Here are the details of maps for Blackhill & Shotley Bridge:
We have published two versions of this map, showing how the area changed across the years. The maps cover the area from the centre of Shotley Bridge (extreme NW corner of map) and Benfieldside, southward to Consett Park and eastward to Medomsley Road.
Features include railway with Blackhill station, St Cuthbert's church, Benfieldside House, Cutlers' Hall, St Mary's RC church, Mechanics Institute, Cemetery, Consett Park, Olympia Picture Theatre, quarries, old coal shafts, schools, chapels, Bridge Hill, No.1 Farm, etc. The 1919 version includes a 1906 directory of Blackhill from Kelly's Directory.
The 1895 version also includes a portion of adjacent sheet 11.06, extending coverage north.
The map links up with Sheets 11.06 Shotley Bridge North to the north, 11.11 Leadgate to the east, and 11.14 Consett to the south.
Shotley Bridge became an industrial centre in the late 17th century when swordmakers from Solingen, Germany, moveed here. As this industry faded away in the 19th century, so Shotley Bridge was developed as a spa, with hopes of rivalling Harrogate. Blackhill meanwhile grew as a suburb to Consett, with its fast growing iron- and steel-works, developed, like the spa, partly by Quakers. In the 20th century Gateshead Poor Law Union established a workhouse here for 'Aged and Infirm' inmates, and in the 1920s this became a 'Colony for Mental Deficients'. With the outbreak of the 2nd World War this was taken over and expanded as a major hospital, which even had a siding to bring in war casualties.
"St Cuthbert’s church, the parish church for Shotley Bridge though it is properly known as ‘St Cuthbert’s, Benfieldside’, was designed by John Dobson and opened in 1850, when Shotley Bridge was thriving as a spa village, with hopes of expansion as a ‘Harrogate of the North’. The church, which was built on a site given by Thomas Wilson of Shotley Hall – a difficult site too, as it is on the fiendishly steep Church Walk, where benches are carved out of the walls to aid weary churchgoers – was enlarged in the 1880s by J W Walton-Wilson. Both church and vicarage, also thought to have been designed by Dobson, are Grade II listed buildings, as is the accompanying Sunday School, built 1882 by Smith & Son on a site donated by Robert Dickinson of Shotley House. Features in the church include a medallioned window in memory of Thomas Siddell, a veterinary surgeon who died in the Crimea in 1855."