Keys to the Past

Local History

Bishopton (County Durham)

The village of Bishopton is stands on a slight hill about six miles north-west of Stockton. Although there was undoubtedly settlement in the area since the prehistoric period, no remains of this early occupation has survived. It is thought that the Roman road from Great Stainton to Chester-le-Street runs through the parish, but no other Roman remains have been discovered.

As the name 'Bishopton' suggests, the site was owned by the Bishop of Durham. The village is first mentioned between 1104 and 1108, and it is not certain whether there were ever any Anglo-Saxon remains in the area. The most important monument of medieval date in the village are the remains of the castle at Castle Hill. There is a central mound surrounded by a ditch and an earth bank. The castle was probably built in 1143 during a war between Roger Conyer's, Lord of Bishopston and the Bishop of Durham. The church of St Peter at Bishopton was originally built in the medieval period, probably in the late 13th century. However, it was rebuilt at the expense of Vicar and his three sisters between 1846 and 1847, leaving only a few fragments of the earlier walls. An old stone cross stands in the churchyard, though it probably originally stood on the village green.

In the 19th century a school was built in the village, but it closed down in 1966. The village used to hold a thriving Cottager's Flower, Vegetable, Agricultural and Industrial Show which was first held in 1878.

During the First World War the village had a landing ground that was used by aircraft of 36 squadron. After the conflict the village war memorial was erected close St. Peter's Church in the form of a Cornish granite cross.

Reference number:D6650

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Please note that this information has been compiled from a number of different sources. Durham County Council and Northumberland County Council can accept no responsibility for any inaccuracy contained therein. If you wish to use/copy any of the images, please ensure that you read the Copyright information provided.