Historic Washington blacksmith's sign uncovered - volunteers discover hidden 65-year-old piece of history and restore it to its former glory

Volunteers have unearthed a piece of history and restored it to its former glory outside.

Sunday, 28th March 2021, 11:38 am
The sign which was discovered outside The Forge has been restored and placed back outside the site

Volunteers of the Washington Village in Bloom group were helping remove ivy from around The Forge restaurant building when they discovered a 65-year-old sign for a former blacksmith’s which stood on the forge site in 1957.

The sign has been hidden in the ivy for years, but now with the help of volunteers and local business Washington Metal Company, it has been fully restored and placed back outside The Forge.

The Forge is a 400-year-old Grade II-listed building steeped in history and residents believe the sign was put up by the owner of the blacksmiths to commemorate his business after it closed down in 1957.

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The Forge, Washington

Joan Atkinson, chairwoman of Washington Village in Bloom, said members were thrilled to make the discovery and see the restoration project come to fruition.

She said: “It’s absolutely important to preserve history like this. The forge is a 400-year-old building and this just adds to it. Washington Village is full of fascinating history.”

After discovering the sign, Washington Metal Company was able to clean it up, repaint it and give it to the owners of the forge who put it up for customers to see when they return.

In 2019, Washington Village in Bloom were awarded gold in the Northumbria in Bloom competition and this year will be looking to defend the title after 2020’s competition was cancelled.