ELVIS was in the house to help pensioners celebrate 50 years of community spirit.
A special party was held in St Bede’s Church community room for residents of the Town End Farm area who have lived in the same houses for more than 50 years, to celebrate the golden jubilee of the estate being completed.
Work began on building the estate about 54 years ago and Edith Horne, 83, who moved into her home in 1961 and has lived there the longest, was presented with a framed copy of her original tenancy agreement.
As well as being entertained by an Elvis impersonator, the party-goers were treated to a cream tea, supplied by Sainsbury, and enjoyed listening to guest speakers.
Jean Bramham, secretary of the Town End Residents’ Association, who helped run the event, organised by housing provider, Gentoo, said everyone had a fantastic time.
She said: “It was absolutely brilliant. The Elvis singer was really, really good and everyone had a great time. I was aches and pains the next day from all the dancing.”
As well as the walls decked out in old photographs of the estate, representatives from Beamish Museum helped turn back time for residents by going along to the party in their costumes and taking old-fashioned artefacts with them.
Jean said: “It was lovely to look at all the old photographs of how the place used to be.”
She said although there have been many changes, the high level of community spirit among the Town End Farm residents has remained the same.
Jean said: “We have always had such a strong community spirit, it is amazing how it just keeps going.”
The pensioner said the idea for the party came from the area’s Gentoo officers, Julie Cardy and John Hollinshead, and it was a huge success, something all the residents will always remember.