Durham Miners Heritage Could Soon Win Worldwide Recognition
Redhills, the miners' hall in Durham, may be among only the 900 global sites of UNESCO world heritage status.
By: Redhills CIO
And, if a bid by an international consortium is successful, it could mean that Durham City becomes one of the few places to have two World Heritage sites.
Durham Cathedral and Castle already hold UNESCO status.
The consortium includes similar halls in Argentina, Australia, Belgium, Finland and Canada.
The Workers Museum in Copenhagen is spearheading the bid and hopes that UNESCO will consider it in 2024.
There were originally 74 applications to join the group, and it is a testimony to the importance of the Durham miners' history, heritage and culture that it has been chosen to be among those who represent the best in the world.
Redhills is Grade II listed, with its 'Pitman's Parliament' named by Historic England as one of its '100 irreplaceable places. It is ranked alongside the Palace of Westminster as one of the country's top ten landmarks in England's power, protest and progress history.
Redhills charity CEO Nick Malyan said: "To be considered for UNESCO World Heritage recognition is a demonstration of the international significance of Redhills. The Miners' Hall embodies English working-class democracy, telling a powerful story of struggle and collective achievement. While the nomination and judging process will take time we welcome the opportunity to ensure the Durham coalfield's story is heard on the global stage it deserves."
The charity has teamed up with Durham University's Prof Robin Coningham to progress the UK leg of the bid. Prof Coningham, holder of UNESCO's 2014 Chair on Archaeological Ethics and Practice in Cultural Heritage, said: "Redhills and all it stands for is hugely significant. The Durham miners were social reformers on a scale rarely seen across the world.
Their memory and achievements should be recognised as being of world heritage status. It will be a privilege to work with the Redhills team to bring this to reality."
For more information visit https://redhillsdurham.org/