I was born in 1932 in Walkers Buildings “Coffee Pot” Trimdon Colliery in a condemned apartment type building.  In 1933 the family were relocated to new council houses in Trimdon Village (Cleveland Ave). Lots were drawn to determine which family got which house.  These were the depression years, my father William, a colliery cartman, did not work from 1926 until 1935.  He eventually got a job as a stoneman at Fishburn where he worked until retirement.

Having seen the hardships of the times, our mother Eveline was determined that none of her five boys would work in the pits.  She basically achieved this goal except for Jim who worked as a mechanic at Fishburn, Trimdon Grange and finally Easington Collieries, from which he retired. Four boys obtained engineering degrees from Durham University. There were also two girls in the family one qualified as a nurse and the other as a schoolteacher.

Looking at the Trimdons today, it is hard to imagine the hive of activity in these communities when the mines were working. Both Trimdon Colliery and Trimdon Grange had a good variety of shops.  Collectively the Trimdons were self-sufficient and it was not necessary to leave the community to obtain the necessities of life. Holidays were a rarity, cars almost non-existent, a treat was a trip the beaches of Hart, Hartlepool or Seaton Carew by bus or train.

Most of the descendants of this Shorthouse family are still to be found in the County Durham area. There are families in Yorkshire, Worcestershire, Cheshire, Cumberland and Surrey. Overseas; Australia, Botswana, Canada and France.

From the families of the labourers, servants, carpenters and miners, we now have a plethora of professions; teachers, doctors, chemists, engineers, nurses, retail store managers, musicians, a judge, a managing director, researchers, etc.


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