The Legends and Traditions of Huddersfield and Its District: Volume I, Part IV (1942) by Philip Ahier

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Price 2/6.

1942. _ :

ApvERTISER Press Lrp., Pace

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To GEORGE FOX, of Byram Street, who has supplied me with many legends as well as facts which would have been irretrievably lost had they not been

to print.

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CHAPTER VI (continued)

LEGENDS ann TRADITIONS telating to:

ay Halls and Dwelling Houses Dwelling Houses now demolished

(IV) Landmarks and Localities”



IgI 199


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Rn Be


ti. 12. i. T4. 15. 16.

17, ic.




Bay Hall, Birkby Part of Gunthwaite Barn

The Ruins of the Chapel in the Wall at Gunthwaite _

Lane Head, Shepley

The Gloth Hall The Cloth Hall—The Main Hall The Cloth Hall—Interior of the Main Hall The Chantrey Tower Cook’s in Ruins Crosland Lower Hall The Moat of the Former Hall

The former “‘ Lower Hurst” at Longwood

~The Plateau of Castle Hill

The Formet ‘¢ Rose and Crown’ Castle Hill from the Flatts (i) The Ditch between ‘‘ and ‘: Bailey ”

(ii) Rampart and Ditch on Castle Hill Ark Hill Mound, Birkby The Hill House Round Hill, Rastrick Round Wood, Waterloo

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The Fourth Part of ‘‘The Legends and Traditions of _ Huddersfield and Its District’’ continues. those related of _ Dwelling Houses and deals with those told of f Buildings, etc.)

now demolished.

Part V. will continue the Traditions related of Landmarks, and will deal with The Dumb Steeple, The Haigh Cross, The Longwood Tower, Cooper a, and the Follies of Huddersfield and District. I

I must tender my very best thanks to Messrs. J. Sed Stanhope, M.A., J.P., of Cannon Hall, Joseph Hadfield, Clerk to the former Holme U.D.C., G. E. Heywood, of Shelley, James Walton, B.Sc., of Hipperholme, and to Mrs. a Hallitt, of Lane Head, Shepley, for many items of legendary and factual informa— tion which have been incorporated in this book ; I must also record my indebtedness to reporters of the ‘‘ Huddersfield -Examiner,’’ who, years ago, collected many legends while they were engaged in writing the stories of the villages around Hud- dersfield. :

ee As on the three previous occasions, I am under a great debt of gratitude to the Proprietors of the ‘‘ Huddersfield Daily Examiner,’’ who, once again, have very kindly lent me photo- graphic blocks; I am also indebted to the Committee of the I Tolson Monreal Museum at Ravensknowle for Cae me the same facilities.

To Mr. Horace Goulden, F.L.A., our esteemed Public Librarian, and to his Assistants, in particular, Mr. Charles Bennett, I must once more express my very best thanks for affording me considerable assistance at our Public Library.


24, Lightridge Road, Sheepridge, Huddersfield, January, 1942.

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BAY HALL, BIRKBY. (Reproduced by courtesy of the Proprietors of the Huddersfield Examiner.)


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CHAPTER VI (continued). I (Continued from Part III.). I



Bay Hall is a very old half-timbered house, originally built of stone and oak, and is one of the few dwellings existing in the former Manor of Huddersfield, which was built in Tudor days (il . not earlier). At the present moment, it is partly hidden by the New Bay Hall, which was probably built in the eighteenth cen- tury. The Old Hall lies between the New Hall and Miln Road, I which leads into St. John’s Road. i

series of interesting problems. arises in connection with this old building, while a number of traditions relating to it’ has been handed down, besides many theories formulated concerning its original purpose :—

_ ].—WHEN WAS IT BUILT? Unfortunately, there is no date upon the building, as in the case of Wormall Hall (p. 187), nor are there any documents extant’ which can give us a clue. The homestead is not men- tioned in the Subsidy Roll of 1523, but it is quite possible that its owner or occupier, although not mentioned therein, duly paid the tax. Its architecture suggests late 15th century or early 16th century work. The late Mr. G. W. Tomlinson was of the opinion that Bay Hall at one time in its history ranked in import- ance with Woodsome Hall.

The middle portion of the Old Hall is certainly the most interesting part. It contains the half-timbered front, while on the vertex of the gable are to be seen the remains’ of a wooden finial. It is this part of the Hall which is referred to in Mr. Lewis Ambler’s book on ‘‘Qld Yorkshire Houses’’ (p. 4), wherein a photograph of this gable is reproduced. The author used the photograph to illustrate the type of work done by, Tudor builders in erecting ‘‘half-timbered’’ houses. He says, ‘‘In the gables, the studs or quarters were invariably parallel to the slopes of the roof.’? An examination of this gable confirms this statement.


Here again, we do not know. The first documentary mention of Bay Hall occurs in that historic deed of the sale of a Moiety of the Manor of Huddersfield by Queen Elizabeth to William Ramsden in 1599 :— I

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‘‘Elizabeth, by the Grace of God, etc., know ye that we, in consideration of the sum of Nine Hundred and Seventy-Five Pounds and Nine Pence have granted to William Ramsden, his heirs and assigns, all that our Manor of Huddersfield, mnt our capital Messuage called Bay Hall in Huddersfield . . . now. or lately in the tenure or occupation of John Brooke. . .”’

In this document are also mentioned the names of Thomas Brooke and George Bourke (otherwise Brooke) who tenanted I lands under the former Lord of the Manor, Sir Gilbert Gerrard, Queen Elizabeth’s Attorney General. It was a great pity that this historic document, as well as two. others containing Royal signatures, were not to the Huddersfield Corporation at the time-of the sale of the Ramsden Estates in 1920.

As to the actual builder of the ‘homestead, Hye have been put forward :— I

_ (i) That it was built by one of the Brookes who were the prevailing family in Huddersfield in 15th and 16th century days. I

Tradition relates that a family of Brookes tenanted the Hall for over a hundred years after 1599. In 1664, when the Hearth © Tax was imposed upon the inhabitants of this district, John Brooke of Bay Hall paid tax on cne hearth. The Brookes con— tinued to live here till about 1760, when the last member migrated to London. His descendants returned to Huddersfield about 1810, but found the old homestead in the tenancy of others and were compelled to find an abode elsewhere.

(ii) That the first building erected on this site was the Manor House of the Moiety of the Manor of Huddersfield. This theory will be next considered.


(a) It is so termed on one of the photographs of the building taken by the late Mr. Isaac Hordern and pasted in his Photo— graphic Books to be found in the Public Library. -

(b) The mention of the words ‘‘ our capital messuage ’’ in the deed of sale by Queen Elizabeth suggests the possibility that I it was originally built as a Manor House. It may have been _ erected to accommodate a former Lord of the Manor whenever he had occasion to visit Huddersfield, or, it might have been built for his steward and used as an administrative building. The general opinion is that it was never privately owned but was always vested by the Lord of the Manor as’ a headquarters for his steward up till 16th century days.

(c) One of the many stories which has been handed down regarding Bay Hall states that it was used as a Court House over

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‘two hundred years ago, and, in support of this theory, the follow- ing episode is told :— .

During some renovations to the building er eighty years ago, a recess in the front wall of the ground floor of the middle portion was disclosed. In it was found a piece of parchment which had been quaintly cut and folded into four parts in order to make a tailor’s yard measure. The parchment was unfolded and turned out to be a document from the High Court of Justice in London to the Sheriff of York, and which contained the legal phraseology —John Doe and Richard Roe. Unfortunately, this document was loaned out by the finder’s mother and was never returned! It has been suggested that’ the presence of this document in Bay Hall may have been a relic of the days when it was used as a Court House, but it is equally conceivable that the parchment yard measure may have been brought into the building by some tailor who tenanted the Hall!

(d) It also appears that over a hundred years ago a former Constable of Huddersfield, appointed by the Court Leet of the Manor of Almondbury, or the Constable for Birkby, lived at Bay Hall. If this be true, then there can be no doubt that one room in the building would have been used as a place of examination

of any prisoner before being handed over for trial at the Court of

the J.P.’s whether in Petty or Quarter Sessions.

Until medieval documents are discovered giving details of the building, it is impossible to say definitely why and when it was orginally built. All that is positively known is that after 1599 it was converted into a dwelling - house and later subsequently divided into three homesteads in which state it now remains.


Here again, two theories have been suggested in this connec- tion, and it is possible that others may be forthcoming :—

(i) It may have been so-called after the style of its architec- ture. A bay is defined as ‘‘ the space under a one-house rable ”’ (Chambers’ Dictionary). As Bay Hall possesses a magnificent Tudor gable, so the name of the Hall may have been given to it due to this circumstance.

(ii) It was suggested to me over ten years ago by a friend

that Bay Hall is a corruption of Baize (or Bays) Hall and

formerly when baize was manufactured in this it was sold at Bay Hall.

I An account of Colchester written by ‘‘ a Gentleman” in 1748, in a book entitled ‘‘ A Tour Through the Whole of Great Britain Divided into Circuits or Journeys, I etc,”’ gives the following description of a called building in that town :—

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‘‘Its other public edifices are Bay Hall, where the goodness of the manufacture of bays made in this town is ascertained by a corporation established for this purpose, consisting of men called governors.” ,

From the above extract, it would seem that the Bay Hall of Colchester was the assay office for bays, and that these governors placed upon the pieces a mark which served as a guarantee of quality to the buyers. Arguing by analogy, which, however, is not always a good guide, it may be that Bay Hall in early Tudor days was a building where baize was sold after it had been tested. (Compare the Cloth Hall, originally built in 1766 and demolished in 1930, p.'205). - I

It is also possible that an earlier building used for this purpose may have existed on this site in the Middle Ages and that when the present Hall was built, the spelling was altered. In any case, the spelling in the 1599 document is Bay Hall.

No ghost! stories are related of Bay Hall, but the following account of a peculiar ‘‘phenomenon’’ which was seen at the Hall was related to me :— I I

During a severe winter, a tile became loosened in the roof of the building, and, until it was replaced, a singular phenomenon was observed on an oak beam which spans the ceiling of one of the bedrooms. On one moonlight night, the light of that celestial orb’ shed upon the beam what seemed to all intents and purposes, the face of a very beautiful old lady. Visitors to the Hall drew the attention of the then occupiers to this strange but pleasing sight, alhough the latter had previously noticed it themselves. As this face seemed to become uncanny as time went on, the oak beam was covered with a layer of washable paint, but still ‘‘the old lady”’ refused to disappear. It was only after several sheets of wallpaper had been pasted over this beam that the ‘‘appari- tion ’’ disappeared.

I have omitted from this section all accounts of parts of Bay Hall having been used as a Sunday School and Day School before St. John’s Church and Day Schools were built in 1862, and later, as a Private School for Girls and with a Kindergarten for boys under six years, conducted by one Miss Thornton.

The Catholic traditions related of Bay Hall have been dis- cussed on page 4. I :

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This barn is reputed to be one of the in the vicinity _ of Huddersfield, and is situated opposite to Gunthwaite Hall. 3

It is one of the ‘‘crucks’’ type as no iron rails were used to keep the woodwork together, but wooden pegs. Its dimensions are 40 feet high at one end, and 45 feet at the other, due to the sloping ground. It is 45 feet wide and 55 yards long.

The upper part of the barn is made of a framework of the I ‘‘black and white’’ variety.. The ‘‘black’’ is old oak, while the ‘‘white’’ consists of the rubble and plaster which: fill in the inter— vening spaces. The stone tiled roof is supported on twenty- ~four great wooden pillars standing on stone bases.

