Discovering Old Huddersfield: Part Two (1995) by Gordon and Enid Minter

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Gordon and Enid Minter

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Front cover:- The Jubilee Fountain, Greenhead Park. Back cover:- The South African War Memorial, Greenhead Park.

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By Gordon and Enid Minter

Illustrations by J.R. Beswick


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This book is for three quarters of the 'How gill Eight': James and Kathleen Broadbent Peter and Vera Greenwood

Albert and Ellen Ramsden with whom we have shared many countryside adventures and even more laughs.

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Introduction Tour No.1 - Palaces and pleasure grounds. Tour No.2 - The first turnpike road 1759.

Illustrations 1. Sparrow Park 2. Lockwood Baths 3. Milnsbridge House 4. Crosland Lodge 5. Turnpike Road at Holt Head 6. Marsden Chapel 7. Thieves Bridge



11 22 36 68 92 105 118

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There are few towns in the manufacturing districts more delightfully situated, with

respect to scenery, than our good town of Huddersfield.

George Searle Phillips, 1848

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Part two of 'Discovering Old Huddersfield® follows the same format as part one - two car tours designed to take you, the reader, out to discover how much of the past remains to be seen along our local highways and byways. The tours, both of which explore the area to the west and south west of Huddersfield, pay particular attention to social, industrial and recreational development, to the growth of communications and to the history of the water supply which has been of particular interest during the extraordinary dry summer of 1995. As both tours touch on the Colne Valley the story of the Luddite years is a recurring theme. As in part one, we have given the directions for the whole route before the historical commentary. Each feature discussed, however, has been given a reference number which appears in the appropriate place in the directions to help locate it. We have tried to make our directions clear, concise and easy to follow and we have used miles rather than kilometres because, at present, car mileometers and signposts do the same. However, as we are fast approaching the mandatory use of the metric system, all yardages are also given in metres. In both directions and commentary instead of using compass points we have used the less complicated left and right hand side and these should, of course, be taken to refer to the direction in which you are travelling. In undertaking the tours it is important to be aware of the difficulties of following what might be an unfamiliar route by car as well as the dangers of stopping, suddenly perhaps, to look at various places of interest. With the speed of modern traffic it is mevitable that some sites will be missed altogether and so, with this in mind, we suggest you carefully read through each tour before setting off. This will not only give you some idea of where you are heading but will also allow you to locate anything of particular interest and be ready for it as you come upon it. In certain places it is necessary to stop to take in all there is to see and, where we know that parking is easy, we have suggested this with the symbol (P). Occasionally, we suggest you leave the car and walk a short distance to see sites not visible from the road. Such places we have marked (P.W.) but we leave the decision to you. To help those who might like to find their own

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parking place and tackle parts of the tours on foot we have divided each route into measured sections of about a mile. Thus an area of particular interest may be thoroughly explored by walking no more than two miles. Of course, anyone familiar with the area may prefer to undertake the joumey merely in his or her imagination. As our book is of general recreational interest rather than a scholarly work we have not provided footnotes but we have included a bibliography which we hope will be of use to anyone who might wish to pursue a particular interest. In the introduction to part one we commented that some of the information contained in any guide book is likely to be out of date before the book is published. We were soon proved right for neither tour in that book is now exactly as we described it. For example, we mentioned a large gateway in St. Andrew's Road, once the entrance to British Dyes. Now it has gone and the site is unrecognisable. In view of such rapid changes we can only reiterate that our routes are described as we found them the last time we checked them. Few books can be produced without help from others and we are grateful to Mike and Cynthia Beaumont, Sue Cottril and Alison Hughes for their practical advice and encouragement. Special thanks are due to our brother/in law, Richard Beswick, for his admirable illustrations in both books and perhaps we should thank our family for putting up with what has been our eight months long preoccupation. Finally, we should say that if we live long enough we hope to produce part three which will be of a slightly different format.


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The first tour starts in St. George's Square, travels through an industrialised area to the south and west of the town, and ends at Greenhead Park - one of the pleasure grounds of the title. The provision of public parks in the late nineteenth century stemmed from a growing conviction that an urban population could and should benefit from open spaces and an acquaintance with nature. In addition to large landscaped areas like Greenhead, Huddersfield had a number of smaller parks and public gardens and the tour passes the sites of three of these. At the opening of Greenhead Park in 1884, the Mayor commented that such a place would have had little value, sixty years previously, when people had no spare time to avail themselves of recreation. The mills and factories where those people worked were described by G.S. Phillips, in 1848, as 'enchanted palaces' and, as the tour crosses the Colne Valley, these improbably named buildings are much in evidence. Of course, we do not concentrate exclusively on parks and mills as the tour passes many other interesting features such as canals, turnpike roads, railways, public baths, schools, co-operative stores, hotels and cinemas all of which played an important part in the development of the area or in the daily life of its people.

DIRECTIONS Section 1. The tour starts in St. George's Square (1). Leave the Square, passing the George Hotel (2) on the left and turn right at the lights into John William Street (3). At the traffic lights at the Market Place (4) turn right into Westgate (5,6) and continue straight ahead (7) through the next set of lights (8). About 60 yards (54m) after the ring road lights fork left into Greenhead Road and then take first left into Park Avenue (12). At the T junction turn left into Springwood Avenue and in about 125 yards (114m) left again into Water Street (13). At the end of Water Street turn right into Spring Street (14) and right again into Old South Street (15,16). Turn left into Merton Street. This is 1.1 miles from the starting point.

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Section 2. After turning left into Merton Street take the right hand lane to the traffic lights at the ring road. Turn right (s.p. Oldham A62, Holmfirth A616, Wakefield and Sheffield A629) taking the middle lane (Holmfirth A616) (17) to the second set of lights at Chapel Hill. Continue straight on down the hill (18) and keep straight on through the lights at Colne Road (19,20,21,22) and St. Thomas' Road and 125 yards (114m) after the latter fork left into Albert Street (23). After a third of a mile (24) turn right into Bath Street (25) and then left at its junction with Lockwood Road (26). Having joined Lockwood Road continue to the next set of lights at the Red Lion (27,28). This is 1.1 miles from Merton Street. Section 3. At the Red Lion lights turn right into Swan Lane (29,30) and follow this under the railway bridge (31,32,33), soon after which it becomes Park Road (34). Follow Park Road (passing St. Barnabas Church on the right) to the traffic lights at Blackmoorfoot Road (35). This is 0.7 miles from the Red Lion. Section 4. Cross Blackmoorfoot Road into Park Road West (36) and continue down the hill to turn left into Manchester Road (37,38). In a quarter of a mile fork right (s.p. Milnsbridge) into Whiteley Street (39) and, after crossing the canal (40) follow the one-way system by forking left into Yates Lane and then turning right into Morley Lane (41) and left into Market Street (42). At the lights turn right into George Street (43) and follow this for about a third of a mile before turning left into Bankhouse Lane. Follow this up the hill and take first left into Armitage Road and continue to its junction with Market Street. This is 1.6 miles from Blackmoorfoot Road. Section 5. At the end of Armitage Road turn right into Market Street and follow this under the railway viaduct (44). Immediately after the viaduct turn right into Lowergate (s.p. Paddock) (45). Follow Lowergate for approximately half a mile (46) to the roundabout at Paddock Head (47). At the roundabout take the third exit into Luck Lane (48,49) and after half a mile turn right into Jim Lane. This is 1.1 miles from the end of Armitage Road. Section 6. Follow Jim Lane as it crosses Broomfield Road (50) and continue

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straight ahead into Dudley Road. At the T junction turn right into Lawrence Road and then left into Heaton Road. Passing Grasmere Road on the left continue to the cross roads at Gledholt Road and go straight ahead into Park Drive South. Follow this round the park (51) for a third of a mile and at the T junction turn left into Park Avenue. The tour ends at the junction of Park Avenue and Trinity Street (52). This is 0.9 miles from the beginning of Jim Lane and 6.4 miles from the starting point of the tour.


