Place:Westerton, Durham, England

TypeTownship, Civil parish
Coordinates54.675°N 1.629°W
Located inDurham, England
See alsoAuckland St. Andrew, Durham, Englandancient parish in which it was a township
Darlington Ward, Durham, Englandancient county division in which it was located
Auckland Rural, Durham, Englandrural district of which it was part 1894-1937
Bishop Auckland, Durham, Englandparish into which it was absorbed in 1937
Spennymoor, Durham, Englandparish into which it was absorbed in 1937
Wear Valley District, Durham, Englanddistrict municipality covering the area 1974-2009
source: Family History Library Catalog
the text in this section is based on an article in Wikipedia

Westerton is a village in County Durham, England. In the 2001 UK census Westerton had a population of 44. It is situated between Bishop Auckland and Spennymoor. It sits on top of a hill which is one of the highest points in County Durham, and is the location of an observatory built for Thomas Wright (1711-1786), who was the first person to suggest that the Milky Way consisted of a flattened disk of stars. The observatory is known today as "Wright's Folly".

Westerton was originally a township in the ancient parish of Auckland St. Andrew in County Durham. It became a separate civil parish in 1866. From 1894 it was part of Auckland Rural District. In 1937 it was abolished and split between Bishop Auckland and Spennymoor with Bishop Auckland receiving about two-thirds of the area. Between 1974 and 2009 it became part of the larger Wear Valley non-metropolitan district. Since 2009 County Durham has been a unitary authority.

A nineteenth century description

A Vision of Britain through Time provides the following description of Westerton from John Marius Wilson's Imperial Gazetteer of England and Wales of 1870-72:

"WESTERTON, a township in Auckland-St. Andrew parish, Durham; 2½ miles E by N of Bishop-Auckland. Acres: 697. Real property: £1,485; of which £400 are in mines, and £260 in quarries. Population: 196. Houses: 43."

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