History of Darlington

Darlington currently enjoys unitary status and is also a Borough; it sits within the southern part of the County of Durham. It has changed its name five times since its creation and it is suggested that its original name was Deathingtun.

Joseph Pease [external link], who was born in 1799, built the Old Town Hall in 1853 as a gift to the Town and later added the Clock Tower and Covered Market in 1864. The current Town Hall was opened by Princess Anne (The Princess Royal) in 1970.

The Pease family also provided the money to build the Library in Crown Street in 1885, which was originally known as 'The Edward Pease Free Library' located next to the family's Mill.

The Town was granted a Royal Charter on 1 October 1867, and the first elections were held in December of that year, and the first Mayor was Henry Pease. The population of Darlington were then given the opportunity to take a more active part in the election of a Council of local administration.

Clara Curtis Lucas [pdf document] was the first Lady to become a Councillor for Darlington County Borough (Cockerton Ward) in 1915.

The Charter of Incorporation [pdf document, 311kb]

More information on the history of the Town [pdf document]

Resurgence - the sculpture outside the Town Hall [external link]

More information about the Darlington railways is available on the Head of Steam pages

Town twinning

Darlington has two twin towns - Amiens [external link], France and Mülheim an der Ruhr [external link], Germany. They were twinned in 1953. 

Darlington Town Twinning and International Association [external link]