The tour starts in St. George's Square. Before leaving the Square spare a few moments to consider two of the town's finest buildings, the station and the George Hotel. (N.B. other buildings in the Square are dealt with in 'Discovering Old Huddersfield, Part One').

HUDDERSFIELD STATION (1) On the 26th Apnl 1845 a local company, the Huddersfield and Manchester Railway and Canal Company, was authorised by Act of Parliament to begin work on a railway line, part of which would run along the lower Colne Valley to join the existing line at Heaton Lodge. The first sod was cut at Deighton on the 10th October 1845. Around the same time, work began on the station which was built to the northeast of the Market Place on part of a large field called George Close, subsequently to be developed as St. George's Square. The foundation stone of the station was laid on the 9th October 1846. The day was declared a public holiday, church bells rang all day and an impressive procession of clergy, police, architects, contractors, engineers, inagistrates, freemasons, company officials and shareholders paraded through the town to the Square. Bringing up the rear of the procession was a Right Hon. the Earl Fitzwilliam who was to perform the stone laying ceremony. Thousands of people crowded into the Square to watch the proceedings and celebrations continued throughout the day. Less than a year later work on the line was completed and the first train arrived in Huddersfield on 2nd August 1847. The station, which was designed in classical style by James Pigott Pritchett of York, was built by Joseph Kaye, a man responsible for several of

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Huddersfield's fine public buildings. By the time the station was completed, in 1850, the Huddersfield and Manchester Company had become part of the much larger London and North Western Company. In May, 1849, the L. and N.W. reached an agreement with the Lancashire and Yorkshire Railway Company for the joint use of Huddersfield Station and for many years the two companies had separate booking offices at the station, the L. and Y . at the west end {unoccupied at present) and the L. and N.W .R. at the eastern end (now the Station Tavern). Still to be seen over these old offices are the nicely restored logos of the two companies, that of the Lancashire and Yorkshire with the appropriate red and white roses and that of the Huddersfield and Manchester (representing the L. & N.W.R.) with its suitable motto, 'devant si je puis'. Plans to convert the L. and Y. office into a Victorian type buffet and a rail museum to be called 'Head of are presently awaiting approval from the Secretary of State for the Environment. Only twenty years after the station was opened, the state of the public accommodation there had become the subject of many complaints. Both the Town Council and the Chamber of Commerce attempted to persuade the railway companies to attend to the matter but without success and it was only after Col. Zolland, a Government Inspector, held an inquiry into the matter at the station, on the 3rd February 1870, that things began to improve. In 1881, at a time when the London and North Western Company was doubling most of its railway lines through Huddersfield, the decision was taken to extend the station by the addition of an island platform and to improve it by providing a subway and a large roof to cover both the old and the new platforms. For many years, soot encrusted and grimy, Huddersfield Station was little regarded and it was not until it received fulsome praise from the poet John Bet;jamen in the 1960s that local people woke up to the fact that they had in their midst one of the finest examples of railway architecture in the country. In recent years the building has been cleaned and repaired whilst at the same time much has been done to improve the ambience of its surroundings. Now, at last, the scaffolding has been removed and we are able to see the station once again as its idealistic and confident Victorian builders meant it to be. Huddersfield Station must be unusual in that it is approached from the east, above the ground, by means of a viaduct and from the west, under the

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ground, by means of a tunnel. At the time of building, the land to the east of the station was largely empty and consequently there was little difficulty in finding space for the long forty-five arch viaduct. The land to the west, however, was occupied and to make way for the entrance to the Springwood tunnel a great deal of property had to be demolished including a small street off Westgate, called Temple Street, which was the site of one of the town's first theatres, the Royal Circus. The viaduct was the scene of a potential disaster when, on Saturday, 14th July 1866, shortly after 1 1p.m. the express Bangor mail train hurtled into an excursion train from Leeds which, for some reason, had halted just outside the station. Amazingly, although there was a good deal of wreckage there were few serious injuries even among a party of teachers from Buxton Road Chapel who, returning from a day trip to Kirkstall Abbey, occupied the last carriage of the Leeds train. Accidents in tunnels were fairly common and one occurred in the Springwood tunnel on Thursday, 31st March 1870. A cattle truck containing a valuable cow had been attached to a passenger train due in Huddersfield at 1.29 p.m. The train had passed through the Standedge and Gledholt tunnels without difficulty but in the Springwood, metal rails, put in to strengthen the tunnel roof some twenty years previously, caught the cattle truck and wrenched off the top and the sides. The train was brought to an abrupt stop but, luckily, although the passengers were severely shaken no one was seriously injured - not even the cow. In our safety conscious times it is difficult to believe the number of accidents that occurred on the railways in mid- Victorian times when, after all, they had been operating for more than a quarter of a century. For example, in the year of the cow, 1870, there were no fewer than ten accidents, mostly collisions and derailments, on lines in or near to Huddersfield and although this was undoubtedly an all time high for a single year there were at least eight others in the four previous years. We will encounter the scenes of one or two of these later. A calamity of adifferent kind put the station itself at risk on Wednesday, 3rd April 1867. At 2 a.m. a fire was discovered at the Lancashire and Yorkshire Railway Company's warehouse. By 2.30 a.m. all the local fire brigades had arrived at the scene but despite their efforts the building was soon

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engulfed. By 4 a.m. the roof was alight and half an hour later the wall nearest to John William Street fell. When the fire was at its height the heat was so intense that railway trucks some twenty yards away burst into flames. The wind carried showers of sparks and burning wood into St. George's Square and the streets around, putting other buildings at risk. One shop, Swallow's tobacconist in John William Street, actually caught fire - as also, it was claimed by its owner, did a drying stove some considerable distance away at Seed Hill. The L. & Y. must have either rebuilt quickly or moved into other premises for only sixteen months later on Sunday, 2nd August 1 868, their warehouse again caught fire. It was the hottest day of a hot and dry summer and a wagon load of wool had been left directly beneath a plate glass skylight. The fire was discovered at 5.30 p.m. and by 8.00 p.m. despite the best efforts of the fire brigade the entire building had been destroyed.

THE GEORGE HOTEL (2) The coming of the railway stimulated the commercial development of the hitherto empty land to the north of the Market Place and by 1849 a number of new streets had been proposed or laid out and several new buildings planned. Among the first of these was the George Hotel which was opened in the new Square in 1851. Built to replace the old George Inn in the Market Place the hotel is an impressive building, designed by William Wallen in an Italinate style to complement the classical facade of the railway station. The quality of the stonework is obvious and, nearly a century and a half later, is a fitting reminder of the excellent standards of the builder, Joseph Kaye. It was at the George Hotel on 29th August 1895 that a meeting was held by the Enghsh Rugby Football Union to discuss payment to players for broken time and loss of wages at work. The meeting was a bitter one, no agreement was reached and consequently twenty clubs, of which Huddersfield was one, broke away from the English Union, with its strict emphasis on amateur status, to form the Northern Rugby Football Union, known later as the Rugby League. Now, in the centenary year, after many meetings and following a proposed injection into the game of some £87 million by Sky Television, changes just as contentious have been approved by a majority of Rugby League officials. The new structure will consist of a super league of twelve

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clubs, a first division of eleven clubs (including Huddersfield) and a second division of ten clubs. After a shortened 1995 - 1996 season the new three tier system will begin in March 1996 and will be run thenceforth as a summer competition. We can only hope that the new format will be successful and that the promised funding will continue into the future.

JOHN WILLIAM STREET (3) Built to provide a new and direct approach to the station from the Market Place, John William Street was the first of several new streets to be laid out on the empty land to the north of the town. Thereafter, development was rapid and St. Peter's Street, Northumberland Street, Brook Street, Byram Street, Lord Street and Church Street soon followed with their attendant buildings. Most of John William Street's Victorian buildings remain and it is worth a glance above the modern day shop fronts to see the unchanged and more gracious building hnes of those times. The street was named in honour of the then lord of the manor, Sir John William Ramsden. The construction of John William Street brought about the demolition of the old George Inn the position of which, on the north side of the Market Place, stood in the way of the new road's continuation into New Street. As well as affording accommodation to many of the town's most eminent visitors the old George had, for more than a century, been the scene of many important political and business meetings. It may, therefore, have been a sense of history - or even sentiment - that led to the preservation of the old building for it was pulled down carefully and re-erected in 1 852 at the corner of St. Peter's Street and Byram Street where it may still be seen. The route of our tour runs over the site of the George, just before the right turn into Westgate.

