Hartlepool

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Hartlepool
TownWallHartlepool(MickGarratt)Nov2007.jpg
Hartlepool Town Wall: dating from the late 14th century, the limestone wall once enclosed the whole of the medieval town. The ancient houses overlook the entrance to Victoria Docks, which can be seen in the background.
Hartlepool is located in County Durham
Hartlepool
Hartlepool
 Hartlepool shown within County Durham
Population 92,000 (2011)[1]
OS grid reference NZ508331
   – London  416km 
Unitary authority Hartlepool
Ceremonial county County Durham
Region North East
Country England
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Post town HARTLEPOOL
Postcode district TS24 – TS27
Dialling code 01429
Police Cleveland
Fire Cleveland
Ambulance North East
EU Parliament North East England
UK Parliament Hartlepool
List of places
UK
England
County Durham

Coordinates: 54°41′N 1°13′W / 54.69°N 1.21°W / 54.69; -1.21

Hartlepool (/ˈhɑrtlɪpl/ or /ˈhɑrtlpl/) is a town on the North Sea coast of North East England, located 7.62 miles (12.26 km) north of Middlesbrough, and 16.98 miles (27.18 km) south of Sunderland. Historically a part of County Durham and later Cleveland, the town is now a unitary authority: the Borough of Hartlepool, which is inclusive of outlying suburban villages including Seaton Carew, Greatham and Elwick. Ceremonially the town remains a part of County Durham, but has strong cultural and economic links to the Teesside or Tees Valley area, with which it shares a number of provisions including the TS postcode, Cleveland Fire Brigade, and Cleveland Police.

It was founded in the 7th century AD, around the Northumbrian monastery of Hartlepool Abbey. The village grew during the Middle Ages and developed a harbour which served as the official port of the County Palatine of Durham. A railway link from the north was established from the South Durham coal fields to the historic town. An additional link from the south, in 1835, together with a new port, resulted in further expansion, with the establishing of the new town of West Hartlepool.[2] Industrialisation and the formation of a shipbuilding industry during the later part of the 19th century caused Hartlepool to be a target for the German Navy at the beginning of the First World War. A bombardment of 1150 shells on 16 December 1914 resulted in the death of 117 people. A severe decline in heavy industries and shipbuilding following the Second World War caused periods of high unemployment until the 1990s when major investment projects and the redevelopment of the docks area into a marina have seen a rise in the town's prospects.

Origins of name[edit]

St. Hilda's Church on Hartlepool Headland, built by the Normans and for centuries known as the Jewel of Herterpol.

The place name derives from Old English *heort-ieg "hart island", referring to stags seen, and pol, "pool".[3] Records of the place-name from early sources confirm this:

  • 649: Heretu, or Hereteu
  • 1017: Herterpol, or Hertelpolle
  • 1182: Hierdepol

'Hart' is the Old English name for a stag or deer (which appears on the town's crest) and 'le pool' meant 'by the sea', implying that people moved here to hunt where there were deer by the sea and those people eventually settled there. The submerged early postglacial forest below the current high water mark provides proof that there was, indeed, a prehistoric forest by the sea!

Geography[edit]

Nearby towns and cities include: Billingham (8 miles): Darlington (25); Durham (17); Middlesbrough (12); Newcastle upon Tyne (30); Peterlee (8); Seaham (17); Sedgefield (13); Stockton-on-Tees (10) and Sunderland (21). The monument at Eston Nab can be seen, beyond the far side of the Tees Bay, to the south.

History[edit]

Early history[edit]

Christ Church was built from materials excavated to build the new docks during the industrial revolution, and intended to satisfy the spiritual needs of the new workforce. It is now Hartlepool's art gallery and visitor centre.

