About Horden Parish Council and the Services We Offer

Horden Parish Council was formed in 1947, the village which was created around the colliery in 1900 was originally under the parish of Shotton until the creation of Peterlee as a new town.

The Parish Council bought the Social Welfare Centre and the Welfare Park from the Horden Miners Welfare Trust in 1991 in order to ensure their continuing use after the demise of the colliery.

The main aim of the Parish Council has always been to provide good quality services, particularly in recreational facilities for local people. They own, manage and maintain two parks, 4 small play areas, playing fields and sports pitches as well as a cemetery and the Social Welfare Centre.

Each of the 15 councillors who serve the Parish Council provide a point of contact to local government and can help raise and deal with issues facing the community. The Parish Council values it’s role in providing of services and facilities for local people. The council now employs more staff than ever and aims to grow and progress as a service provider in the local community.

The Social Welfare Centre, which is home to the Parish Council Offices, was refurbished in 2000. This work refurbished two impressive function rooms upstairs as well as a large meeting room, two back offices and a training room downstairs. All of the rooms are rented weekly to local clubs, organisations and members of the public. Rooms are always available for hire, for further information please contact the Social Welfare Centre Operations and Events Manager.

In 2005 Horden Parish Council transformed Horden Welfare Park, the restoration project cost a total of £1,8m. With funding from CDENT, Europen Regional Development Fund, NE Mineworkers Trust Fund, The Children’s Fund, Horden Parish Council and Sure Start. The Heritage Lottery Fund contributed 75% of the overall cost, £1.36m.

In 2005 the Welfare Park won a County Durham Environment Award, the Natural Environment Award and Craft Award. From 2006 and every year since, the park has been awarded the Green Flag Award in recognition of achieving the national standard for parks and green spaces in England and Wales and also awarded the Green Heritage Site Award in recognition of achieving the required standard in the management and interpretation of a site with local or national historic importance.

The Welfare Park now boasts an extensive Summer Activities schedule with activities and events running most days in the school summer holidays. The events continue to grow in popularity each year.

Horden Memorial Park hosts the traditional village events such as the Remembrance Sunday Parade and Christmas Tree Lighting Service each year. The Memorial Park boasts the Memorial Clock, the memorial which was built in 1953 is the villages focus for the annual Remembrance Sunday event and is one of Horden’s most prominent landmarks.

Details of what’s on in the park can be found on the Memorial Park noticeboard at the entrance of the park. In 2007 Horden Memorial Park was awarded the Green Flag Award in recognition of achieving the national standard for parks and green spaces in England and Wales, and has been awarded this every year since.

Horden Parish Council also maintain the Church Green, the area of grass at the bottom of the Memorial Park opposite St Mary’s Church. The Church Green has a number of seats, litter and dog bins, which the Parish Council own and maintain. In 2014, the Parish Council registered the Church Green as a ‘village green’ this protects the green from future development.

Many football teams continue to be allocated pitch space at Sunderland Road. Whippet racing also takes place on the fields on a Saturday morning, an activity which has a long tradition within the village. The playing fields also cater for more informal activities such as five-a-side football, permanent mini goals are provided on the field alongside a small play area for children.

In 2015 Horden Parish Council began a four-phased programme of development of the Sunderland Road Pavilion, the pavilion provides showers and changing facilities for the football teams and a communal area. Phase One was completed in 2016 upgrading the changing facilities and showers and Phase Two of installing a new pitched roof was undertaken in 2018.

In 2014 Residents formed the Cotsford Park Working Group, working in conjunction with Horden Regeneration Partnership and Horden Parish Council a funding bid for £54,000 was made to fund new play equipment in the Cotsford Park Play Area, the funding bid was successful and new equipment was installed in 2015.

Horden Parish Council also maintain the Play Area at Maritime Crescent, Grants Houses. The land belongs to Durham County Council with the mini goals and play equipment belonging to Horden Parish Council.

The allotments, situated at the end of Acacia Avenue, are on both sides of the railway bridge. The whole site is rented to the Station Road Allotment Society. Anyone who is interested in renting an allotment on this site can contact Horden Parish Council for further details.

Horden Parish Council’s Thorpe Road Cemetery was opened in 1954, the first burial taking place 18th August 1954. This cemetery replaced the old cemetery which was situated opposite the Memorial Park (A1086). Thorpe Road Cemetery was extended in 1973, 1997 and then again in 2018.

In 1995 a remembrance garden with a teddy bear sculpture was built in the north side of C section, by Easington District Council on behalf of the Supporting Mothers of Infant Loss Experiencing Sorrow, (S.M.I.L.E.S.). This Garden was built by the group in aid of parents who suffered bereavement before 1984 when stillbirth and neonatal deaths from Thorpe Maternity Unit were buried at Thorpe Road Cemetery, leaving the grieving parents no specific place to mourn their loss and unable to place flowers.

In 2000 the cemetery won the Cemetery of the Year competition for cemeteries under 10 Acres for England Scotland and Wales and in 2001 the cemetery received the runner-up award for Cemeteries of under 10 Acres for England Scotland and Wales. In 2010, 2011 and 2012 the cemetery was awarded the Green Flag.

In 2014 the Cemetery Toilet Block underwent a full renovation, the toilets are open to members of the public who visit the cemetery.

Major capital work commenced in 2018 to extend Thorpe Road Cemetery underwent major capital work to extend the burial site. A £500,000 loan was secured in 2016 through the Public Works Loan Board to finance the purchase of almost four acres of land and to develop the extension.

Memorial plaques are available for purchase for display on the Memorial Wall. If you are interested in purchasing a plaque please contact the Parks and Cemetery Manager.

The cemetery has its own Chapel of Rest, renovation to the Chapel started in 2019 and is expected to finish in 2021, the Chapel will be available for private service hire once the renovation is complete. Anyone who wishes to book the Chapel should contact the cemetery on 07770793560.

Throughout the financial year the Parish Council endeavours to help as many groups as possible in the village. For example we allow organisations free and reduced room rental in the Social Welfare Centre and give one-off donations. If you think a local project or group could benefit from a donation you can contact the Parish Council for further details.