THE MARKET PLACE (4) Before turning right into Westgate notice, straight ahead, the Market Place which, apart from the removal of the George Inn, has changed little in shape and extent since it was established here in 1671. In that year King Charles II granted to Sir John Ramsden the right *... to have and to hold one market in the town of Huddersfield to be held on Tuesday in every week for ever for the buying and selling of all manner of goods and

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Soon after receiving the Charter the Ramsdens raised the Market Cross to mark the site of the general market and although, over the years, it has been moved several times and has been repaired and restored it remains much as it was when erected, surely one of the oldest edifices in the town. The general market continued to be held in the Market Place for two centuries by which time there was much agitation for a covered market which would be more in keeping with the prosperous modern town. So great was the demand that it even found its way into the pantomime 'The Forty Thieves' presented at the Theatre Royal in 1872. In a forthright, if not literary, piece of dialogue several characters addressed the contentious subject thus:

*Who talks of Markets? Where will they be found? Not here in Huddersfield, I dare be bound. Have they a covered market? Oh dear no! The Huddersfielders no such blessings know. The working man whose daily task is ended Towards the Market Place his weary way has wended, The rain and cold his buoyant spirits crush, As he toils onward through the mire and slush; His dinner's not yet bought. Wet to the skin, The public house invites - he tumbles in, His money spends, gets drunk - Oh grief and sorrow, His children get no dinner on the morrow! His case is bad, but those share his disgrace Who should and don't build him a Market

It was to be another eight years before the 'Huddersfielders' received their covered market which was opened on the site of the old Shambles in King Street in March 1880.

RUSHWORTH'S (5) Whilst turning right from John William Street into Westgate notice the building now occupied by the Pizza Hut Restaurant. In 1867 this site housed the local branch of the United Kingdom Electric Telegraph Company and its clerk, George Bins. But it is the business established here by Mr. Aquilla Rushworth, in the 1880s, that will be best remembered. A. Rushworth & Co. traded at first as toy dealers but by 1900 the premises had become Rushworth's

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Bazaar. A quarter of a century later, as Rushworths Ltd. General Fancy Goods, the shop had become Huddersfield's premier department store, a position it retained until its much lamented closure in the late 1960s. Many of our readers will have fond memories of this store and will remember, perhaps, their childhood delight in the magical Christmas window displays. Until the new General Post Office opened in Northumberland Street in 1914 the top floor of the Bazaar housed the local telephone exchange.

WESTGATE (6) The estate map of 1716 shows Westgate as an unbroken continuation of Kirkgate leading to an area called, on the map of 1778, Top o'th Town. Neither Westgate nor Kirk gate are named on the 1716 map but on the later map they are shown as West Street and Church Street. Beyond Top o'th Town there were, in the eighteenth century, a number of agricultural closes, a large tenter ground and two footways, one leading to Greenhead and the other striking off to the north west to reach Marsh and Lindley. Not until the New Hey Tummpike and the New North Road were built in the early nineteenth century did Huddersfield have direct routes to the west and north and both these routes, when built, used the old Westgate thoroughfare to approach and leave the town. As early as 1716, Westgate was solidly built up on the south side and only marginally less so on the north. On both sides, the buildings, probably a mixture of dwelling houses, workshops, inns and stables, had large stretches of agricultural land to the rear. By 1778, several new buildings had appeared in the area, their presence brought about, no doubt, by the proximity of the Cloth Hali which had opened in Market Street in 1768 and which, naturally, stimulated new business and commercial ventures in the area.

THE CHERRY TREE INN (7) In 1868 a good deal of old property on the north side of Westgate was demolished to make way for the new Ramsden Estate Offices. This handsome Gothic Revival building, designed by W.H. Crosland, opened in 1870 and still stands on the right hand side between Station Street and Railway Street. The demolished property included the shops of a fishmonger, a staymaker and a bootmaker and more notably, perhaps, the Cherry Tree Inn which stood on the

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corner of Railway Street and Westgate. One of seven inns then standing in Westgate, the Cherry Tree was favoured by many of the clothiers who came into the town on market day and a great deal of business was contracted there. Those of our readers who enjoy seeking out old photographs of the town will have seen one of a group of men standing in front of the Cherry Tree Inn. This was taken on the afternoon on 27th July 1868 when the landlord, Mr. Cooper, had invited several friends to a final dinner to mark the passing of the old house. Happily a new Cherry Tree Inn, still with Mr. Cooper as landlord, was soon opened on the corner of Westgate and Market Street, diagonally opposite the site of the old one. By the 1920s this had become the Cherry Tree Commercial Hotel. That too is now gone but the area is still known as Cherry Tree Corner and the modern buildings on the site of the inn are part of the so called Cherry Tree Centre. On 3rd July 1883, visitors to the Cherry Tree would have witnessed a tragic accident when a steam tram and car coming into the town from Lindley ran out of control on the down-hill gradient in Trinity Street and overturned when attempting to round the curve from Westgate into Railway Street. Seven people were killed and twenty eight injured. Trams had been operating in the town only six months when the accident happened and on the Lindley route only two weeks. Public confidence in the new system must have been considerably shaken as a result. Afterwards, trams were required to stop for passengers to alight in Westgate before they continued to the terminus in St. George's Square.

UPPERHEAD ROW AND PEEL PARK (8) Just after Cherry Tree Corner, look out on the left for Upperhead Row which, until the coming of the ring-road, led directly to Outcote Bank and hence to Manchester Road and the river crossing at Longroyd Bridge. Upperhead Row was the site chosen in the 1970s for the new bus station, the building of which led to the demolition of a great deal of property and the loss to the public of an area called Peel Park. This was a small paved square with a dozen or so specially planted trees, two or three park benches and an ornate

drinking fountain.


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The name Peel Park must have been given to the area when, in January 1873, it was decided toerect a statue of Sir Robert Peel on what was described as 'the open space at Upperhead Row' after Sir John Ramsden and the railway companies refused to allow it to be erected in St. George's Square. However, by June of that year the authorities had relented and the statue was given its rightful place in the Square. Whether it ever stood at Upperhead Row is doubtful but the park must have been officially named in anticipation of its coming and, officially, the name remained. Unofficially, the people of Huddersfield preferred the soubriquet Sparrow Park and as such it is still remembered. Sparrow Park now lies beneath the entrance to the bus station which was opened on Sunday, 1st December 1974.


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GREENHEAD ROAD (9) The original destination of Greenhead Road, which is shown as a narrow footway on the 1716 map, was, of course, Greenhead Hall, one of four mansion houses situated on the gently sloping ground to the west of the town (the others were Gledholt, Spring Wood House and Spring Grove).

THE 'PRINCESS ROYAL®' AND ST. PETER'S VICARAGE (10) On the left hand side of Greenhead Road notice the large Gothic building, now part of the Princess Royal Health Centre. This was built in 1842 as a new vicarage to replace the original one which, from earliest times, had stood in the area of the present day Venn Street, near to St. Peter's Church. The Rev. Josiah Bateman, vicar of Huddersfield from 1840 to 1855, described the original vicarage as *... a very old building in the worst part of the town with a garden attached in which nothing green would grow ... all was hemmed in by tall chimneys and wretched buildings. After several members of his family fell ill Mr. Bateman called a vestry meeting at which he, in effect, laid down an ultimatum - if a new vicarage was not built in a healthier part of the town, he would leave. His incumbency must have been valued for a two acre plot of land was acquired in Greenhead Road and the desired vicarage was built for £2,200. Later, in 1928, the vicarage became part of a new municipal maternity home. When this was greatly extended in 1939 it was opened by Princess Mary, the then Princess Royal, and was renamed the Princess Royal Maternity Home. As such it served the town for more than forty years and, no doubt, many of our readers first saw light of day there.

