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Mining in the New Mill — Hepworth area By Stanley Garlick
From the number of shafts, commonly called ‘day holes’, that are in the hillside to the east, coal must have been mined for centuries. But pits as we know them, that is with pithead winding gear, did not appear until the late 18°/early 19™ century.
Snowgate Head Colliery was by what is now the Crossroads Inn. The buildings had gone but the chimney was standing until the early 40s.
Sally Wood Pit was not really a pit at all, but is a drift for the miners to enter the workings of the Hazelhead Colliery-Tinker’s. This is just off the Penistone Road at Hollin House Lane.
Wood Colliery, off the Sheffield Road at Stalley Royd Lane, Jackson Bridg was part of Tinker's. I
Gate Head Colliery was by the Chapel graveyard. It was no longer working, but the building and machinery were still there until the 30s.
Hazelhead Colliery (Tinkers Pit) at Farmers Lane, Sheffield Road. The coal from this pit was made into coke for the steel works of Sheffield. The coke ovens were in the gully at the side of the road. In 1945 this pit was nationalised but closed not many years later.
Sledbrook colliery’s shaft was in the pipe works. But later a drift was dug on the other side of the Sheffield Road and the coal was brought in tubs (small trucks) through a tunnel under the road, by a ropeway to the pithead. In later years the coal was crushed, mixed with pitch, and made into ovoid briquettes. This pit was worked until the 60s. A new seam had been opened but after only a few days they came to a fault and there was I no more coal.
While transport in Jackson Bridge was horse and cart, Hepshaw-Crowedge was connected to the railway. There was a branch from Hazelhead on the Sheffield to Manchester line. This had a cutting and a short tunnel but it was still a steep incline to the works. Round about 1960 road had taken over, the engines Hepworth and Ebor were scrapped and the line taken up. It was not long after this that the Sheffield to Manchester line itself closed.
Iron ore was mined the Bank House area of Hepworth; hence the Hepworth Iron Company. It was taken by tramway to Lower Mill Shaw, then through a tunnel which is almost a mile long to the works at Crowedge. It was down to the tunnel, and them some sort of ropeway pulled the tubs (trucks) up. Plans were made and work started to make the tunnel wide enough to take an engine but the company, which was owned by a Mr Chapman, went bankrupt. Mr John Booth then bought the company in 1899. I
At the end of the 19 century Crowedge-Hepshaw had two working pits: Hazelhead and Sledbrook.
The Hepworth Fire Clay Company. Fire clay is ganister, a refractory siliceous sedimentary rock occurring beneath coal seams (used for lining furnaces). This was still mined along with coal at Sledbrook Colliery until it closed.
The Hepworth Iron Company. The company changed from making iron to clay products; first bricks and then pipes. Clay was mined open cast near to the works and brought in tubs by the tramway. About 1960 this was no longer practical as the clay was being mined further away. So large dumper trucks were used instead. Now it can be mined anywhere and brought to the works in large tipper lorries.
Finally, well before the end of the 20" century there was no longer Mining in the New Mill -Hepworth area.
Snowgate Head and Gate Head collieries owned by LS and H W Tinker along with Sledbrook, Hepworth Iron Co worked the Halifax Hard bed seam. This was a house coal.
Hazlehead Colliery with Sally Wood and Wood pits worked the Halifax Soft bed seam, a coking coal.
Other small mines (day holes) working in 1890 were:
New Mill, Lane End owned by E Heeley & Co. Foster Place I R Copley & Co. Oxlee, Hepworth I I Adam Hirst. Hepshaw Tinker Bros.
Smut Hole Hepworth Iron Co.
Day hole = a tunnel into the hill side.
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JOHN SUTCLIFFE JP (1775/6-1858) -'A VERY USEFUL MAN' by David Griffiths
WHEN THE Huddersfield Improvement Commission was established in 1848, John Sutcliffe JP, although over 70, must have been the natural choice for its first chairman. He had already chaired the key public meetings over the previous year which expressed the town's support for new legislation to modernise the town's governance, replacing the struggling institutions of the previous quarter of a century. And he had been active in the public life of the town for over 40 years, serving in some capacity in many of those institutions. He deserves to be better remembered among the pioneers of modern Huddersfield.
BY TRADE John Sutcliffe was a woolstapler - in other words a dealer in wool, buying from farmers and selling to textile manufacturers. He entered this business in 1794, aged 18, as an apprentice SARE ss to Edward Hawxby. Hawxby's Court, ne now very dilapidated, can still be entered on the West side of New St, and it was apparently here (see photo) that the business was carried on. His obituarist reported that "The period of his indentures was passed in so satisfactory a manner that, shortly after its expiration, he I became a partner in the business”. By 1809 the business is indeed listed as 'Hawxby & Sutcliffe, woolstaplers, New St”, and by 1822, although Hawxby is still listed as a New St merchant, Sutcliffe is separately listed as a woolstapler, apparently now the sole
Some time between 1829 and 1834, the business moved a few yards from New St to the North side of Cloth Hall St, into what was to become known as Sutcliffe's Buildings - later the Halifax Building Society, and where HBOS stands today - and the directories begin to note that he was a woolstapler "including importer of foreign wools".* The move, and the extended description, tell a story of successful business expansion. However Sutcliffe did not, like many merchants of the time, diversify into manufacturing, but stuck to the trade of his youth until his retirement in 1847.
