Nunthorpe WW1 War Memorial refurbishing


Nunthorpe has two War memorials, the World War 1 memorial is next to Stokesly Road and the World War II memorial is within the Lych Gate leading towards St Marys Church.

The World War 1 memorial is within a small garden area. This garden has been looked after by Nunthorpe Parish Council for a number of years, primarily maintained by the Harrison family, John and Pauline, who tidied up the garden on a regular basis and replanted when considered necessary.

The World War 1 memorial was originally built in 1921 at a cost of £286.16s.3p. The cost was covered by public subscription plus an unnamed donor. Sir Arthur donated the land on which the memorial was built. A metal plaque was mounted on the memorial with sixteen names of the fallen.


Purpose of refurbishing

To emphasise with increased visibility the presence of the stone memorial cross in an improved and simple landscape setting.on behalf of the Nunthorpe community.

Background to refurbishment

In 2014 a housing developer purchased the land surrounding the memorial, this land was originally the allotment gardens belonging to the St Marys Parochial Church Council with the War Memorial plot owned by the Diosece of York.

When the housing proposal plans were first produced the developer made an undertaking to the Parish Council to retain the visual aspect of the memorial area as seen from the Stokesley Road. This aspect was considered part of the heritage setting of the War Memorial along with the Grade II listed Vicarage and the Locally Listed Old School House façade located in the background.

The Parish Council considered the retention of this setting was absolutely vital as part of Nunthorpe’s heritage, much appreciated by the community and also by those who passed along Stokesley Road viewing an essential part of Nunthorpe’s history.


Following approval of the housing development Middlesbrough Council planners insisted in 2015 that the new houses be protected from road noise and instructed the developer to erect a 2 metre close boarded wooden fence along the housing boundary facing Stokesley Road, albeit with a small gap in front of the war memorial.

Not only did this fence impact on the visual presence of the memorial, it also took away the valuable heritage setting of the memorial also the previous composite view of the Grade II Vicarage and the Locally Listed School House. This blight on an important view was vigorously fought by the Parish Council but with no success.

The construction of the fence has been regretted by the Nunthorpe community and the Parish Council had begun to look into ways in which to mitigate the negative impact on this valuable Nunthorpe asset.


By coincidence, in early 2017, two Parish Councillors and a resident attended a Civic Voice training workshop in the Dorman Museum on recording the condition of War Memorials. Attending this workshop inspired the attendees to cast a newly trained eye on the two Nunthorpe War Memorials.

When recording the condition of both Nunthorpe memorials it was discovered only the World War II memorial had a Historic England Grade II listing, the World War 1 memorial had received no listing status at all. It was presumed by proceeding with the English Heritage listing process there may be some way to persuade Middlesbrough Council to consider alternative methods in reducing road noise affecting the new dwellings.

The listing process commenced in March 2017 and succeeded in obtaining a Grade II status in September 2017. Unfortunately the listing had no influence on Middlesbrough Council. The next step was to investigate the improvement of the now sadly diminished setting of the memorial on Stokesley Road.

The refurbishing project.

When conducting the condition survey it was found some work was required to restore some of the almost one hundred years old lime mortaring on the memorial itself. At the same time it was decided the flagstone path leading to the memorial also needed restoring with some of the flags needing reset and re-mortared to avoid a tripping hazard. It was also considered the garden area would benefit from a complete renewal with new low level planting more in keeping with a required open view of the memorial from Stokesley Road. Nunthorpe Parish Council agreed to fund the refurbishing project.

Initial agreement to proceed with the project was given by the St Marys Parochial Church Council and Middlesbrough Council.

An expert masonry restorer Mr. Nigel Copsey of the ‘Earth Stone and Lime Company’ was engaged to carry out the work on the stone memorial and a local Nunthorpe landscaper, Mr Anthony Wadsworth (A. Wadsworth Landscape Ltd) was engaged to complete the landscaping works.

Further planting of yew hedging was considered along the frontage of the wooden fence to break up the austere visual aspect on either side of the War Memorial gap, as well planting twelve White birch trees in the greenspace between the fence and Stokesley Road. Unfortunately, Middlesbrough Council then introduced aconsiderable amount of bureaucracy and potential extra cost in proceeding with this part of the proposal which was eventually abandoned.