There are no less than five tall barn doors which open into it. The barn was formerly divided into two parts by an internal wall, but within recent years a third compartment has been made. The original divisions were unequal, and ‘‘one may suppose that the larger division was used for rye, which occupied more space than wheat and straw, while the smaller was used for the storage of wheat.’’ If the partition walls had noti been made, the interior of the barn would have resembled the Jong nave and aisle of a cathedral.

On its roof at otis ha ends can be seen much weather- worn finials, while the bricks erent its east end are of the hand—made variety.

‘A tradition has been handed down that one of the apprentice lads of the carpenter who erected the barn was employed ‘during the whole of the period of his apprenticeship i in making the wooden pegs or pins, and that he was ‘‘out of his time’’ before the build- ing was finally completed. I

There may be some element of truth in this story, as a cer- tain amount of time was allowed to elapse to enable the founda— tions to settle. Moreover, it is quite certain that weather condi- tions would delay the erection of the building, and, finally, the workmen in the days of Queen Elizabeth had far more holidays than those of the 20th century. I


Lane Head is a fine old homestead at Shepley, with a 16th century date carved over one of the doors, and which’ is known throughout the district as “The Quaker House’’ from its former associations with a family of Firths who lived there.

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197 It is said that this. house is haunted and: tet the ghost ‘‘ walks on St. Valentine’s Day each year.’

The precise version of the legend appears to be as follows :— of the Firths, who was a member of the Society of Friends, converted part of the building into a Chapel. Shortly afterwards one of the family met an untimely end in this strange place of worship, and the legend states that on the anniversary of the unfortunate accident, strange noises are heard and an apparition is supposed to have been seen at various times.’

The following is an account of this homestead which has been ‘sent to me by Mrs. L. Hallitt, from a MS. version communicated to her by Miss Helen Wood, a member of the Firth family (p. 50) :

Head was the first of the family residences of the Firths of which any definite record exists. There were four distinct parts of this residence, the first part on the West side was built in 1597 and enlarged in 1647, by adding the dining room and the bedroom over it; the next was made in 1695, or abouts, and was a lean-to meeting house, with a passage and door into the garden, over which is inscribed ‘“Memento mori’’ (Re- member Dying).’’

‘“This last addition was used as a House for members of the Society of Friends in the district, and for which a license was granted in 1695 :—

“WEST RIDING At a general Quarter Sessions of the Peace of _CO. OF yoRK. our Lord the King held at Rotherham by ad- journment in and for the West Riding of the County aforesaid, the 22nd day of July in the year of the reign of our Lord the King William the Third, by the Grace of God now King of England, &c., the seventh (i.e., 1695), before John Wentworth, Godfrey Copley, George Cooke, Baronets, Godfrey Bosville, John Bradshaw, Esquires, and other Justices of the Peace there, etc. These are to certify whom it may concern that the House of Joseph Firth of Hallroyd, Lane Head, in Shepley, is recorded at the abovesaid ' Sessions for a Meeting place for religiouse _ worshipp pursuant to a late (Act) of Parliament entitled an Act for exempting His Majesty’s subjects dissenting from the Church of England, from certain penall laws.

By the Court, (Signed) T. SKELTON, Clerk of the Peace there.’’

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(Reproduced by courtesy of the Proprietors of the “Huddersfield Examiner’’).

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199 ‘ A further addition was made in 1709 by my great-great-

Do Joseph Firth, on his marriage with Hannah Dickenson, of Low House, High Flatts.’’

‘In the building of this part, the Meeting House was absorbed in the staircase and the pantry; meetings were held: is the large sitting room, which was known as the ‘low’ room.

‘‘The Courtyard in front of the house was paved at a later date, the stones came from Elland Edge.’’

I Then followed an account of the arrest and subsequent of John Firth of Lane Head in 1642, p. 50}.




There is a tradition, so Mr. Fred Lawton, of Skelmanthorpe, in a letter to the ‘‘ Huddersfield Examiner,’’ some years ago, stated, that one of the Bosvilles of Gunthwaite Hall agreed ‘‘to I build a church for Denby in 1624.” :

‘* He began building the church too far away from the village to suit the inhabitants of Denby. The latter told Mr. Bosville that they would not go to the church nor subscribe a penny for its upkeep. So he gave in and built the Church at Denby. Thus the in the field are of a partly-built church.”’

Lady Alice Macdonald of the Isles, in her book, ‘“The For- tunes of a F amily,’’ which deals with the history of the Bosvilles of Gunthwaite, makes no reference to this tradition in her bio- graphy of Godfrey Bosville II. (1596-1658). She mentions the erection of the ‘‘new chapel at Denby"”. by William Bosville, his son (1620-1692), which chapel, she says ‘‘ owed its building chiefly to exertions of Colonel Godfrey Bosville’’ (‘‘ Fortunes,’’ p. ° 73-77).

It would thus seem that Godfrey Bosville, after his plan of building a chapel about a quarter of a mile from the Hall had been scotched by the inhabitants of Denby, decided to build it in the village itself and that the édifice was completed by his son.

In the Parliamentary Survey dated May 7, 1650, when the Long Parliament ordered enquiries to be made into the livings of

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Anglican Churches, there are interesting details concerning two chapels in the Parish of

(i) “‘ We find a chapel of ease calied Gunthwaite Chapel within the Parish of Penistone, distant from the parish church two miles, to which chapel there is granted out of Sir Edward I Osborne’s estate upon the composition the sum of £50 per annum — towards the maintenance of a preaching minister there.’’

This Chapel of Ease was, in all probability, the private chapel of the Bosvilles of Gunthwaite, of which details will be given shortly (p. 201).

(ii) ‘‘ We find another chapel in the said chapel called Denby Chapel, three miles from the Parish Church (of Penistone), and a quarter of a mile from Gunthwaite Chapel, and without minister and maintenance.”’ I

This ‘Chapel was, no doubt, the present Church at Denby_ which was built by William Bosville.

(iii) ‘‘ We think it fit in regards to their nearness to annex them and have them made in one parish and all Cumberworth but that part of the township in the Parish of Silkstone, as also that part in the Parish of Kirkburton, to be annexed to that new parish, so, as we conceive it fit, that all Gunthwaite, Denby, and the whole of Cumberworth be made a parish of itself, and Denby Chapel be the Parish Church.’’ [Parliamentary Survey (Lambeth Palace, Vol. XVIII., Pear ies

In order to see the ruins of the Church projected by. Godfrey Bosville, permission should be obtained from the tenant who farms the fields which enciose them. The following directions will enable the enthusiast to find them :— I

Walk along Oak Lane where a gate is to be seen on the right hand side. Pass through the gate and keep near the pond until the wooden bridge which spans the railway is reached. A. very high wall will be seen after crossing the bridge. Keep along the high wall in the direction of Denby, and at the top of the field, © in the right hand corner, will be found some old window frames and stone posts which apparently formed part of a church.

It is certain that the Church could never have been built in. . the corner of this field but must have been erected on another site. It can be reasonably assumed that the window frames and’ the stone posts were incorporated in this high wall at a later date.

Lady Macdonald of the Isles says that ‘‘a provision was made for this chapel at Denby partly bv a fine out of the Rectory of Seaton Rosse, which fine gave £100 to be paid annually by Sir

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Edward Osborne of Kiveton (£59 to Gunthwaite and £50 to Denby). Mh tg Fortunes of a Family,”’ p. 76).

The Rev. Joseph Hunter, in his South Yorkshire”? (Vol. II., p. 352-353), gives an account of the building of Denby Chapel and of the ministers who officiated there.


The Bosvilles of Gunthwaite, had a private chapel in the grounds of their ancestral home, although Lady Macdonald of the Isles, in her work, ‘‘ The Fortunes of a Family,’’ makes no allusion to it. I

These ruins were first described by my dear old friend, Mr. Fred Lawton, of Skelmanthorpe, in the ‘ ‘Hudderstield Nae years ago :— I

‘‘The roof is gone but the four walls are standing. The piscina is there intact. The Chapel was large enough to seat the Bosville family and the workers on the estate. The little well is there, which, it is said, supplied water for the baptisms of many generations of by-gone Bosvilles. The brick—tiled pathway that led from the Old Hall door down to the “Church is' there, though covered >

I Mr. ‘Lawton, ina gave me additional information con- cerning the destruction of this private Chapel :— I

ig, 3. Holmes, who lived in one half of the Hall for a good many years, told me that he saw the farmer who lived in the other part, pulling the Chapel down; Mr. Holmes asked the farmer why he was so doing. The farmer replied that he wanted stones to build a wall! Mr. Holmes wrote to the steward of the Bosvilles complaining of the destruction of this private Chapel. The steward arrived on the scene just in time to prevent further desecration, but unfortunately the greater part of the Chapel had been pulled down.’

There must have been a further removal of stones tenes the ruins since Mr. Lawton first explored the site, for when Mr. Frecheville Frobisher and myself visited the spot on October 30th, 19338, we could not find the piscina. We observed the base of a pillar and the stones which formed part of the East’ wall.

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This is one of the most fascinating place-names in our dis- trict, for there is every reason to believe that it originated as the result of having been the abode of some hermit, possibly in the days when the Anglians' first settled in the West Riding, A.D. 635—650. Professor W. G. Collingwood, M.A., F.S.A., in his book on ‘‘The Angles, Danes and Norse in Huddersfield. and District ’’ (Tolson Memorial Museum Handbook, No. 2, p 19), when referring to the development of Anglian Abbeys in the old. Anglian kingdom of Northumbria, :—

“Many of these Abbeys had begun as hermitages, ra there were hermits among the Angles as there were in much later times when Armitage (Hermitage) Bridge took its name.”’’

Mr. Armitage Goodall, in his book on ‘‘Place Names ir South-West Yorkshire,’’ states that Armitage Bridge is one ‘‘of the few West Riding names of French origin.’’ The derivation is from an old F rench word hermitage, and the surname Armitage so common in the neighbourhood of Huddersfield, owes its ae to this ancient cell.

The first documentary reference to the locality is found in the Pontefract Chartulary, in which a deed dated 1212 contains the phrase ‘‘ Hermitage que jacet juxta Caldwenedenebroc,”’ i.e., ‘‘ the hermitage which lies beside the Caldwenedene brook,”’ the Caldwenedene brook, no doubt, being an old name for the stream which flowed ato the River Holme.

The Armitage family took its surname from the locality as above stated. The first reference to this family is to be found in the list of free tenants mentioned in the so-called Inquisition into the Manor of Almondbury, 1340 :—

Adam del Hermitage holds a ‘‘vast place called Rodbank (situated somewhere near Armitage Bridge or in South Crosland), paying 2d. annually at Martinmas, his heir has to pay double rent by way of reler on his decease, he is' also bound to perform military service.’

This entry is the ‘‘Extent’’? compiled by order of Hen Earl of Derby, Lord of the Manors of Almondbury and Huddersfield, has not been mentioned by: former local and is gene ant for two reasons :— I

I (i) As already stated, it is the first written record of a of the Armitage family of Armitage Bridge, later of Highroyd,

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Honley, of House, of Storthes Hall, and now of Hunter’s Leaze, Wiltshire. hee

(11) Ale ro del Hermitage is the only other instance in the ‘‘Extent’’ of 1340 besides Stephen Walleys of a free tenant in the Manor of Almondbury holding land by rendering military service as well as by a monetary payment.

In the Poll Tax Returns of the year 1379, we find William del Armytache and Agnes, his wife, contributing 4d. to the National Exchequer as their quota.

The abstracts of the Armitage Charters prepared by the Rev. Henry Paton, M.A., in 1906, give many interesting details of land transactions effected by the early members of this family in late 15th century days. The earliest is a deed dated the 10th of May, — 1492, wherein William Armytegge of Armytegge ‘‘ granted to his son dnd heir John Armytegge his messuage called Armytegge, with all and sundry lands and territory of Crosland Fosse, etc.’’