The 19™ century Huddersfield historians G W Tomlinson and D F E Sykes have left a slight puzzle about his family origins. Sutcliffe is of course a common Calderdale name, and the 1851 Census confirms Halifax as his birthplace. According to his obituarist and to Tomlinson (perhaps one and the same’), he moved from Halifax in 1794 to take up his apprenticeship”, implying that his parents remained in Halifax. However the parents, John (1749/50-1818) and Jane (1743/4-1807), were buried in Huddersfield.” Moreover there was a John Sutcliffe who converted some old buildings on the opposite side of New St, roughly where Woolworths now stands, as a large cotton spinning mill in the early 19" century’, and Sykes states that this Sutcliffe was father to the woolstapler. Perhaps the son came to Huddersfield on his own account and then spotted a business opportunity for his father to take up?
What is clear is that John junior married Mary Hornblower (1779/80-1836), daughter of Thomas Hornblower of Stourbridge® - perhaps a business contact of Sutcliffe's, as there was a Stourbridge clothier of that name in 1791. Between 1808 and 1822 they had five children, though all but one died before their father - Jane (1808-1841), Mary (1809-1883), Thomas (b.1811, died in infancy), John (1816/17-1853) and Hannah (1 821/2-1841).'° I have not identified their home during these years, but on 1 March 1825 Sutcliffe took over the lease of land and buildings. at Chapel Hill for £1740, to erect a house.'’ This was next to Buxton Rd Chapel’ and the lease was taken over from Rev John Wilson. It remained the family home until the death of the unmarried daughter Mary in 1883 brought the Sutcliffe line to an end.
NO RECORDS have survived to tell the story of the Sutcliffe firm, but according to his obituarist "Mr Sutcliffe gave early indications of an aptitude for public business, and evinced a lively interest in the prosperity of the town, which was only in its infancy when he took up his abode in it." We are much more fortunate in the survival of records of the public bodies of the period, which certainly bear this out.
In my recent HLHS booklet Pioneers or Partisans? I explain the various institutions which had a hand in governing the town in the first half of the 19" century - the Ramsden-owned manor, the township vestry, the new Commissioners of 1820 and 1827, and the county magistracy. Generally speaking, I argue, these were separate realms, each with their own leading personnel. John Sutcliffe was unique in the extent to which his activities extended across all these domains - an exception to prove the rule, if ever there was one. He also played a large part in a wide range of charitable and financial institutions. I
To start with the governing bodies. Before 1820 the vestry was the basic institution of local government and elected officers annually to manage the affairs of the township. In October 1815 Sutcliffe was elected chief constable, as much the town's leading citizen as a policeman in the modern sense. This was a year of considerable unrest, as unemployment rose and incomes declined after the end of the Napoleonic Wars, and his fellow ratepayers must therefore have placed _ considerable confidence in Sutcliffe, then 40, as the right man for the job; he had a little earlier, at the time of the Luddite disturbances, been a founding member of the Huddersfield Prosecution Society, which pursued miscreants in the absence of effective public He was elected overseer of the poor in 1822/3 and again in 1832/3, responsible for dispensing parish relief to the needy. His last recorded
service to the vestry was as a member of a committee to resolve a rating crisis in February 1838, by when, as we shall see, he was about to move on to higher things.
In 1820, along with many of the town's businessmen, he became one of the 59 Commissioners for Lighting, Watching & Cleansing (CLWC). He was not an assiduous attender in the early years, when most of the business was put in hand, managing only seven meetings by June 1823 (the top performer, James Booth, made it to 36). He became much more heavily involved in the 1830s - by which time he was also one of the 120 Waterworks Commissioners appointed in 1827 - and from 1834 to 1837 he chaired the majority of CLWC meetings. But this was to change abruptly in 1838 and his attendance petered out in 1839, resulting in disqualification from membership in 1842."
The reason for this was not the lassitude which seems to have afflicted many of his fellow Commissioners, but rather his elevation to the county bench as a Justice of the Although the local JPs were ex officio Commissioners, it had never been their practice to attend, and Sutcliffe evidently followed precedent in absenting himseif from both CLWC and vestry affairs after his new appointment. As a magistrate, however, he was very active, becoming one of the three "usual Saturday magistrates" who heard cases weekly at the Court House. '®
Sutcliffe was one of five new / appointments to the Bench in 1837/8, swelling its numbers from three to eight as the Whig government tried to face down the militant campaign - of which Huddersfield was famously a hotbed - against the implementation of the New Poor Law of 1834. But he was an unusual recruit. For one thing he was, his obituarist noted, "the first Nonconformist that had the honour of a seat on the Huddersfield bench"’” (though I will return to his religious affiliations). But he also failed to f t the typical social profile of a magistrate.
