Gainford Memories

Read and share memories of Gainford

A couple at a laptop


This amazing community has grown around our invitation to 'Share Your Memories'.

So far you've shared 73,559 memories of 7,312 towns & villages, right across the UK!

So many of these are filled with extraordinary, irreplaceable detail that will now be preserved. Please keep them coming!

This week's Places

Here are some of the places people are talking about in our Share Your Memories community this week:

...and hundreds more! Enjoy browsing more recent contributions now.

Add a Memory

It's easy to add your own memories and reconnect with your shared local history. Search for your favourite places and look for the Add Your Memory links to begin.

Tips & Ideas

Not sure what to write? It's easy - just think of an important place in your life and ask yourself:

  • How does it feature in your personal history?
  • What are your best memories of this place?
  • How has it changed over the years?
  • How does it feel, seeing these places again?
  • Do you remember stories about the community, its history and people?


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Hi, my name is Jean. I have been doing my family history for a while now, but cannot find anything at all about my grandfather John Francis Donald. All I know is that he lived on the green and before that in the Coulton by the river. I found out that he was awarded a pocket watch for rescuing 12 people from the River (...Read full memory)

I moved to Gainford when I was 7 years old. My dad was German and was called Felix. I attended Gainford School and Claude Cree was the headmaster and taught the top classes. My best friends were twins and I am sure lots of you will remember them, Kathleen and Maureen Rourke. I dont know where they are today as we moved to (...Read full memory)

My first memory is crossing the North Road with my father pushing the dolls' pram he had just bought me for my 4th birthday. We were visiting my grandmother and grandfather's pub The Caldedonian - does anyone remember it or them? Maureen

Hi, I am from Darlington and I would love to hear memories of the old orphanage/St Peter's School. Whenever I pass the building I am so curious, it is such a shame it is going to waste as it is a lovely building. I have researched it on the web and read stories of the Spanish children that were sent there, it's quite sad to think it could all be gone if demolished. Ruth

I grew up at Barforth Hall and left when I was 18. I used to spend my pocket money on toy cars with Mrs Brown in this dark and evocative shop, the memory has never left me. I would also go to buy my parents' Christmas present here every year. My parents still have a cottage on the green and I remember Mr Cree, he (...Read full memory)

The corner shop was owned by my Aunt May. My sister Betty used to help out at holiday times. I used to spend a lot of summer times in Gainford and I still have an affectionate feeling for it. I have memories of the Andersons,who used to live next to St Peter's School (I think I have that name right), who were friends of my sister, as were nearly all of the village.

Reading the memories prompts me to contribute to the nostalgia - My grandfather "Bob Allan" was the Postmaster and his parents before him. My aunt took over from him in the late 1960s and in all the business was in the family for three generations. The family have as is evident been involved in the (...Read full memory)

I was sorry to leave the village, some of my best memories of my childhood relate to Gainford and its residents. I lived in what was known locally as 'knobs row' or High Row, no.13. One of my best friends was a boy whose surname was Absolom, and he lived in the row of houses next to this shop. I went to the primary (...Read full memory)

I started Gainford School in 1954 & remember Miss Browns little shop crammed full with habberdashery, stockings (nylons) hankies, knitting-wool, etc., everything you could possibly want - an oasis in this small village. She was kind to us children, softly-spoken & had her hair tied up in a bun. We used to run (...Read full memory)

My Great Aunt May Brown ran this shop for many years in Gainford. She was housekeeper to the local Catholic priests prior to this.