ONCE, the riverside community of South Church, near Bishop Auckland, boasted eight shops and a fish shop, five pubs, a workmen's club and a brewery, two chapels and a church on the hill.

Now only the church on the hill and one of the pubs survived, and that's because the village also contained an awful lot of bad housing. The long line of riverside terraces, dangerously close to the Gaunless, were known as Peases' Rows, after the Darlington family who built them – some of them being fashioned out of the crudest river boulders in the earliest years of the Victorian industrial expansion.

But in the 1960s, the slums and the shops, the pubs, the brewery and the chapels were all cleared, as these pictures show.

If they bring back any thoughts or memories, or if you have any information about South Church, please email chris.lloyd@nne.co.uk