Welcome to Esh Winning and The Deerness Valley

Esh Winning is a former colliery village in County Durham, in England. It is situated in the beautiful Deerness Valley about 5 miles (8 km) to the west of Durham City.

Living in Esh Winning you can find almost everything you need , such as a Post Office, Bank, Garage, Dentist, Doctors and Shops, all just a short walk away. Esh Winning is situated amidst beautiful countryside with a multitude of woodland and riverside walks, a great place to exercise your dogs!

Map of Esh Winning

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The village name of Esh Winning comes from two elements, firstly the older nearby village of Esh, which was a Saxon term for Ash, and secondly Winning, which was the Victorian term used when coal was found.

Waterhouses Colliery

closed for good in 1966 and the Esh Colliery in 1968. Opencast mining was then carried out in the hills around the village from the late 1970s to the 1990s when the land was then reclaimed and restored.

The village of Esh Winning was founded in the 1850s by the Pease family to service a new coal mine on the Esh Estate. Pease and Partners gave special attention to the drainage and sanitary conditions of their employees homes and took a great interest in the education and welfare of its workforce.

Miners Hall Esh WinningSchools were built for youngsters and a Miners’ Institute, near South Terrace, provided reading rooms and recreational activities. A memorial hall was opened in nearby Brandon Road in 1923. The hall was built to commemorate the miners who lost their lives in the Great War.

Built in an Edwardian style with several large rooms, it had its own cinema, concert hall, library and even a swimming pool. The hall experienced financial difficulties during the economic depression of the late 1920s but it continued to operate as a cinema and ballroom for many years.

Very few of the terraced houses built by the Peases in Esh Winning and Waterhouses remain today. Most of Waterhouses lay in what is now woodland, North of the Deerness Railway. Today the railway itself is no more, but the land now forms part of The Deerness Valley Walk, providing a lovely place to walk, cycle or ride your horse along the many miles of adjoining woodland paths and streams.

Ragpath Woods

Ragpath woods Esh WinningPurchased by the Woodland Trust in 1996. The wood is to the south-east of the village bordering the Deerness Valley Walkway. The wood is on the site of an Ancient Woodland and was planted in the Fifties with larch, Scots pine, spruce, sycamore and beech, though a scattering of oak and birch still survives there.

Deerness Valley Railway

Opened on 1 November 1877 and was then closed to passengers on 29 October 1951 and freight on 28 December 1964, passed through these woods on its way to the small Railway Station at Esh Winning.

Though situated in Esh Winning, this was Waterhouse’s passenger station, not to be confused with the smaller goods station that existed at Waterhouses itself.

Esh Winning Football ClubThe village also has their own football team, Esh Winning Football Club who currently play in the Northern League Division One. Their ground is in West Terrace in nearby Waterhouses. Sir Bobby Robson, former manager of the England national football team grew up in the neighbouring village of Langley Park and was educated for a time in Esh Winning. A local park has been named in Sir Bobbies honour.

There’s also a Cricket Team in Esh Winning who play within the Durham County League.

The EWE Centre (Esh Winning Eco-Learning Centre) is a training facility for the North East, based within Esh Winning Primary School. Designed and developed with global ecological and sustainable principles at its heart. The EWE Centre specializes in the delivery of training for education for sustainable development, global education and outdoor learning.

The Centre is part of the Outdoor and Sustainability Education Service (OASES) which is a partnership between Durham County Council Groundwork and One World Network North East

If you have any pictures of Esh Winning or of the surrounding Deerness Valley area, old or new, local information or stories, news, events or results, then please consider forwarding them to myself for inclusion on our Esh Winning website for others to see and read about. We also have a forum which is open to everyone for general discussion about anything that’s happening or happened in Esh Winning or the surrounding area.

Maybe you previously lived in the village and have fond memories or stories to tell? Well now there is a place where you can share your memories with other like minded people.

Wikipedia article Esh Winning (contributors) licensed under CC-BY-SA