The last pit in the Durham coalfield closed in 1994. Yet, phenomenally, the powerful culture of mining lives on.

The Future We Build

Redhills and its glorious council chamber (The Pitman’s Parliament) attracts more and more users every year.

It is used as an important educational resource for schools; brass band performances, jazz and traditional music shows; lectures and meetings.

Schoolchildren visit regularly to hear how the union men shaped their county. Volunteers are proud to relay that rich history to generations who have barely seen a piece of coal.

But Redhills could provide even more for its community. That’s why we are asking the communities who currently use the building, and potential new user groups, to tell us what their future vision for the building might look like.

Click to learn about our community consultation work >>

Throughout the winter of 2017 user groups, including performers, banner makers, teachers and artists, were asked how they see the future of Redhills.

  • They said Redhills would fulfil a much-needed role as a centre for education, practice and performance.
  • The city of Durham and its surrounds has a paucity of such facilities.
  • Redhills could be the heart of traditional and progressive cultural renaissance for the county.


The people who use Redhills now and those that will use it in the future want it to be a place where things are done.


  • A place where children are understand their heritage
    A place where musicians can practice and perform.
  • A place where groups can meet and repair banners, quilts and traditional mats.
  • A place where poets and playwrights can showcase their work.
  • A place where the traditions and culture of County Durham can be nurtured, developed and preserved.