The three acting magistrates already in place in 1837 were Joseph Armitage of Milnsbridge House, Benjamin North Rockley Batty of Fenay Lodge and Joseph Walker of Lascelles Hall - county gentry with no real stake in the emerging industrial town. The five who joined them, apart from Sutcliffe, were substantial merchants. and/or manufacturers, successful enough also to occupy ‘gentleman's residences' on the edge of the town, if not already then during the 1840s - Joseph Starkey of Heaton Lodge; his brother Thomas Starkey of Spring Wood; William Brook, later of Gledholt; and William Walker Battye, later of Thorp Villa. The former apprentice John Sutcliffe, with his town house at Chapel Hill, though obviously a man of means, was perhaps an unusual! addition to this company, and one whose qualities had again earned him the confidence of the powers that be as they had, 20 years before, of the ratepayers.
He would, however, have been well-known to some of these gentlemen by virtue of other roles he had taken on during the past 30 years. His earliest known civic engagement was as one of the founding subscribers of the Huddersfield _ Subscription Library, in 1807. There were 42 of these, including many of the leading gentlemen and mill-owners of the time; John Sutcliffe had ticket no. 8, and was a committee member from the start.'® The Public Dispensary was founded in 1814 to make out-patient medicine available to the poor, and Sutcliffe is recorded as a committee member as early as 1815, so again he was probably a founding member of the organisation. '° By 1831 the Dispensary was to evolve into the Infirmary;
Sutcliffe was still on the committee, which included all but one of the 1838 I magistrates.
Many of the same men were aiso leading lights of the town's new financial institutions. In 1818 the Huddersfield & Upper Agbrigg Savings Bank was founded, which aimed to encourage regular saving by "fru jal and industrious persons male and female, mechanics, labourers, servants etc"“’, and eventually became one of the Trustee Savings Banks. The founding directors included Sutcliffe, Battye, Brook and Thomas Starkey. At that time the leading commercial bank in the town was Dobson's of Market Place, but this was a victim of the 1825/6 banking crash (its resulting entry into chancery reputedly still being remembered in the name of Chancery Lane). The Huddersfield Banking Co was then established in 1827, with Armitage, Battye and Walker among its founding directors; Thomas Starkey and Brook were soon to join them. Sutcliffe joined the board in 1835 and was several times chairman in the 1840s and 1850s. The HBC operated until 1893, when it became part of the Midland Bank.
The (later) Banking Co, at the Cloth Hall St/New St corner ; and, immediately behind it in Cloth Hall St, Sutcliffe's Buildings. (' ©kirklees Council. Huddersfield Local Studies Library)
If in these respects his interests and commitments were similar to some of the town's grandest men, Sutcliffe exhibited a more distinctive interest in education. When the Huddersfield College was established in New North Road in 1838 (in the Gothic ‘castle’ now part of Kirklees College) he was one of the pr oprietors, holding two £20 shares, each share carrying the right to nominate a pupil.“ He was elected President of the College Council, a position which he continued to hold until at least 1848.~ Over the same period he chaired the British & Foreign School Society (BFSS) in Huddersfield? , which promoted the Lancasterian system of elementary
schooling, dependent on 'monitoring' of younger children by the older ones. Its school in Outcote Bank (still standing as Prospect House) opened around 1838; in _ 1844 we find him fund-raising for the infant school in Spring (also stil standing, now occupied by Huddersfield Plate Glass 3 Ltd), and in 1848 he is President of the Huddersfield Infant School Society.”
SUTCLIFFE'S LEADING ROLE in these institutions sheds an interesting light on his religious views. The College was committed to providing education of a Christian but inclusive, non-denominational kind, and distinguished itself in that respect from the exclusively Anglican Collegiate School at Clare Hill, which was also being established in 1838.7 " Exactly the same distinction existed at elementary level between the ‘broad church’ British Schools and the doctrinally Anglican National Schools, so in both cases Sutcliffe was committed to a ‘liberal’ religious education.
As noted above, he has been described as the town's first non-conformist magistrate, and his obituarist confirmed that for many years he had "connected himself with the Wesleyan body, to which he was warmly attached". In fact his first two daughters were baptised at High St Chapel, which adhered to the Methodist New Connexion (the New Connexion had split from the mainstream Wesleyans in 1797 in search of greater local, lay control of church affairs), while two later children were buried with his parents at Highfields Independent (Congregationalist) But Sutcliffe nonetheless acted as a collector of funds for the 25" anniversary of Queen St (mainstream) Methodist chapel in 182579 and also rented a pew in the parish church. QI 1836, the year his wife died, he paid 15 guineas for a double vault at Holy Trinity*°, where he, his wife and three of their children are buried.