The below photograph shows the present status of the War Memorial area in January 2019, providing a new raised decorative gravel bed to replace the older gravel with a new under-gravel membrane to inhibit unwanted weed growth. There was some planting of small yew and conifer bushes within the gravel bed. The landscaper will be planting further yew shrubs to both sides of the pathway where it meets the grassed area.

January 2019

When eventually completed it is considered the opening out of the vista towards the memorial from Stokesley Road and the sensitive planting will at least mitigate some of the visual impairment caused by the wooden fence. However, it is rather sad the previous composite view of all three significant listed structures - the memorial, the Vicarage and the Old School façade - has gone forever.
The landscaping scheme has been simplified to reduce future maintenance involving a yearly trimming of the shrubs to retain a non-intrusive view of the stone memorial. There will also be an annual collection of fallen leaves and generally tidying up of the memorial area.

Nunthorpe Parish Council has contributed £ 3,915 towards the refurbishing costs.

The Nunthorpe Institute, what is its future?

posted 25 Apr 2018, 07:10 by My Nunthorpe   [ updated 27 Aug 2019, 04:20 ]

Below is an article placed on the Nunthorpe News highlighting the plight of The Nunthorpe Institute after being evicted from the Dorman Suite -

The Nunthorpe Institute

The Nunthorpe Institute has been a wonderful community resource for a number of years. The Institute was originally a large First World War Army hut located in Stewarts Park and then bought in 1920 with Nunthorpe community funding. The hut was located in Connaught Road. It was originally used by the men as a billiard hall and to play chess, with the women holding their W.I. meetings. Village residents over the following years regarded The Institute as their very own social centre.

It was a wooden building with a pitch felt roof, having one very large room with a large stage, a smaller room at the side and two more rooms at the back. There were entrances at the front and the back. Unfortunately, because of its wooden construction, it suffered from a number of fires with the terminal event in 1997 when it burned down to the ground.

A very active Management Committee then took on the task of finding a new location that could offer similar facilities but in a more modern manner. With the assistance of Middlesbrough Council a suitable location was found in The Avenue Primary School. With insurance money from the fire an investment was made to improve and modernise the school’s facilities. The Institute had access to three locations within the school – the Dorman Suite, the Brunton Suite and the main hall. Unfortunately, these rooms could only be accessed after school hours. The Institute continued to prosper with a large number of user groups enjoying the facilities in the evenings.

In 2018 The Avenue School was transferred from the Local Authority to the James Cook Learning Trust, becoming an academy. Because of the anticipated increase in pupil numbers the academy announced that it required exclusive access to the Dorman Suite from July 2019 for school use. With only two remaining activity areas this has impacted on the ability of The Institute to offer the same level of use to the user groups and is presently jeopardising its continuing viability.

With the support of the Parish Council, the Community Council and the Ward Councillors a number of residents have now set up a steering group to investigate an alternative location for The Institute. This could be the use of existing buildings in Nunthorpe that could offer their facilities to the user groups or even a new purpose-built community centre. We are not sure how much longer The Institute can survive with its now limited facilities, therefore the steering group feels the situation should be addressed as soon as possible.

A survey/questionnaire has been delivered to every home in Nunthorpe (Middlesbrough Council side). It is to be hoped residents will contribute their thoughts and return it to the steering group for analysis. If there is a positive response to pursue a replacement facility this can be enthusiastically taken up by the steering group for further action.

We will keep the community advised on our progress.

Bob Mullen

on behalf of the steering group.

Nunthorpe Community Council gets a new lease of life

posted 14 Mar 2018, 10:54 by My Nunthorpe   [ updated 14 Mar 2018, 10:56 ]

Following the recent AGM the Nunthorpe Community Council has come under new ownership. The new Chairman is Coucillor Jon Rathmel.

At last evening's meeting (13 March 2018) the Chairman advised a new Execitive Member structure is to be put in place. The following posts are to be filled with enthusiastic Nunthorpe residents who really care about their community.Names and contact details of the committee members will be advised as soon as posible, they will always be availble to assist residents where and when needed. The new posts are:-
Chair who will coordinate the Community Council activities and represent Nunthorpe to other organisations including Middlesbrough Council, Cleveland Police and others.

