era. During the conversation, Jean mentions a royal visit to the steelworks, prompting Maisie to enquire about its accuracy. Upon researching, we discovered that the event did indeed occur. Listen in to enjoy this unique recording, offering insights into the social history of Consett.

Consett Heritage Project / February 9th, 2024

My Dream for Consett

Ray Lonsdale’s statue of Tommy, at Seaham had a profound effect on me. Tommy, or using it’s real title of “One Minute Past Eleven” depicts a weary First World War soldier slumped and gazing ahead. Tommy represents how many troops felt when the war ended – we had ‘won’, but at what cost?

Consett Heritage Project / February 5th, 2024

Voices of Consett - Sadie (The Bra Lady)

Before earning the title of "Sadie the Bra Lady," Sadie Ayton worked in the steelworks following her school years. She initially found employment at Richmond's the Solicitors before transitioning into the role of a 'Ticky Woman,' collecting credit payments by visiting houses.

Consett Heritage Project / January 30th, 2024

Niamh McDonald - Consett Heritage Podcast

Niamh volunteers with Building Self-Belief as a member of their Youth Panel and is also studying towards a Masters of Planning at Newcastle University. Niamh has been able to support projects run by BSB and add both a professional and personal perspective on a whole host of projects.

Consett Heritage Project / December 4th, 2023

Sarah Envy - Consett Heritage Podcast

Sarah is Engagement Manager for The National Lottery Heritage Fund North. Until her involvement in our Consett Heritage Project, she was unaware that this area had such a significant industrial past, and that Consett steel was used in the construction of the Eiffel Tower! From photographs she has seen of the old Consett Ironworks, she now realises that you would have been able to see rows of machinery just over the horizon from the Reservoir, peeking over the ridge of the dam. She believes that we need to continue to provide opportunities to access such a significant part of Consett's heritage. She is particularly excited about the latest Heritage initiative that will truly put Co Durham on the cultural and heritage map!

Consett Heritage Project / November 17th, 2023

Edwin Oxley - Consett Heritage Podcast

Edwin started as an apprentice at the Consett Steelworks in 1961, as a 15-year-old. Over time he developed a whole host of skills and describes the excellent training he received both at technical college in Consett and Gateshead, and on the jobs in the boiler shop, foundry, blast furnace, plate mills - amongst others. He worked in every department! Take a listen to his podcast which gives a fascinating insight into the opportunities made available to him and how this gave him a solid foundation for the rest of his working life. He also gives our young people some great advice!

Consett Heritage Project / October 20th, 2023

Voices of Consett - Ian Malpass

Ian Malpass, born and bred in Consett, tells us about his time at 'The Works', how it felt when the steelworks closed, and how his family worked and managed after the closure. A great insight into the true spirit of Consett folk.

Consett Heritage Project / October 11th, 2023

Peter Shaw 'Shawty' - Consett Heritage Podcast

Peter is 4th generation Consett Native (Delves to be Specific), his childhood was spent wandering the now desolate and empty railway lines before they were finally pulled up, playing in and around the remains of the then quiet monsters of industry before they were pulled down. It was his time spent in what was left of the steelworks that has led to a lifelong interest into the heritage of 'the works'.

Consett Heritage Project / October 2nd, 2023

Consett Youth Banner

We are incredibly proud of our new Consett Heritage Project banner celebrating Consett Youth. The slogan the young people created is perfect- 'From the red dust of the past, Consett youth forge a brighter future'. Our plan is to use the banner as a force for good and encourage young people to take the initiative and work together for a better future.

Consett Heritage Project / September 21st, 2023

Voices of Consett- David

David is 71 years old and was born in the Richard Murray Hospital at Blackhill, which was where everybody was born, and lived on Benfieldside Road in Blackhill. His father was a ‘Bevin Boy’, during the war you were either sent as a soldier or down the mines, if you were unlucky the mines were worse.

Consett Heritage Project / September 18th, 2023

Voices of Consett - Eileen

Eileen has lived in Consett for 64 years, her family live in Consett, she works and socialises in Consett, her grandchildren go to school in Consett, so you could say her whole life is in Consett. She has three children and three grandchildren who all live in this area, one of them teaches in Leadgate, in Consett.

Consett Heritage Project / September 13th, 2023

Anne-Louise Grant - Consett Heritage Podcast

Anne-Louise was born in Consett in 1966, and grew up in a village nearby. Her Grandad on one side was a postman and on the other side a miner. Her Dad was a metallurgist at the Steelworks and she had many family members who lived and worked in the area (and still do). She returned to Consett in 2004 to raise her family, having left to seek employment in London in 1989.