GREENHEAD (11) Just past the 'Princess Royal'® notice straight ahead a large building visible beyond its boundary wall. This was built in 1909 as a high school for girls and many people will remember the Greenhead girls, strictly uniformed in light and dark blue, hats on heads, satchels over shoulders, decorously making their way to and from school. Greenhead continued as a selective school until a comprehensive educational system was introduced in Huddersfield. Thereafter it became a sixth form college. Greenhead High School was built on the site of Greenhead Hall which


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was demolished to make way for it. The Hall was probably built in the early seventeenth century and was owned or occupied over the years by the Hirsts, the Wilkinsons and the Lister-Kayes. In the early years of the nineteenth century, Greenhead was the home of Benjamin Haigh Allen, an active member of the Church Missionary Society and a noted local philanthropist. At a time when the established church was becoming alarmed by the growth of nonconformity Mr. Allen, in 1816, received authority, through a private Act of Parliament, to purchase land and erect a new church. The result was the nearby Holy Trinity Church, opened in 1819, which apart from chapels-of-ease, was the first completely new Anglican church to be erected in the Huddersfield parish since circa 1200. Benjamin Haigh Allen died in 1829, aged thirty six, and sometime thereafter the Greenhead Estate was purchased by the Ramsdens. In 1884 a public park was opened on part of the estate {see No.51).

RIFLE FIELDS (12) The street name Rifle Fields on the left hand side of Park Avenue is a remnant of a much larger area and may, in fact, mark the southernmost limit of the rifle ground which bordered Trinity Street and which covered much the same area as the present Greenhead Park. The name suggests that this once open area may have been used as a training ground for the local volunteer rifle corps which flourished in the second half of the nineteenth century. On a less militaristic note the rifle ground was certainly a popular venue for shows and sporting events. It was here, for example, that the Huddersfield Floral and Horticultural Society held their annual shows during the 1 860s and here that the Huddersfield Athletic Club chose to hold their first and at least seven subsequent festival sports days. In that first festival, held on 24th June 1865, the hundred yards flat race was won in ten and threequarter seconds and the mile in five minutes and twenty seconds. One particular sporting event held on the rifle ground is worthy of note. On 15th May 1865 a cricket match was played between an all England Eleven and twenty Huddersfield and District players, one of whom was the great J ohn Thewlis of Lascelles Hall. The scores were: All England 75 and 101; District 87 and 90 - a famous local victory by just one run.


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WATER STREET (13) (P.W.) Soon after turning into Water Street notice, on the left, the premises of Conacher and Sons, organ builders who have been in the town for over a century. In the past they also had premises in Bath Street and in Upperhead Row near to Sparrow Park. At the end of the street stop to consider the old waterworks office, on the left hand side. Although Water Street and nearby Spring Street were not laid out until the early nineteenth century, the area has had a connection with the town's water supply for at least two hundred and fifty years. Huddersfield, of course, is a well watered area and, in early days, the abundance of springs, wells and troughs was adequate to serve the needs of the small community. But as the town developed it became necessary to provide a more adequate and constant water supply to meet the needs of a rapidly growing urban population. Consequently, in 1743, Sir John Ramsden was approached to construct the town's first waterworks. The nearest copious supply was the river Colne and a scheme was put into operation to pump water from Folly Hall (see No.19) for storage in a sinall rectangular reservoir in the Springwood area. From the reservoir, water was distributed at certain times of the day to various parts of the town, the supply being controlled for many years by one Betty Earnshaw who, as well as being the turnkey, was a fortune teller and something of a character in the town. The Springwood reservoir continued to be the town's main water supply for some eighty years but by the 1820s it had become inadequate. In addition, the growing concentration of factories on and near the banks of the river led to water pollution and, after eighty years, the old pumping engine at Folly Hall was regarded as unreliable and primitive. In 1820, the governing of the town passed, by Act of Parliament, to a 'Committee for Lighting, Watching and Cleansing the town of Huddersfield'. In 1827, the Committee addressed the problem of the water supply through a special Act 'for supplying with water the neighbourhood and the town of Huddersfield'. The Act pointed out that a good supply could be obtained from certain springs within the township of Longwood. To carry out the Act, one hundred and twenty Commissioners were appointed each of whom had to swear that he was in possession of £1000, clear of debt. The Commissioners


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were empowered to borrow £20,000 and work began immediately on two reservoirs at Longwood, a compensation reservoir and Longwood Lower which, when filled to overflowing, held seventeen million gallons of water. From Longwood Lower, water was piped to a service tank at Longwood and to the Spring Street tank in Huddersfield. This circular tank, which had a capacity of nearly four hundred thousand gallons, was built on or near to the site of the old reservoir at Springwood. Around the same time, the waterworks office was erected in front of the Spring Street tank and opened in 1828. The facade of this handsome classical building was, happily, preserved during the recent redevelopment of the area. Spring Street tank, like most of the service tanks in the locality, became redundant about twenty years ago but although it was largely demolished a short section of the curved wall was preserved and may be seen by taking a very short walk along the path at the side of the old waterworks building.

SPRING STREET (14) In Spring Street, notice how carefully the old houses have been cleaned and restored and how with the help of the cobbled road surface, the stone flagged pavements and the replica gas lamps, a feeling of the past has been achieved. We are nearer to Early Victorian Huddersfield here than almost anywhere else in the town. Whilst travelling down Spring Street notice, on the right hand side, the building now occupied by Huddersfield Plate Glass. This was once Spring Street infants school, where the Huddersfield Choral Society once held their monthly rehearsals on, or just before, the night of the full moon. The Society was founded in June 1836 by a meeting of choral enthusiasts, held at the Plough Inn in Westgate. At the initial meeting it was decided that whilst men would pay a subscription of two shillings and sixpence per six months no subscription would be required from women. After rehearsals all members were allowed three gills of ale and bread and cheese before returning home - a gratuity no doubt much appreciated by those members who had to walk upwards of four miles each way to attend rehearsals. Doubtless they also appreciated the full moon. On the left hand side of Spring Street, No.46 was the home for many years of Charles Sikes, a member of a prominent Huddersfield banking


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family, who was manager of the Huddersfield Bank. Sikes was instrumental in persuading the Government to set up the Post Office Savings Bank which commenced business in 1861 with three hundred branches. The idea proved a popular one for only nine years later there were nearly six hundred branches and twelve thousand accounts with deposits of £15,077,104. For his

achievement, Charles Sikes was knighted in 1881.

OLD SOUTH STREET (15) After turning right out of Spring Street our route briefly follows a

remnant of South Street once, at a third of a mile, the second longest street in Huddersfield. Twentieth century development has swept away much of the property that once stood in this area and it is difficult now to imagine the scene as it was, say, at the turn of the century. The modern car parking area has obliterated much of South Street which ran from the present day Trinity Street across George, Back Spring, Spring, Henry, Swallow and Grove Streets to Prospect Street. Most of these streets are now either truncated or gone as are the nearby Cross Grove, Duke and Heap Streets and part of Bow Street which once curved right round the edge of the high ground, between Springwood Avenue and Outcote Bank. (See map).


% @ t y 214 % 379



§ u redqy | 'in 1220 1; 1 _raRAA Ot

Gone too are the yards and alleys, the shops and workshops and the hundreds


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of terrace houses that made this one of the most densely populated areas of the town.

THE VENTILATORS (16) Although so much has disappeared m this area these two very obvious structures have survived and cannot be missed. The two shafts were built at different times to ventilate the Springwood railway tunnel which runs from the station to Gledholt sidings. The lighter coloured shaft is the oldest, built m 1848, whilst the other was built c.1880 when a double track was laid. Both shafts were lowered by some two metres in 1970.


