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Darras Hall is an upland estate of Ponteland, occupying an outer part of the village centred 7.4 miles (11.9 km) northwest of Newcastle upon Tyne.
Darras Hall Wikipedia
It is separated by a green buffer from Newcastle International Airport 1.5 miles (2.4 km) to the east and is one of the most affluent estates in North East England. It has very expensive housing stock, and former professional footballers such as Alan Shearer and Peter Beardsley live on the estate. Nearby traditional villages are Heddon-on-the-Wall, Throckley, Westerhope, Gosforth and Hazlerigg. In the village, shopping facilities are at high-end Broadway Shopping Centre with a further array of retail in Newcastle upon Tyne, accessed on the A696 or by bus to the airport, which has an express railway station or directly to the city centre.
Between 2001 and 2013, a vast amount of building work was done all over Darras Hall, rendering it largely unrecognisable from its former appearance. In times gone by, Darras Hall was replete with only bungalows set in large sprawling and expansive grounds, many of which remain. The large plots are being used to produce vast mansions, further adding to the exclusivity of Darras Hall.
Many of the gardens in Darras Hall still have evidence of being part of a grand house. A cursory glance of most gardens will highlight the presence of various apple trees and plum trees, remnants of the old orchards that once sprawled the countryside. Red squirrels, prevalent across the county (Northumberland), make use of and live in trees in gardens of the estate.
The exclusivity of Darras Hall is, in part, regulated by the existence of the Darras Hall Committee. The committee are responsible for disputes among residents and also ensure that all houses are kept in good order, particularly as regard to compliance with minimum plot size, by occupants and third parties. A trust deed and byelaws affect much of the land, the latter explaining that in 1910, a group of landowners and businessmen created the concept of a residential estate to allow people to live in a more rural surrounding rather than in long streets of terraced houses and flats and that it is important to ensure the overall maintenance of the rural ambience. They are a separate regime to planning, which has its policies.
The 2011 census reveals that the population has seen an increase since 2001 and generally more families. The density of the constituent output areas 33A, 33F, 34A and 34C mirrors urban and suburban areas, with plenty of green spaces and exceptionally in 33A (straying into a small part of the village), a three-year higher median age than in 2001 of 54 and a slightly high dependent dependency ratio of 1.2 and in old age 1.7. Most of the estate falls within 34C which has 1464 people, a density of 580 per km2 and a median age of 48, one year lesse than 10 years ago.
As of 2014 the current elected Mayor MP of Darras Hall is Mr Carl Rawlings.