View of Ponteland
Ponteland shown within Northumberland
|Population||10,921 (Parish) (2011)|
|OS grid reference|
|Sovereign state||United Kingdom|
|Post town||NEWCASTLE UPON TYNE|
|EU Parliament||North East England|
Ponteland // is a village in Northumberland, near Newcastle upon Tyne, England. The name means island in the Pont (the river that flows through the village), as the area previously consisted of a small piece of solid ground around St. Mary's church and the old bridge, surrounded by marshland. The marshland is now drained, with housing built on top of it. The Pont joins the Blyth river further downstream. The old village has been greatly enlarged by the development of the residential area of Darras Hall. It is home to many of the region's footballers and CEOs and is part of the North East's only safe Conservative parliamentary seat.
Ponteland is notable for a ruined pele tower, its bridge, and its four churches: St Mary's (Church of England), St Matthew's (Roman Catholic), Ponteland Methodist Church and Ponteland United Reformed Church. St Mary's churchyard includes the Grade II listed 18th-century tombstones of Matthew Forster and William Turnbull.
Ponteland previously boasted a small castle or tower house, which was largely destroyed by the Scottish army under the Earl of Douglas, the day before the 1388 Battle of Otterburn. The remains were incorporated into the building now occupied by the Blackbird Inn, which is rumoured to contain an old tunnel connecting it to St Mary's church across the road. The tunnel was supposedly bricked up behind the fireplace in The Tunnel Room.
Ponteland was once served by a branch line of the North Eastern Railway (later part of the LNER) from Newcastle upon Tyne, with a short spur to Darras Hall, but the line was an early casualty, losing its passenger services in 1929 after passenger numbers failed to meet expectations. There were initially plans to electrify the line, but they were abandoned in 1907. However, a substantial part of the branch has since been resurrected as part of the Tyne and Wear Metro system to serve Newcastle Airport.
- Ponteland United – the local football club.
- Ponteland Cricket Club – the local cricket club
- Ponteland RFC – the local Rugby Union club.
The affluent housing estate of Darras Hall is a popular choice for many of the Northeast's wealthy residents and many people associated with Newcastle United Football Club live on the estate including Alan Shearer, Peter Beardsley, Steven Taylor, George Hall and Terry McDermott.
In December 2005, the estate was the focus of considerable media attention when a convicted rapist moved to the estate after purchasing a house with his National Lottery winnings. For months after purchasing his house, he was bombarded with threats and constant media exposure.
One of the oldest houses, or farms at the time, in the Darras Hall area is Little Callerton House. The Old Mill, the house where Alan Shearer used to live, and various other dwellings in the area belonged to Little Callerton House, which is approximately 450 years old.
Ponteland has three functional public houses: the Seven Stars, the Blackbird and the Diamond Inn. Two major supermarket chains have stores in the village. Several banks also operate on Main Street. The Northumbria Police force headquarters is just to the north of Ponteland.
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