THE POLICE AND FIRE STATIONS (17) Once on the ring road notice the fire station on the right and the police station on the left. The name Castlegate, given to part of the ring road near the police station, was originally the name of an old street (now gone) on the other side of the town, near to Old Leeds Road. However, the name is rather apt, for the first place of detention in Huddersfield of which there is any record was a small lock-up, called Towser, in the original Castlegate. In the early years of the nineteenth century, Huddersfield had a police force of two, a constable and full time assistant constable, the latter being required to 'look after, detect and take thieves, to visit lodging houses frequently; vagrants of all kinds to take up; to examine pedlars and hawkers or those likely to have stolen goods in their possession; to visit public houses frequently.' By 1831 the need for law enforcement had grown along with the population and in that year, when Joseph Beaumont was the town's constable, anew police station with separate cells for men and women was built by public subscription in Bull and Mouth Street (an area now under the Piazza). Although by 1870 this had become inadequate, not until 1898 when there was a force of a hundred and thirteen men, was a new police headquarters built in Peel Street. At that time, the Chief Constable was also Captain of the fire brigade whose station in Princess Street adjoined the police station. Things must have been a little tricky for the fire brigade at that time as, although they


Page 26

had a number of horse drawn vehicles, they had no horses of their own and when they were called out they had to borrow them from a nearby cab proprietor. Both police force and fire brigade moved to their present premises near the ring road in the 1960s.

CHAPEL HILL (18) Soon after the traffic lights at the top of Chapel Hill notice Chapel Street on the left. The names of both hill and street mark the one time presence of the Buxton Road Chapel, a so-called 'Dissenter's built in 1775, which stood on the lower corner of Chapel Street. Originally called Old Bank Chapel it was the first Wesleyan Methodist church to be built in the tow n. It was rebuilt and renamed in 1837, closed in 1950 and subsequently demolished to inake way for road improvements in the area. Demolished at the same time was the Model Lodging House which stood next to the chapel. This was an old warehouse, converted in 1854 by the Improvement Commissioners, at a cost of nearly £6,000, to provide nightly accommodation for some two hundred of the poorest members of the community. The instigator of the scheme was a local Radical, Joshua Hobson, who was proud to state that the lodging house was the only one in England to be constructed and supported out of the public rates. The building was enlarged in 1879 to contain one hundred and eighty six beds. That there was a long-time need for cheap lodgings is revealed by the dealings for the year 1918, which show a 96% take up of beds:

Males -single 6d per night - 14,893 Males - sharing - 4d per night - 44,620 Females 4d per night 3,898 Married couples - 8d pernight - 2,006. The Model Lodging House continued to provide accommodation until it was demolished in 1957.

ENGINE BRIDGE (19) (P.W. - at discretion)

A third of a mile past Chapel Street our route reaches the river crossing at Folly Hall, long known as Engine Bridge. Although from earliest times


Page 27

there might have been a forded crossing in this area it seems likely that the first bridge here was built in 1768 as part of the Huddersfield to Woodhead turnpike. This new route left the Market Place and ran directly southwards across a number of agricultural closes to the river here at Folly Hall. Later, as the town grew, this section of the turnpike developed into New Street, Buxton Road and Chapel Hill. The bridge at Folly Hall was built close to a building known as Engine Mill, obviously the source of the name Engine Bridge. Engine Mill was built in 1743 to house a pumping engine which provided the town with its first piped water supply. The river water was pumped through wooden pipes, made of large tree trunks with a 3% inch (87mm) bore, to the storage reservoir at Springwood (see No.13). John Hanson, who, in 1878, described the town as he remembered it in 1812, tells how he was *... attracted by the screeching and groaning of the pumping engine driven by the old water wheel.' He goes on, 'It sounded as if it had not had a drop of oil for twelve months ... It would make a desperate effort for a few seconds and then groaningly move off again. Thus painfully and laboriously was the scanty supply of water pumped from the polluted river." If it is possible to find a parking space -and to cross the road - in this busy area, walk to the bridge and look upstream. Engine Mill was situated on the right hand (north) bank of the river immediately below the bridge. Mill, engine and waterwheel are long gone but the top one of two weirs in the nver was built to provide the head of water necessary for turning the wheel which drove the pumping engine. It is a happy survival for it is all that remains to remind us of one of the town's earliest enterprises. Interestingly, there was some doubt about the name of the river here on the part of the map makers in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries. A little way downstream from Engine Bridge the mvers Colne and Holme join and from the junction down to its confluence with the Calder the river has always been known as the Colne. However, there is no doubt that the mver we know as the Holme was for centuries called the Colne. It is referred to, for example, as the water of Colne in the 1584 recitation of the bounds of Almondbury and it is shown as the Colne on the 1778 map of Huddersfield whilst the present day Colne, above its confluence with the Holme, is called the Hudder. Nearly fifty years later, on a map of 1826, the Hudderhas become the Mars, presumably because it rises near Marsden. Early references to the


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river flowing through the present day Colne Valley mention Slaithwaite Water, Golcar Beck and Linfit Beck and it seems likely that it was known by such local names until canal, road and railway and nineteenth century industrial development gave the valley a pre-eminence it had previously lacked. Such growth in status might well have led to a conscious decision being taken, sometime after 1825, to credit Marsden, rather than Holme, with the source of the Colne.

FOLLY HALL (20) This area near to the river owes it name to the enterprise of an eighteenth century businessman, Marmaduke Hebden, who, in 1768, commissioned Blind Jack Metcalf to build a row of four tenements near to the new Huddersfield to Woodhead turnpike. Most local people, however, considered it foolish to build so far away from the centre of town and soon, probably before it was finished, Hebden's building was being referred to as Folly Hall. The building, which stood on the opposite side of the river to Engine Mill, ended its days as the Commercial Inn and was demolished in 1890.

THE FOLLY HALL FIGHT (21) Engine Bridge was the scene of a disturbance, on Sunday 8th June 1817, when a gathering of Holme Valley men assembled with the intention of marching on the town to make known their grievances at the unfairness of life. Their complaints, not unfamiliar today, were mainly against low wages, high taxation and the cost of maintaining Royalty and a standing army. The demonstration was doomed to failure from the start as there were only eighty or so men involved and only seven possessed firearms. Prior to their march the rebels were being drilled in a field near to the river by their leader, the so called 'General' Croft. When a troop of local yeomanry, sent out to deter the rebels, arrived at the bridge Croft gave the somewhat ambitious command, 'Front rank kneel down, rear rank fire.' Only a few shots were exchanged before both sides decided to beat a hasty retreat, the rebels running back the way they had come along Woodhead Road, the Yeomanry riding at full gallop up Chapel Hill, back to the safety of the Armoury then situated in Upperhead Row. The whole engagement lasted only twenty minutes. Several of the rioters were later arrested and brought to trial. Eye


Page 29

witnesses gave differing accounts of the action, their testimony being influenced, no doubt, by whichever side they favoured. For example, the estimated number of rioters varied from seventy to seven hundred and several people swore that one of the Volunteers shot his ow n horse in the mouth in an attempt to prove that he and his fellows had been in enough peril to justify their rapid withdrawal. The jury returned a verdict of 'Not Guilty' and the rioters, after a stern warning from the judge to moderate their future conduct, returned home to great acclaim.

FOLLY HALL MILLS (22) Just beyond Engine Bridge, on the right hand side of the road, notice the six storey building presently (1995) being renovated and restored as part of a new riverside leisure complex. It was here, in 1 825, that Joseph Kaye built a large mill, six stories high, for the purpose of letting off rooms and power to small businessmen who could not afford to build their own premises. By 1840 he had added two other mills, a weaving shed and allied buildings on adjoining land thus providing the town with what was probably its first industrial estate. After the first mill burnt down in 1844 it was soon replaced by the present building, built on the same site to the same scale and described as fireproof. One man, George Searle Phillips, secretary of the Huddersfield Mechanics' Institute, was obviously greatly impressed by the complex for in his book 'Walks round published in 1848, he describes *... the factories of Joseph Kaye like so many Aladdin palaces with their hundred of windows and tall steeple chimneys.' Whether the people who worked there thought of the mills as palaces is debatable. A large part of the complex has recently been demolished to make way for the bowling alleys, bars and bingo halls of the leisure complex and it is fortunate that the old mill, which must be one of the most handsome industrial buildings in the town, has been spared.

