Burt Hall is in Newcastle-upon-Tyne, opposite the City Hall on Northumberland Road. The hall was built in 1895 as the trade union offices of the Northumberland Miner's Federation. In 1907 this union affiliated to the national Miner's Federation of Great Britain. In 1945, this became the National Union of Mineworkers, and the association became its Northumberland Area. It was not only offices, but the building also featured a large meeting room and it would have been a place familiar to the union officials. But it wasn't specifically an educational establishment.
The hall was named in honour of Thomas Burt, a self-educated miner, who was the secretary of the Northumberland Miners' Association for 27 years. He became the first working-class MP in 1874, for the constituency of Morpeth. Surprisingly, he is not featured on many of the post-nationalisation banners. Hazel Edwards, in her 1997 book "Follow the Banner" attributes this to Burt retaining his Liberal affiliations and ideologies when by the mid-20th century the miners' union and Labour Party had become deeply intertwined. Edwards also suggests the building is not local and is modelled on a standard educational training college. This was an image that was copied on to many of the Tutill manufactured banners as a standard catalogue item. Burt Hall and the banner image at first glance do have similarities but closer inspection reveals they cannot be the same building.
The Newcastle Chronicle in a series published in 1872-3 called "Our Colliery Villages" wrote:
"The most intelligent of the Burradon miners are justly proud of their school, which is larger than either the Seghill or West Moor ones, and is their own property. There is a compulsory payment of 6d. per fortnight by each married man, the young men and boys, who can have the advantage of the night school if they choose, paying 3d. per fortnight. The school is a mixed one, and the aggregate average daily attendance is 164. As nearly all the denominations are represented among the scholars, the teaching is purely unsectarian. There is a news-room and small library attached to the school, but it does not number on its list more than 30 members."
[The miners of West Moor had commented that their news room was too close to the colliery offices where officials where always in proximity and: “A chep was afraid to speak his mind”. The school was built in 1861, which was prior to the state taking responsibility for education in 1870, and was in part funded by the explosion disaster relief fund from 1860. The Chronicle reported that the news room at New Delaval, Blyth, was "well attended".]
A mechanic's institute was built by the mineworkers in the 1890s which had an educational as well as a recreational purpose - an alternative to the pub.