Vice Chair will work with the Chair to review and strengthen the Community Council constitution

Secretary will keep minutes, book meeting rooms and send out correspondence on behalf of the community council;

Treasurer will provide a financial report at each meeting and circulate to members any grant requests. They will also draft a new grant application form and protocol

Executive Officer for Highways & Infrastructure - they will deal with everything from potholes, resurfacing and schemes such as Dixon’s Bank.

Executive Officer for Parks and Green Spaces - they will be responsible for dealing with issues relating to Nunthorpe’s Green Spaces and playgrounds.

Executive Officer for Environment - they will deal with waste collection issues, new bin requests etc.

Executive Officer for Planning - they will deal with any planning objections and weekly planning lists reporting on any for Nunthorpe and if they require an objection.

Executive Officer for Grants - they will search and apply for community grants while identifying projects that we can develop and receive grant funding for.

Executive Officer for Schools - they will liaise with local schools and offer support for community based projects.

The public Community Council meetings will be every two months as usual. Residents will be advised of the meetings by a leaflet drop carried out with the help of enthusiastic leafletting volunteers.

War Memorial fence, update and disappointment

posted 14 Mar 2018, 10:38 by My Nunthorpe


Unfortunately the latest update is still WYSIWYG (What You See Is What You Get!), the horrid fence is to remain..

To the disappointment of many residents and visitors to Nunthorpe  Middlesbrough Council have come back to me with the below e-mail stating they apparently don't have the powers to rescind a previous planning condition. The only positive outcome I can see is that the fence wasn't made of plastic, at least wood eventually rots away, so there is achance your grandchildren and perhaps your great grandchildren may have the opportunity to see the view of the heritage structures that you and I have enjoyed before the fence was erected.
My apologies to all my supporters for the failure in having the fence replaced with a more favourable mitigation.

 Pearman <>
Wed 28/02/2018, 15:07
Bob Mullen;
Joanne Lloyd;
Heather Nelson;

Dear Bob


Further to your correspondence regarding the above.  I apologise for the delay in responding.  Following your comments I have familiarised myself with the relevant applications and the site. 


As you are aware the development was approved in January 2015 with a condition requiring a noise assessment to be carried out to determine whether any mitigation was necessary to reduce noise from road traffic to the approved properties.


The Local Planning Authority have sought to find a balance between the need for some form of development to prevent the heritage assets at the site from falling into further decline resulting in the possible loss of those assets, and minimising the impact of those developments on the heritage assets we sought to protect.  This was reflected in the limited scale of the houses and the use of high quality materials as detailed in the Committee report which was considered by members.


Following the approval an application to discharge the requirements of the condition was submitted in June 2015.  The submitted noise assessment was carried out by an appropriately qualified person and was assessed by the Council’s Environmental Health service.  The assessment determined that mitigation was necessary and proposed a close boarded timber fence.  Environmental Health confirmed that the assessment met their requirements and the proposed mitigation was suitable from their perspective.


Given that the fence is required for noise mitigation purposes the LPA must determine on balance, whether or not the fence is acceptable from a planning and conservation perspective.  The impact of the fence on the heritage assets at the site (the grade II listed vicarage, and the locally listed school) was considered at the time of the discharge of condition application.  The memorial itself was not listed but it was still considered as part of the setting of the listed building.


From a planning and heritage perspective the close boarded timber fence forms a residential boundary and has a domestic appearance which is typical for residential areas, including those within conservation areas.  The height of the fence decreases as it approaches the memorial which softens its appearance and retains an open view of the memorial whilst still providing the necessary noise mitigation to the properties.  It was considered that on balance, the fence does not result in a significant detrimental impact on the setting of the listed and locally listed buildings and the memorial.  The condition was subsequently discharged in July 2015.


As you have previously been advised the LPA cannot rescind the planning approval or require the developer to remove the fence as it has been carried out in accordance with the approved details.  I note that the war memorial itself has recently been listed however this does not alter our ability to rescind an approval. 