ALBERT STREET AND RASHCLIFFE (23) In the third decade of the nineteenth century the hitherto quiet fields in the Rashcliffe area of Lockwood, between Lockwood Road and the river,

were perceived as an ideal location for new industry. These were the boom years of industrial development and by 1850 two large factories, both called Rashcliffe Mills, had been built on the river bank and these were soon


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followed by four more: Victoria Mills, Albert Mills, Bath Mills and Rashcliffe Brass and Iron Foundry. At the same time, several small streets of terrace houses (many now gone) were built to accommodate workers near to their places of employment. By 1870, by which time Albert Street had made its appearance, the area was suffering from the dirt, grime, soot and pollution that was always a consequence of nineteenth century industrial development. Rashcliffe - and Lockwood - had developed in a very different way from what was hoped for in the 1820s when there were serious plans to establish a fashionable spa resort here.

LOCKWOOD SPA BATHS (24) (P) One third of a mile after turning into Albert Street stop somewhere in the open space just before Shaw Valves to consider the building on the left, now the premises of Messrs Sykes and Dyson. Described at the time of its erection as 'a handsome range of buildings' this was once Lockwood Spa Baths, considered at the time to be the 'most complete establishment of the kind in the West Riding of Yorkshire'.

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The chalybeate spring waters which rise at Lockwood have a sulphur content and in the nineteenth century it became fashionable to administer such water to the body both externally and internally. In 1827, to exploit the fashion and, hopefully, to establish at Lockwood a spa town that would rival Harrogate, a private company built large spa baths over a sulphur spring on the river bank. At the same time an hotel was built nearby, lodging houses were provided in Lockwood, gardens were laid out in front of the baths and a new 'rustic' bridge behind led to more gardens across the river. In 1828, the charges at the baths were:

Swimming bath 6d Private cold and shower bath 1s.0d. Buxton bath 86° 1s.6d. Warm bath 2s.0d. Vapour baths 3s.6d. Annual subscription (swimming bath) 10s.6d. Family to all the cold baths one guinea.

Interestingly, parties could be accommodated with tea, by the bathkeeper at one shilling each. For the time, these charges were quite high and it is likely that the baths were patronised more by the better off members of the community than by the factory workers who lived all around. By the 1860s, in addition to the above, sulphurous, shampoo and fumigating baths were available and the spa was attracting some thirty thousand visitors annually, promising them cures for 'glandular, rheumatic, gouty, dyspeptic, scorbutic and all other kinds of cutaneous complaints.' At the time of its building the Spa's promoters, naturally anxious to attract custom, truthfully described Lockwood as ® ... beautifully and delightfully situated about % of a mile distant from the Market-Town of Huddersfield (it) lies in a romantic and finely sheltered country with good roads in every How sad that such an idyllic scene was so soon to be overwhelmed by ugly - but profitable - industry. Doubtless though, Harrogate was much relieved. In 1869 the Huddersfield Corporation bought the baths and, after


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alterations, reopened them to the public on 30th May 1870. They were finally declared redundant in 1945 and sold in 1946 for conversion into an engineering shop.

BATH STREET AND THE BATH HOTEL (25) Before driving off along Bath Street notice the three storey building opposite the end of the street on the far side of Lockwood Road. This was the Bath Hotel built at the same time as the baths to accommodate visitors coming from far afield. Bath Street was originally an ornamental garden planted with lawns, flower beds, shrubs and trees, where clients could stroll and take their ease after the exertions of the swimming baths and before the serious business of eating lunch or dinner at the Bath Hotel.

LOCKWOOD ROAD (26) Soon after turning left from Bath Street into Lockwood Road notice Mount Pleasant School on the right. The school opened in August 1875 and by 1918 it had places in its four separate departments for nearly one thousand five hundred pupils, such a large number reflecting the density of population in the area. The school has been much extended in recent years but the old building still stands looking rather sedate when contrasted with the architectural exuberance of the modern extensions. Shortly after the school look out for a large red brick building, today the premises of a car body shop. The building was opened on 18th November 1915 as the Lockwood Picture Palace, one of the earliest and largest of Huddersfield's suburban cinemas. Later, the name was changed to the Excelda and it continued to offer twice nightly entertainment until it closed in February 1960.

LOCKWOOD BAR (27) Lockwood Road was part of the original route of the Huddersfield to Woodhead turnpike road of 1768. The area at the bottom of Swan Lane, near to the traffic lights, is called Lockwood Bar, the name indicating the one time presence of a bar house where tolls were collected from travellers using the turnpike. At Lockwood Bar the Woodhead turnpike swung left along the present day Bridge Street to the river crossing at Lockwood Bridge from


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where it followed a steep route along the modern day Taylor Hill Road and Hangingstones Road to Honley. This narrow, hilly and difficult route soon became inadequate for the growing volume of traffic and it was replaced by the present day Woodhead Road in 1809. The road running straight ahead from the traffic lights at Lockwood Bar was constructed as a turnpike road to Meltham, work starting in 1819. It seems likely, from its appearance, that the building on the right hand side of Meltham Road just beyond the junction with Swan Lane (presently occupied by Expressions Kitchen and Bedroom Studio) was a toll house on this road.

LOCKWOOD BRIDGE (28) From the traffic lights at Lockwood Bar it is possible to see, to the left, the bridge over the river Holme. As the surrounding area is called Salford it is very likely that the earliest river crossing here was by means of a ford, the name meaning the ford amongst or near to the sallow trees. Lockwood township was part of the parish of Almondbury and, as the route across the river and up Lockwood Scar led ultimately to Almondbury Church, it 1s likely that the ford would be replaced by a bridge early in the thirteenth century, soon after the church was built. Doubtless this would be a flimsy, wooden construction as were most early bridges but by the fifteenth century many wooden bridges in our area had been replaced by more substantial stone structures. Certainly by 1634 Lockwood Bridge was important enough to be marked and named on the Almondbury Township map, a distinction it shared only with Huddersfield Bridge. The present bridge was built in 1909. The elegant classical style houses standing on the right hand side of Bridge Street were, according to Brian Clarke in his 'History of Lockwood, erected in the 1820s as lodging houses for visitors to the Spa Baths. In 1883 the Huddersfield Corporation became the first local authority to operate its own tramway system. The first route, opened on 11th January 1883, was the line between Fartown and Lockwood. During the steam tram era the terminus was not at Lockwood Bar but just over half a mile aw ay along Meltham Road, at Dungeon Cottages. In 1901, when the system was electrified it was decided that the line between Lockwood Bar and the terminus was uneconomical as it was used only at weekends in the summer months by passengers travelling to Beaumont Park. It was therefore abandoned and thus


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a part of the first tramway route to be opened was also the first to be made redundant after only eighteen years service. Thereafter, the terminus was at Lockwood Bar from where a spur ran along Bridge Street and on to Berry Brow and Honley.


LOCKWOOD 'CO-OP' (29) Soon after turning right into Swan Lane notice the premises on the left, now occupied by a television retailer and a fabric shop but with the name of the original ow ners still apparent over the door and windows. The Huddersfield Industrial Co-operative Society had only been established for sixteen months when the decision was taken to open branch number three in rented property at Lockwood (the first two branches were at Lindley and Moldgreen). Over the next several years business was brisk and in 1878 the Society was confident enough to build the premises at the bottom of Swan Lane. The general store occupied the larger part of the building whilst the present day fabric shop was a drapery department until 1888 and, after that, a 'co-op Most of our local co-operative branches flourished until the spread of the new supermarkets in the 1960s. Their hundred-year success was partly due to the dividend they offered their customers and, no doubt, many of our older readers will still be able to remember their 'divi' numbers.

LOCKWOOD TOWN HALL (30) On the right hand side of Swan Lane, just past Victoria Road, Lockwood's one time Town Hall may be easily recognised by its important upper storey and pediment. It is believed that the Lockwood Local Board, which was formed in 1863, was the first small local authority to build its own Town Hall which it did in 1866 here, on the site of an old school. However, the Board was to hold authority for only five years as, in 1868, Lockwood Township became part of the newly formed County Borough of Huddersfield. After 1868, the building served for a time as a police station and public meeting house. Today, the premises are occupied by Dixons who make what is arguably the best ice cream in the district - if not the country!


