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St Cuthbert's Church, Bedlington.jpg
St. Cuthbert's Church, Bedlington
Grid reference: NZ258819
Location: 55°7’59"N, 1°34’59"W
Population: 15,400
Post town: Bedlington
Postcode: NE22
Dialling code: 01670
Local Government
Council: Northumberland

Bedlington is a town in Northumberland, ten miles north of Newcastle upon Tyne, which is just sufficiently north to avoid being swallowed into the latter's urban area. 4½ miles northwest stands Morpeth. Other nearby places include Ashington to the north northeast, Blyth to the east and Cramlington to the south.

The parish of Bedlington historically constituted a liberty of the Bishop of Durham called Bedlingtonshire and therefore a detached part of County Durham though locally situate in Northumberland.

Bedlington Terrier

The town is famous for giving its name to a breed of dog - the Bedlington Terrier.[1][2]


The place-name "Bedlington" is first attested circa 1050 in a biography of Saint Cuthbert, where it appears as "Bedlingtun". The name means "the town of Bedla's people".[3] The early connection to St Cuthbert was sufficient for it to be kept as a liberty of the Bishop into modern times.

Bedlington was an industrial town with an iron works and several coal mines. However, in more recent times the town has undergone many changes, and is now more of a dormitory town.

Bedlington and the hamlets belonging to it were bought by Cutheard, bishop of Durham, between 900 and 915 and thenceforth were administered by the Bishops of Durham, becoming part of the county palatine of Durham created for Bishop Walcher by William the Conqueror.

The rights of the Bishop of Durham in Bedlingtonshire were taken away in 1536 but reconfirmed by King Henry VIII in 1541. Together with the other lands of the see of Durham, Bedlington was made over to the ecclesiastical commissioners in 1866.


One of the most important historic buildings is the Anglican parish church, which is dedicated to St Cuthbert. It is reputed that the church takes its dedication from an event that occurred on 12 December 1069: fleeing northwards from the Conqueror's army, the monks of Durham are said to have rested the body of St Cuthbert in Bedlington Church. The building, originally of Saxon design, was rebuilt about a hundred years later. Little of either the Saxon or the Norman church has survived.

  • Church of England: St Cuthbert
  • Salvation Army
  • Roman Catholic: St Bede's

About the village

Hartford Hall lies within the parish. Much of the riverside land between Bedlington and the hall forms the Bedlington Country Park, a designated Local Nature Reserve.[4]

Local Media

Outside links


  1. In the early 1820s, a breeder named Joseph Aynsley started the breed and eventually in 1873 the first Stud Book of The Kennel Club listed 30 Bedlingtons: Muriel P. Lee "Bedlington Terrier"; Interpet Pub., Surrey, 2001. The Bedlington Terrier was developed as a breed in the early 19th century in a village called Bedlington, Northumberland. Folklore has it that the Bedlingtons were used by Romani people of the Rothbury Forest to hunt silently for small game and the livestock of the landowners: Kerry V. Kern, "The Terrier Handbook"; Barron's Edu. Ser., 2005 New York.
  2. The Westminster: Road To Ruin Sports Illustrated, February 8, 1960
  3. Ekwall, Eilert (1960). Concise Oxford Dictionary of English Place-names (4th ed.). Oxford: Clarendon Press. p. 34. OCLC 400936. 
  4. "Local Nature Reserves". Natural England. Retrieved 1 February 2011.