Plans approved for new memorial honouring forces and mine workers which will proudly display historic Boldon clock

Proposals for a new memorial displaying a historic clock have taken a step forward after winning approval from planning chiefs.

Earlier this year, South Tyneside Council’s planning department registered a planning application for the erection of a new granite war memorial to stand on a site between Hubert Street and Cotswold Lane in Boldon Colliery.

Designs for the scheme included a granite base and columns, granite statues and a historic timepiece at the top of the structure.

The clock was previously attached to the Royal British Legion (RBL) Club in Boldon Colliery but is currently in storage after being refurbished with the help of a council grant.

(L-R) Billy Robinson, vice-chair of the Boldon Colliery Heritage group, George Henderson, chair of the group, Cllr Sandra Duncan, Jarrow and Boldon Community Area Forum chair, Cllr Alison Strike, Secretary of the heritage group and group member Sean Hudson Credit: South Tyneside Council

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According to a previous funding application, the clock was originally gifted to the RBL ‘in thankful memory of those from Boldon Colliery who fought for the cause of freedom and made the supreme sacrifice’.

A planning application was required to secure permission for the new war memorial displaying the historic clock and was registered by South Tyneside Council in July, 2022.

After considering the application and assessing it against planning policies, the council’s planning department granted permission for the structure on September 12, 2022.

A report prepared by planning officers said the war memorial clock dates back to 1956 and that the wider memorial would give an “indication of both community spirit and the social development of the area”.

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Proposed site of new war memorial between Hubert Street and Cotswold Lane, Boldon Colliery Picture: Google Maps

The Boldon Colliery Heritage Group was formed in 2021 with the aim to raise funds towards the creation and structure of a memorial in Boldon Colliery.

This includes a memorial paying tribute to the area’s “proud mining heritage” and “all those from Boldon Colliery who fought for the cause of freedom, and in service of their country”.

Estimated costs of constructing the memorial are around £85,000, with around £20,000 raised so far.

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Designs show a central column with the refurbished war memorial clock on top flanked by the statues of both a World War One soldier and a miner, as well as the inclusion of a historic plaque.

Billy Robinson, vice-chair of the Boldon Colliery Heritage Group and Armed Forces veteran, said the memorial would provide a place for residents to reflect and pay tributes.

He said: “The Boldon Colliery Pit was worked by residents across the Boldons and during its time there were about 123 deaths, with the creation of this memorial they can be publically remembered by their community.

“The traditional Tommy statue represents the sacrifice and loss that the Boldons community suffered during World War One and World War Two.

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“It’s also to remember those lost and injured in all wars and conflicts since the end of World War Two.

“I’m very proud to be part of this project and hopefully we will get the monument ready for Remembrance Day 2023.”

Boldon Colliery councillor Alison Strike welcomed the news of planning permission but said there was some way to go towards reaching the fundraising total needed.

Cllr Strike, who is also a member of the Boldon Colliery Heritage Group, added: “Hopefully now that planning permission has been granted, it’s going to help us with funding.

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“We have done a lot of fundraising but we need some big funding applications going forward and any support is appreciated.”

More information on the war memorial plans can be found by visiting the Boldon Colliery Heritage Group’s Facebook page.

Online donations can also be made via a fundraising link at: www.gofundme.com/f/boldon-colliery-heritage-group-memorial-fundraiser