Moving story of part of village’s heritage

Dr Brendon Renwick with a brick from the Hetton Silver Band Hall which is being dismantled and planned to be built at Beamsih Open Air Museum if funds are raised. As part of the money raising efforts he is walking with the brick from Hetton L:yons Primary School to the Museum. Pictured with Brendon are pupils l-r Jamie Chappell (10), Jake Bowman (10), Toni Lithgow (9) and Carlie Fenwick (10)

Dr Brendon Renwick with a brick from the Hetton Silver Band Hall which is being dismantled and planned to be built at Beamsih Open Air Museum if funds are raised. As part of the money raising efforts he is walking with the brick from Hetton L:yons Primary School to the Museum. Pictured with Brendon are pupils l-r Jamie Chappell (10), Jake Bowman (10), Toni Lithgow (9) and Carlie Fenwick (10)

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THE first piece of a historic Wearside building was being transported to its new home in a special ceremony this weekend.

Today, the first brick from the 99-year-old Hetton Silver Band Hall was due to journey to Beamish Museum as part of its relocation to the visitor attraction.

Youngsters from Hetton Lyons Primary School have chosen the Hetton Silver Band Hall Appeal as their charity of the year.

All 450 children who attend the school are hard at work coming up with ways to raise money for the move.

Parent and musician Dr Brendon Renwick is going the extra mile by taking a brick from the band hall to Beamish Museum on foot.

Dr Renwick, dad to Ella, nine, will be met at the end of his 12-mile journey by director of Beamish, Richard Evans.

Yesterday, he walked with children from the band hall site to Hettons Lyons.

The hall has been dismantled brick by brick since it fell into disuse last year. It has now been donated to Beamish and will be rebuilt in the museum’s Pit Village once funds have been found.

After the band was founded in April 1887, a tin practice hut was built for them before the brick band hall was created in 1912.

It is hoped that the rebuild will be complete in time for the 100-year anniversary of the original construction next year.

Daniel Harrison, Hetton Lyons deputy headteacher, said: “We are proud to continue a terrific community tradition and to this year raise money for a cause which is particularly significant in our wonderful community.

“This school has given musical experience to tens of thousands of children over the years and we value our mining heritage.

“The Francis Street pit cottages at Beamish were also from Hetton so this relocation and rebuild will further strengthen the bond that exists between the museum and our town.”

The youngsters and Dr Renwick have even put together a rap song and video about the journey, which is now on YouTube.

Dr Renwick said the walk would take him “about five hours at a leisurely pace”.

As part of the celebrations, Hetton Lyons was holding its annual maypole dancing day, a tradition for the past 41 years, today at the school, from 10am.

Raffles with prizes worth hundreds of pounds were due to take place and children could meet Flash, the Beamish pit pony.

The Durham Miners’ Band are also set to perform at the event.

Those who would like to donate to the Hetton Silver Band Hall Appeal should call Lisa Wilkinson at Beamish Museum on 370 4017.

@davidallison88