Keys to the Past

Local History

Shotley Bridge (County Durham)

Shotley is derived from Old English meaning 'Clearing of the Scots' and was first mentioned in 1356 in connection to the name Gilbert de Brendon.

Prehistoric remains have been discovered in the form of a solitary Bronze Age Cist burial.

The scant remains of a 14th century flour mill originally owned by the Annadale family are still present but the earliest intact standing buildings were built by German sword makers who moved to this area in order to continue their craft. The former sword manufacture was used as a depot and office by a building contractor during the 1960s when the building was described as "lacking any special architectural feature and is mainly roofless. The interior has no original plant within it." At one site were the living quarters of the craftsmen (now demolished, possibly in 1959). These were 17th or 18th century buildings. A much-weathered door lintel was inscribed apparently in German: 'SEG...HN...ALLE S...EICH IN...Deinem EVW...UND ELE...WAS DIR BE...'

In the 19th century Jonathon Richardson (a member of the local gentry) established a spa. Buildings relating to this venture still exist, such as Dial House and Swiss style chalets in Snows Green Road. There was even a small zoo at Elm Park, with tropical birds and unusual animals.

Reference number:D6883

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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.