After the Romans left England, the east coast began to be raided by Anglo-Saxons. They then settled in the area, creating what is today Northumbria.[4] Hartlepool began as an Anglian settlement,[3] but was founded as a village in the 7th century AD, springing up around Hartlepool Abbey, founded in CE 640 on a headland overlooking a natural harbour. Founded by St Aidan, the monastery became famous under St Hilda, who served as its abbess from 649–657. But it fell into decline and was probably destroyed by the Vikings in the 9th century.[3] In March 2000, the archaeological investigation television programme Time Team located a lost Anglo-Saxon monastery in the grounds of St Hilda's Church.[5]

After the Norman conquest of 1066, the De Brus family gained ownership of the lands surrounding Hartlepool. William the Conqueror built Durham Castle and brought stability to the area, and the villages were first mentioned in records in 1153 when Robert de Brus, 1st Lord of Annandale became Lord of Hartness. The town's first charter was received before 1185, for which it gained its first mayor, an annual two-week fair and a weekly market.[3][4] By the later Middle Ages, Hartlepool had grown into an important (though still small) market town. A major part of the reason for growth was that its harbour was improved to serve as the official port of the County Palatine of Durham. The main trade developed as fishing, making Hartlepool one of the major ports on the east coast of the UK. In 1306, Robert the Bruce was crowned King of Scotland, and became the last Lord of Hartness. Angered, King Edward I confiscated the title to Hartlepool, and began to improve the town's defences.[4] But in 1315, before they were completed, the Scots under Sir James Douglas attacked and sacked the town.[3][6] The town recovered, with a pier being built in the late 15th century. Occupied by Scots who supported the roundheads during the English Civil War, they were replaced by English troops after 18 months.[3]

Hartlepool established gun emplacements and defences in 1795 to repel a possible French invasion. The later Crimean War revived the idea of protection from seaborne attack, and two batteries were built close together: the lighthouse battery in 1855 and the Heugh Battery in 1859.[4] The town had medicinal springs, particularly the chalybeate spa near the Westgate. Thomas Gray the famous poet ('Elegy Written in a Country Churchyard') visited in July 1765 to take the waters, and wrote to his friend Dr Wharton:

A few weeks later, he wrote in greater detail:

19th century[edit]

Hartlepool Borough Hall

By the early nineteenth century, Hartlepool was still a small town of around 900 people, with a declining port. In 1823 the council and Board of Trade decided that the town needed new industry, so the decision was made to propose a new railway to make Hartlepool a coal port, shipping out minerals from the Durham coalfield. It was in this endeavour that Isambard Kingdom Brunel visited the town in December 1831, and wrote: "A curiously isolated old fishing town – a remarkably fine race of men. Went to the top of the church tower for a view."

But the plan was faced by local competition from new docks. 25 kilometres (16 mi) to the north, the Marquis of Londonderry had approved the creation of the new Seaham Harbour (opened 31 July 1831), while to the south the Clarence Railway connected Stockton-on-Tees and Billingham to a new port at Port Clarence (opened 1833). Further south again, in 1831 the Stockton and Darlington Railway had extended into the new port of Middlesbrough.

The council agreed the formation of the Hartlepool Dock and Railway Company (HD&RCo) to extend the existing port by developing new docks, and link to both local collieries and the developing railway network in the south. In 1833, it was agreed that Christopher Tennant of Yarm establish the HD&RCo, having previously opened the Clarence Railway (CR). Tennant's plan was that the HD&RCo would fund the creation of a new railway, the Stockton and Hartlepool Railway, which would take over the loss-making CR and extended it north to the new dock, thereby linking to the Durham coalfield.

After Tennant died, in 1839, the running of the HD&RCo was taken over by Stockton-on-Tees solicitor, Ralph Ward Jackson. But Jackson became frustrated at the planning restrictions placed on the old Hartlepool dock and surrounding area for access, so bought land which was mainly sand dunes to the south-west, and established West Hartlepool. Because Jackson was so successful at shipping coal from West Hartlepool through his West Hartlepool Dock and Railway Company and, as technology developed, ships grew in size and scale, the new town would eventually dwarf the old town.