Both the surname and the place-name in the Armitage Charters are variously written Armytegge, Armytage, Armyttage, Armitage, Ermitage, up till the year 1609, when we find it spelled Armitage, although in 1514 there is a record of this last-named form of spelling in a Yorkshire Fine. —

A story of one of the early female members of this family was communicated by the Rev. J. Hunter to Dr. H. J. Morehouse (the historian of Holmfirth and Kirkburton), and was reproduced by the late Mr. G. W. Tomlinson in ‘one of his MSS. Books (Box 4, . Book Q., pp. 108-109 9) :— I

‘In the reign of iV, a of one of the Armitages of Armitage Bridge had been forced by her family into a marriage with a person she did not love. The marriage was an unpopular one and the case afterwards came to be investigated. I Her dispositions were taken, in which she stated that ‘she would rather have been thrown into a Coyle Pit than have married him.’ ’”’

The Armytages of Kirklees are said to have been descended from, those of Armitage Bridge, although in Mr. Tomlinson’s MSS. there are divergencies of opinion expressed by former genealogists on this point.

In 1856, Mr. George of Milnsbridge (1806 - 1882) supplied Mr. Tomlinson with the following ‘‘ note ’’ which had been made by his pe Mr, me need of High Royd

“gq have heard my papa (Joseph 1716- -1798) speak I of two uncles of my cen s (George Armitage, 1674-1743),

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who built Deadmanstone. He said that they were next of kin to the Kirklees Estate, both dying unmarried, the heir, Mr. Samuel Armitage, was found in or near Barnsley. These said two bachelors quarrelled with the Kirklees family and changed the letter in their mame trom y to 1.44."

The story of the Armytage family of Wiridees iS told ie Mr. W. B. Crump, M.A., in his ‘* History of the Huddersfield Woollen I Industry,’’ (Tolson Memorial Museun: Handbook, No. IX., pp. 45-46). I

The Hermits who occupied the Hermitage no . doubt built a small narrow bridge to cross the River Holme, and it is natural to expect that the bridge later gave its name to the locality (cp. Cooper Bridge; Milnsbridge).

The Bridge at Armitage Bridge is frequently mentioned in the Accounts of the Constable of South Crosland. In 1774, Jonathan Crowther expended £1 15s. 04d. in repairing the ‘‘battlements”’ of the Bridge, and used 10441bs. of lead which he bought in Hud- dersfield for the work of repairs.

In Tudor days, a homestead was erected in the vicinity, no doubt, on or near. the site of the former dwelling-house of the Armitages. My attention was first drawn to the picturesque ruins — of this.old abode on Good Friday, 1915, when my first wife and I were walking up the steep road from Armitage Bridge to Nether- ton. The ruins were partially covered with ivy, while the stone mullioned window-frames and lapel mouiding were plainly visible. I have not been able to ascertain when it was demolished; for- tunately, a photograph of the Tudor homestead was taken by the late Mr. Benjamin Langrick, the Headmaster of Armitage meee Church Schools.

The modern Armitage Bridge House was built in 1825 Hy Mr. William Brooke, of Northgate House (1763-1846) for his son, Mr. John Brooke (17941878).


records that a done time ago there lived at this former abode a man of the name of Tinker, a wild, hectoring, type of individual. His great sport was hunting; all the day long, he would be riding on the hills with his hounds, and, on his return at night, he would celebrate his day’s bag with the con- sumption of much liquid refreshment and the singing of ete songs.

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He lived to a good old age, and “if the stories which were formerly circulated concerning him were true, his neighbours were more than delighted to see his departure from this life. How- ever, even when they had securely nailed down his coffin lid and buried him in the ground, they were not yet finished with the wild huntsman.

After he was dead, an old woman one night was sitting in the kitchen of Tinker’s house when she heard a terrific shriek which made her blood run cold, and her hair stand like ‘‘nine pins on a door mat.’’ She heard, so she averred, the horses kicking madly in their stables, and it is said she threw her apron over her head to allay the noise; when this plan failed, she tried to say her prayers. The din éontinued for such a long time that she could stand it' no longer so she decided to light a candle and go to the stables from whence the pandemonium emanated.

The stable doors were locked, but when she unfastened them and went inside, there was, of course, no one there, but the horses were foaming at the mouth as “‘in a white lather,’’ stampeding ‘and mad with fright. I

Terrified at this sight, she ran back to the house, and as she sped along, a tali white ghostly spectre glided by her side—it was the ghost of old Tinker who had come back to see his. horses !


This -building was originally erected by Sir John Ramsden (1699—1769) in 1766, enlarged by his son, Sir John Ramsden (1755—1839) in 1780, restored by the grandson of the latter, Sir John William Ramsden (1836—1914) in 1848, demolished in 1930 to make way for the Huddersfield Public Library, but, on its vacant site, the Ritz Cinema was built instead of the Library in 1935-1936.

It was supposed to be haunted by ‘‘ghosts’’ by the super— stitiously-minded in the early days of the 19th century. In those days, stories were told of at least three such apparitions which were said to visit periodically the Cloth Hall:— I

(i) The first was that of Old Mike, a former turnkey of the premises, ‘‘whose uneasy spirit used t6 play all manner of pranks, such as mixing up the manufacturers’ cloth, until, in the October of the year 1793, the then Vicar of Huddersfield, after many fruitless efforts, succeeded in laying the ‘‘ghost’’ for sixty years.’’

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(Reproduced by courtesy of the Tolson Memorial Museum Committee)


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BG hae (11) The second ‘‘spectre’’ was that of Bernard Flanagan, an Irishman, who got lost in the corridors in 1789, so it was alleged, and whose ‘‘spirit’’ was reputed to appear at odd times to the consternation of‘the dwellers of the houses in the vicinity of the Cloth Hall.

i (iii) The third was that of a manufacturer who had : hung himself in the building about the same time as Bernard Flanagan had got “‘lost.’’ I

_ Much speculation, therefore, arose on Tuesday, October 4th, 1858, as to which of these three ‘‘ghosts” was ringing the bell in the cupola surmounting the building after the premises had been locked up at 4-0 p.m. on that Market Day by the turnkey. After ia while, the bell ceased ringing, a pale form appeared at one of the upper windows and made signs’ to the folk who had collected below, and who were now very curious to know which “‘ohost’’ “was at this window. Seven times, so it was reported in the contemporary, press account, the ‘“‘ghost’’ had rung the bell, and seven times had the ‘‘ apparition ’’ manifested ‘itself as above stated ! :

At last one gentleman, less superstitious than the others congregated in the street, approached the Cloth Hall and heard the voice inside shout, ‘‘My dear Sir, the turnkey has locked me up while I was making an invoice in my shop, I’ve been shut in for three hours and I hope you’ll be so good as to send for the turnkey to open the doors as J don’t want to remain here till next Tuesday.”’ 2 :

I The turnkey was soon sent for and the doors duly opened, when the ‘‘ghost,’’ as was to be expected, turned out to be a respectable manufacturer, who, apparently, had been so engrossed in his labours, that he had not heard the closing-time bell! The turnkey demanded a shilling for re-opening the doors, which he received after some demur on the part of the manufacturer. i

In those days, the Cloth Hall was opened once a week, namely, on Tuesdays from 8-0 a.m. till 12-0 noon, and from 3-0 p.m. till 5-0 p.m., for the removal of cloth, etc. It was also’ opened on Friday’ afternoons at a later date in the nineteenth century. I : Mr. J. W. Jessop, the last custodian of the Cloth Hall pre- vious to its demolition, informed me that during his term of office, no less than twenty-one persons had been locked in the Cloth Hall after the bell had been rung.

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R eproduced by courtesy of the Tolson Memorial Museum Committee).

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Two buildings have been erected on or near the same site on Godfrey Hill; the first, for reasons to be stated shortly, went by the name of Cook’s Study, and the second, The Chantrey Tower, although its subsequent ruins were locally known by the name of the first tower. The Chantrey Tower was demolished during the years 1934-1985. Each of these two buildings had a separate history which is worth preserving and handing down to later generations.


Former topographers of Huddersfield and its vicinity have stated that the date of the erection of the first tower was ‘‘ lost in the mists of antiquity,’’—-but there is every reason to believe that it was built as a shooting-box or gamekeeper’s cottage (perhaps, a combination of both) in the early years of the last century.

The first reference to Cook’s Study is to be found in George Searle Phillips’s little book, ‘‘ Walks around Huddersfield,’’ written in 1848. He described the ruins, of the building in the following words : —

‘“The moors are 23 miles bevand Holmfirth, and, at the top of one of the mountains, on the moorland, is a curious build- ing in ruins, which is called ‘ Cook’s Study.’ It is about 10 feet square and 20 feet high, and was built by a clergyman, an incum— bent, I believe, of Holmfirth, who used to go and read there.”’

‘“ It is at present used by shepherds on the moors as a shelter, and there is a spring of water close to it which is said to possess valuable medicinal properties.’’

Mr. Phillips’s statement that the builder was a Rev. Cook of Holmfirth is inaccurate, for no clergyman of that name appears in the list of Vicars and Curates of the Holmfirth Parish Church, or of any Churches in the neighbouring district.

Another ‘manufactured ’ story stated that the first building was erected by the celebrated Captain Cook who sailed to the South Seas, but this can be dismissed as sheer fiction.

It was also generally believed that the original builder was interested in astronomy and pursued his investigations there.

On the other hand, there is a tradition that ‘‘ there lived in the township of Hepworth a studious young man of the name of Cook who loved to take his book under his arm and walk up the long straight road that led from his home until he came to the

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Photo by the late Mr. W. H. Sikes.


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moors, and then he would make his way to the top of Godfrey. Hil! and sit in the shade of the tower and read his book or gaze at the - wonderful scenery about and below him. The inhabitants of the locality, who, of an evening, gathered at the ‘ Weathercock Inn,’ which stood not far from the foot of the hill—a handy place where thirsty peat diggers could quench their. thirst—would relate that young Cook had been up to his study again. And they would laugh and say that would be all the old tower would be of any I use, and so they jokingly called it ‘ Cook Study,’ and as it had not been known by any other name, this one remained, while the former name of the hill on which it stood has almost beea for— gotten.’ :

This is the version as told to me by Mr, J. Hadfield, the former Clerk to the now defunct Holme Urban District) Council, and there is every reason to believe that is the real explanation why the first tower erected on Godirey ies got this name of Cook’s Study.

The destruction of the first Cook's Study dates to the days of King William IV. In 1829 an Act of Parliament entitled ‘* An Act for Inclosing Lands within the Graveship of Holme in the _several parishes of Kirkburton and Almondbury in the West Riding of York,’’? was passed; its object was to dispose of the thousand acres of moorland laying on the south-western side of the Graveship of Holme, and which up to that time was used as common land by the inhabitants of the component townships of the . Graveship, and which is. still referred to by that name by sheep farmers and others in the locality. I

Under the provisions of this Act, certain gentlemen were appointed Commissioners of Inquiry; these were ‘Thomas Brad- ley, of Richmond; Frederick Robert Jones, of Huddersfield; the surveyors were William Bingley, of Wombwell, and Thomas Dinsley, of Huddersfield.

The Commissioners executed their Award on the 12th of April, 1834. A copy of this Award can be seen in the Holmfirth Council offices. I

A’ short summary of the Act is given in the Charity Com- missioner’s Report for the Parish of Kirkburton in 1897 (pp. 28-29).

‘“ The Commissioners appointed were directed to allot to the _ Constable of the Constabulary of Holme for the time being several pieces of common land, not exceeding in the whole 40 acres in trust for the benefit of the owners or proprietors within the said Graveship for the purpose of their digging and getting peats and turves therein to be ee and consumed in their respective dwell-

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ing—houses within the said Graveship, but not to be sold or other- wise disposed of; and it was further directed that the grass and herbage of such lands should, subject to the right, be let from year to year by the said Constable for the time being, and the rents and profits arising therefrom paid and applied by him in aid of the Poor Rates of the several con- the Graveship, etc.’

