After many years of searching, a beloved historical bust with cultural significance to its community has been found a new home.
Durham County Council’s Chester-le-Street and District Area Action Partnership (AAP) has been working to help relocate the historical bust ‘Dainty Dinah’.
Dainty Dinah once adorned Horner’s Sweet Factory which was founded in Chester-le-Street in 1911. The company, which employed 2,000 people in the town at the height of its production, eventually ceased manufacturing in 1961 and the factory was demolished in 1989.
Left without a home, Dainty Dinah was retained and displayed in Chester-le-Street Civic Centre until this was demolished in 2014, and she was then relocated to St Cuthbert’s Walk near to the site of the former Horner’s Sweet Factory.
With this came concerns that Dainty Dinah was not visible enough to the local community and the search began again for a more prominent home.
With the support of neighbourhood budget funding through the Chester-le-Street and District AAP and Cllr Beaty Bainbridge, along with backing from the Chester-le-Street Heritage Group, Dainty Dinah has now been relocated to the window of Mile House, in Chester-le-Street town centre, where she is the star of a historical display.
The building currently exhibits historical artefacts associated with Horner’s Sweet Factory, including an original uniform worn by one of the factory workers and tins that would have contained the world-famous Dainty Dinah toffees.
Dainty Dinah has joined these artefacts to add to the Horner’s cultural community display.
Mile House can be found at the bottom of Newcastle Bank and is the home of the CDC Enterprise Agency, a not for profit company which assists people in setting up and growing their own businesses.
Michael Wilkes, Chester-le-Street and District Area Action Partnership coordinator, said: “I am delighted to see Dainty Dinah in her new home where she can be enjoyed by the public for many years to come. The additional artefacts kindly provided by the Heritage Group really serve to put Dainty Dinah into context. I’d like to thank everyone involved in making this happen.”
Dorothy Hall, chair of Chester-le-Street Heritage Group, said: “The Chester-le-Street Heritage Group is delighted to see Dainty Dinah at Mile House where we have put together a small exhibition on Horner’s and Dainty Dinah, including a uniform worn in the 1930s and a commercial traveller’s suitcase, as well as a selection of Dainty Dinah tins which can be seen alongside Dainty Dinah in the window.”
Joe Murray, chief executive of CDC Enterprise Agency, said: “We are pleased to host Dainty Dinah here at Mile House. It is CDC Enterprise Agency’s mission to assist people to set up and grow their own businesses so to have this monument to local industry from times gone by makes perfect sense.”
For more information about the support provided by the council’s AAPs, visit www.durham.gov.uk/aaps