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Previously untold stories of women in mining communities across Durham and Northumberland are being brought to the surface in this special exhibition.

The exhibition showcases the role women played in the regional coal mining communities of the 1800s, which has been largely overlooked.

Art works, archive images and personal histories highlight the tenacious spirit of these women, whether working at the colliery as Pit Brow Lasses or taking on multiple jobs to keep a roof over their families’ heads.

Highlights include an original glass negative of Hannah Porter, a County Durham woman, who ran a hardware shop from her home, took in lodgers, worked as a dressmaker and did all manner of jobs to earn a wage after her husband left for the newly sunk mines of the United States.

These local stories feature alongside works by artists such as Tom McGuinness, David Venables and Archie Rhys Griffiths.

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