Standing tall, a skeleton of our industrial heritage high in the Durham Dales, this headgear is an iconic monument to our past.
Our ancestors mined the area for centuries, so not only do our towns and villages owe their existence to mining, but so do we. It is where we are from, it is who we are.
As the last head gear in the County, it has immense importance, not just an impressive landmark but as a reminder of our history, not merely to us but to our children, grandchildren and the generations to follow.
"When a place loses its heritage, it loses its soul."
- John Grundy
Groverake's future secured!
The future of the iconic headframe on the Groverake mine at Rookhope is now safe. The threat of demolition which has hung over the last remaining headframe in County Durham for more than a year has been lifted.
The Friends of Groverake were formed to secure the future of this much loved landmark and have been working hard with interested parties to reach a positive outcome. The Friends, working with the Friends of Killhope, set up an appeal in a bid to take over the headframe and money poured in from all over the country and from as far afield as Ireland and the United States. The Friends rapidly reached the target set.
But now the landowner has agreed to take on the headframe rather than it being demolished in accordance with the original planning permission, now that the mining lease has come to an end. Margaret Manchester, chair of the Friends of Killhope, says "We are all delighted with the landowner's positive response. This is an excellent outcome for a historic structure which is dear to the hearts of local people. My father worked at the mine and I know how happy he will be at this news. We would like to say a massive "thank you" to all those members of the local community and the wider public who supported us and our appeal. Without such huge public interest we would probably have lost this vital part of our heritage for ever. All those who gave money will now receive a full refund and we wish the landowner all the best for the future of Groverake. We have offered him any help he might need in the coming months and years." Joint statement from Friends of Groverake and Friends of Killhope, agreed by GSC Grays.
Friends of Groverake are part of the Friends of Killhope - Registered Charity No: 517647