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County Durham
St. Andrew's , Sadberge. - - 192538.jpg
St Andrew's church
Grid reference: NZ342169
Location: 54°32’48"N, 1°28’20"W
Population: 691  (2011[1])
Post town: Darlington
Postcode: DL2
Local Government
Council: Darlington

Sadberge is a village in County Durham, situated between Darlington and Stockton-on-Tees.


The village's name is Old Danish for "flat hill",[2] an accurate description of the location of the village from where good views of the surrounding countryside can be obtained. The origin of the name is reflective of the area's high Viking-influence.[2] Placenames with the same root also appear in other Viking-influenced areas, including the village of Sedbergh in the West Riding of Yorkshire.

The village served as the centre of a wapentake, a Viking subvision equivalent to a hundred, covering land north of the River Tees, which stretched as far west as Barnard Castle and as far east as Hartlepool.[2] Wapentakes are found in parts of England settled by Danes, most notably the wapentakes of Yorkshire.[3]

In Norman times the wapentake (or the "Earldom of Sadberge"), though north of the River Tees, was not initially under the rule of Durham's Prince Bishops. Instead, it formed a liberty of the county of Northumberland. In 1139, Northumberland and its liberties were given to Scotland by England's King Stephen, and the River Tees briefly became the southern boundary of the kingdom of Scotland. This situation continued until 1157 when Northumberland was reclaimed by Henry II.

Hugh de Puiset, who purchased the wapentake for £11,000,[4] was largely responsible for the decline in importance of Sadberge. He added the earldom to Durham in 1189 and from then on Sadberge was ruled from Durham. Sadberge retained some independence and continued to be administered almost completely separately until 1576. The area's historically distinct status within County Durham was still reflected in the name of the Court of Chancery of the County Palatine of Durham and Sadberge, which was merged into the High Court in 1972.[5]


Sadberge is conveniently situated for fast commuting to Teesside. The village has a church and two pubs.


  1. "Parish population 2011". Retrieved 25 July 2015. 
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 Pocock, Douglas; Norris, Roger (1990) (in English). A History of County Durham. Chichester: Phillimore & Co.. p. 24. 
  3. {{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=encyclopaedia }}
  4. Pocock, Douglas; Norris, Roger (1990) (in English). A History of County Durham. Chichester: Phillimore & Co.. p. 30. 
  5. "Courts Act 1971". 1971. Retrieved 17 November 2017. 

Outside links

("Wikimedia Commons" has material
about Sadberge)
  • Sadberge Village Website
  • Tommy Craggs a local chainsaw carver, created three sculptures on the village green from three trees that had to be felled, a Roman lady, a Viking warrior and a Saxon child.