A chief executive has been appointed to lead the restoration and renewal of the historic Redhills, Durham Miners Hall.

Nick Malyan will oversee the £8 million redevelopment of the Grade II-listed hall, and its future operations as a vibrant centre for culture, heritage and education. 

The 37 year old from Durham city steps up into the newly created role after four years developing the project as the programme manager at Redhills.

Before joining the Redhills development team, Nick was a founding director of regeneration organisation Empty Shop CIC, and held cultural development roles with Durham County Council and New Writing North. His experience in the culture and heritage sectors also includes work with the Lumiere Festival, the regeneration of Hartlepool’s historic Church Street and the Lindisfarne Gospels exhibition in Durham.

Nick, who holds a masters degree in cultural regeneration, grew up in Durham city in a family with a long history of coal mining. His association with the Miners Hall began when his mother, then pregnant with him, packed food parcels in the Committee Room at Redhills.

Redhills is a beacon for working people and a symbol of our collective worth. The heritage it represents is of regional, national and international significance.

My role now is to put the Durham miners’ proud heritage of collective endeavour to work, and ensure that Redhills is once again an engine of positive change for the Durham coalfield area and beyond.”

Nick Malyan, Redhills Chief Executive

Opened in 1915 as the purpose-built headquarters of the Durham Miners Association (DMA), Redhills was funded by more than 150,000 working miners. At its heart is The Pitman’s Parliament, from where elected delegates created a pioneering social system across Durham’s communities before the advent of the national welfare state.

From Redhills, the DMA provided education, sickness and unemployment benefits, retirement homes, medical care, community centres, libraries, sports fields and more. This helped provide a platform for the people of the county and a distinct and vibrant culture flourished.

In October 2021, the DMA handed ownership of Redhills to a new charity constituted to serve as the stewards of the Miners Hall on behalf of the public.

We have selected Nick from a very competitive field with some outstanding candidates. 

He has worked tirelessly alongside our communities, partners and stakeholders to develop the Redhills project and shape our vision for the future of the Miners Hall. He also brings with him a wealth of valuable experience gained elsewhere in the heritage and culture sectors. 

Nick has a deep understanding of Redhills and its meaning for the people of Durham, and he has the skills we need. 

I have every confidence that Nick, working with the charity’s trustees and our existing team, will now deliver a vibrant and sustainable future for this very special place.”

Chris McDonald, Chair of the Redhills charity

With the support of the National Lottery Heritage Fund, Durham County Council and other funders, the Miners Hall is undergoing an extensive redevelopment programme. 

As well a complete restoration, the addition of new buildings with modern facilities will enable Redhills to improve accessibility and offer a wide-ranging programme of activities and community resources. The renewed Redhills will use cutting-edge audio-visual technology to bring to life the rich history of the DMA, the people and the communities of the Durham coalfield.

Now closed for redevelopment, the renewed Redhills is due to reopen to the public in 2023.

For updates on developments, follow @RedhillsDurham on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.