The lands allotted by the of the Award were 40 acres at Cook’s Study, and these were divided into ‘‘ Shooting Rights’’ for the Spencer Stanhope family who paid £10 Os. Od. yearly rent for the same, and ‘‘ Herbage Rights,’’ held in de by I Mr. George Sedgwick, at an annual rent of 10s.

-. The Commissioners, .after having granted the Constable of Holme certain plots for the use of the inhabitants to dig peat, then granted to each existing landowner an allotment of land proportional to the extent he already owned, on condition that he erected a substantial stone fence around it within two years from the time of his receiving the allotment. All these allotments except those granted to the Constable of Holme were on the fringe of the moor and adjoining enclosures, so that when they were all taken up and enclosed, there was a large amount of stone-fenced land.

Among those who acquired either by allotment, or by pur- chase, large tracts of enclosed land was Mr. John Spencer Stan- hope of Cannon Hall (1787-1873); this gentleman then entered into. the fashionable sport of grouse shooting on his newly- acquired estates and invited his ‘friends to join in the pursuit.

It seems that about this time, 1828-1834, if not earlier, tower commonly known as Cook’ s Study, a combination of gamekeeper’ s cottage and a resting place for the Stanhope ie ing party, came into existence on Hill which had been enclosed under. the terms of the Award of the Holme Enclosure Act.

But from time immemorial, the inhabitants of the Graveship of Holme had had the right to graze their cattle, sheep and young geese on the moors in the summer months, also to dig peat in the winter. They were highly incensed that their former privileges were henceforth to be denied to them, notwithstanding the fact that certain areas were allocated to them by the terms of the ‘ Award.”’ for digging peat.

‘To prevent further peat digging, Mr. John oe Stanhope (1787-1873) caused a strong’ wire fence to be placed along the side of the public road leading to the peat mound. This was “‘ the last straw ’’ as far as the inhabitants of these localities were con- cerned, for on one night, they assembled in full force and set fire to Cook’s Study, not then known by that name, and so damaged it, that it could no longer be used as a dwelling-house.

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“What kind of structure was the original Cook’s Study? The > ate. Mr. S. L. Mosley, in his articles on ‘‘ Rambles around Hud-— dersfield’’ which appeared in the ‘‘‘Huddersfield Weekly Examiner,’’ stated that he had spoken to an old man, aged &6 years, who had lived within short distance of the Chantrey Tower (as the second building was originally to have been termed), all his life, and who said that before this second tower was erected, there had been another, some 12 to 14 feet high, with a round top like a,‘‘ bee hopper.’? But another resident told Mr. Mosley that it had ‘‘ a square top which went to a point in the centre ’’ (prob- ably a pyramid). This building was, no doubt, the one whose ruins were described by Mr. Phillips in 1848. It is not known whether it was built of stone or of wood.

Two interesting items concerning the first Cook’s Study can be recorded :—

. (i) In 1842, some wide shooting near Cook’s Study, stumbled across the remains of a human skeleton which were believed to have been there for nearly a hundred: years.

(ii) Cook’s Study appears to have been used by George Phillips (1816-1889), the Secretary of the Huddersfield Mechanics’ - Institute during the years 1846-1851, as a retreat. Here he wrote his little book on ‘‘ Ebenezer Elliott, the Corn Law Rhymer,’’ under the pen—name of January Searle; the book was: published by Messrs. Whittaker and Co., Ave Maria Lane, London, and John Brook, Huddersfield. It was no doubt due to Phillips’ asso— ciation with Cook’s Study which led him to describe the ruins thereof in his ‘*‘ Walks Round Huddersfield.’’ I


This tower, also known as Cook’s Study, but wrongly, originated through a visit paid in the year 1828 (not in 1852, as some former topographers of Huddersfield have stated) by Sir Francis Chantrey to Cannon Hall, then the residence of Mr. John Spencer Stanhope, who, we have previously said, acquired lands in the vicinity of the first Cook’s Study. Both went to see the mag- I nificent view from Godfrey Hill where the tower still stood, but whether in ruins or not at the time of this visit is not known. Sir Francis Chantrey was so impressed by the view that he drew sketches for a stone building to be erected on or site.

. The Chantrey Tower, however, was not erected until the year 1852, the year of the Holmfirth Flood. It was designed in the form of a square 20 feet long and broad and stood 40 feet high. At one corner, a side tower which abutted- in the form of

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an irregular pentagon, was built a few feet higher than the rest of the building. A carved tablet stone stood over the doorway, and on it were inscribed the words :— , ;


This gave the date of its construction and also its correct title. Nevertheless, the popular name of Cook’s Study stuck to it; it was used as a residence for gamekeepers and as a shooting—box. The tower originally had three storeys, with a flat parapet on its top, all the walls were two feet thick and were built of dressed I sandstone obtained from a near-by quarry.

The Chantrey Tower suffered the same fate as its predecessor, Cook’s Study,—it, too, was destroyed. Much has been previously written concerning the date and the cause of its destruction, which, I am inclined to think, is fictitious. The facts as reported in the ‘‘ Leeds Mercury ’’ for April. 14, 1860, are these :—

‘“On Monday morning last (April 9, 1860), it was discovered that the Chantrey Tower (better known as ‘ Cook’s Study ’), a castellated edificé which stands among the hills that separate Yorkshire and Lancashire, had been destroyed by fire, and reason was afterwards found for believing the fire to be the work of an incendiary. A crowbar was lying outside the building, and it had ° evidently been used to force the’ iron stancheons with which the windows were protected, for the purpose of obtaining entrance. The tower is in occupation of Mr. Henry Brooke, of Huddersfield. He had filled it up a short time ago and it was a place of resort among those who went to the moors between Holme and Dun- ford Bridge. It: was usually watched by the keeper, John Webster, but on the night of the fire, he had gone down to his family who live on the farm below, and he thus escaped what possibly might have been fatal to his life. The floors, doors and furniture, valued at about £200, were entirely consumed.”’

The perpetrators of this outrage were never discovered, but it was generally believed by many persons in the vicinity of Holm- firth chat the incendiarism was committed by some poachers who had been previously imprisoned for an attack on some game- keepers when the majority of the former had been sent to gaol, and that the destruction of the Chantrey Tower was a piece of revenge on the part of these poachers.

There are at least three other versions this destruction of the Chantrey Tower :—

(i) The late Mr. S. L. Mosley, in his articles previously men - tioned, said that “‘ soon after the Holmfirth Flood of February, 1852, it was set on fire by a gang of poachers and never repaired.’’ Mr. Mosley had anticipated the date of the fire by eight years!

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(ii) story says that the tower was set alight either by poachers or trappers after Mrs. Green, the wife of a former keeper had died.

(iii) A third account, which, perhaps is linked with the correct story told above, states the inhabitants of Holmfirth and district were still aggrieved at the fact that their rights of digging peat in winter time, and grazing cattle in the summer, were being denied to them, and ‘‘ they tore up the fence and set fire to the new tower, so that floors were burned, and the roof fell in, and it could not be used. However, the inhabitants retained their free access to the peat ground. i

Mra. Vi ON, in his ** History of Penistone,’’ ‘said that when the Tower was set on fire, the silver plate kept there for the use of shooting parties was stolen.

The heat from the fire cracked the building in several places, and later, the walls were strongly buttressed; three buttresses remained till 1935 and were four feet wide.

After its destruction by fire, the lower room was still used for some purposes connected with game-shooting, and in 1914, _the building was not so dilapidated as in 1929. .In 1882, a keeper, of the name of Mr. Samuel Haigh, lived there.

I visited the existing ruins in the August of 1929, and observed that the tower was built on an island mound which. towered above the rest of the moors on three sides. Below the tower the ground descends almost vertically to a disused quarry, from which the stones used for it's erection were first quarried and then trimmed. . The ruins were then fast crumbling away; in severe wintry weather the force of the gales hurled down stones from the remains of the pentagonal tower, which then was the highest portion of the structure. The entrance to the tower was by an arched doorway, made of granite, and carved in Gothic style, similar to that seen over church doors. . The doorway consisted of eighteen stones, ten on the left and eight on the right. It did not contain a corner stone—a rather unique feature. It was quite weathered, but the tracery was in a fairly good condition. It rose to a height of 7 feet 8 inches above the ground, and a large rectangular slab stood at its base. The doorway led to a room _ on the ground floor; as one entered it, one was immediately con— fronted with a:mass of débris, the majority of which corsisted of the rectangular slabs which formed part of the walls and roof.

At the extreme left-hand corner of this room was a doorway which led to the pentagonal tower. The ascent to the top of this — tower was by means of a spiral staircase made of right—angled

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Photograph of a Sketch by Mr. Harry Fieldhouse.

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triangular blocks of stone, 74 inches high and 24 feet in hypo- tenuse; this was a most beautiful piece of work. This staircase also led down to a doorway which opened into a cellar, which, like the staircase, was full of loose stones. In the cellar, no doubt, was stored a supply of liquid refreshment for the members of shooting parties. I

could not find the tablet stone containing the inscription ‘“Chantry Tower,’’ but it might have been amongst the débris. There was an Ordnance mark on the building, showing that the base of the tower stood at an altitude of 1,486 feet above sea level.

As already stated, the ruins were fast crumbling away, and, in spite of notices which Mr. J. Spencer Stanhope placed on the tower, informing the members of the public that the ascent of the tower was dangerous, yet some attempted to do so.

In order to prevent fatal accidents, Mr. Spencer Stanhope ordered its demolition in 1934, and in 1935 the whole of the struc— ture had been removed. Mr. Spencer Stanhope wrote a letter to the ‘‘ Huddersfield Examiner ’’ giving his reasons in full for the demolition :

of all let me state very definitely that it has not been demolished to extend a quarry. It was only after I had made a . careful inspection of the building and had decided that it was a real danger to the public, who, in spite of warning notices, per- sisted at the risk of life and limb in climbing to the top of this crumbling ruin, that I regretfully gave orders for its demolition, rather than. indulge j in a sentiment which might be the cause of a serious accident.’

‘“ There is little doubt that the Meanie Tower ’ would be standing to-day had not the building been set on fire. The damage done by this act of vandalism was so extensive that for I many years it has been apparent that the tower could not with- stand for long the batterings of the gales and storms which sweep across the Pennines salen. it was re-built almost entirely. The cost of such an undertaking was prohibitive in these days of high taxation. Thus the glories of the past have to give place to the practical requirements of our times.’’

Mr. Spencer Stanhope has caused to be re-erected all the beautiful stones of the Gothic doorway as an entrance to the other ruins in the pleasure grounds of Cannon Hall Park.

Mr: E. Morris’s ‘‘ Guide to the West Riding of York- shire”’ (p. 481), appears the following description of ‘* Cook’s Study’’: ‘‘A building that on being seen thfough a rift in the mist might almost stand for the’ ‘ dark tower’ in Browning’s ‘ Childe

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Harold,’ so strangely does it break on the eye of the spectator who is unexpectedly traversing the rough road below.’’

On the 17th of September, 1862, one Robert Turner, of Wooldale Farm, was riding on horseback near Cook’s Study when his horse stumbled and fell upon him; owing to the swampy nature of the ground at the time, he was immediately suffocated and died before help could be rendered.


I Local topographers are agreed that the first Crosland Hall, the abode of Sir Robert Beaumont, the third victim of Sir John de -Eland’s wrath in 1841 (according to the Ballad) stood on or near the site of the Lower Hall at South Crosland.

