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Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Ponteland Mart Closes

Ponteland mart was built by local farmers in 1921 when they put money in to a site next to the railway station. There was a large holding field, extensive outside and covered pens and a selling ring with tiered seating. For 85 years it has been a thriving auction and brought the country into the village. The railway is long gone, Ponteland has become more of a commuting village for Newcastle and difficulties since the foot and mouth epidemic in 2001 have eventually forced closure as it was not making money. Local farmers have memories of their families walking stock to the mart and its history goes back to at least the 1850s when it took place on land behind the Diamond Inn. Carron Craighead (feeding lambs),Ponteland organic farmer and county chairman of the NFU regrets the closure and says animals will now have to travel further for selling.
By Muriel Sobo