David Johnston is memorialised in St Cuthbert’s churchyard in Darlington.
His memorial is quite elaborate and substantial and is very much valued by the church community – they recently restored it and made it safe. The work was paid for by Darlington Council.
David died on January 29th 1847, aged only 35. He died of tuberculosis – then known as ‘consumption’ – a disease that struck down many people back then. So why is he important to the S&DR story?
David was the acting foreman at the Darlington Railway Engine Works between 1838 and 1847 – little more than ten years after the Stockton & Darlington Railway opened on 27th September 1825. He must have done a good job as the monument was paid for by his fellow workmen “as a tribute of that respect and esteem for his ability & exemplary conduct which he exercised towards them…”
So this wonderful churchyard and church, which dates back to Anglo-Saxon times, is a fitting resting place for someone who played a valuable and valued role in the story of the S&DR. He is a part of Darlington’s long history.
Why not take the time to visit the churchyard and pay your respects to David?