IT has been three weeks since our last story about an item used for suspending piece of clothing in a wardrobe – sorry if we’ve kept you coathanging on.

So this week, not one but two coathangers, and thereby hangs a tale...

They belong to David Thompson, who lives near Wackerfield near West Auckland, and in his grandfather’s generation there was a fall out among tailoring brothers, Arthur and William Thompson.

“I’m only going by what was said in the family,” he says. “They set up in business together and then fell out.” Which is why we have two coathangers rather than just one.

The brothers appear in Darlington library’s street directories trading happily together from 34, High Northgate (near the railway bridge) in 1900, but come 1905, Arthur had gone his separate way and established himself at 33, North Road (opposite the railway workshops) while William remained at No 34.

In 1908, Arthur – who is David’s grandfather – died, aged only 31. William continued trading at their original address, and in the late 1920s when the street was renumbered, he found himself trading from 96, High Northgate without having had to move.

He must have been doing well because, as his coathanger shows, he expanded into the neighbouring property, but by the time the 1935 directory was compiled, both 96 and 98 High Northgate were empty – William must have retired from tailoring.

By coincidence, Ann Eynon in Darlington also has a William Thompson coathanger – “it’s been part of my life since time immemorial,” she says. But only David has the pair which tell the full story.

Any other local coathangers in anyone’s wardrobe?