About the Shepherd & Shepherdess Pub and Beamish

The Shepherd & Shepherdess Pub in Beamish


Beamish, previously named 'PIt Hill' is a village in County Durham, England situated to the North East of Stanley. The name of Beamish is derived from a corruption of the Norman word 'Beauvis', meaning 'beautiful place' or the old French phrase 'bew-mys' which when translated means 'beautiful mansion'. A common misconception  is that Beamish is located in Stanley when Beamish is contained within Hell Hole Wood.

It is home of Beamish Open air Museum , an open air museum seeking to replicate a Northern Town of the early 20th Century. It's principal pub is the Shepherd and Sheperdess near to the Museum's entrance.

There is much more to Beamish than the Museum. It is steeped in history and has been associated with many of the local gentry over the years such as Robert Shafto (sometimes spelt Shaftoe) who was an eighteenth century British Member of Parliament who was the likeliest subject of a famous North East folk song and nursery rhyme 'Bobby Shafto's gone to sea'. Other gentry associated with Beamish include James Joicey, 1st Baron Joicey was a coal mining magnate from Durham and a British Liberal Party MP, Thomas Piercy, the Earl of Northumberland and Sir Robert Eden.

The Shepherd & Shepherdess Pub in Beamish

It was also the victim of a german bombing raid on 1st May 1942, where 3 people died during the raid. However, a bigger tragedy was waiting to happen. On eof the bombs was a time bomb that went through the roof of a house and lay undetected until later that day when it went off and killed a further 5 people and injuring many more.

As well as the Shepherd and Sheperdess, the C2C sustrans cycle route passes through en route from Whitehaven to Sunderland. Tanfield Steam Railway, Durham County Cricket Ground, the Metro Centre are all within easy reach by car. Being close to the A1, Beamish is a great stop off point heading North to Newcastle or Sunderland or South to Durham, Teesside or further afield.