With a personal history rooted in mining communities and living in one of our bungalows, Pauline Boll is an ideal candidate to represent residents on the board of Durham Aged Mineworkers’ Homes Association.
Pauline, 69, was appointed in September and is helping to shape the role. “I will bring a different perspective to the board room, that of the resident,” said Pauline. “I can speak from my own experience but also want to reflect the views of other residents and I’m currently thinking about how I can best gather those.”
Pauline was brought up in New Herrington where her father, Norman Gustard, was a miner.
“I was one of eight children raised in a colliery house,” said Pauline. “I have lots of memories of seeing the miners come home after a shift, faces black with the coal dust.”
Pauline’s husband was also a miner at Herrington before the pit closed and the couple moved to Cheshire after he found work in sales. Pauline worked for the charity the British Medical Acupuncture Society, organising conferences across the country for health professionals.
She retired in 2015 and moved back to her native north-east to care for her parents until their passing.
“I suffer from arthritis and needed a bungalow so was delighted when I was offered one with DAMHA,” said Pauline.
“I’m aware of the good work the Association does in providing affordable homes for people and of course for me it has that mineworking connection.”
Pauline and her husband have a grown up son and daughter and a teenaged granddaughter. They enjoy trips to Berwick and walks in the Northumberland countryside.
She says she took the role as board member “to keep the brain ticking over,” adding: “I’m retired but I’m not ready to do nothing.”
A keen gardener, Pauline is also a volunteer at Herrington Country Park where she maintains the Miners’ Memorial Garden and where her father’s ashes are laid to rest.