Whether he was by then an Anglican - and therefore not a non-conformist magistrate after all - is unclear. At the least, all this confirms that, as his obituarist put it, "his Christian sympathies were too enlarged to be circumscribed within sectarian limits. Prepared to cooperate with Christians of every denomination, he could not brook the most distant approach to religious intolerance." (Though one might add that this tolerance was limited to the Christian family. In 1838 he moved a motion at a town meeting "opposing Government sanction to idolatry in India" - there was national controversy at the time over the perceived indulgence of Hindu practices by servants of the East India Company - and in 1850 he was Huddersfield _ Auxiliary of the missionary British & Foreign Bible Society.°’)
If there is some ambiguity about his brand of Christianity, in politics he was unequivocally a Whig, as was typical (though not universal) among the rising class of merchants and manufacturers. In Huddersfield's first, riotous parliamentary. election in 1832 he clashed sharply with the Tory Radical chief constable William Stocks junior, and in 1835 he nominated John Blackburne as the Whig candidate in — that year's general election. Surviving poll books record him as a consistent Whig. voter from 1832, except for a Tory vote in the 1848 West Riding election - but _ many Whigs switched on that occasion, when party loyalties were disrupted by a Liberal candidate standing entirely ona platform of ‘voluntaryism’ (rather than state involvement) in education.° I
However his political and social views, like his religious ones, were seemingly more temperate than sectarian. As a JP he was a member of the Board of Guardians, established in 1837 to implement the highly unpopular New Poor Law. This resulted in intense, often riotous, political conflicts in the town.** At a key meeting in August 1838, discussing the appointment of assistant overseers to enforce the new law, he urged the appointment of men who were “kind hearted in disposition. From men of a churlish or snappish disposition the poor would rather starve than solicit relief. A refusal by some men would be much better received by the pauper than the granting of a pittance in a rude and unfeeling manner."*°
As a Whig he was of course on the winning side in all the early elections after Huddersfield became a parliamentary borough in 1832. The Ramsdens were also Whigs, and historians have debated the extent to which the town was a Ramsden ‘pocket borough’. Sutcliffe himself was certainly on good terms with Isabella Ramsden, mother of the young Sir John William, in the 1840s. The Ramsden family papers contain over a dozen letters fiom Sutcliffe to Mrs Ramsden between 1844 and 1846, which are fascinating both for their content and their
1844 was a crucial year in town affairs, as George Loch replaced John Bower as principal Ramsden agent and Sir John William's trustees vigorously re-engaged with the development of the town. Sutcliffe evidently saw this as a great opportunity, — writing to Mrs Ramsden on 9 November 1844 that "you [the trustees] are now going to adopt such a line of conduct, as will soon place Huddersfield in the Rank she must one day occupy among the towns in the West Riding.” In particular he urged the importance of bringing a direct railway to the town, and reported on 28 October 1844 on.a public meeting on the subject which he had convened at Loch's suggestion. By 4 March 1846 work on the railway was steaming ahead and "I have no doubt all will now go well for Huddersfield."
But some of the correspondence is chattier than this. The 9 November letter begins by announcing that he will be writing "when anything occurs, that I think you ought to know, so long as it is your pleasure tc allow it". Similarly on 21 February 1846 he pens "a few lines" - in fact seven pages! - "simply to inform you what is pressing amongst us, and which I presume may be interesting to you". However, he is always respectful of the status of the lord of the manor. His fund-raising for the infant school, noted above, is justified on 3 November 1845 on the grounds that it was "doing much good among the children of your tenantry"; while on 14 October 1844 he advocates a "very small expense" to paint the slates blue at Longley Hail, improving the appearance "as befits a Baronet's residence”. It would be good to know how these letters, ingenuous yet not quite impertinent, were received at Muncaster Castle in Cumberland, to which they were generally sent, and what replies they attracted.
IN 1847, as I related in Pioneers or Partisans?, the death from typhus of Thomas Starkey JP precipitated a new alliance between the Ramsden estate, the town's magistrates and some leading township figures, notably Joshua Hobson, to secure the 1848 Improvement Act and establish the Improvement Commissioners, who were to govern the town for the next 20 years. Although in his early seventies, John Sutcliffe played a central part in these developments. In particular he chaired the
two key public meetings, in June 1847 to discuss how to respond to the typhus epidemic, and in January 1848 to approve the proposed terms of the Improvement Bill. It took until August to get the Bill through Parliament and Sutcliffe worked closely throughout with the Ramsden estate managers, his fellow JPs and other leading citizens to secure this result.
It is therefore no surprise to find him unanimously elected chairman at the inaugural meeting on 30 August 1848. But in view of his age, perhaps it is equally unsurprising that he did not join any of the working committees established to manage particular functions; nor that he was replaced as chairman by his fellow JP Joseph Brook at the next annual
He did, however, remain a Commissioner until 1854 (now nearing 80 years old), and accepted further public offices during this period. As well as some mentioned above, these ranged from the vice-presidency of the Pig & Poultry Association to membership of the 1852 Holmfirth flood relief committee. *°
THE FIRST HALF of the 19" century was a period of massive social change but also of strong class distinctions. The "influential men" of the town, holding such positions as magistrate and bank director, tended to be land-owning minor gentry or, increasingly, major merchants or manufacturers. In contrast the men most active in town government, whether as appointed Commissioners or elected officers of the vestry, were commonly from a lower stratum of the middle class - typically smaller tradesmen, shopkeepers and artisans.
