Nora Handcock spent many years researching the social history of Allendale and its surrounding areas after she moved to live in Allendale in 1952. She was particularly interested in the changes that took place in the Allen Valleys during the first half of the twentieth century and their impact on the people that lived here. Her research led her to collect a vast archive containing oral histories from local inhabitants, photographs, documents and memorabilia. Her first publication in 1993 was Allendale Town: a history in photographs, and this was followed in 2007 by Allendale: Twentieth Century Memories.
Volunteers within the Allen Valleys Local History Group have catalogued Nora’s collection. This was a mammoth task; there are over 800 images alone, along with documents and copy papers. Now catalogued the archive will be accessible at the Border Library at Hexham Gaol. The catalogue will help ensure that Nora’s archive can be easily accessed for future research and will be made available on this website soon.