chester-le-street heritage trail Legal Information PHOTOGRAPHS courtesy of: Dorothy A. Hall. George Nairn. Chester-le-Street Heritage Group. DESIGN: Chris Fairley      Email:

Chester-le-Street Heritage Group © All rights reserved

Legal Information

1.	Civic Centre (Board 1) Opened in 1982 by HRH The Duke of Gloucester. The building has won many awards.

Information Board 1.

In 1974 Local Government restructuring brought together the separate Chester-le-Street Rural and Urban District Councils. Their offices were in different parts of the town. The Civic Centre for the new Chester-le-Street and District Council took 23 months to build and was officially opened by the Duke of Gloucester on 6th May 1982.

The architects Faulkner-Brown Hendy, Watkinson and Stonor of Killingworth conceived the offices as part of a pedestrian route through the town similar to a shopping mall.

The design was highly acclaimed and between 1983 and 1986 received a number of prestigious architectural awards.

Adjacent to the Civic Centre, Cestrian Court stands on the site of the former Chalmers’ Orchard. Prior to construction in 2006 archaeological evaluation here found the earliest pottery so far recovered from Roman Chester-le-Street.

Opposite Cestrian Court, the Community Centre is a two-storey brick-built building in a stucco renaissance style with stucco pilasters and stone and decorative and inlaid pediments. It was opened on the 30th November 1929 as South Pelaw Colliery Miners’ Welfare Hall. After the closure of the colliery in 1964 the hall became a community centre and is very well supported by local residents.

The area behind the Community Centre is ‘Hillside’, sometimes known as Tile Shed Bank and is on the site of Mr. George Murray’s tile, brick and drain pipe works.

Chalmers’ View (adjacent to 15, Newcastle Road). Excavations here in 2006 showed that the Roman road, Cades Road, passed through here. Sound dating evidence for the road’s construction was recovered from the body of the road and consisted of a little worn denarius of Hadrian issued in the years AD125-128 together with fragments of a samian bowl from the first half of the second century. Along with pottery found on the Chalmers’ Orchard site, and other recent information, this suggests the Roman fort may have been founded in the AD120s.

Roll over to enlarge