We are ending our Great North Festival Transport with our annual Old King Coal event. This community led event celebrates the regions mining heritage and culture.
Every year school and community groups are invited to display and parade their local colliery banners in our ‘mini’ miners gala.
Over the past few years many community groups have produced replica banners. As many of the original banners are to fragile to be paraded, using replicas ensures the continued use of banners at community events and most importantly Durham Miners Gala.
To accompany the visiting banners we are displaying a selection of banners from the museums own collection. There are over 100 banners housed in the museum stores, from a variety of trade unions. Over half of these banners represent lodges of the Durham Miners Association and National Union of Mineworkers.
Many of these banners are now to fragile to be regularly displayed, however, for this years Old King Coal we are bringing out a selection of these original banners.
The Lodges these represent are Chilton, Morrison, Eldon, West Auckland, Hobson, Harton and Westoe and Lambton. These banners were manufactured over a period from 1896 to 1950.
The Lambton Banner is one of the oldest in the collection, being manufactured in South Shields in 1896.
Along with miners banners, there is also a collection of banners representing the trades with a close association to the mining industry. These include Carpenters and Joiners, Agricultural Workers and Boiler Makers.