The 8 acres (0.032 km2) West Hartlepool Harbour and Dock opened on 1 June 1847. On 1 June 1852 the 14 acres (0.057 km2) Jackson Dock opened on the same day that a railway opened connecting West Hartlepool to Leeds, Manchester and Liverpool. This allowed the shipping of coal and wool products eastwards, and the shipping of fresh fish and raw fleeces westwards, enabling another growth spurt in the town. This in turn resulted in the opening of the Swainson Dock on 3 June 1856, named after Ward Jackson’s father-in-law. In 1878 the William Gray & Co shipyard in West Hartlepool achieved the distinction of launching the largest tonnage of any shipyard in the world, a feat to be repeated on a number of occasions.[7] By 1881, old Hartlepool's population had grown from 993 to 12,361, but West Hartlepool had a population of 28,000.

Ward Jackson helped to plan the layout of West Hartlepool and was responsible for the first public buildings. He was also involved in the education and the welfare of the inhabitants. In the end, he was a victim of his own ambition to promote the town: accusations of shady financial dealings, and years of legal battles, left him in near-poverty. He spent the last few years of his life in London, far away from the town he had created.

In 1891 the two towns had a combined population of 64,000. By 1900 the two Hartlepools were, together, one of the three busiest ports in England.[8]

20th century[edit]

The modern town represents a joining together of "Old Hartlepool", locally known as the "Headland", and West Hartlepool. As already mentioned, what was West Hartlepool became the larger town and both were formally unified in 1967. Today the term "West Hartlepool" is rarely heard outside the context of sport, but one of the town's Rugby Union teams still proudly retain the name (See Sports below).

The name of the town's professional football club reflected both boroughs; when it was formed in 1908, following the success of West Hartlepool in winning the FA Amateur Cup in 1905, it was called "Hartlepools United" in the hope of attracting support from both towns. When the boroughs combined in 1967 the club renamed itself "Hartlepool" before re-renaming itself Hartlepool United in the 1970s. Many fans of the club still refer to the team as "Pools".

First World War[edit]

The area became heavily industrialised with an ironworks (established 1838) and shipyards in the docks (established in the 1870s). By 1913, no fewer than 43 ship-owning companies were located in the town, with responsibility for 236 ships. This made it a key target for Germany in the First World War. One of the first German offensives against Britain was the Raid on Scarborough, Hartlepool and Whitby on the morning of 16 December 1914, when units of the Imperial German Navy bombarded Hartlepool, West Hartlepool, Whitby and Scarborough. Hartlepool was hit with a total of 1150 shells, killing 117 people.

In Hartlepool near Heugh Battery, a plaque in Redheugh Gardens War Memorial "marks the place where the first ...(German shell) struck... (and) the first soldier was killed on British soil by enemy action in the Great War 1914–1918."

Two coastal defence batteries at Hartlepool returned fire, launching 143 shells, and damaging three German ships: SMS Seydlitz, SMS Moltke and SMS Blücher. The Hartlepool engagement lasted roughly 50 minutes, and the coastal artillery defence was supported by the Royal Navy in the form of four destroyers, two light cruisers and a submarine, none of which had any significant impact on the German attackers. Private Theophilus Jones of the 18th Battalion Durham Light Infantry, who fell as a result of this bombardment, is sometimes described as the first military casualty on British soil by enemy fire.[9] This event (the death of the first soldiers on British soil) is commemorated by the 1921 Redheugh Gardens War Memorial together with a plaque unveiled on the same day (seven years and one day after the East Coast Raid) at the spot on the Headland (the memorial by Philip Bennison[10] illustrates four soldiers on one of four cartouches and the plaque, donated by a member of the public, refers to the 'first soldier' but gives no name). A living history group, the Hartlepool Military Heritage Memorial Society, portray men of that unit for educational and memorial purposes.

An attempt by the German High Command to repeat the attack a month later led to the Battle of Dogger Bank on 24 January 1915 at which the Blücher was sunk. During World War II, RAF Greatham (also known as RAF West Hartlepool) was located on the current South British Steel Works. Hartlepudlians voluntarily subscribed more money per head to the war effort than any other town in Britain.[11]

Second World War[edit]

A view of the town facing west from the viewing platform built into the Christ Church tower.

