The Hartlepool Headland History Group is coming up for its 28th birthday and it is ‘going from strength to strength’.
Honorary secretary Eileen Manners said the ‘enthusiasm for local history’ has grown ever since the formation in July 1994 when the constitution was adopted.
It all started when regeneration officer Fred Dickson, who was based in the rent office in the Borough buildings, formed the group.
Eileen said: "There were a great many residents interested in the local history and from meeting Fred, the history group was started.”
She added: “The group thought a lot of information had been lost after the amalgamation of the towns in 1967 and wanted to try to fetch the history and pride in the Old Borough of Hartlepool back to the residents."
Thirty people came to the first meeting but not only were the members keen on embracing the area’s history. They also helped to produce the group’s first book just months after the formation.
It was called Hartlepool Headland Urban Village and the first print sold out by June 1995 with a second run ordered from Atkinson Print in Church Street.
Later came a video in August 1995, and two more books.
By 2003, a quarterly magazine was produced and Eileen said: From the vision of Fred Dickson in 1994 the history group has gone from strength to strength.”
But it is not resting on its laurels.
The group holds two meetings each month. The second Tuesday of the month is a ‘drop-in’ session from 11.30am to 3.30pm, where non-members can view lots of photographs.
"There are also many books containing the history of the towns. We also have the on-line resource to access family history records along with birth, marriage and death records to enable you to find those elusive ancestors,” said Eileen.
The third Monday of the month (except August and December) is dedicated to speakers, slide shows with the occasional formal meeting. It runs from 6.45pm to 9pm.
Meetings are held in Headland Baptist Church, Baptist Street. Members can also look forward to occasional visits to places of interest in the area.
To find out more, contact Eileen by e-mail: [email protected]