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Originally the name was spelt: Langhurst or Langhirst before eventually evolving into Longhirst. The first recorded resident was Roger Fitz Roger who held eighteen acres of land here for the cost of three shillings in the thirteenth century. Like nearby Bothal, history appears to have passed Longhirst by without much of a mention.

Longhirst parish was founded in 1875, prior to this Longhirst was part of Bothal parish. The Church of St John the Evangelist was built in 1876 to the plans of Sir Arthur Blonfield and paid for by local landowner Edward Lawson who then gifted it to the village. Edward Lawson became Vicar of Longhirst and he soon let it be known that no other but he should preach in the village or school. He was quoted in 1873 on the subject of Methodism: 'Dissenters are dangerous. Its radical and tends to disestablishment: therefore it must be kept down.' Sometime after the census of 1861, he also closed the only village pub: the 'Half Moon Inn'. Longhirst has never had a pub since.

Lawson's Palace: Longhirst Hall was commissioned by William Lawson from the designs of John Dobson and the foundation stone was laid in 1824; the Hall was still unfinished in 1828. Rev W.C. Ellis, vicar of Bothal, 1861- 1923, was to observe in the Bothal parish registers that the Lawson's: '...had a sudden rise in the first half of the nineteenth century - flourished like Jobs gouard in the time of the coal famine of 1873 and like it collapsed.' In 1887, Longhirst Hall was bought by Sir James Joicey, he had also made his fortune in coal mining. The Joicey family were to leave Longhirst Hall in 1936 in favour of Etal near Ford. Longhirst Hall was requisitioned by the Army in WW2 and thereafter as an approved school and later a community home for around 65 boys. In later years the Hall was renovated and became a conference centre. As from 2014 defunct again.

The narrow gate in the wall of the Longhirst Estate was the way that the local squire and his family traveled to Church. The gate is situated opposite the church and leads, via a small footbridge to a path through the grounds of the estate to the Hall. Local legend states that a ghost is the only user of this gate.

The former stable yard of Longhirst Hall built in 1824. It was here that horses and coaches for the Lawson and later the Joicey families were kept. Servants also were housed here. When the Hall became an approved school, members of staff lived in the houses here. The centre building, off to the right, as late as the 1970s was a bit of a wreck with no ceilings, doors or windows in it. When the Hall became a conference centre, the stable yard was developed into private housing.

The Longhirst vicarage built 1891. In more recent years it has become a private dwelling house.

The Longhirst War Memorial was built c 1919. Only one name, Squadron Leader John Sample, was added after the Second World War.

Longhirst Village from the south end. Gabled house to the left was built in 1880 as a Police House.

This building was formerly the Half Moon Inn and the Inn keeper in 1861 was Robert Hindhaugh. Other members of his family also worked at the inn before it was closed by Edward Lawson sometime before 1871. In later years it became the village Post Office and the building still bears the name: 'The Old Post Office.'

Longhirst School was built in 1847 and lies a quarter of a mile to the east of the village. It is now a private dwelling house.

Pupils, rear row, L/R: Jim Learmouth, ?, Jim Black, Guy Turnbull, Wylie Dawson, Jim Elliot, Robert Moore,?, Walter Cuthbert.

Middle, L/R: Emily Davidson, ?, Ada Bewick, ?, Cissie Moore, Hilda Taylor, ? Violet Bewick, Leonora Fryer, ?, Teacher Jack Hine.

Front, L/R: George Green, Minnie Cuthbert, Bessie Green, ?, Margaret Sinclair, ? Jimmy Green, ?, ?. Class of 1929. 

Longhirst Grange Farm

John Sample eldest son of Thomas Norman and Kate Isabel Sample of Longhirst Grange. John Sample was born at Longhirst Grange and baptised at Longhirst Church, February 27, 1913. He joined 607 Squadron, Aux AF at Usworth and remained with that squadron until after the battle of France having led the squadron briefly during that conflict. He was then posted to command 504 Squadron and led that squadron throughout the Battle of Britain. He was taken off flying, for a rest, in early 1941 and returned to flying when he took command of 137 Squadron in September, 1941. He was killed in a mid-air collision with another of the squadrons aircraft, October 28, 1941. John Sample was buried in the family grave within Bothal churchyard November 3, 1941. He was awarded the DFC, June 1940, for his action in France.

Old Moor Farm: this is about one mile to the east of Longhirst. Historian Hodgson thinks this area was the original lands known as 'Pendmoor' dating from c 1240. Pendmoor was thought to be the original Longhirst. Old Moor was also known in older times as 'Auld Moor'.