Hartlepool suffered badly in the Great Depression of the 1930s and endured high unemployment until the start of the Second World War, during which its shipbuilding and steel-making industries enjoyed a renaissance. Most of its output for the war effort were "Empire Ships". German bombers raided the town 43 times.

Post war decline[edit]

After the war, both industries went into a severe decline. Blanchland, the last ship to be constructed in Hartlepool, left the slips in 1961. In 1967 Betty James wrote how "if I had the luck to live anywhere in the North East [of England]...I would live near Hartlepool. If I had the luck".[12] There was a boost to the retail sector in 1969 when Middleton Grange Shopping Centre was opened by Princess Anne, with over 130 new shops including Marks & Spencer and Woolworths.

Before the shopping centre was opened, the old town centre was located around Lynn Street, but most of the shops and the market had moved to a new shopping centre by 1974. Most of Lynn Street had by then been demolished to make way for a new housing estate. Only the north end of the street remains, now called Lynn Street North. This is where the Hartlepool Borough Council depot was based (alongside the Focus DIY store) until it moved to the marina in August 2006. In 1977 British Steel announced the closure of its Hartlepool steelworks with the loss of 1500 jobs.[13] By the 1980s the area was affected by unemployment figures of over 30 per cent, the highest in the country.[14] 630 jobs at British Steel were lost in 1983 and a total of 10,000 jobs were lost during the Margaret Thatcher premiership.[14][15] Between 1983 and 1999 the town lacked a cinema.[8] A series of major investment projects in the 1990s revived the town centre with a new marina, rehabilitation of derelict land, the indoor conversion to modernise Middleton Grange Shopping Centre from the 1960s brutalist architecture, the Historic Quay regeneration, and the construction of much new housing.

Governance[edit]

Council[edit]

After boundary changes introduced in 2012, Hartlepool is now divided into eleven electoral wards, each of which elect three councillors who make up the 33 councillors of the Borough Council.

The eleven wards of Hartlepool Borough Council
Burn Valley De Brus Fens & Rossmere Foggy Furze
Hart Headland & Harbour Jesmond Manor House
Rural West Seaton Victoria

Members of Parliament[edit]

Hartlepool is represented in the House of Commons by one Member of Parliament. The current MP for the Hartlepool constituency is Iain Wright of the Labour Party. He was first elected in a by-election on 30 September 2004 with a much-reduced majority following an 18% swing to the Liberal Democrats. He retained the seat with a greatly increased majority in the 2005 general election, and was re-elected in the 2010 general election, which saw a substantial drop in the Liberal Democratic and smaller drop in the Labour votes, but left Wright with half-again the votes accorded the second-place (Tory) candidate.

Former members of parliament for Hartlepool since 1945 have been:

Colour key
Name Term of office Political Party Offices Held
David Thomas Jones 1945–1959 Labour
John Simon Kerans 1959–1964 Conservative
Edward Leadbitter 1964–1992 Labour
Peter Mandelson 1992–2004 Labour Secretary of State for Northern Ireland (11 October 1999 – 24 January 2001),
Secretary of State for Trade and Industry (27 July 1998 – 23 December 1998),
Minister without Portfolio (2 May 1997 – 27 July 1998)
Iain Wright 2004-incumbent Labour Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for 14–19 Reform and Apprenticeships (9 June 2009 – 11 May 2010)

Mandelson resigned to take up a role in the European Commission. On 13 October 2008 he was created Baron Mandelson of Foy and Hartlepool following his appointment as Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform in the British Government.

Emergency services[edit]

Police[edit]

Hartlepool falls within the jurisdiction of Cleveland Police. Before 1974, it was under the jurisdiction of the Durham Constabulary.

Fire department[edit]

Hartlepool is covered by the Cleveland Fire Brigade which has two stations in Hartlepool: a full-time station at Stranton and a retained station on the Headland.

