Carter house gets the bullet

A HOUSE that made an appearance in the cult gangster movie Get Carter has been razed.

Beechcroft, get carter

A HOUSE that made an appearance in the cult gangster movie Get Carter has been razed.

The 1950s detached property, Beechcroft, in Broomside Lane, Belmont, Durham, was used as gangster Cliff Brumby’s house in the 1971 film set in the North East and starring Michael Caine.

But now it has been demolished to make way for homes.

Beechcroft was the fictional home of crooked businessman Cliff Brumby, played by the late Bryan Mosley, better known as Coronation Street’s Alf Roberts.

In Get Carter, Brumby returns to the house to discover a wild party is in full swing hosted by his teenage daughter. He is later confronted there by Carter, played by Caine.

The location for the house in the film is given as the fictional Durham Road, in Pentiles.

In real life the two-storey detached house, with an indoor swimming pool, was the luxurious home of the late Durham businessman Charlie Newton and his family.

In March last year Durham City Council planners approved an application to build 12 homes on the site, despite objections from fans of the film and from conservation group the City of Durham Trust.

Trust secretary Dr Douglas Pocock said the house was a “visitor attraction which should be preserved”, but councillors voted for its demolition after hearing the site was brownfield and suitable for development.

Planning officer David Thornborrow advocated allowing the demolition of Beechcroft, which he described as “an unlisted building of no outstanding architectural merit”.

He acknowledged the demolition would result in the loss of a local connection with the film, but said: “Since its brief appearance in Get Carter, Beechcroft has undergone significant alterations and is barely recognisable as the house in the film.”

The demolition marks the end of the line for yet another Get Carter location in the region. In one of the most famous scenes in the film, Brumby was thrown to his death from Gateshead town centre’s multi-storey car park, which is itself in line for demolition.

Already lost to the film’s location history is the aerial flight system which carried coal waste from County Durham’s Blackhall Colliery to the coast and featured dramatically in the film.

Other locations in Get Carter include Tyneside’s High Level Bridge; Dryderdale Hall, near Bishop Auckland – which was once the home of 1960s slot machine king Vince Landa – Newcastle’s West Road Crematorium and the city’s old Oxford Galleries dance hall.

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Big plans

THE first phase in work clearing the way for the demolition of Gateshead’s Get Carter car park began last week.

Demolition of Trinity Square Shopping Centre will open up possibilities for town centre regeneration.

The much-delayed demolition means that if a planning application for Trinity Square is approved by Gateshead Council, the revamp can start immediately.

Consultation with the community has led to plans for a performance space and amphitheatre seating areas as well as 40 shops, a supermarket, cafes, bars and restaurants, student flats, offices and a hotel.

The car park demolition is likely to be left until the end of the process.

Devotees of the film argued that, although it was ugly and outdated, the car park should become the basis of a cultural town trail.

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