The Boldons

Coordinates: 54°56′42″N 1°26′28″W / 54.945°N 1.441°W / 54.945; -1.441
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The Boldons
Parts of Boldon Parish Church date from AD 920
The Boldons is located in Tyne and Wear
The Boldons
The Boldons
Location within Tyne and Wear
Population13,271 (2001)
OS grid referenceNZ361615
Metropolitan borough
Metropolitan county
Sovereign stateUnited Kingdom
Postcode districtNE35
Postcode districtNE36
Dialling code0191
FireTyne and Wear
AmbulanceNorth East
UK Parliament
List of places
Tyne and Wear
54°56′42″N 1°26′28″W / 54.945°N 1.441°W / 54.945; -1.441

The Boldons is an area made up of the three villages of East Boldon, West Boldon and Boldon Colliery in South Tyneside in the county of Tyne and Wear, England. In 2001 they had a population of 13,271.[1]

Lying within the historic boundaries of County Durham, the villages are first recorded in print in 1170. Their names evolved from the words "Bold" or "Botl", meaning a building, and "dun", meaning a type of hillfort.[citation needed]

In 1866, work began sinking a pit that began producing coal in 1869, and was then known as Boldon New Winning. The village that developed nearby in the 1870s became known as Boldon Colliery. When the mine was deepened and extended in the 1910s, further housing to accommodate the workforce was built to the south of the pit in an area known as Boldon New Town.

Until 1974 the area was administered as an urban district of County Durham, but since then has been part of the borough of South Tyneside.

In 1976, the Boldon Colliery Band appeared in episode 13 of the television series When the Boat Comes In. The mine closed in 1982 but more jobs became available when an Asda supermarket opened in 1987. Recent developments include Boldon Business Park. Boldon Colliery also has its own multi-screen cinema operated by Cineworld. The main secondary school in the area is Boldon School, a specialist sports college.


East Boldon and Cleadon was previously the only ward in South Tyneside to elect three Conservative councillors. However, in the 2011 local elections, Labour candidate Joan Atkinson unseated the sitting Conservative councillor, reducing the number of Conservatives on South Tyneside Council to one. Boldon Colliery usually elects three Labour councillors. As of March 2021, these two wards have five Labour councillors and one Independent Conservative.[2]

The Boldons are within the Jarrow constituency, which also includes Jarrow, Hebburn and parts of east Gateshead. The local MP is Kate Osborne of the Labour Party, who succeeded the previous Labour incumbent.

In the earlier part of the 20th century, a famous son of the community was the Labour politician Jack Lawson. He represented Chester-le-Street in County Durham as an MP and was later elevated to the House of Lords.

Housing and environment[edit]

The Boldons form part of the suburban fringe of South Tyneside and are completely surrounded by green belt.

There are conservation areas within the historic village centres of East and West Boldon. East Boldon is considered the more affluent sought after area of the Boldons. With a reputation competing with nearby Cleadon, East Boldon attracts a young professional family market and residents to this day have created a very much desired family, village environment. The three schools are very much sought after, they provide nursery, infants (East Boldon Infant School) and juniors (East Boldon Junior School), who work together via the PTA. The village has its own community Facebook page and the Friends of East Boldon Parks hold annual community events such as party in the park and Halloween trails etc. The East Boldon Scouts is one of the largest in the UK with over 200 attendees. House prices are higher than national average due to gentrification.

Despite the relatively small geographical area, there are a significant number of older buildings considered as being of architectural merit including churches, public houses and former country houses, as well as modern additions. St. Nicholas' Church in West Boldon is a Grade I listed building; much of the stonework dates from the thirteenth century, but the foundation of the building dates from the Saxon period.[3]

The area includes a wide range of housing styles, from Edwardian villas to Victorian terraces, post-war housing to more recent smaller-scale developments. The first street built in Boldon Colliery was Cross Row (also known as Sinkers Row) which was constructed to house the men who were initially employed to sink the shaft. Several years later, other major housing projects were started and terraced housing such as that at Arnold Street and Charles Street were built.

After the colliery was closed, the former industrial land lay derelict for many years. In 2000, Colliery Wood was created with over 2,500 trees planted. The wood is popular with the local community and provides a habitat for animals such as pheasants, squirrels, woodpeckers and otters. Colliery Wood provides six new paths, which are also suitable for cycling and link to East Boldon, and Brockley Whins and Whiteleas in nearby South Shields.

Boldon Flats is another site important for nature conservation, which contains an area of damp pasture. The flats are flooded from each October to March, attracting a wide array of bird life and a large population of common frogs.

West Boldon Lodge, constructed by the National Grid, is situated amongst a range of habitats, including wetland, grassland and woodland. Locally rare orchids are present at one site.[4]

The River Don traverses Boldon and is the last stronghold of water voles in South Tyneside.


East Boldon metro station

Brockley Whins and East Boldon are neighbouring stops on the Tyne and Wear Metro system. The Green line serves stations between South Hylton, Sunderland, Gateshead, Newcastle Central and Newcastle Airport.[5]

The nearest National Rail stations are at Heworth and Sunderland, which are stops on the Durham Coast Line between Newcastle, Hartlepool and Middlesbrough; services are operated by Northern Trains.[6]

Bus services are provided predominantly by Stagecoach North East; routes link the area to South Shields, Cleadon, Heworth, Gateshead and Newcastle.[7]


Boldon has produced many notable sports personalities, among them former Newcastle United footballer Wes Saunders. Charlton Athletic goalkeeper Sam Bartram, their record appearance holder, who played 800 games for the London club, was signed from Boldon Villa in September 1934 and played in four successive Wembley cup finals from 1944 to 1947. Full back Jack Shreeve moved from the Villa to Charlton in 1935 and was a colleague of Bartram's in their 1947 FA Cup winning team. A Sam Bartram Memorial Cup competition was introduced at Boldon in February 2008 aimed at inspiring current footballing youngsters in the Boldon area. Other notable sportsmen from Boldon are cricketers Simon Brown and current England rugby youth player Robert Bell, Darlington striker Shaun Reay and Spennymoor Town midfielder Jamie Chandler.[8]

There are private tennis and golf clubs at Dipe Lane as well as other pursuits on offer within local schools, community centres and parks.

The Jarrow Roofing Boldon Community Association F.C. was founded in 1987 and played at The Boldon C.A. Sports Ground.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Office for National Statistics : Census 2001 : Urban Areas : Table KS01 : Usual Resident Population Retrieved 2009-08-26
  2. ^ "List of councillors by ward - South Tyneside Council". Retrieved 4 March 2021.
  3. ^ Church website
  4. ^ "West Boldon Lodge". Archived from the original on 17 October 2012.
  5. ^ "Timetables and stations". Nexus. 2023. Retrieved 7 November 2023.
  6. ^ "Timetables and engineering information for travel with Northern". Northern Railway. May 2023. Retrieved 7 November 2023.
  7. ^ "Boldon Bus Services". Bus Times. 2023. Retrieved 7 November 2023.
  8. ^ "Ex-Black Cat relishing facing boyhood heroes Newcastle clash". South Shields Gazette. 11 July 2011. Retrieved 11 July 2011. Chandler, from Boldon, was a Toon fan as a youngster, and the former Sunderland man admits he is excited about the prospect of lining up against his boyhood idols at the Northern Echo Arena.

External links[edit]