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THE PENISTONE RAILWAY LINE (31) About three hundred yards (270 metres) past the Town Hall our route runs underneath the track of the Penistone railway line. On 30th June 1845 the Huddersfield and Sheffield Junction Railway Company was authorised by Act of Parliament to begin work on a new line to Penistone which would provide a direct link with Sheffield. The difficult terrain between Huddersfield and Penistone necessitated the excavating of six tunnels and several cuttings and the building of four viaducts, more than forty bridges and many embankments. Not surprisingly, such a massive enterprise took five years to complete and by the time the line was opened on 1st July 1850 the Huddersfield and Sheffield Company had amalgamated with several others to form the Lancashire and Yorkshire Company which jointly operated Huddersfield Station with the London and North Western Company (see No.1).

LOCKWOOD STATION (32) As the branch lines to Holmfirth and Meltham left the Penistone line in the Lockwood area the volume of rail traffic through Lockwood was extremely heavy and business at the small station was brisk. It is not difficult to picture the hurry and bustle at the station in the heyday of the steam powered railways when the activities of booking clerks, ticket collectors, guards, porters and passengers would be closely monitored by a dignified top-hatted station master. The entrance to Lockwood's station lies just beyond the bridge on the right hand side of the road but today it is merely an unmanned halt. The track has been reduced to a smgle line, several buildings have been demolished and the subway which once led to the main platform has been blocked off. However, the decaying subway building on this platform remains, looking for all the world as if it is waiting to receive wraith-like passengers from a ghost train - hauled, of course, by a phantom steam engine. Nearby, to the north of the station is the Lockwood tunnel where, on Wednesday 17th March 1869, one of the all too frequent collisions of those times occurred. A goods train travelling to Penistone from Huddersfield made an unscheduled stop in the tunnel. Fortunately, the driver of a passenger train to Holmfirth, fast approaching the tunnel, noticed that it was full of steam and immediately shut off his own steam and tried to halt his train. He was not able to do so in time but his prompt action took much of the force out of the ensuing


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collision and although his passengers were severely shaken none was seriously injured. To the south of the station were the once extensive Lockwood sidings where, in August 1865, eleven runaway trucks began their dramatic and eventful journey towards Huddersfield Station (see tour 2 No.11).

LOCKWOOD (33) Before leaving Lockwood, a little should be said about the name. When the Angles came to our area, probably in the seventh century, they found the land well wooded. We know this from the high incidence of the suffix 'ley', found in their place names, which means clearing in the trees. Such clearings were made for living space and agriculture. But woods were as valuable a resource as agricultural land and over the centuries they were carefully husbanded for their crops of timber, coppiced wood and firewood. As the name Lockwood means an enclosed wood it is possible that when the Angles came, they settled on the higher, easier ground in the Crosland area and farmed the trees they found growing in the valley near to the river. Certainly an enclosure implies ownership and, therefore, management. By the thirteenth century a family who had taken the name Lockwood as a surname was playing an important part in local affairs. Over the centuries the name ramified and it may be of interest to any of our readers who have the surname Lockwood, or who have a Lockwood in their family trees, that a clever piece of research by the late Clifford Stephenson (published in the journal 'Old West Riding' Vol.5 No.2) proved fairly conclusively that the surname originated here and nowhere else and that, therefore, all Lockwoods have a remote ancestor who lived in the township.

DAVID BROWNS (34) Immediately beyond the railway bridge and before Yew Green Road, the factory on the left, now part of Brown Corporation P.L.C., was once the premises of William Whiteley & Sons Ltd., manufacturers of textile machinery. William Whiteley founded his business in 1850 and such was the demand at that time for new machinery that by 1890 the factory had spread to cover three acres and the workforce numbered four hundred. Goods were moved from the factory by rail from the firm's private railway siding. Towards the end of the


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nineteenth century the Whiteley family's home, Park Cottage, was bought by the Brown family and, eventually, the factory also passed into their hands. David Brown's large factory in Park Road is part of the success story of a company which, although founded in a very small way, expanded to employ some ten thousand workers in no fewer than fourteen factories. The story begins with David Brown who in 1860, at the age of seventeen, began making patterns for gears in partnership with Thomas Broadbent. Four years later, Brown moved to premises in East Parade, Huddersfield and began to manufacture his own gears. The business was slow to grow and as late as 1890 when, for example, William Whiteley was employing four hundred workers, Brown employed only ten including himself and his three sons. Towards the end of the century, when the business at last began to prosper, the Brown family moved to Park Cottage at Lockwood and soon built a small factory nearby. In 1902, a year after the death of the founder, the gear cutting business was moved from East Parade to the new Park Works. During the First World War business expanded rapidly and by 1921, when David Brown II, the grandson of the founder, entered the firm, there were about a thousand employees. The Company managed to survive the Depression of the 1920s and 30s and, in 1939, started producing tractors at a factory at Meltham. Further expansion came during the Second World War with the various factories working flat out to produce badly needed parts for tanks, ships and aeroplanes. After the war, David Brown ventured into sports car production and soon his Aston Martin and Lagonda cars were entering and sometimes winning international road races. Browns reached their peak in the 1960s when, as well as their fourteen factories in Great Britain, they owned or were associated with another seventeen around the world. The story of David Browns is a long and complicated one and we have space to give only a very brief outline. Should any of our readers wish to know more they will find a much more detailed account in Brian Clarke's book, 'The History of Lockwood and North Crosland'.


About a quarter of a mile past Park Works our route crosses Blackmoorfoot Road which was once part of the Wakefield to Austerlands


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turnpike of 1758. Part of the route of this road, which was the first in our area to be turnpiked, is dealt with at length in tour number two. The single storey octagonal building on the corner of Blackmoorfoot Road and Park Road West was once a gatehouse belonging to Crosland Lodge (see tour 2 No.19).


PARK ROAD WEST (36) (P) On the right hand side of Park Road West the land soon falls away steeply to Manchester Road below, a result, no doubt, of the extensive stone quarrying that went on here in the mid nineteenth century. As the road begins its descent towards Manchester Road stop to take in the view over the Colne Valley. Whilst the prospect cannot be described as beautiful, it 1s certainly of interest in that it reveals, almost at a glance , the history of this once wild and remote area. When we think of local industry we tend to picture the tall chimneys, gaunt mills, narrow cobbled streets and rows of terrace houses of the nineteenth century. But the textile industry has been present in our area since medieval times and the scene high on the valley side, though we may not recognise it as such, 1s just as much an industrial landscape as any that has resulted from steam power. On the opposite hillside the churches at Longwood and Golcar are easy to make out and above and beyond, as far as the high ground at Scapegoat Hill, are the scattered cottages, smallholdings, paddocks and old tenter fields where local clothiers and their families once lived and worked. Until the late eighteenth century, there was little industry and less housing in the valley bottom and it was only after the Huddersfield Narrow Canal was put through in 1794 that the Coline Valley started to have an entity of its own. Until the canal there was, in fact, no route of any kind through the valley but its construction and the concomitant development of the new scribbling mills along its banks signalled an overwhelming change in working practices. Road and railway were to follow and the ease of access they provided undoubtedly helped in the industrialisation of the valley. In time, the small scribbling mills grew to finally encompass all the processes of the textile industry and, gradually, the hill clothiers were forced to abandon their


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handlooms and move down into the valley to seek work as paid hands in the new mills. Thus they lost their much valued independence. It is interesting to reflect that only three decades or so ago a clear view across the Colne Valley would have been impossible. In those days smoke poured forth from factories and houses alike contaminating the air, touching every building with its sooty fingers and discouraging any vegetation that might have beautified or at least brightened the scene. The river too was filthy taking, as it did, the effluent discharged from the factories along its banks. In fact, the colour of the river changed from day to day according to the needs of local dyers. It was only during one week in August, when the mills shut down for the annual local holiday, that the air cleared. That such a clear view is now possible at all times is due entirely to the Clean Air Acts of fairly recent years and, similarly, the slight sparkle now to be seen in the Colne has resulted from mandatory river improvements. We have a great deal to be thankful for!