Emergency medical service[edit]

Education[edit]

See also List of schools in Hartlepool.
Hartlepool has five secondary schools:[16]

The town had planned to receive funding from central government to improve school buildings and facilities as a part of the Building Schools for the Future programme, but this was cancelled because of government spending cuts.[17]

Hartlepool College of Further Education is an educational establishment located in the centre of the town, and existed in various forms for well over a century. The recently demolished campus was built in the 1960s. The new £52million custom-designed building was approved in principle July 2008, and construction was complete for September 2011.[18]

Hartlepool also has its own specialist sixth form college, Hartlepool Sixth Form College. A former grammar and comprehensive school, the college provides a number of AS and A2 Level courses for students across the town. The English Martyrs School and Sixth Form College also offers AS, A2 and other BTEC qualification to 16–18-year olds from Hartlepool and beyond.

A campus of Cleveland College of Art & Design, the only remaining specialist art and design college in the North East that teaches Higher Education, is located in Hartlepool, alongside the Art Gallery in Church Square. The College has a further site in Middlesbrough that facilitates Further Education.

Economy[edit]

Hartlepool's economy has historically been linked with the maritime industry, something which is still at the heart of local business. Hartlepool Dock is owned and run by PD Ports.[19] Engineering related jobs employ around 1700 people, with companies such as Heerema employing around 400 people.[19] Tata Steel Europe employ around 350 people in the manufacture of steel tubes, predominantly for the oil industry.[19] Within the greater docks development, Able UK are a leading maritime recycler, which in the Teesside Environmental Reclamation and Recycling Centre (TERRC), owns and operates the largest purpose-designed facility for recycling redundant marine structures.[20] TERRC dismantled 13 former US Naval Ghost fleet vessels in 2003,[21][22] and in February 2009, decommissioned the French Navy aircraft carrier Clemenceau.[21] Able UK run the largest dry dock in Europe just outside the town.[19]

Hartlepool nuclear power station is an advanced gas-cooled reactor (AGR) type nuclear power plant opened near Hartlepool in the 1980s. It is the single largest employer in the town, employing 1 per cent of the town's working age people.[19] If it is agreed to build a new plant on the site, it is forecast that 12,000 construction jobs, 5,000 operational jobs, and 1,000 manufacturing jobs would be created.[19]

The chemicals industry is important to the local economy. Companies include Huntsman Corporation, who produce titanium dioxide for use in paints, Omya, Baker Hughes and Frutarom.[19]

Tourism was worth £48 million to the town in 2009; this figure excludes the impact of the Tall Ships 2010.[23] Hartlepool's historic links to the maritime industry are centred around the Maritime Experience, and the supporting exhibits PS Wingfield Castle and HMS Trincomalee.

Camerons Brewery was founded in 1852 and currently employs around 85 people.[24] It is one of the largest breweries in the UK. Following a series of take-overs, it came under the control of the Castle Eden Brewery in 2001 who merged the two breweries, closing down the Castle Eden plant.[25] It brews a range of cask and bottled beers, most famously Strongarm, a 4% abv bitter. The brewery is heavily engaged in contract brewing such beers as Kronenbourg 1664, John Smith's and Foster's.[26]

Orchid Drinks of Hartlepool were formed in 1992 after a management buy out of the soft drinks arm of Camerons.[27] They manufactured Purdey's and Amé. Following a £67 million takeover by Britvic, the site was closed down in 2009.

Middleton Grange Shopping Centre is the main shopping location. 2800 people are employed in retail.[19] The ten major retail companies in the town are Tesco, Morrisons, Asda, B&Q, Next, Argos, Marks & Spencer, Aldi, Boots and Matalan.[19] Aside from the local sports clubs, other local entertainment venues include a VUE Cinema, Mecca Bingo and UK Super Bowl.

Companies that have moved operations to the town for the offshore wind farm include Siemens and Van Oord.[28]

Territorial Army[edit]

Situated in the New Armoury Centre, Easington Road are the following units.

Transport[edit]

Road[edit]

Hartlepool is served by two primary routes which are the A179 road and the A689 road, both linking the town to the A19 road. The A179 road is the main road to the north-west which leads to the A19 road, Durham and Tyneside. The A689 road is the main road to the south-west towards the A19 & Billingham, Stockton, Middlesbrough and York. The A178 road leads south to Seaton Carew, Graythorp, Seal Sands, Port Clarence and Middlesbrough via the Transporter bridge. The A1086 road leads north to Crimdon, Blackhall, Horden, Peterlee and Easington.