The residential properties also benefit from Permitted Development rights which allow them to erect boundary treatments to a certain height without consent.  If the LPA had powers to rescind a decision in this instance it would not be considered to be reasonable to require the removal of the fence when the residents could erect a similar fence under permitted development rights at any time.


I appreciate that this response will not be too your liking and can understand your frustration with the process but I am afraid the LPA cannot take any further action in this matter.  I would recommend that you contact the developer directly or individual home owners if you wish to pursue the removal of the fence further.




Shelly Pearman

Principal Planning Officer

Oh no! Not again!!!!

posted 1 Jan 2018, 04:39 by My Nunthorpe

As Brenda from Bristol said when told of another election - "Oh no! Not again"

Unfortunately, we in Nunthorpe may be saying the same thing when/if the Government allows an increase in the cap on Council Tax.

Previously, local authorities could only put council tax up by 2% thanks to a Government cap, any further increase had to go to a referendum vote  across the Borough . Although not yet confirmed, as of March 2018, councils could raise bills by up to 5.99% without holding a vote - making it the biggest hike for 14 years.

A summary of the upcoming Middlesbrough Council Local Plan 2018

posted 28 Oct 2017, 11:13 by My Nunthorpe   [ updated 2 Nov 2017, 09:54 ]

Definitely more like moving backward!!!!

The proposed Middlesbrough Local Plan 2018

by Bob Mullen - my summary of the situation

With the radical change in Central Government planning policies in 2012 a new Middlesbrough Local Plan was required to replace the earlier 2009 Local Development Framework (LDF). This Local Plan was adopted in 2014 and included a Core Strategy and a Council Housing Strategy to cover a 15 year period from 2012 through to 2029.

 Under the central Government regulations a Local Plan also has to be reviewed annually. This is undertaken via an Annual Monitoring Report (AMR).  The AMR is then used to consider any need to review the current Local Plan, both specifically and generally, to ensure the Plan is responsive to changing circumstances. The three criteria that may lead to an amendment are:-

  • Policies not being implemented
  • Policies not achieving the desired outcomes
  • Policies no longer consistent with national planning policy

Following changing circumstances since 2014 the Council considered that a complete renewal of the Local Plan was required (it is likely some of the suggested housing sites may not actually be available to meet their projected housing requirement). The new Local Plan will incorporate a considerable change of existing Council policies by entirely replacing the Core Strategy, the 2014 Housing Local Plan and associated Regeneration Plan documents.

 The 2014 Housing Plan called for 6,970 houses to be built across Middlesbrough over the 2012-2029 period.  In Nunthorpe this included Grey Towers Village – 295 houses, south of Guisborough Road – 250 houses, Ford Close Riding Centre – 50 houses. It is possible the actual number of houses required until 2029 (6,970 houses) may not change but it is likely a number of the original preferred locations could have been dropped since 2014 for various reasons.

 To address the AMR’s findings Middlesbrough Council has launched a new “Local Plan 2018”. Their first step in publicising the proposed Plan was to introduce two consultations:-

In December 2016 the “Local Plan 2018 Issues Report” was released to the residents of Middlesbrough for public consultation. Also in December 2016 a second consultation was released to interested landowners in Middlesbrough who may be willing to offer their land for housing development. The results of this consultation will form the “Housing Land Availability Assessment” (HLAA) in which the Council will evaluate the suitability of offered land for housing development.

 The next consultation step by Middlesbrough Council will be the “Local Plan 2018 Options Report” consultation when we will discover if the housing numbers have changed upwards or downwards and which areas of land the Council prefer for their proposed housing development. We are advised this will be a 6 week consultation commencing at some time in November 2017.

I suspect areas in Nunthorpe now potentially under further threat include those sites looked at in the original recommendations as feasible in the 2011 SHLAA but not included in the 2014 Housing Strategy section of the Local Plan.