John Sutcliffe was unusual in pursuing a career which crossed these divides. As his obituarist put it:
Cast, in a great measure, in early life, upon his own resources, he, by the maintenance of a sound morality. and high principle, and by steady application, rose to a position among his fellow-citizens of honour and usefulness, and enjoyed the esteem of all who knew him.
The once-popular ‘self help’ or 'rags to stereotype of 19" century © businessmen has been heavily qualified by recent historians. However, Sutcliffe did start out as an apprentice to Hawxby, and I have found no evidence that he inherited significant wealth from his father®’. It is of course possible that he 'married well’, although the Buxton Rd house was not put up until nearly 20 years into the marriage. His social origins and reported nonconformity were both unusual for a magistrate in 1838, and - to use an anachronistic term, coined over a century later - in comparison with his peers he does seem to have pursued something ofa ‘meritocratic’ career.
JOHN SUTCLIFFE died on 4 April 1858, aged 82, after an unsuccessful operation for a strangulated intestinal His will confirms that by then he had acquired quite substantial wealth.*' In addition to his home at Chapel Hill, and business at Cloth Hall St, there were other assets just short of £8000, roughly equating to
£700,000 today. Most of this was accounted for by a mortgage of the East Lancashire Railway (£3800) and 121 shares in the Huddersfield Banking Co (£2964). There were also two freehold cottages, at Crosland Moor and in Rochdale, although unlike other Whig businessmen of the day, Sutcliffe does not seem to have built up a portfolio of working class housing in Huddersfield. A valuation of £67 (say £6000 today) for "wine and other liquors” is perhaps another indication that, if he remained a Methodist, he was a broad-minded one.
The fate of the Sutcliffe business is unclear. By 1858 there was no obvious heir: his sons were already dead: _ Jane's widower was a clergyman, Revd WA Hurndall of Ramsden St _ Congregational Chapel; and Mary was unmarried. The main beneficiaries of the will were Mary and Jane's son John Sutcliffe Hurndail. In 1866 Mary sold Sutcliffe's Buildings by auction, and at that time the premises - comprising three floors of warehouses, offices and shops - were all in the hands of "highly _.. respectable tenants".** Most likely this 7» had been the case since John's retirement in 1847. The complex was sold to Charles Hirst for £5420, but the Se Examiner reported in 1935 that it had * been known as Sutcliffe's Buildings "until recent years".**
John Sutcliffe's real legacy, however, is » his role in developing the town's public 1 institutions. As the founding chairman of the 1848 Improvement Commission, Joe eM Me chen ere a he was able to draw on 40 years of ohn, his wife Mary, 7 718, ohn, I rr and Jane's husband RevWA I and the magistacy Ac his obituarist recorded, "He lived to see the town of Huddersfield, the advancement of which he had always striven to promote, rise in every point of view to considerable importance - a circumstance which I yielded him high Satisfaction. In the words of G W Tomlinson, he was indeed "a very useful man".
' ' Huddersfield Chronicle, 17/4/58. * Holden’ s Directory, 1809. The spellings Hawxby and Hawksby both appear in the records. Baines’ Directory, 1822. * Pigot's Directory, 1834; White's Directory, 1837; Sutcliffe family papers, Eaton, Smith & Downey Archive, West Yorkshire Archives Service, Wakefield. (WYAS-W), C296/218-9 - hereafter Sutcliffe
papers. Huddersfield Chronicle, 17/4/58; Tomlinson, op cit.
° GW Tomlinson, Some Account of the Founders of the Huddersfield Subscription Library (Daily Chronicle, Huddersfield, 1875). The dates are taken from the Highfields Independent Chapel burials register, relating to tombstone 13 (WYAS, Kirklees, NUH I/1/3), and other names in. the entry establish the link with John Sutcliffe junior. "DFE Sykes, The History of Huddersfield and its Vicinity (Advertiser Press, Huddersfield, 1898), based upon the article ‘Huddersfield 70 Years Ago’ by 'Native', in the Huddersfield Daily Examiner, 24/5/1878. I ° High St Chapel baptism register, 1797-1838, WYAS-K, NM/HSC. io Directory listing at http:/Avww.parishmouse.com/towns Highfield and High St Chapel registers, op.cit., and tombstone at Holy Trinity Church. jp Sutcliffe papers. 2 ‘Huddersfield in 1825/6’, reminiscences of Mr D Schofield, Huddersfield Examiner, 15/9/1883. 8 Edward Law, Huddersfield in the 1820s (HLHS, forthcoming). ‘4 CLWC minutes at West Yorkshire Archives Service, Kirklees (WYAS-K), KMT98. Unfortunately I failed to note his 1842 disqualification in the full list of Commissioners in Pioneers or Partisans? Governing Huddersfield, 1820-48 (HLHS, 2008), Appendix 1. ° He was sworn in on 4 April 1838: WYAS-W, QD1/108. '® I eeds Mercury, 20/1/44. v7 |, Huddersfield Chronicle, 17/4/58. 