A little Hurworth history:
Hurworth-on-Tees is a village in the borough of Darlington, within the ceremonial county of County Durham, England. It is situated in the civil parish of Hurworth. The village lies to the south of Darlington on the River Tees, close to its meeting point with the River Skerne, and immediately adjoins the village of Hurworth Place, which forms part of the same civil parish.
The church of All Saints is situated in the middle of the village. There may have been a church on the site as early as the 12th century. The church was extensively rebuilt in the 1830s and again in 1871.
There was a school at Hurworth before 1770, when it was refounded. Currently the village has two schools. Hurworth Primary School caters for around 250 children aged 4–11. The secondary school is called Hurworth School Maths & Computing College; it caters for around 650 students aged 11–16. There was also a small independent school, Hurworth House School, which closed in the summer of 2010.
The Hurworth Grange Community Centre is based in a manor house built in 1875 by the Backhouse family. Facilities include the large hall, meeting rooms, lounge bar, sports hall, football pitch, children's play area, 14 acres (57,000 m2) of grounds and a concrete skateboard ramp. Hurworth Grange was once visited by Rudyard Kipling; it is claimed that 'The Roman Centurion's Song' is based on a sarcophagus he saw there. The village has a number of other amenities including a fish and chip shop, village shop, pubs, a garage and a residential home.
There has been a settlement at Hurworth since at least as far back as the 12th century. The estate that Hurworth was part of has changed hands many times over the centuries.
In 1645, the Great Plague almost wiped out the village population of 750 leaving only around 75 survivors. The plague struck many other nearby villages including Birkby and South Cowton. Three dips in the village green mark the site where as many as 1,500 people were buried in massive lime pits. According to old records, bodies from other nearby villages were ferried across the River Tees for burial in Hurworth.
Perhaps the most famous person to have lived in Hurworth was William Emerson, an eminent mathematician born in Hurworth in 1701. He was educated at Newcastle upon Tyne and York and then devoted himself to mathematics. He died at Hurworth in 1782 and has a monument in the church of All Saints.
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