Poole Hospital Office site – 16 houses (brought forward and already built)

Lady Harrisons Field – 60 houses

South of Guisborough Road – 2011 SHLAA figure 321 houses, of which 250 houses were accepted in the 2014 Housing Strategy – balance left is 71 houses (NB part of this land includes the Nunthorpe Park recreation area)

Nunthorpe Grange Farm – 184 houses

Field House – No 2011 SHLAA estimate was provided but likely to be 50 houses (NB part of this land includes the Nunthorpe Wetland Park)

Other areas possibly under threat but not identified in 2014  are:-

Nunthorpe Hall Farm paddock – estimated 25 houses

Land west and north of Nunthorpe Village, recently obtained by directors of Grey Towers Park (Poole) – estimated 50 to 100 houses.

Nunthorpe always has been a target for housing, some of us are happy to be here as we all paid a premium to live in this green leafy suburb. Unfortunately, the Council's housing plans will have the unfortunate effect of making Nunthorpe just part of a conurbation no different from anywhere else.

Middlesbrough Council road widening proposal for Dixons Bank

posted 18 Oct 2017, 01:33 by My Nunthorpe   [ updated 21 Oct 2017, 01:03 ]

In a typical knee jerk reaction to problems on the Marton Crawl voiced by our MP, Simon Ckarke, Middlesbrough Council have produced a road widening proposal on Dixons Bank which is meant to improve peak hour traffic delays occurring on the Marton Crawl. Oddly, a consultation request on the proposal was sent to Marton West but no such request for consultation was offered to Nunthorpe.

The proposal is to gouge out a fair amount of green space and a number of trees on the Egton Avenue area of Dixons bank to provide extra northbound lanes. Contact Nunthorpe Parish Council or your Ward Councillor for further details.

Please find below my own objections to the proposal. Nunthorpe Parish Council is to contact the Council highways planning department to request a meeting for Nunthorpe residents to discuss the proposal.

  • With a major road widening works proposed to take place within the Nunthorpe Ward no consultation has been offered by Middlesbrough Council to Nunthorpe residents, their Ward Councillors or community organisations such as Nunthorpe Parish Council or the Community Council.
  • The proposal has not been adequately justified or backed up by any statistical road traffic measurements or any anticipated statistical traffic movement improvements to the overall Marton Crawl. 
  • The presentation of inadequate information on this particular scheme appears to be very unprofessional on the part of Middlesbrough Council highways officers. 
  • With the road widening proposal offering additional northbound lanes this may cater for the morning peak hour traffic into Middlesbrough. What is the proposal to cater for peak hour traffic in the afternoon leaving Middlesbrough?
  • Because of pinch points further to the north on the Marton Crawl this proposal would not address or improve the underlying problem of excessive overall trip duration into and out of Middlesbrough during peak hours.
  • The financial cost to the Council Tax payer for this "sticking plaster" road widening proposal on Dixons Bank is unlikely to be justified.
  • The disturbance to peak hour traffic during the period of road works would not be justified for whatever minor gain that could be gained.
  • An excessive number of trees would have to be felled within the Nunthorpe boundary to accommodate the road widening scheme along with a substantial loss of green space

WW1 War Memorial finally Grade II listed by Historic England

posted 18 Oct 2017, 01:12 by My Nunthorpe

Great news! After nine months of working with Historic England the WW1 War Memorial is now finally listed as a Grade II monument. It is hoped over the next few months to use this status to provide the memorial with some TLC to improve its condition. It is also hoped the new status will also provide sufficient leverage to have the 6ft fence finally removed allowing the return of the much appreciated view and setting of the Grade II listed Vicarage, the Locally Listed Old School frontage and of course the newly listed War Memorial.


Dear Mr Mullen,


Nunthorpe War Memorial, A172 (west of Church Lane), Nunthorpe, Middlesborough - Awarded Listed Building Status

List Entry Number: 1448373


Following your application to add the above memorial to the List of Buildings of Special Architectural or Historic Interest, we have now considered all the representations made and completed our assessment of the memorial. I am delighted to inform you that having considered our recommendation, the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport has decided to add Nunthorpe War Memorial to the List of Buildings of Special Architectural or Historic Interest. The memorial is now listed at Grade II.

Nunthorpe loses iconic heritage view. Part 3

posted 15 Apr 2017, 04:10 by My Nunthorpe

Recently a number of Nunthorpians attended a War Memorial workshop at the Dorman Museum hosted by Civic Voice. We learned how evaluate the condition of existing memorials in order to seek funding for any repairs required. More importantly we learned how to proceed with the protection of a War Memorial under the Historic England Listing process.