Rail[edit]

Hartlepool railway station

Hartlepool is served by Hartlepool and Seaton Carew railway stations, both of which lie on the Durham Coast Line with hourly services to Sunderland, Newcastle and Middlesbrough, which are operated by Northern Rail. A service to London from Sunderland, operated by Grand Central that uses Class 43 and Class 180 trains capable of 125 miles per hour (201 km/h) operates from the former of the two stations. The service marks the first time since the 1980s[29] that Hartlepool has had a direct rail link with London which takes around three and a half hours.[30]

Bus[edit]

Local bus services are provided around the town mainly by Stagecoach.

The Stagecoach Group operate service 36 from Hartlepool to Billingham, Stockton and Middlesbrough. Other services are provided by Arriva and Go North East from Hartlepool to Peterlee, Durham, Seaham, Hetton-le-Hole, Houghton-le-Spring and Sunderland.

Sea[edit]

Offshore supply vessels in Hartlepool docks
Former US Navy "Ghost ship" awaiting scrapping in Hartlepool

Hartlepool has been a major seaport virtually since it was founded, and has a long fishing heritage. During the industrial revolution massive new docks were created on the southern side of the channel running below the Headland, which gave rise to the town of West Hartlepool.

Now owned by PD Ports, the docks are still in use today and still capable of handling large vessels. However, a large portion of the former dockland was converted into marina, capable of berthing 500 vessels. Hartlepool Marina is home to a wide variety of pleasure and working craft, with passage to and from the sea through a lock.

Hartlepool also has a permanent RNLI lifeboat station.

Climate[edit]

Hartlepool has an oceanic climate typical of Great Britain. The Köppen Climate Classification subtype for this climate is "Cfb"(Marine West Coast Climate).[31]

Climate data for Hartlepool
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °C (°F) 6
(43)
7
(44)
9
(48)
11
(52)
14
(58)
17
(63)
20
(68)
19
(67)
17
(62)
13
(55)
9
(48)
7
(45)
12
(54)
Average low °C (°F) 1
(34)
1
(34)
2
(36)
3
(37)
6
(43)
8
(46)
11
(52)
11
(52)
9
(48)
6
(43)
3
(37)
2
(36)
6
(42)
Precipitation mm (inches) 56.1
(2.21)
38.9
(1.53)
51.1
(2.01)
52.1
(2.05)
49.5
(1.95)
54.9
(2.16)
44.4
(1.75)
61.2
(2.41)
57.4
(2.26)
56.9
(2.24)
61.5
(2.42)
59.2
(2.33)
643.1
(25.32)
Source: [32]

Sport[edit]

Football[edit]

Hartlepool United is the town's professional football club and they play at Victoria Park, Hartlepool. They won promotion to League One for the 2007–08 season. Their first season back in League One, after a brief absence, they finished 15th. In December 2008, the club parted company with manager Danny Wilson. The club's most famous day was back in 2005, just 8 minutes away from England's 2nd tier, Championship, when Chris Westwood gave away a penalty and Sheffield Wednesday pipped Hartlepool to a place in the Championship. The supporters of the club bear the nickname of Monkey Hangers. This is based upon a legend that during the Napoleonic wars a monkey which had been a ship's mascot was taken for a French spy and hanged. Hartlepool has also produced the nationally famous football presenter Jeff Stelling who has a renown partnership with Chris Kamara who was born up the road in Middlesbrough.

Rugby Union[edit]

West Hartlepool R.F.C. are more commonly known as "West" play in National League 3 North which is the 5th tier of the national league structure. In the mid-1990s, West played in what is now the Guinness Premiership. West were then hit by bankruptcy and controversially sold their Brierton Lane stadium. There then followed a succession of relegations as professional players left the club.