1, Sutcliffe papers; Tomlinson, op.cit.. tomlinson collection, notebook R, WYAS-K, KC174/2/1. Rules of the HUASB, WYAS-W, QE19/45. *1 Rules and Regulations of the College, 1838, Sutcliffe papers. Similarly, donors to the Dispensary/Infirmary had the right to nominate patients. Sykes, op.cit., p419, and reports in the Leeds Mercury of his speeches at the opening ceremony, 21/1 [39 and at subsequent prize days to 1848. 7, Leeds Mercury, 7/9/39 and 21/8/48 7, GeOrge Redmonds, The Place-Names of Huddersfield (David Shore, 2008), p112. * Letters to Hon Mrs Isabella Ramsden, 10/7/44 & 3/11/45; Ramsden papers, WYAS-K, DD/RAIC/4/1 & 3. Leeds Mercury, 1/7/48. 27 I eeds Mercury, 26/5/38. 28 Highfield and High St Chapel registers, op.cit., Resolutions of Trustees of Queen St Chapel, 1824-55; WYAS-K, N/QS/2. Sutcliffe papers. I Leeds Mercury, 21/7/38 & 19/10/50. 2 Vivienne Hemingway, 'Urban Politics and Popular Movements in the Age of Reform: Huddersfi eld, c, 1832-52' (unpublished PhD thesis, University of Huddersfield, 1992). 3 Sykes, op.cit., p.371; Hemingway, ‘Parliamentary Politics in Huddersfield, c.1832-53, in E AH Haigh (ed), Huddersfield - A Most Handsome Town (Kirklees Cultural Services, 1992). * The full story has most recently been told in Allan Place, Pray Remember the Poor: The Poor Laws and Huddersfield (Holme Valley Civic Society, 2004). , Leeds Mercury, 25/8/38. 6 WYAS-K, DD/RA/IC/4/1-4. 37 ag PUAdersfield Improvement Commissioners minute book, 1848-59, WYAS-K. Leeds Mercury, 19/10./50, 14/2/52, 22/5/52. I *° There is no will for John Sutcliffe senior either at the Borthwick Institute, York or the WY Registry of Deeds, Wakefield, where one would expect to find it. This raises a further question mark over whether this Sutcliffe was in fact the owner of the New St cotton factory, which its owner Sutcliffe had sold to Joseph Schofield in 1816. (The change of ownership is referred to by Lesley Kipling & Alan Brooke, Huddersfield: A History and Celebration, Francis F rith, 2005, and confirmed by trade directories. ) i, Sutcliffe papers. *' Last will and testament made 1/3/56, proved 20/5/58, in Sutcliffe papers. “2 yg atticulars of sale of 10/4/66 in Sutcliffe papers. 7, Huddersti eld Daily Examiner, 26/10/1935. “ Tomlinson (1875), op.cit.
‘THE LUDDITES AND THE AFFECT THEIR ACTIONS HAD ON THE HORSFALL FAMILY
We have all heard and read so much about the Luddites and their activities that it was good to hear another side to this story as excellently told by Pamela Cooksey in the No.15 Winter 2003/2004 Journal. It was taken from the Journal of Joseph Wood, a Minister of Quakers who was very concerned for the families of the Luddite men who were transported or suffered death. So Joseph Wood and Thomas Shillitoe, another Quaker who was greatly concerned, paid a religious visit to many families, at times being joined by other Quakers in the different localities they visited.
Another side to the Luddites story is the death of William Horsfall and how it affected his family. Mr. Horsfall was very determined to introduce the new labour saving machinery into his mill, Ottiwells at Marsden, he even had built a barricade with a cannon to protect his mill from the Luddites.
With his own workpeople he was popular but with the croppers he was hated, as the new machinery meant that they had no work and no job. Mr. Horsfall was reportec to have declared that he would "ride up to the saddle girths in the blood of the Luddites." His saddle girths the Luddites vowed should be red with blood, but it would be his own. Although Mr. Horsfall took careful measures to guard his mill he was careless in the safety of his own person. It must never have entered his mind that harm would come to him. :
On Tuesday, 28th April 1812, on his way back to Marsden from the market in Huddersfield Mr. William Horsfall was shot by two of a group of Luddites hiding in Mr. Radcliffe's Plantation up Blackmoorfoot Road. A Mr. Henry Parr was riding behind him and he went to help him, Mr. Horsfall asked that someone go and fetch his brother. He was taken to the Warren House Inn just down the road and Mr. Rowland Houghton, the surgeon from Huddersfield, was sent for. His brother, the I Rev. Abraham Horsfall, had hurried to the Inn and Stayed with him until he died the next day.
When the news of Mr. Horsfall's death became general knowledge the Magistrates redoubled their efforts and each millowner his precautions. At Marsden, the cavalry made their headquarters at The Old Red Lion Inn, kept by John Race, and they scoured the countryside by night. The infantry were at Ottiwells Mill and the workplace of the Taylors was barricaded as for a siege. I
This affected the Horsfali family very much. Although they would not have the money worries that the Luddite mens families had their spirit was broken. The use of the new machinery was discontinued and nand cropping was resumed at Ottiwells Mill. A few years afterwards the Horsfalls disposed of their Marsden property, Bankbottom Mills passing to Messrs. Norris, Sykes and Kinder and Ottiwells Mill to Messrs. A. & W. Kinder. It is said that after his son's tragic death, Mr. Abraham Horsfall never again entered the Mill at Ottiwells, and when riding past it on his way to Bankbottom, would avert his face from a building associated with black and bitter memories.