This farm house can be approached from by walk- down Bank End, past the Congregational Church, till a stile in the wall on the right-hand side of the road ding to Honley is reached. A path leads from this opening to the at ft can also be reached from Healey House. :

No remains of the old Hall are to be seen. Hobkirk in his History of Huddersfield’’ (1st Edn. pp. 28-29) states. that ‘ the wood and stonework of the original building were used to build a mill about two hundred years previously,” that is, about the year 1668. But Hobkirk was not quite accurate in his state- ments, for Crosland Hall is marked on Robert Morden’s Map of the West Riding compiled in 1695, while on John Warburton’s Map of the District, compiled about the year 1720, it is clearly indicated in miniature by a two-gabled dwelling-house. The representation suggests an Elizabethan structure, and it is also quite possible, as in the case of Quarmby Hall (p. 179), that Cros- land Hall was rebuilt in Tudor Days. It is not indicated on a Map of Huddersfield and its District, compiled about the year 1789, although the locality Crosland is marked, hence it would appear that the Hall was demolished betw een 1720 and 17 89.

A tradition has been handed down that the stings of the old Hall were used to build Lower Hall which is adjacent to the existing moat. Would this have been one of the original mills mentioned by Hobkirk and later converted into a dwelling-house? Some very old stones are to be found in the walls of the barn attached to the Lower Hall, and a derelict pig- -sty has in one of its walls a massive stone section is a trapezium. 1

i Very little is known about the Cr osland Hall which here in 1341, and, in which, Sir Robert Beaumont was murdered,

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Photo by Mr. J. Eric Smith, B.A., F.R.G.S,


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assuming, of course, that the first ‘‘ act’’ of the Elland Feud is historically correct. I I

Some few details concerning the medizval building are gathered from the Ballad of the Elland Feud (printed in Mr. J Horsfall Turner’s ‘‘ The Elland Tragedies.’’).

(i) .\ moat surrounded the Hall in mediaeval days :—

‘<The Hall was watered well about, No wight (person) might enter in; Till that the bridge was well out, . hey durst not venture in.

(ii) It was the temporary place of refuge of Adam Beaumont, : the son of Sir Robert, after his flight from Ainley Wood following

the murder of Sir John de Eland the younger at Elland on Palm

Sunday, 1351.

The remains of the moat can be seen-almost at right angles to the Lower Old Hall Farm and practically parallel to the house known as Lower Hall. Local tradition states that Sir Robert Beaumont was murdered in the cellars of this last-named building ! The moat runs in a N.E.-S.W. direction. Up till some twenty vears ago, the moat could be distinctly traced on three sides of Crosland Lower Old Hall Farm, and, at the moment, there are traces on the south side of Lower Hall. It was also visible in the courtyard of the Lower Old Hall Farm, now in the occupation of _ Mr. G. H. Saxton, who informed me that he had filled up this part of the moat in order to make a level piece of ground in front of his dairy. :

The moat is about 120 feet long, and its greatest breadth is 30 feet. At its southerly end, it seems to run into a small stream which flows into the River Mag, a tributary of the River Holme. In one part, its depth is five feet, although, it is possible that formerly, it may have been deeper, as there is evidence, at various places, of its having been filled up with earth and rubble. On both sides of the moat are ‘‘ ramparts’’ which extend beyond its length. I

A few depressions, filled with water, lie by its uh while a few walls which-may have been part of the original parapet of the ‘‘ rampart ’’ can also be seen. In 1933, some wire netting was placed along the moat between it and the Courtyard of the Lower Hall to prevent poultry from straying.

in his ‘‘ History of Huddersfield” (1st Edn., p. 28), states that Mr. Jones Oldfield, the Surveyor of Roads .in South Crosland in 1859, had informed him ‘‘that he had struck upon a

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portion of the parapet wall on each side of the moat. It was about four feet thick and built of the rough stones obtained from the bed of the streamlet which runs at the foot of the small wood behind. The interior was built strong and firm, but the external one was not as compact, indeed, it was not needed, there being a good natural embankment for the moat in the rising ground on that side. On the South side the interior wall had been struck upon.”’

Even at this day, some of these stones are visible; a piece of stone work suggests that this may have been the buttress end of the drawbridge. At the time when Sir Robert Beaumont was murdered in his own abode, the moat must have encircled the - whole area of the Hall.

The stream called Mag or Hall Dyke flows quite close to the moat on the Honley side, so that the only approach to Crosland Hall in medieval days would have been from South Crosland, Netherton or Healey House, although the latter name did not come into existence till late 18th century days.

Crosland Hall was the abode of the Beaumonts lorg before they were seated at Whitley Hall. It is quite conceivable that Crosland Hall saw changes in Tudor days, was deserted by its owners and _ finally demolished in the 18th century,


The exact site of the former Lockwood Hall will, 1 think, never be determined. It has long since been demolished, but wherever it stood and what buildings now stand upon its previous location are problems which have baffled former topographers of the district. I

A branch of the Lockwood family left the district from which they took their surname in the early days of Henry VIII. and settled at Skircoat near Halifax. In an article on ‘‘Stoney Royd’’ (Halifax Antiquarian Society’s Publications, 1909 Vol., p. 218), we find.the name of ‘‘ Oliver Lockwood, of ddan?” The writer of this article, the late Mr. J. Lister, M.A., of Shibden Hall, said :

“Oliver Lockwood, of Skircoat, was, by the way, an imported specimen cies ee WE SON Oliver, he will, haply, tell us the tragic tale of the Elland Feud, how in revenge for their mur- dered fathers, William de Lockwood, one of his own race and ‘name, in company with Adam de Bhadmont and Thomas de Lacy, slew, in the days of Edward III., Sir John de Eland (the ee on his way to hear Mass ‘at Elland. 3

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It is conceivable that when this branch of the Lockwoods left the district, the new owners either demolished the older Hall. and rebuilt a new one in the same manner that the first Quarmby Hall was pulled down and the present building erected by. the Blythes (p. 179), or, the older building at Lockwood was re: modelled in accordance with the prevailing architecture. I

For many years, there has been much conflict of opinion as to the site of the first Lockwood Hall; North House and Dr. J. D. Walker’s residence are both claimed to be the later successors of the building where old Lockwood de Lockwood met his death in 1341.

The first reference to a residential dwelling- house in Lock- wood in modern times, as far as I can ascertain, occurs in


Directory and Gazetteer of the County of York’’ (1822), in which —

is printed a ‘‘ List of the Seats of the Nobility and Gentry ’’; and herein we read: ‘‘Lockwood’’ (but no Hall nor House designated) ‘¢ 2 miles S.S.W. of Huddersfield, the residence of Joseph Army- Rage, Esq.”

Joseph Armytage, above mentioned, was originally known as

Joseph Green, and ultimately succeeded to the estates of his cousin, ©

_ William Armytage, on condition of his assuming the surname of

Armytage (Canon Hulbert, ‘‘ Annals of Almondbury,’’ p. 356. p- 529). :

Canon Hulbert, in his ‘‘ Annals of Almondbury (. 275),

written in 1882, said that ‘‘no remains exist of the ancient man- I

sion of the Lockwood family, resident here in the Middle Ages.

The site is that formerly occupied by Mr. Green| mes I and —

now by Mr. Norman Wrigley.’’

Unfortunately, Canon. Hulbert did not stale the precise aie

of this building, but there can be no doubt that it was North —

House, originally the residence of Benjamin Nérth, whose daughter, Anne North, married Joseph Green Armytage in 1787. Benjamin North married Ellen Crosland, the daughter of James Crosland of Holme. He rebuilt the house at Lockwood in 1775, and commemorated the fact by placing a tablet stone still to be seen on I the north wall of North House in Swan Lane:— © ©

E BN 1775. ey North House was again rebuilt in the fiddle. of ‘the last century; some portions of the 1775 building were retained, in

particular, two oak beams which span the ceiling of the kitchen ; two very old arched cellars still exist. I I (6

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In his ‘“‘ Supplementary Annals’’ (p. 15), written in 1885, Canon Hulbert stated that he had received a letter from we ohn Ashton, of Lockwood, containing the following particulars : —

regard to the probable site (of Lockwood Hall) I suggest that you are mistaken, the inscription on North House, the residence of the late Mr. Green Armitage is 1795 (? 1775), a few months ago the barn was demolished. I examined the place — carefully, but could not find any traces of its age, except the © woodwork, and the square blocks of stone of: which it was built.’’

‘“T would suggest that the residence of the Lockwood family was the ‘‘ Monument ’’ which stood on the north side of the late Mr. John Henry Abbey’s residence, and demolished by him for improvements to his own house. Pifty years ago (presumably in 1835), I well remember the old monument, as it was called at that time. It was let in four dwellings, in one of which an old woman lived, and the people worshipping at Rehoboth Chapel held ‘prayer meetings once a week. Latterly a street has been made over part of the foundations, but with all my watchfulness, I could not discover any inscription of its age, and probably the Barn at I North House was formerly connected with the monument.’’

According to Mr. Ashton, Lockwood Hall stood on a site once known as the ‘‘ Monument,’’ consisting of four dwelling-houses, later demolished to make a street. It was unfortunate that Mr. Ashton did not give the name of this street to Canon Hulbert when he wrote the above letter.

Mr. Taylor Dyson, M.A.; in his: ‘ History of Huddersfield and Its District’’ (p 131), wrote :—

Lockwood Hall has long since disappeared. There is a strong local tradition that Dr. Baldwin’s house (now Dr. J. D. Walker’s) is in fact old Lockwood Hall. It is certainly a charming old house, but I must leave the question ‘ not proven,’ and await enlightenment from some local enthusiast who will undertake the necessary research”’

I had the privilege of viewing this homestead in the late Dr. Baldwin’s lifetime, and agree with Mr. Taylor Dyson that it is ‘a ‘‘charming old house.’’ The attic contains some massive oak beams. The building attached to the dwelling—house was con— verted into a surgery by one of Dr. Baldwin’s predecessors. In the room above the surgery are massive old oak beams, which, in all probability, date to Tudor days. In the year 1832, the room . above the Surgery was used as a Mangle House.

At the Centenary of the erection of ois Rehoboth Baptist Church, held in October, 1982, references were

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made to this Mangle House. Through the courtesy of the Rev. L. Colin Edwards, the Minister of the Church, I am able to reproduce these Notes :—

It is suggested that the old Said Meltham Road, Lock— wood, is the original Lockwood Hall, the history of which has been lost in antiquity. It is built in style and still carries in its appearance much of the old world beauty peculiar to the architecture of this period. At one time it appears that part of the building—the part now a surgery—was used as an old hand-loom weaving place, while the room directly overhead was used as a public mangling house. Here the women of that far-off day used to bring their washing, and while they were wait- ing for their turn to have their clothes put through the mangle, would just sit round the room talking over the news of the home. Other women joined them, and it eventually became a retreat for the gossipers of the village. According to traditional history, the place thus caused the title, Gossip Shop or House, and spoke of it later as the old Mangle House where the women used to go gossiping.”’

‘“’This upper room was the place where our people first met together for worship on the Sabbath of June 10th, 1832. It is a large room—nine yards long by four yards wide. In appearance to-day, it is almost identical with that which our forefathers saw one hundred years ago. The rough oak beam still runs across the centre of the room, so low that one has to bend to get be- neath it, and the roof is quite open to the slates.’’

This note confirmed Mr. Ashton’s statement made to Canon Hulbert in 1885. I

Among the Archives of Lockwood Rehoboth Baptist Church was an old map which dated about the year 1830. On it were marked the roads, farms and homesteads which existed in that year. Unfortunately, in the early part of 19383, it was inad- vertently destroyed.