Hartlepool Rovers play in the Durham/Northumberland 1 division. Other clubs include, Hartlepool BBOB & Seaton Carew.

West Hartlepool TDSOB (Tech) folded last year due to a high number of players leaving, the majority of which now play for either West or Rovers.

Olympics[edit]

Boxing[edit]

In August 2012 21-year old Savannah Marshall, who attended English Martyrs School and Sixth Form College in the town of Hartlepool, competed in the Women's boxing tournament of the 2012 Olympic Games. She was defeatead 12-6 by Marina Volnova of Kazakhstan in her opening, quarter-final bout.

Swimming[edit]

In August 2012 Jemma Lowe, a British record holder who attended High Tunstall College of Science in the town of Hartlepool, competed in the 2012 Olympic Games. She finished sixth in the 200-metre butterfly final with a time of 58.06 seconds. She was also a member of the eighth-place British team in the 400m Medley relay.

Tall Ships' Races[edit]

On 28 June 2006 Hartlepool celebrated after winning its bid to host The Tall Ships' Races.[33] The town welcomed up to 125 tall ships in 2010, after being chosen by race organiser Sail Training International to be the finishing point for the race. Hartlepool greeted the ships, which sailed from Kristiansand in Norway on the second and final leg of the race.

Local media[edit]

Monkeys[edit]

Main article: Monkey hanger

Hartlepool is famous for allegedly executing a monkey during the Napoleonic Wars.[34] According to legend, fishermen from Hartlepool watched a French warship founder off the coast, and the only survivor was a monkey, which was dressed in French military uniform, presumably to amuse the officers on the ship. The fishermen assumed that this must be what Frenchmen looked like and, after a brief trial, summarily executed the monkey.

Although a popular story, it seems unlikely to be true. Historians have also pointed to the prior existence of a Scottish folk song called "And the Boddamers hung the Monkey-O". It describes how a monkey survived a shipwreck off the village of Boddam near Peterhead in Aberdeenshire. Because the villagers could only claim salvage rights if there were no survivors from the wreck, they allegedly hanged the monkey. There is also an English folk song detailing the later event called, appropriately enough, "The Hartlepool Monkey". In the English version the monkey is hanged as a French spy.

"Monkey hanger" and Chimp Choker are common terms of (semi-friendly) abuse aimed at "Poolies", often from bitter footballing rivals Darlington. The mascot of Hartlepool United F.C. is H'Angus the monkey. The man in the monkey costume, Stuart Drummond, stood for the post of mayor in 2002 as H'angus the monkey, and campaigned on a platform which included free bananas for schoolchildren. To widespread surprise, he won, becoming the first directly-elected mayor of Hartlepool, winning 7,400 votes with a 52% share of the vote and a turnout of 30%. He was re-elected by a landslide in 2005, winning 16,912 on a turnout of 51% – 10,000 votes more than his nearest rival, the Labour Party candidate.

The monkey legend is also linked with another of the town's sports clubs, Hartlepool Rovers RFC, which uses the hanging monkey as the club logo. On tours it would hang a monkey on the posts of the rugby pitch to spread the story.[citation needed]

The bone

In June 2005, a large bone was found washed ashore on Hartlepool beach by a local resident, which initially was taken as giving credence to the monkey legend. Analysis revealed the bone to be that of a red deer which had died 6,000 years ago. The bone is now in the collections of Hartlepool Museum Service.

In 2008, a novel based on the legend called The Hartlepool Monkey, written by Sean Longley, was published. The novel tells the story of the monkey, named Jacques LeSinge by the French doctor who discovers him, that was supposedly hanged. In the book, the monkey talks and possesses several other human characteristics.[35]

The Hartlepool Monkey also featured prominently in the play Bestiary, written by Jim Burke and broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 2003.[36]

In 2014, a documentary about the Hartlepool Monkey and its long lasting significance to the city and its inhabitants called "Heart of The Pools"[37] was made.