The information about Wiliiam Horsfall was taken from "the History of Huddersfield and its Vicinity", by D. F. E. Sykes, LL.B. (1898)
Edwin Swift: “the Man”
Those who attended the Members’ Christmas event may remember an item about this famous Linthwaite bandsman. Thanks to one of our members, it is possible to look again, at a biographical pamphlet, originally published at the time of Edwin’s death in 1904, and reissued by the Band in 1998. He was born in 1843, at Upper Clough, Linthwaite, the son of a handloom weaver. The formation of a drum and fife band attracted Edwin’s attention, and he began to practise, even at that tender age, with a determination that was to characterise his musical life. Joining the Linthwaite band at the age of 10, and already proficient with the cornet, he developed such a natura! ability to ttanspose music, that, within 4 years he had also become the conductor, preparing music by candlelight, long after his family had retired to bed. Such determination was not without a sharp, competitive edge, as when the rival Ryland’s Band prepared to launch a new piece. Edwin attended their Friday night rehearsal, memorised the work, wrote it down for a quick rehearsal, and led the Linthwaite Band in performance on Saturday, much to the dismay of their bewildered neighbours. As an arranger he worked all the hours possible, despite having a full time job as a weaver. Like many ambitious working men of the period, he combined study with work at the loom, even at some financial cost, as spoiled pieces had to be paid for. His baffled master, famously asking “who art ta’ weaving for, But instruments cost money, and contesting was the only way forward. A public appeal financed a few more instruments, as did a link with the 34th West Riding Yorkshire Volunteer Regiment, as their regimental band. A first visit to Belle Vue was unsuccessful, but two local contests in 1869 led toa ‘return visit which yielded a fifth prize. This success spurred Edwin on to even greater efforts, working round the clock, with the mill by day, and music through the night. Not surprisingly, as we would say today, he “burned out” and was seriously ill by the spring of 1870. Cornet playing, and then, conducting had to be suspended. By 1872, he was back conducting, but the post of solo cornet player was passed to Charles Aulty. I Despite modestly describing himself as “a weaver by trade, and a professional musician by accident”, he took the band to 10 first prizes in 1874, including Belle Vue itself. By the following year, it was possible to leave the mill behind and devote his time to teaching and arranging music. Brass bands were thriving, and Edwin was much in demand, In 1876, he took 3 local bands to the Belle Vue contest, 3rd, 4th and 5th prizes. Numerous other bands followed, right across the North of Engiand, and most were rewarded with success, both musical and financial (the Linthwaite and Wyke bands alone amassed over £11,000 in prize money). But personal problems were also taking their effect. In 1899, his son Fred, himself a former Linthwaite bandmaster, died, followed only 14 months later by another son, Lawrence, also a promising musician. Already dogged by ill health, and the strain of constant travel and outdoor performances, these bereavements had a profound effect on a man who felt the end approaching. When he passed away, from a form of cancer, in February 1904, Linthwaite witnessed a massive funeral. Mills closed down, and over 80 bandsmen, playing Handel’s “Dead March’ with muffled drums, led the cortege. Even special tramcars brought mourners from Huddersfield to swell the local crowds. He was greatly missed, as one obituary wrote “courage, work and faith. Those were the three things that made Edwin Swift one of the greatest band trainers the world has ever seen”
A select band of local publications this year, and, since, reviews, like charity, begin at home, the Society’s own publication takes pride of place. Pioneers or Partisans? Governing Huddersfield 1820-1848, by David Griffiths, looks at one of the least explored periods of the Town’s history. The creation of the Commissioners for Lighting, Watching and Cleansing in 1820 can be seen as the first significant step in the creation of modern local government -by way of the Improvement Commissioners, the. Borough, to the present Metropolitan District. It was not an easy path, for, in the early 19th Century, local government was just that, toa microcosmic degree that is scarcely imaginable now. Getting to grips with the traditional accretions of the centuries is rather like opening a set of civic Russian dolls; within the County, governed by the magistrates, were the parishes, which, in turn, subdivided into townships and chapelries, within which were hamlets (in Huddersfield township’s case, no less than 5!).Then, for good measure, there was the manor, owned famously by the Ramsden family, and increasingly active in its’ developing asset. Into this maelstrom of competing jurisdictions stepped the 59 Commissioners, who were to improve the lot of those who lived with the rapid transformation of Huddersfield from an “insignificant cluster of irregularly built lanes” to a “large and populous town’. Who these pioneers were, and how they worked, makes for a very human story of public service (Huddersfield Local history Society 9780950913445 £5)
That Huddersfield was in such a position at all in the first decades of the 19th Century, is indicative of its humble, not to say, insignificant past. The medieval town didn’t compare with neighbours like Elland, let alone such notables as Wakefield and Pontefract. Not until the late 18th Century was there a town of any real note, and that, small and of “wretched appearance”. so it is not surprising that place names play such an important role in exploring and explaining the early history of this area -and who better to do that than Dr George Redmonds. : In his latest volume of linguistic The Place names of Huddersfield, he reconstructs settlement patterns, rights of way, trades, buildings, places of prayer, and places of refreshment, plus those individuals whose own names have come down to posterity. Heavily illustrated, with both maps, and photos, from the late Clifford Stephenson’s collection, it is both a valuable history and a fascinating lucky dip for anyone who ever pondered such questions as whether Folly Hall really was a mistake, why there was a China Town, but no Chinese people, in Leeds Road, and who actually were Hillhouse’s Clara and Honoria (David Shore isbn 9780950852690 £9.75)
For investigators of our even earlier past, however, words are not enough, and there is no alternative but to get down to some serious digging. Through 30 years of adversity, the Huddersfield and District Archeological Society has struggled to establish the actual route of the Roman military road from York to Chester, where it passed between Slack and I Castleshaw. The Romans came this way: the story of the discovery and excavation of a military way across the Pennines, by Norman Lunn et al, relates this epic tale of persistence, hard work, and grim determination. Battling against scepticism, atrocious conditions, and unwelcome visitors (4 legged ones used their trenches as temporary homes, whilst 2 legged ones actually stole a wheelbarrow) they achieved their objective. This is so significant, that the National Lottery helped with funding, and Professor Mick Ashton of Time Team fame, has written the forward to this lavishly illustrated, and substantial work. (Huddersfield and District Archaeological Society isbn 9780905 747033 £12. 99).