A second plan of Lockwood compiled for the use of the Sur— veyor of the township of Lockwood in the year 1834 is in the possession of Mr. Frank Abbey, of the firm of Messrs. Abbey and Hanson, Cloth Hall Street. Mr. Abbey very kindly permitted to see the old map which outlined the streets and houses in Lock-— wood. No clue can be gathered from a study of this map as to the sites of Lockwood Hall or of the Monument, although a round ring is marked on the road to Meltham, which in the absence of a description might have represented a monument or a horse. - trough! Consequently, until further evidence is forthcoming, it is impossible to state definitely whether the first Lockwood Hall was built on or near the site of the present North House in Swan Lane or on the site of Dr. J. D. Walker’s residence.

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Previous to its demolition in 1937, this old building, no doubt, dating to Elizabethan or early Stuart times, was standing on the right-hand side of Ray Gate, a steep road ultimately becom-- ing a narrow cindered track. Ray Gate is a turning off from the left on the New Hey Road ati the top of Outlane, and the road leading to the former building is known as Coal lit Lane.

The building originally consisted of a two—gabled house joined by a central portion. The gabled part on the left was used as a dwelling-house at the time of my visit there in 1934, the centre portion was a ‘' dump,’ ’ while the right-hand gable was used as a pigeon loft.

The central part was, in all probability, the Entrance Hall of © the building in the days of its former glory. An old but very handsome stone porch btilt adjacent to the left-hand gable led to the doorway_of the Entrance Hall; this latter was twelve yards square. On its ceiling was to be seen one half of a very beautiful upraised decorative panel similar in design to those at Newhouse Hall, Fenay Hall and Wormall Hall (p. 187); thistles, acorns, lions rampant, amongst other heraldric devices, were depicted on this panelling. A hoist had been inserted in the middle of the panel, and I was informed that this ceiling had been gradually falling down for the previous fifteen years. As the remaining half of this panel was in a fairly good condition, I suggested to the late Dr. T. W. Woodhead that. efforts should be made to in- duce its then owner (the late Sir Emmanuel Hoyle, J.P.) to allow it to be removed to the Tolson Memorial Museum at Ravens- knowle.

Close to the right-hand gable was a stone panel on which a sun dial had formerly rested. —

Tradition stated that Lower Hurst at Longwood was the Court House for the Halifax district, and that prisoners from a wide area were brought for trial in the Entrance Hall which con- tained the panelled ceiling above described. I

Opposite Lower Hurst (the site is now occupied by three modern dwelling—houses), stands a large barn, used as a hay- loft and a cow mistal.. The barn is of considerable size with massive roof beams supported on stone pillars about two feet in diameter; these pillars, I have been informed, originally came from Prospect Mills at Longwood.

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THE FORMER ‘‘ LOWER HURST ’’ AT LONGWOOD. (Reproduced by courtesy of the Proprietors of the ‘‘ Huddersfield Examiner.’’)


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Tradition also related that the prisoners brought for trial in I the Court House were incarcerated in this barn. If this statement be true, there was ample accommodation for these unfortunate persons, but they received little light or air as the first windows which were inserted were narrow slits (probably of the archery window type), and were sparingly placed in the thick outer walls.

It is difficult to understand how the tradition originally arose, for Longwood was never a part of the iCal or civil parish I of Halifax.

In 1384, Longwood was one of the several manors, Lindley. Quarmby, Scammonden, being others, which were granted by Hugh de Annesley, and Joan his wife, formerly the wife of William de Quarmby II. to Sir Brian Stapleton, the ancestor of the gen- tleman (p. 131), who built the Chantry of the Holy Trinity (Y.A.J., Vol. VII. p. 279, Vol. VIII. pp. d19, 520). The district seems to remained in the possession of the Stapletons, and their suc- cessors, the Eltofts and the Blythes, till the days of Queen Elizabeth. I

Longwood, as a manor, is not mentioned in the Domesday Book; it is possible that the locality may have been ‘‘manorialised’’ by the process of sub- infeudation, but, as yet, I have seen no document to substantiate this statement. As a place-name, Long- wood is mentioned in several deeds relating to Quarmby, published by the Yorkshire Archeological Society, but it is not mentioned in the deed of sale of the manor of Quarmby-cum-Lindley by Sir - Edward Barkham to Thomas Thornhill of Fixby, in 1634.

A considerable amount of research has still to be undertaken to fill in the many gaps in the eer of Longwood from the days of Queen Elizabeth till 1850.

Some years ago, a writer in the ‘‘ Huddersfield Examiner,’’ who described the building before its and narrated the above traditions, concluded :—

“TE the Old i really justifies its name, and was years ago a seat of Justice, it is strange that it should have been so neglected in local histories which appear to contain no reference to it.

‘One explanation of this lack of reference to this Forsies build— ing at Longwood is that the majority of our local historians have concentrated on the history of the Manors of Huddersfield and Almondbury to the almost complete neglect of that of the Manors of Quarmby—cum-Lindley, Bradley, Daiton, Deighton, Edgerton, North and South Crosland, and also of the histories of the districts of Birkby, Cowcliffe, Fartown, Sheepridge, etc., all of which

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Photo by the late Mr. Isaae Hordern.






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localities are now incorporated in the County Borough of Hud- dersfield. It is possible that the old building at one time may have been the residence of a former Constable of Longwood and that he used the barn opposite his dwelling-house as a temporary ‘“lock-up,’’ previous to his interrogating the malefactors before they were handed over to the authorities, either at Halifax (assum - ing the tradition to be accurate), or, at Wakefield (which is more likely). But, as yet, I have not seen any documentary evidence to confirm such a hypothesis.

Shortly after the article on ‘* The Old Courthouse: at Long— wood ’’ had appeared in the ‘‘ Huddersfield Weekly Examiner,’’ and I had written some supplementary notes thereon which are reproduced above, I was invited to inspect some old documents relating to Longwood which were lodged chronologically in pigeon holes in a room at the Mechanics’ Institute. I spent a considerable time examining these quaint relics of the past which dealt mostly with the work of the old-time Overseers of the Poor of that township previous to its becoming a part of . the Huddersfield Poor Law Union in 1837. There was nothing in this large collection of documents which gave any mention of the ‘* Old Courthouse.’’ I

Nevertheless, these documents should prove of invaluable assistance to a subsequent historian of the local government of Longwood previous to its having adopted the Local Government Board of Health Act shortly after the year 1860.

After the death of Sir Emmanuel Hoyle, the property at Lower Hurst was sold by his executors to Mr. William Haigh, of New Mill; the farm with the old barn (still intact) is now tenanted by Mr. William Henry Dyson. I


This public house was situated in Venn Street, somewhere near the site of the present ‘‘ Palace,” or near the Parish Church Schools.

It is referred to, but not actually mentioned by name in the description- of the old Huddersfield Vicarage in the Abstract of the Ramsden Deeds.’’ The land on which the ‘‘ Rose and Crown ”’ formerly stood originally belonged to Richard Beaumont of Whitley (Lord of a Moiety of the Manor of Huddersfield, d.1541), and was granted to John Hall, the Vicar of Huddersfield, in 1521.

The property was purchased from the Kev. Josiah Bateman, Vicar of Huddersfield, by Sir John W. Ramsden, Bart., in 1850,

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(Photo bythe late Mr. W. H. Sikes, reproduced by kind permission of the Tolson Memorial Museum Committee).


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231 Tradition has handed down a story that a duel was fought in the courtyard of this inn in the last decades of the 18th century, by one of the Brooks who lives at Newhouse Hall (p. 93) as a tenant of the Thornhills. His opponent was a Golcar man of the name of Whitwham. :

Both these gentlemen were enjoy ing their glasses of ale in the bar-parlour of ‘‘ The Rose and Crown,’’ among many others who were discussing the current topics of the day, the French Revolution, the Suppression of Free Speech, the Agitation for the Parliamentary Representation of Huddersfield, etc.; the discus-. — sion ultimately became hot and stormy. Brook was a staunch upholder of Church and Monarchy, while Whitwham was a Dissenter with a bias towards Republicanism.

From being impersonal, the arguments become personal and eventually Whitwham challenged Brook to a duel. Seconds were soon obtained from the other patrons of the bar—parlour, and the parties hastily adjourned to the Courtyard at the back of the Inn.

The duel was fought with swords, but the encounter between the two antagonists was but of short duration, for Brook soon vanquished his rival with his weapon by wounding him to such an extent that a surgeon had to be summoned to attend to Whit-. wham’s injuries.

The Rose and Crown, the Horse Shoe Inn, the ay and Barrel and the Fleece Inn were scheduled for ‘‘ partial removal ”’ during the régime of the Commissioners for Lighting, Watching and Cleansing the Town of Huddersfield (1820-1848), so we read in White’s ‘* Directory of the West Riding of Yorkshire, (p. 362), but the last two still remain.


A photograph of ‘‘The Rose and Crown ’’ previous to its demolition in 1884 is to be found in Mr. Isaac Hordern’ S Photo - graphic Books. (No. 24 in Book 2).


In the month of February, 194713 ¢ Puck huge the’ and ‘About ”’ column of ‘‘ The Hudder Examiner ’’ wrote:

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‘“One of the things people argue about in clubs and pubs is whether anyone has ever seen York Minster from Huddersfield. There seems to be a local legend that on a very clear day if you stand on a certain point on Castle Hill you can discern with the: naked eye the Towers of York Minster some forty miles away.’

‘“* So far as I know no one actually claims to have seen them. ‘It would be interesting to know w hether there is any substance for this

The statement that the Towers of York Minster could be seen from the top of Castle Hill goes back as far as the year 1588, when, in an old MS book, giving details of the various beacon fires which were ordered to be lit in the county at the time of a threatened invasion, appears the following entry :

‘“ Castle Hill beacon giveth light to Halifax beacon, and re- ceiveth light from the beacon at Hoyland-super-Montem, within and at the said beacon one may see York ‘Minster.’

It may be that the light and ere from the beacon at Castle Hill could be seen from thie top of the Towers of York Minster, as was the case in 1805 (Canon C. A. Hulbert, of Almond- p. 217).

Mer, GB. A. Léatham, MEP. for ‘Hudhereteld: 1854-1865. and

1868-1886, once stated Haak the ‘‘ incense’’ of the industries of

the Dewsbury. and Batley Mills ‘‘ ascended in one unbroken and so obscured the view, which, in one writer’s opinion, was ‘ the reason ety York Minster and Castle Hill will never see each other again.’ I :

An apocryphal story is toid that after the Jubilee Tower on Castle Hill had been built on the top of plateau in 1897-98, an old farmer climbed the steps of the structure to test. the truth or otherwise of this popular belief. He took his telescope with him, not to admire the view from the top of the Tower, but, to quote the words he is alleged to have uttered ‘‘ that he might hear the sound of the bells of the Minster better ”’!

A certain amount of correspondence on the above subject took place, and several readers of ‘‘ The Examiner ’”’ provided geo- graphical reasons which indicated why it was not possible for Castle Hill Tower to be seen from York Minster :—

(a) ‘‘ Taking the height of Castle Hill to be 900 feet, and that of York Minster as 250 feet, I find that a hill of the height of 315 ft. one mile west of Garforth will obscure the view. Un- fortunately, my ordnance map is not to a large enough scale to find accurately whether this hill is in the direct line between the

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= “RSs two points, but within the restrictions thus imposed, it should certainly be.’

(b) ‘‘ There is also another high point of 440 feet, about three . quarters of a mile south- west of Ardsley Station which appears to interrupt the view.’



Nineteenth century antiquarians put forward a theory that the two moats and the ditch all round the inner rampart of Castle Hill,in the days when the Castle stood upon its plateau surface (?1147- 1822), were filled with water.

Two wells at least are known to have existed on the hill, and provided water for the inhabitants of the Castle when it was in situ, but it is very doubtful whether there was sufficient water to flood the space required for a moat.