Town twinning[edit]

Hartlepool is twinned with:

People from Hartlepool[edit]

For a complete list, see Category:People from Hartlepool (district)

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ http://m.hartlepoolmail.co.uk/news/local/town-population-grows-by-2-000-1-4747481
  2. ^ Ordnance Survey plan of the 'Hartlepools'
  3. ^ a b c d e f Tim Lambert. "A brief history of Hartlepool". localhistories.org. Retrieved 8 June 2010. 
  4. ^ a b c d "Hartlepool – a brief history". History UK. Retrieved 8 June 2010. 
  5. ^ Channel 4 – Time Team
  6. ^ Fraser, W. Douglas Book vol i, p130
  7. ^ Lionel Alexander Ritchie, 'Gray, Sir William (1823–1898)’, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, 2004 accessed 2 May 2011
  8. ^ a b The Independent (London) 23 February 1992, Sunday Britain 1992 / The view from Wall Street ; British society is mired in class-consciousness, apathy and under-achievement. The future looks bleak. This is how Tony Horwitz of 'The Wall Street Journal' presented us to the world this month. It is an outsider's view, with a message that cuts across party politics p3
  9. ^ "18th Battalion, Durham Light Infantry". The Wartime Memories Project. Retrieved 28 June 2012. 
  10. ^ British Listed Buildings ('war memorial in Redheugh Gardens')
  11. ^ The Museum of Hartlepool (A brief history of Hartlepool) at Hartlepool's Maritime Experience – Maritime Museum, Quayside & Historic Warship
  12. ^ A kingdom by the sea : an exploration of Northumberland, Durham and the North Riding of Yorkshire James, Betty. p95
  13. ^ The Times 13 December 1977 p23
  14. ^ a b Hartlepool to lose 630 steel jobs (News) The Times Saturday, 15 January 1983; pg. 1; Issue 61431; col C
  15. ^ The Independent (London) 23 February 1992, Sunday Britain 1992 / The view from here: Hatchet job only half the story; Peter Mandelson, Labour's prospective parliamentary candidate for Hartlepool, defends the town's image
  16. ^ Secondary Schools – Hartlepool Borough Council
  17. ^ BSF News – Hartlepool Borough Council
  18. ^ BBC News – Hartlepool's new £52m College of Further Education
  19. ^ a b c d e f g h i http://www.investinhartlepool.com/pdfs/Hartlepool%20Economic%20Assessment%20-%20Draft%203.pdf
  20. ^ Able Ship Recycling
  21. ^ a b Ghost ship arrives in north-east BBC News, 8 February 2009
  22. ^ Council faces 'ghost ships' bill BBC News, 1 February 2007
  23. ^ Tourism worth £48M a year to town economy – Local – Hartlepool Mail
  24. ^ Camerons brewery clinches new five-year deal – Business News – News – nebusiness.co.uk
  25. ^ "Camerons Brewery Company". www.quaffale.org.uk. Retrieved 25 May 2010. 
  26. ^ High hopes of contract brewing – Local – Hartlepool Mail
  27. ^ UK: Britvic closes Orchid Drinks deal worth £67m
  28. ^ http://www.hartlepoolmail.co.uk/news/jobs-boost-for-marina-1-4606952
  29. ^ "All aboard for London rail link – VIDEO". Sunderland Echo. 5 December 2007. Retrieved 28 June 2012. 
  30. ^ "Direct rail link to London planned". Hartlepool Mail. 17 January 2005. Retrieved 28 June 2012. 
  31. ^ Climate Summary for Hartlepool, UK
  32. ^ "Average weather for Hartlepool". Weather.com. June 2011. Retrieved 21 December 2008. 
  33. ^ Call on Government to reverse hospital decision
  34. ^ How monkey murder brought British coastal towns together
  35. ^ Bakewell, Sarah (29 February 2008). "The Hartlepool Monkey, By Sean Longley". The Independent. Retrieved 28 June 2012. 
  36. ^ Daoust, Phil, "Pick of the Day" The Guardian, 8 July 2003
  37. ^ https://vimeo.com/95639129
  38. ^ "British towns twinned with French towns". Archant Community Media Ltd. Retrieved 11 July 2013. 

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