Longframlington stands on the A697, which follows the line of one of the traditional routes into Scotland, branching off the A1 at Morpeth and passing Wooler en route to the border at Coldstream. This has the benefit of ensuring that Longframlington is never likely to be overlooked, but the disadvantage of bringing a significant amount of traffic along Front Street, which though at the extreme eastern end of the village, also forms its core.
Longframlington is a village with a fairly long history, and there may have been a settlement here when the Romans built a north-south road, a branch of Dere Street, through what is now the western end of the village. This is partly followed by minor roads, while other stretches can be seen on the ground crossing fields, giving rise in the medieval era to the name "Devil's Causeway" for the feature. And while St Mary's Church was built in 1190, traces of what may be earlier stonework in the structure suggest the possibility of an earlier, perhaps Anglo-Saxon, church on the site, which implies there might have been an Anglo-Saxon settlement here too.
We start to get firmly into recorded history with the building of the church by Walter de Framlington in 1190. The church was originally dedicated to St Mary and St John the Baptist, but multiple dedications went out with the Reformation and it has been known as St Mary's ever since: and, after 1891, when Longframlington became a parish in its own right, the Parish Church of St Mary the Virgin. A little under two miles south west of Longframlington is the remarkable Brinkburn Priory, standing in woods in a loop of the River Coquet. This also dates back to the end of the 1100s and became a ruin after the Reformation. The priory was beautifully restored in the 1800s and today stands as one of the finest examples of early Gothic architecture in Northumberland.
Longframlington is also home to a Presbyterian Chapel. This was built in 1854 and carries on a tradition which started when one of the earliest Presbyterian congregations in England gathered in a private home in Longframlington in the early 1600s. The chapel became part of the united Reformed Church following a merger of denominations in 1972.
The village gained its own school in 1826 when a Mrs Tate made an endowment of £500 to provide for the education of 20 poor children. The school was rebuilt in 1878, but closed in 1953. Children living here have since had to travel to school.
By the late 1860s, Longframlington had become a mining village. Framlington Pit, which was sunk about a mile north of the village in 1869, employed around 40 men at the time of its closure in 1930. This may not seem a large number, but to get a true impact of the demise of the industry on the area you need to appreciate that there were up to 15 other collieries operating within five miles of Longframlington. Most of these also closed in the 1920s or 1930s.
The exception was Whittle Colliery, which stood just to the east of the A1 some four and a half miles north east of Longframlington. This differed from other pits in the area in remaining open until 1987, and in being much larger than the others, employing 648 men in its peak year, 1975. One novel feature of the pit at Longframlington was a four mile long ropeway travelling up to 30ft above ground which transported the output of the pit to Whittle Colliery for grading and sorting.
Today's Longframlington is largely a dormitory village, which continued to grow during the second half of the last century. It is home to an annual music festival, and also does reasonably well in supporting and maintaining its local services. The Village Inn and the Granby Inn stand on the eastern side of the main road, while a little further north is the Embleton Hall Hotel. Embleton Hall was built by Thomas Embleton in 1730 and extended at the end of the 1800s. It was converted into a country house hotel in 1986. There is also a village shop which won a Countryside Alliance "Best Rural Retailer" award in 2006, a paper shop, and a butchers in the village.
Visitor InformationView Location on Map