Is it conceivable that there was any need for further defensive measures by way of wet moats to be added to the site? Its

tion on a hill, 900 feet above sea level, seems to preclude such

a possibility. An attacking party could have easily been driven off by a of arrows hurled from bows by archers standing on (or behind) the ramparts.

Canon C. A. Hulbert, in his ‘‘ Annals of Almondbury ”’ ai 216-217) was one of the first to print the ‘‘ tradition that the fortress was supplied with water by a subterranean passage from Lud Hill, in Farnley Tyas, which is even higher than Castle Hill; and that this even supplied a moat.’

This tradition is highly improbable because ‘‘ levels taken by the late Dr. T. W. Woodhead and the late Mr. Cocking show that the ditch near the corner of the third ward (the one containing the ‘ Great Gateway ’) is 82.11 feet higher than the ditch on the north-eastern side of this ward a little south of the great gateway.” (J. A. Petch, “Early Man in Huddersheld,”’

p- 66

Even in prehistoric days these ditches were never intended to be wet ditches as the slope of the surface obviated that necessity. To early man, even dry ditches of such dimensions as occur 4 this camp must have proved a serious military obstacle.”’ (J. . Petch, loc. cit., p. 66).

Others have been more fanciful in their suggestions as to how water was brought to the Hill to flood the moats, one theory which I had told to me, was that it was carried to the plateau by overhead pipes in the early Middle Ages ! :

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(Photo by the late Mr. W. H. Sikes, reproduced by kind permission of the Tolson Memorial Museum Committee).


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A list of some of these underground passages has already _been given on page 8; in this section, I propose to discuss the former existence of two definite underground perenne or shafts which were found within the plateau :—

(iy Dr. Whitaker, in his History Loidis and Elmete ’’ (1816), states that in digging the foundations of a house on the Hill, “the remains of a winding subterranean staircase are said to have been discovered, which unfortunately were not followed as they ought to have been.’

. This probably referred to the building of the first on the Hill about the year 1811 and which still remains as the out—buildings of the present one erected in 1852-53..

(ii) While digging operations for the foundations of the present Victoria Tower (erected to commemorate the Diamond Jubilee of Queen Victoria in 1897) were in progress, an old well was discovered in the south-western ward. An account of these excavations was given by the late Mr. S. J. Chadwick, F.S.A., in the Yorkshire Archeological Journal (Vol. XV., pp. 118-119) :

‘A shaft 6in. square... . had been cleared to a depth of 30ft., and found to be sunk through the ‘rag’ stone and not walled. It is supposed to have been a well for the supply of the Castle, and'to go down to the water level of the existing wells on the north and south sides of the hill, that is, to a depth of about 120ft. from the surface of the Castle area. The material excavated had been piled round the mouth of the shaft, and formed a level platform of about &ft. in height.”’

I Then followed a description of the stones discovered in this shaft and the hope that further excavations on of the Hill. could be made while the workmen. were working there. Unfor— tunately, there was little interest taken in local antiquarian matters, even in 1897, and in spite of the late Mr. Chadwick’s suggestions that these excavations should be pursued further, the well was filled up. But the filling—up process was not’ performed very satisfactorily, for after the Tower had been built, a crack appeared on its south wall!

Up till some years ago, there rested on the ground towards the west side of the [Tower a stone slab on which was recorded : Site of an ancient well discovered in 1898.”’

The discussion of other supposed underground passages lead— ing to and from Castle Hill, is deferred to a later part; those from Deadmanstone House which are traditionally supposed to lead to Castle Hill have been treated on pages 153 and 154. Various

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schoolboys are willingly and keenly, in their spare time, investi - gating ‘‘day-holes,’’ small tunnels, etc.; their findings, I trust, will be duly reported in a subsequent Part.


A tradition has been handed down that a battle took place on the slopes of Castile Hill, near the farm known as Catterson Croft or Catterston Croft.

This is all that is recorded of this onslaught; nothing is related as to when it took place, whether in Brigantian, Roman, Anglian, Norman or even in later times.

It has been suggested that this tradition is confirmed by the prefix in the place-name Catterson (or Catterston), namely, ‘‘cat,’’ having some connection with an old Keltic root ‘‘ cat ’’ meaning war.? In support of this theory, the Rev. W. Kerr Smith, in a monograph entitled, ‘‘Some Curious Cymro-Celtic Place-Names’’ (Y.A.J., Vol. 23, pp. 338-344) said :—

‘*T cannot undertake to give a complete list of places in Yorkshire where the prefix ‘‘ Cat’’ is the old Cymric word for ‘“ War,’’ but I will indicate some which in my opinion (pace Pro- fessor Skeat) probably have a similar ‘origin. These are Cat - Foss; Catwick (near Cat Foss), Cat Nab, Catton (probably origin— ally Cat Dun—Domesday has Cattune), Catrigg, Catterick (Domesday gives Catrik) and Catterton near Tadcaster (probably from the allied word ‘‘Catr ’’ and ‘‘ Dun.’’ No doubt there are others, but I do not’ wish to include any of doubtful origin. Some.) may owe their derivation to the wild or domestic cat, some are probably a later corruption of coet (Modern Welsh ceed), a wood. All these cited above are in Yorkshire.”’

Mr. Smith had previously suggested, when discussing five different place-names called Cat Babbleton, that all were ‘‘ centres of military interest ’’ and that the prefix ‘‘cat”’ is the Celtic word for" War,” : I

But Mr. Armitage Goodall gives the derivation of Catterston (which first appeared in print in the Map of the ‘‘ Towneshipp of Almanberie '’ compiled in 1634) to be ‘‘ Kataer’s Farm’”’ from a ‘“ Danish personal name Kataer recorded by Nillsen ’’? and from an old Norse word ‘‘tun,’’? meaning an enclosure or farm. Mr. Goodall also gave derivations of such place-names as Cat Clough (Hepworth), Cat Hill in Hoyland Swaine, Cat Moss (Rishworth), Catshaw, etc., and says that the prefix in each case may be derived

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from an old Celtic word meaning a wood, as Mr. Smith also suggested; in fact, as to the actual derivation, it can be safely said, ‘‘ tot homines, tot sententiae.’’

It is of course possible that a battle or skirmish was fought on the slopes of Castle Hill, and that the ruthless devastation of the ramparts (p. 129) left an impression on succeeding generations which gave rise to this tradition, but I am very dubious that the place-name was called after this traditional battle.


This is one of three or four mounds to be seen in our district which may, or may not, be of natural formation.

It is popularly known as Nanny Croft and is situated behind Messrs. Heywood’s Glazing Engineering Works on one side and the Fartown and Birkby Conservative Club on the other.

At the moment, numbers of trees grow on its slopes, and a series of hawthorn trees surrounds its oval summit. This oval has diameters of 30 and 35 feet. The height of the mound is about 25 feet above Beacon Street, while the diameter of its base is about 100 feet. a

Formerly a semi-circular slab of stone rested at one extremity of its oval summit; it has now been removed. Previous to this slab (which probably marked the burial place of a dog) hav— ing been inserted, there have been erected on ‘this oval surface, first, a summer-house, and, secondly, a set of stones built in the form of an altar. The path round its base has been fenced by large stone slabs similar to those seen on Round Hill at Rastrick (p. 241).

A tradition relating to this mound has already been given in the Introductory Chapter (p. 5), nevertheless, some interesting problems arise in connection with this Mound :—.


Many theories have been formulated as to the origin of the term :—

a) One says that it received its name from a public-house called ‘‘ The Noah’s Ark ”’ (the landlord of which in 1845 was Aquila Priestley) which formerly stood at the end of Ark Hill, a on the left-hand side of Halifax Old Road, Hillhouse; a lane, which still exists, leads to the Mound from the former Inn.

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A Photograph from the Painting by the late Mr. G. Alexander, of Leeds. By kind permission of Mr. P. Cardno.


Photo by Mr. H. Shaw.

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(b) Another says that before its summit had been levelled to make way for the summer—house which formerly stood on its top, — the appearance of the Mound from a distance was that of an arc, hence the site was known as Arc Hill; in course of time, however, the spelling of the name was altered to Ark Hill. .

(c) A third suggestion, fanciful in its origin, is that before the building of the houses in its immediate vicinity, the Mound towered above the fields attached to the farm-house, the old Nanny Croft. It was suggested that the farmer who lived -here surveyed his cattle from. the top of the Mound as if he were on Mount Ararat, and hence the name Ark Hill! :

(d) Another theory ‘states that the existence of the summer- house on its summit was reminiscent of Noah’s Ark resting upon Mount Ararat, and may have been the reason for its rane termed Ark Hill Mound.

(e) Another piece of speculation regards Ark Hill as a cor- ruption of Ack Hill or Ak-hill, “‘ ac’? or “‘ack’’ being an old Anglian word meaning an oak; hence Ark Hill, according to this theory, is the hill of the oaks, suggesting that at one time, oak trees grew in the vicinity.

The first designation which I have come across of this elevated piece of land is on the Ordnance Survey of Huddersfield, 1848-1854, where it is marked as ‘‘ The Mount.’’ I Probably, © Lieut. C. E. Penrice and his colleagues who surveyed and con- toured this district during those years had not heard the site designated Ark Hill Mound, or perhaps thought that this was too lengthy a description to insert’ on the Ordnance Map! On the other hand, Ark Hill Mound may be a later appellation of the site.

I am inclined to think that the first theory formulated (a) above, is the correct one, and that the others are specula- tive. I


It is quite possible that it derived this sobriquet from the name of the adjacent farmhouse, Nanny Croft, the old Hill House, de— molished many years ago to make way for Beacon Street. It seems that at one time an old woman called Nanny kept a goat in a field near the Mound and near the old Hill House. In course of time; the locality went by the name of Nanny’s Croft which became abbreviated into Nanny Croft. A croft, incidentally, is ‘‘ a small piece of arable land adjoining a dwelling ’’ and also ‘‘a small farm.’’ There is every appearance that this story of goats is true; an acquaintance of mine told me that when he was a boy, he used to play on this mound with his schoolmates ; on one occa- sion, they found some bones which they were subsequently told were > those of a goat!

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These and other problems associated with the site could only be solved by excavation. Ever since Hobkirk first formulated the theory that ‘‘ perhaps: some distant relative of Caractacus or Boadicea is laid in state in its gloomy* halls, or may be it is of later origin, and encloses all that was of some renowned Saxon chief,’’ (‘‘History of Huddersfield,’’ 1st Edition, pp. 45-46), much speculation has arisen as to what might be found ints: , interior.

Only a systematic and scientific excavation of the Mound would solve the problem. Geologists might throw some light upon the nature of its soil and tell us whether it is a natural or © artificial mound.

A similar mound, La Hougue Bie, exists in my native island of Jersey. Nearly a hundred years ago, a local historian, the Rev. Edward Durell, suggested that it should be excavated. It was only in 1925 that such operations commenced, when a Druidical Temple was unearthed, and, by the remains discovered, proved to be one of the oldest of its kind in Europe.

Many fantastic and fanciful stories have béen related to me as to what might be interred within the earthy mass of Ark Hill Mound :—

(i) I was in all seriousness, that it was the burial place of Captain Hudder, the founder of Huddersfield! This idea, no doubt, will raise a smile, but, for a moment or two, let us consider the derivation of the word Huddersfield. I

Mr. Armitage Goodall, in his work on ‘‘ The Place Names of South West Yorkshire ’’ (p. 178), suggested, among a set of alternatives, that Huddersfield meant the ‘‘ field of Huder,’’ while others who maintain that the ‘‘ Odersfelt ’’ of the Domesday Book compilation was ‘gradually converted into. Huddersfield, seem to be of the same opinion for ‘‘ Huder”’ appears to have been a later variation of ‘‘ Oder.’’