Other local societies have also been active on the publication front in 2008. The Marsden History Group has published a substantial illustrated work Marsden then and now: a photographic journey (isbn 9780955717512 £12.50), and the Honley Civic Society have produced a series of pamphlets on their area’s past. Non-Conformist Chapels of Honley: Moorbottom (9780956007421 £3.50) and Non-Conformist Chapels of Honley: the Methodists (9780956007414 £3.50). Also Woodroyd: Honley's hidden hamlet. (9780956007407 £3)
These talks are organised by the Local Studies Library and held in the Huddersfield library’s Light Reading Room, every two months at 1pm, with light refreshments provided. Events for 2009 are: January 21st Ken Kaye “The way we were - growing up in Huddersfield March 11th Geoff Lee “They could write a book about this place, it would be a best seller” May 6th Helga Hughes “The story of Red House” July 8th Vivien Teasdale “Murder and mayhem -foul deeds around Victorian Yorkshire” September 23rd David Griffiths “Huddersfield’ s Great exhibition -the Town shows off in 1840” November 25th “Silent witnesses- the story of War Memorials”
Also of interest is a forthcoming talk by Pam Cooksey to the Huddersfield & District Family History Society at Dewsbury Town Hall on 10th March ‘The Holme Valley Lads -researching soldiers of the 1st World War”. Incidentally, Pam, together with the local History Group of the Holme Valley Civic Society will be launching the first in a series of booklets about the New Mill area, at New Mill library on 26th February and at Holmfirth library on 6th April I
CELEBRATING EDGAR WOOD
Society members may remember Professor Clyde Binfi eld' s talk in 2007 on Edgar Wood, the architect of Banney Royd, Lindley Clock Tower and some other notable buildings around Huddersfield. Wood was from Middleton (Greater Manchester), where there is a'rich heritage of his work, and a Friends of Edgar Wood group has been established there. Now steps are in hand to establish a Huddersfield branch of the Friends, with the aims of increasing awareness of Wood's local work, opening up more of it to occasional public access and researching his legacy in Huddersfield. HLHS committee members David Griffiths and Brian Haigh are both involved in this initiative, with other local Wood enthusiasts. If you are interested in becoming involved, please contact David (tel 540309, gniffi. davigiG sgooglemail, cam) or Brian (tel 471083, email@example.com uk).
Prograr:me 2008 - 2009
# 27 October
#24 November By 1 December #26 January 23 February 30 March
uocal History Society
Olympic Medallist and World Record Holder in Athletics Derek
Saturday Seminar at Newsome South Methodist Church Huddersfield from Miserable Village to Handsome Town
West Yorkshire Archive Ser vice
facorporating the Annual General Meeting,
Mull and Hardcastle Urags Trevor Moody
Christmas Evening itnal still to be arranged
Diary of Dewsbury Lady 911) Stuart Hartley
Mills af Huddersfield Vivienne Teasdale
the \dinu.2d History of the New Mill Club & the Memorial Room Pam Coc’ sey
Cotto: Be rol Country - ~ Landscape History & People of the Gritstone Avec of fh, south Pennines I Marea yeh ce i urry
How the Assizes Came to Leeds Kate Taylot
Excursion. Details still to be arranged
All Meetings except those mark: J * and # will take place i in the Children’s Library,
Hudder: ield Library at 7.50 pm
#Meetings in th. Light Reading Room at 7.30 pm
The 2009-2016 series of taiks will commence on Monday 28" September 2009
Membership Subscriptions: Sinyie £6 : Joint £10 are due at the start of the session
Editor: Mr. K. Brockhill, 52 Croft Gardens, Birkby, Huddersfield.