The restoration of a set of historic lime kilns has received a boost with the return of its original name stones.
The 174-year-old stones, which have been stored at The Bowes Museum
for many years, are to be reinstalled at Bantling Lime Kilns near Annfield Plain as part of the Breathing Life Into Bantling project, delivered by Groundwork North East.
The stones would have originally spelled out the words Stanhope & Tyne Railroad Co Limekilns 1835, in respect of the company which built the kilns, but the surviving ones stored at the Museum are missing the words Tyne, rail and the date. However, Grace Wallace, Project Officer for Groundwork, is delighted to have those remaining returned to their original setting.
This latest initiative is the second phase of a project that was completed in 2008, which saw two of the six kilns restored on site, along with access and information improvements, she said. Work resumed in August this year, resulting in the completion of a further kiln. We plan to reinstall the stones in the structure of the kilns, along with newly carved stones where the originals are missing.
Jane Whittaker, Principal Keeper at The Bowes Museum, said: We are very pleased that these stones, which have never been on display since they came to the Museum, will be safely reinstated in their original setting and appreciated as part of the industrial heritage of northern Britain.
The kilns project is being developed as an educational resource aimed at giving schools and community groups a better understanding of their local heritage and why such structures sit within the landscape.
The project was funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund, The County Durham Environmental Trust and English Heritages Regional Capacity Builders program.