On the other hand, the late Mr. D. F. BE. Sykes, in his ‘‘ History of Huddersfield and Its Vicinity’’ (p. 32) says :—

_ “* Huddersfield is claimed by some to owe its name to Uther Pendragon, the father of Arthur of fable and romance. Certain it is that Huddersfield in the vernacular form is often pronounced ‘ Uthersfelt.’’’ I do not suggest that Uther Pendragon is interred in the interior of Ark Hill Mound.

Huder may have been some petty Anglian chieftain in the district in the days before Christianity was introduced. Such a personage, in all probability, would have had a burial mound

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erected over his mortal remains. Hence it is possible that the hypotheses advanced by Hobkirk may not be unreasonable. Per- haps, too, he had heard some local tradition bearing upon the subject.

It has been suggested to me that Hobkirk’s theory was responsible for the name given to the district in the vicinity of the Mound, Kingcliffe. But, from the terms of the Award of the Huddersfield Enclosure Act of 1789, in the list of the new roads which were ordered to be made, we find the following particulars relating to Halifax (Old) Road, viz.: ‘‘From Hill house over the Kiln Cliffe Common,’’ which suggests that in that year there were brickworks or a limekiln in the vicinity. It is certain that Kiln Cliffe has been altered into Kingcliffe, but whether Hobkirk’s theory of a warrior being buried in the interior of the Mound, or not, was responsible for the alteration in spelling of the oni name, it is difficult to say.

(ii) It was suggested to me that Ark Hill Mound may be the result of a ‘‘ tip’’ from some old quarry whose existence has since been forgotten. This might account for the different nature of the soil found therein.

During the operations of excavating a site for the extension of Messrs. Heywood’s Engineering Works, the soil removed from its southern slopes was observed to be different from that on the I surface layers. Incidentally, some silver coins were found during the work of excavation. I

If, in 1789, or thereabouts, there were quarries in the immediate vicinity of Ark Hill Mound, then Hobkirk’s hypotheses break down at once. . As suggested previously, the only test by which its inner secrets could be revealed is that of excavation.

(iii) The story of the chest of deeds has already been given in the ‘‘ Introduction.’’ (Ch. I. p. 5).


Round Hill is situated on the right hand side of the road Hey Road) leading from Bradley Road to Rastrick, as one journeys from Huddersfield to Brighouse by trolley—bus. —

There can be no doubt whatever that this is a natural mound, rising to a height of about a hundred feet above the road. It preserves its hemispherical appearance in contrast to Ark Hill Mound in Birkby, the summit of which has been levelled while Round Wood at Waterloo has an almost level top. Round Hill ‘has not received much attention from writers on local topography ;

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as far as I have been able to ascertain, only two historians have referred to it :— :

(:) Hobkirk, in his ‘‘ History of iwddérsticld (First’ Edition, p. 52) described it in these words :—‘‘ Just at the cross-road close to Bradley Lane is ‘ the round hill,’ generally supposed to be a tumulus; it is certainly artificial, and its form, size and general appearance are all in favour of such a conclusion.’’

‘But local residents are inclined to doubt this statement as it is more probably ‘‘a freak of nature’’ as one inhabitant informed me, and posseses all the characteristics of a natural mound.

Other residents maintain there is a mystery attached to the hillock; this may have originated from the fact that bones, querns, altars and remains have been found in artificial tumuli in other parts of Yorkshire, including Castle Hill at Rastrick; in the opinion of some of these to whom I spoke when I made enquiries amongst the older inhabitants in 1929, similar relics might be found in Round Hill, if it were excavated.

(ii) J. Horsfall Turner, in his ‘‘ History of Brighouse, Rastrick and Hipperholme’’ (p. 20) considered that Round Hill seemed ‘‘per- fectly natural.’’ He put forward the view that ‘‘ it was a place for wayfaring men to make their habitation,’’ and quoted Watson’s opinion concerning a description of Castle Hill, Rastrick, which he thought was more applicable to Round Hill.

A few flints have been found on its slopes, but very little archeological or excavation work has been done to test Hobkirk’s theory.

At one time it was surrounded by a clump of trees, including silver birch and laburnums. Brambles and bracken also grew upon its slopes in great profusion. These signs of vegetation have com- pletely disappeared, partly because the lads of Rastrick used the I mound in former days to play the game of ‘‘ hide and seek,’’ and they also carted away trees as ‘‘ chumps’? for their Guy Fawkes day celebrations. Around the base of the mound there once existed a ring of rectangular slabs which separated the plantation of trees from the pasture land below. I

At the present time, a flagstaff surmounts the top of the hill, from which a very good view of the surrounding country can be obtained on a clear day, no fewer than eight parish churches being visibl:. The hill-top is bare and discloses clay soil. Attempts have been made by the Rastrick Cricket Club to turf it, but these have failed. I

«> in 1808, the Rastrick and. Athletic Club the whole hill and the green below from the Thornhill Estate who own

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the entire site. The Club laid out the level portion in front of the hill as a cricket field.

Bonfires were lit in a field near the Clough House Public- House to commemorate the Golden Jubilee of Queen Victoria in 1887 and her Diamond Jubilee in 1897. At the time of the Coronation of King Edward VII. a bonfire was lit on the hillside of Round Hill, but, in 1911, on the occasion of the Coronation of the late King George VI., a bonfire was hit on the top of the Hill; similar bonfires were lit on the occasion of the Silver Jubilee of this Monarch, May 3, 1985, and at the time of the Coronation of H.M. King George VI. on ‘May 12, 19387. :

Round Hill is mentioned in the Wakefield Manorial Court Roll for the year 1634, when it is therein recorded that a piece of — land on Rastrick Common near Round Hill was ‘‘ made in trust for the benefit and maintenance of a preacher or minister . . . in. the chapel of Rastrick, commonly called St. Matthew.’’ I


liobkirk, in his ‘‘ History of Huddersfield ’’? (1st Edition, 1859, pp. 53-54) described this mound in these words :—

‘* Rising out-of an extensive plain is a round hill of consider-_ able height and nearly a quarter of a mile in diameter on its top, the sides of which are extremely steep and covered with a dense wood up to the very summit; the top is quite bare of wood and under cultivation. From its peculiar form, the wood got the name of Round Wood, though some people call it ‘The Warrior’s

‘“Various surmises have been made respecting its origin. In form it most resembles a tumulus, but’ its immense size is against such an opinion, unless we suppose it to have been the burial place of the warriors slain in some great battle. This is not after all very unlikely, as there are records showing that a fierce bloody war was waged in this neighbourhood, by its prince, Edwin, in repelling the incursions of Caldwall, the Briton, and Penda, the Mercian. Again, it may have some connection with (though it scarcely could have been the site of) the small Roman town, men— tioned by Dr. Richardson, as near Kirkheaton; yet we ae con- fess there seems to be little to favour such an Opinion.’

“*Then again, how came it to be planted with trees on the sides cnly, whilst the top is perfectly bare of them? It is quite an

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anomaly, and there 1 is a mystery about its origin purpose which we should only be glad to see cleared away.

Unfortunately no satisfactory answers to Hobkirk’s queries were forthcoming between the years 1859 and 1868; he referred to ‘‘The Warrior’s Tomb’’ in his 2nd edition of his ‘‘History of Huddersfield’’ (p. 64) in these words: ‘‘Whence this name could have arisen I am at a ioss to state, as it is a perfectly natural hill, composed of alternating beds of sandstone and shale, with a very slight dip towards the last. Dr. Richardson, quoted by Whitaker, states that there was a small Roman town near Kirkheaton, but J can find no other records respecting its whereabouts. Supposing. that this town may have been merely a Roman station or camp, it is possible its site may have been on the summit of the Round Wood, which, though wooded on the sides, is quite bare on the summit, where is also a well of very pure water. It certainly would make a very good ‘look-out’ station for a detachment of soldiers, and would not be very difficult of defence.’’

A few observations on Hobkirk’s theories and queries con- — cerning Round Wood can now be given :-—

(i) The great battle between Edwin, King of Northumbria, and Cadwallada, King of North Wales, in alliance with Penda, the heathen King of Mercia, was fought at Heathfield, near Doncaster, in A.D. 633. In this battle, many Northumbrians were killed, but it is extremely unlikely teat the bodies of the slain were from a spot near Doncaster to Round Wood for interment.

(ii) No Roman coins have been found on this site, nor have, as yet, any traces of Roman occupation been found at Kirkheaton. Mr. Ian Richmond’s map. of the earliest route taken by the Romans in their penetration into the district of Huddersfield (Tolson Memorial Museum Handbook, No. 4, p. 7), shows a track from Castle Hill (Camulodunum?) to Kirklees, where the Romans are known to have built a camp. It is perhaps possible that the Romans may have used the summit of Round Wood as ‘a temporary post of observation.

(iii) ‘‘ How came it (Round Wood) to be planted with trees on the sides only, whilst the top is perfectly bare of them ?’’ Surely, could have supplied an answer to this question? It is conceivable that economic considerations of a much later date than the Romans or the Anglians demanded the cultivation of the soil; the farmers who tenanted the site felled whatever trees grew on its summit, levelled it (compare the levelling of Ark Hill Mound at Birkby (p. 229), and after a successful growth of crops during one season, decided to continue the experiment.

_ The whole mound consists roughly of three parts :—

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_ (i) A gradual slope of pasture land, which extends to about cne-third of the height of the mound. On this land on the side facing Waterloo large numbers of dwelling-houses have been erected since 1929 when I first visited the locality. At one time there were tree fences radiating like the spokes of a cartwheel to the outer extremities of the island site on which the mound is situated. I

(ii) A steeper part, as described by Hobkirk, covered with bracken and long grass, on which are planted hundreds of trees. A stone wall separates the pasture from the wooded area. On the north-east side is a very beautiful dell, which Hobkirk described as one of the beauty spots of Huddersfield in 1868. It is very thickly wooded, and in it may be seen an oak tree which is bifurcated. At the bottom of the dell flows the stream known as Round Wood Beck Hobkirk’s description is certainly worth reproducing :—

Take a stroll along the banks of this small rivulet as far as the bridge . . . . there, the channel is deep and wide, with the stream coursing towards you at its bottom; the steep clay. sides are slightly relieved by the pink and prhite blossom of the blackberry bushes growing on its top.... As we proceed along the banks, the stream is considerably wider, and in the centre is a little island, luxuriant with the graceful sweep of the waving willow, under the shade of whose branches are numerous little flowers sf most varied colouring ; the waters are curled into innumerable eddies round the stones nearest to us, whilst on the opposite side, they run deep and smooth, reflecting: re. tall stones and verdant Folia of the wood behind.’’

Alas! when I visited this stream in 1929, I found the water therein polluted with dye-water, while the vegetation erp about the water side consisted mostly of wild rhubarb !

(ui). The summit of Round Wood is almost level but not quite circular in shape ; its form roughly resembles an artist’s palette.

Owing to the rise of the ground, it is impossible to see one end

of this. ht palette ’’ from an opposite point. The plateau is under _ cultivation; in 1929, a good crop of oats was obtained. The farmer who then cultivated this patch told me that when he grew potatoes, he frequently I had his crops stolen. Moreover, the top surface and the hollow in the dell provided an excellent retreat for gambling schools !

_ Qn the north side of the nan site of Wood, a at known as Round Wood was built in 1882 2 to span the beck.

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(247 Another tradition which was current in the late eighties of the last century respecting Round Wood related that in its vicinity there had been fought a battle during the Wars of the Roses (1455-1485)! This ‘ legend’ was probably an attempt to post- _ date the tradition previously related of the great Battle of Heath- _ field fought near Doncaster in A.D. 638.

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ioe 2.



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