The World War 2 memorial in the Lych Gate is already Grade II listed. We have now submitted all the required information to Historic England to obtain Grade II listing for the World War I memorial. Because of the World War 1 centeneary we are assured this will be a straightforward process.

The benefit of Listing is that it brings into play the protection offered to such memorials. One of these protections relates to the setting of the memorial and it's amenity benefit to the community. It is obvious with the installation of the 6 foot road noise reduction fence the setting and the amenity has been destroyed.

We now hope to utilise this protection when the memorial is eventually listed to approach Middlesbrough Council to reconsider their decision to retain the fence. To date they have refused, despite all the approaches made by individuals and community organisations in Nunthorpe, to have the fence removed and restore our ability to have an unimpeded view of the memorial and the important heritage buildings beyond (the Grade II listed Vicarage and the Locally Listed School House).

Nunthorpe loses iconic heritage view. Part 2

posted 21 Feb 2017, 04:10 by My Nunthorpe   [ updated 23 Feb 2017, 14:27 ]

The Nunthorpe community was horrified when a 6 ft boarded fence was erected on either side of the World War 1 memorial. Approaches were made to Middlesbrough Council who dictated to the housing developer that the fence was necessary to conform to road noise pollution requirements. The Council said it must stay!

Not only did this fence impact on the visual presence of the memorial it also took away the valuable setting (an Historic England protection term) of the memorial along with the previous composite view of the Grade II Vicarage and the Locally listed School House.

Members of the Parish Council and the local community recently attended a War Memorial workshop and discovered that there were processes through Historic England which could list the the two Nunthorpe memorials  (WW1 and WW2). This process is now to be followed and it is hoped that following listing of the War Memorials the issue of the fence could be revisited with the Council on the basis that the composite 'setting' of the memorial, Vicarage and Schoolhouse has been seriously impacted.

We sincerely hope this will convince the Council to undertake further actual road noise measurements on the housing site and then realise the importance of the visual setting of the three structures will outweigh any reduction of road noise within the housing site.

Keep watching this space!

A plaint from a disenchanted resident of Nunthorpe

posted 2 Oct 2016, 11:02 by My Nunthorpe


 Nothing ever stays the same

in this town’s constant housing game.

They build them here, they build them there.

In fact, they build them everywhere.

except that is, where there is  demand

for the size of house, the type of land -

the inner town, the starter home,

are just neglected and left alone.

And nothing could be worse or sadder

for those who want to climb the ladder.

We find the developers and their greed

ignore the homes that people need.

They build the executive types instead

of meeting the real demands ahead.

The quota system may work well

in other prosperous regions prone to swell.

But here in lowly Boro town

where industry has broken down,

the executive home is just not needed

to the extent that has been ceded.

The outer town and all around

where green fields once were sound,

all have succumbed to the concrete jungle,

lost to this Government's and Council’s bungle.

The developers laugh, they cannot lose

they build anywhere just what they choose.

The council, desperately short of money,

sees all this as its feeding honey.

No objections made, no opposition,

can seem to stop a planning decision,

as we, the public are treat with derision.

The hedgerows, trees, and green land gone,

sadly we can no longer look upon.

Country and wildlife the powers neglect,

for God’s sake how do we object,

to seeing all this being swept away

when none of us have any say.


So here in Nunthorpe, look around

at what was once our hallowed ground.

The village farms, the sights, the sounds

all prone to concrete, bricks and mounds

of earth as all is swept away.

Will there ever be a judgement day

and those destroyers made to pay?

For all the sins of money and greed,

for which they willingly sow the seed. 

Which part of Nunthorpe next - towards the south?

The Village no longer a Village?

Green fields that supported sheep

no longer will be ours to keep.

Our view towards far 'berry Topping

will fall to housing, the trees a-lopping,

The view to the south once previously clear,

ask yourself, just who are the real sheep here?

Are we all as lambs leading to the slaughter

whilst our countryside turns into bricks and mortar.


1-10 of 52