Topics > Tyne and Wear > Gateshead > Kibblesworth


Kibblesworth is a village in the Borough of Gateshead approximately 2 km west of Birtley. The village grew in size after the sinking of the Colliery in 1842; the population of 219 recorded in 1841 had grown to 467 in 1851.[1]  To cater for the growing population new buildings included a Wesleyan chapel in 1868, a Primitive Methodist chapel in 1869 (later used as a candle making factory), and a colliery school in 1875 (now the village community cente). The Bowes Railway to the south of the village was built by George Stephenson for transporting coal from the areas mines. The former railway line is now part of a cycle network.

Kibblesworth, meaning Cybbel's Enclosure, is a village west of Birtley, Tyne and Wear, England. Kibblesworth was a mainly rural community until the development of the pit and brickworks and the resulting increase in population. Now, after the closure of the pit, few of the residents work in the village. Formerly in County Durham it was transferred into the newly created county of Tyne and Wear in 1974.

Churches & Chapels

Kibblesworth is in the parish of St. Andrews, Lamesley. While the area was agricultural, this was the centre of worship for the people of Kibblesworth. After the development of the mining industry, the Primitive Methodist Chapel (1869) and Wesleyan Methodist Chapel (1868), provided social as well as religious life for the village. The present chapel was built by the Wesleyan Methodists in 1913. The Primitive Methodist Chapel has now been converted into flats.

The Colliery

Although there had been coal-mining in the Kibblesworth area from medieval times, relatively few men were employed in the industry until the sinking of Robert Pit in 1842. From this date the fortunes of the village followed those of the industry with particular black spots during the strikes of 1921 and 1926 and the depression of the 1930s, high spots in the boom of the 1950s and 60s, and eventually closure of the pit in 1974.

The Bowes Railway was used for the transport of coal from Kibblesworth to the River Tyne at Jarrow. The line was started by George Stephenson in 1826 and extended to Kibblesworth when Robert Pit was sunk in 1842. The railway used three types of power - locomotives, stationary steam engines and self-acting inclines. There is now a cycletrack that runs along the former track bed.

Notable buildings and structures

The square at Spout Burn was built to house the miners of Robert Pit. It was demolished between 1965 and 1966, and replaced by old people's bungalows the following year and the Grange Estate from 1973.

Better known as 'the Barracks', Kibblesworth Old Hall was divided up into tenements. The memory survives, in the street named Barrack Terrace. The hall was demolished and replaced by the Miner's Institute in 1934. The area has recently been redeveloped for housing.

In 1855 a short test tunnel for the London Underground was built in Kibbleworth, because it had geological properties similar to London. This test tunnel was used for two years in the development of the first underground train; in 1861 it was filled in.

Kibblesworth Hall was for many years the home of the colliery manager. It was demolished in 1973.

The original Kibblesworth School was built in 1875, and closed in 1972. It has since been redeveloped using Lottery funding to house the village community centre known as the 'Millennium Centre'. The present school opened in 1972.


1842 The sinking of Robert Pit

1842-1850 The Square and Barrack Terrace built

Old Hall (Barracks) converted to tenements

1855 Metropolitan Railway dug a small tunnel to test digging skills before moving onto London.

1862 Causey Row built

1864 The Opening of Primitive Methodist Chapel

1867 The Opening of Wesleyan Methodist Chapel

1875 The Opening of school

1901 School extensions built, Coronation Terrace built

1908 The Old Plough Inn demolished

1913 The Opening of New Wesleyan Chapel

1914 The Crescent built and Grange Drift opened

1921 Miners' strike

1922 First aged miners' homes, opposite Liddle Terrace

1926 General Strike

1932 Closure of Grange Drift

1934 Barracks demolished and Miners' Welfare Institute built on site

1936 First council housing in Ashvale Avenue and Laburnum Crescent

1947 Nationalisation of the pits

1965 The Square demolished

1974 Closure of the pit

Notable people

  • Si King, TV presenter (The Hairy Bikers).
Text from Wikipedia, available under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License (accessed: 24/12/2016).
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Gateshead Lamesley Civil Parish Airey Houses, Kibblesworth Kibblesworth Academy Kibblesworth Colliery (1842 - 1974) Kibblesworth, 1848
from Geograph (geograph)
Kibblesworth Main Street

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from Geograph (geograph)
Terraced housing in Kibblesworth

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from Geograph (geograph)
The Plough Public House

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from IllustratedChronicles (flickr)
JW WIlkinson - 8th DLI - Kibblesworth Colliery (Wounded)

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from Geograph (geograph)
Kibblesworth Workmen's Club

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from Geograph (geograph)
Disused Bowes Railway

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from Geograph (geograph)
Kibblesworth Grange

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from Geograph (geograph)
Methodist Church

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from Geograph (geograph)
Housing, Kibblesworth

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Kibblesworth Grange Drift Mine
- Opened 1914 Closed: Dec 1932

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Simon Cotterill
Kibblesworth - Urban Design Framework
- Planning document from Gateshead Council - includes sections on history of Kibblesworth

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Simon Cotterill
from IllustratedChronicles (flickr)
1916-02-09 (Feb) D 06

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Jack Pratt - DLI - Kibblesworth - wounded

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