MANCHESTER ROAD (37) Constructed circa 1820, Manchester Road was an entirely new route cut through the Colne Valley to replace the hilly section of the Wakefield to Austerlands turnpike between Huddersfield and Marsden. The new route left the old just past Longroyd Bridge and its more or less level miles must have been greatly appreciated by travellers, whether journeying on foot or on horseback or by cart or coach, who previously had had to contend with the gradients of the original turnpike. Although the road runs more or less parallel with the river and the canal it was built, as may be seen, at a higher level to allow an unobstructed through route and, consequently, side roads such as Whiteley Street were soon developed to give access to the new mills and factories that were springing up at that time in the valley bottom.

THE WARREN HOUSE (38) Soon after joining Manchester Road notice, on the left, the Warren House inn with its new sign depicting ambush and murder. It is a well known fact that, in April 1812, William Horsfall, arch-opponent of the Luddites, was murdered by them near to the Warren House Inn and that, mortally wounded, he was taken there to die. However, the attack took place half a mile away from here at Crosland Moor and the inn to which Horsfall was taken stood at the side


Page 40

of the old turnpike there (see tour 2 No.25). It was probably soon after 1820, when traffic on the old turnpike would be dwindling, that the original Warren House was replaced by the present inn on its much more profitable site. It may well be that the landlord of 1812 transferred to the new building, along with the licence, but today the only connection the Warren House has with the notorious murder is its name.

WHITELEY STREET (39) (P. & W.) If possible, pull off Whiteley Street just before the canal bridge to take in the view over Milnsbridge. Ahead, on the skyline, is the squat Nab End Tower at Longwood Edge constructed, according to tradition, by local unemployed workers as a pastime. Reputedly built without any architectural plans the tower was completed in 1869 and, four years later, on 'Thump Sunday' local people climbed the hillside to sing popular hymns at its base. Thus began the famous annual Longwood Sing. Longwood Feast is still called 'Longud Thump' by some local people although the origin of the word '"'Thump' seems to be lost. The scene in the Valley is dominated by tall factories and by the impressive Longwood railway viaduct which carries the main line on its way from Huddersfield to Marsden, the Standedge Tunnel and the west. Many of the mills, houses, shops and churches in Milnsbridge date from the mid nineteenth century or later and it requires a great effort of the imagination to picture the area as it must have been in, say, medieval times when probably the only building in the lush water meadows near to the river was Longwood's manorial corn mill. Even as late as the eighteenth century, the scene was predominately one of open countryside where the owners of Milnsbridge House (see No.43) had more than enough space to lay out grounds half a mile long by one sixth of a mile wide complete with lawns, flower beds, shrubberies and two large fishponds. The first tentative steps towards industrial development in the valley came soon after the canal was put through and readers might like to walk to the canal bridge to look at the flight of four locks (two on each side of the road) that lift the waterway through the village. In the 1950s, after the canal was closed, all the locks between Paddock and the summit at Marsden were either capped, infilled or cascaded and the waterway was left to deteriorate. The


Page 41

excellent condition of the Milnsbridge locks today is due entirely to the efforts of the members of the Huddersfield Canal Society who, since its formation in 1974, have lobbied long and hard for restoration. In recent years their efforts have been rewarded along the whole length of the canal with locks being rebuilt, lock gates reinstated and channels cleared of the debris dumped there by humankind. The Society's ultimate goal is to reopen the entire canal, including the Standedge Tunnel, by the early years of the next century. We can only hope that they are successful in their admirable enterprise.

TANYARD ROAD (40) Just after the canal bridge, notice Tanyard Road on the right. Until the mid-nineteenth century many villages had small tanyards, where leather was cured, and it is perhaps surprising that today there is little evidence of what was once a common activity. For example, of the several tanneries that existed in the Huddersfield district we know of only one, at Woodbottom near Meltham, where any recognisable remains of the industry have survived. Milnsbridge tannery is long gone but its position on the low ground between Tanyard Road and the river {(now occupied by Custom Cars and others) may be seen from the canal bridge. The commencement date of the tannery is not known but as its site is near to a small basin and wharf on the canal it is likely that it dated from the last decade of the eighteenth century. It was certainly in operation in the 1820s when John Haigh was the tanner and over the years it grew to be quite a sizeable concern with over sixty stone-lined soaking pits. There must have been an unpleasant smell constantly hanging over the tannery, as the first process was to soak the hides in a lime solution to loosen the hair and decay the fat. Afterwards, the hides were immersed for a period ranging from nine to eighteen months in a brew of ground oak bark and acorns. By 1905, operations at the tannery had ceased and, later, the site was reclaimed. Now, only the name Tanyard Road remains to remind us of this once important local industry.

MILNSBRIDGE CO-OP (41) Branch number eight of the Huddersfield Industrial Cooperative Society opened here at Milnsbridge, in December 1864, in rented cottage property. This soon became inadequate and, in 1871, new premises were built


Page 42

in Morley Lane and opened as a general store. Over the next three decades, business prospered enough to warrant the opening, in 1898, of new drapery and butchery departments in a separate building, designed by the Society's favoured architect, Joseph Berry. Both properties remain today and although presently unoccupied they are, like most old co-operative buildings, reasonably easy to recognise. They may be seen immediately after negotiating the one-way system into Milnsbridge, the drapery and butchery building on the left hand corner of Yates Lane and Morley Lane and the general store on the right hand side of Morley Lane. A slight but interesting link with the past may be made out on the right hand end of the latter building in the shape of the shadowy outline of a notice board which was erected more than a century agotodisplay the Society's forthcoming events. Although all co-operative buildings had such notice boards it is only here, at Milnsbridge, that a recognisable trace remains.

MILNSBRIDGE (42) The name Milnsbridge comes from the one time presence of Longwood township's corn mill which stood close to the bridge over the River Colne. The boundary of the hillside township of Longwood stretched down from the high ground to form a narrow corridor to the river at Milnsbridge (see map below).


In his 'History of the Countryside" Oliver Rackham says that township


Page 43

boundaries were fixed and immovable by the end of the twelfth century. It is possible, therefore, that a corn mill was at work here in Norman times, as the Longwood boundary could have been so arranged to give the inhabitants access to the nearest possible source of water to turn their mill wheel. Little is known of the mill in its early days and it is not known when textile processes were added. A list of local clothiers, dated 1533, mentions Roger Hyrst of Mylnebrige and John Thornton of Mylnebrigge and this may indicate textile activity at the mill at that time. However, there were other mills by other bridges and as the Longwood township was part of Huddersfield and the two men are listed under Almondbury, identification cannot be certain. In his book 'A Living Inheritance', E. Shackleton identifies a woollen mill called Quarmby Mill, which stands three hundred yards downstream from the bridge, as the site of the corn mill. However, it is possible, in view of the name Milnsbridge, that the original corn mill was located at the side of the bridge on a site now occupied by a supermarket. It was quite common for old corn mills to carry on grinding long after their main function had changed to textiles and, certainly, the mill by the bridge was still producing flour in the 1850s.

MILNSBRIDGE HOUSE (43) (P) Immediately after crossing the bridge our route turns right at the traffic lights to follow George Street, Bankhouse Lane and Armitage Road on a circumnavigation of Milnsbridge House and its former grounds (see map

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Page 44

Picture the scene:

'The valley in which the house is situated is of the most fertile and beautiful description, it is bounded by hills rising above each other to a considerable height and cultivated to the summit. The house is built with stone of correct architecture, cousisting of a plain centre, having a pediment enriched with scrollwork, and two wings in corresponding design. The shrubbery that adjoins the house 1s disposed with much taste, in the front the lawn is bounded by two detached pools of water beyond which runs the rich prospect of the adjacent country.'

Milnsbridge House and its surrounds were so described in Jones' ©Views of Picturque Yorkshire in 1829. Today, with its original lofty roof gone, its elegant interior gutled and its extensive grounds infringed by housing and industry the house retains little of its former glory. The front gates to Milnsbridge House were opposite the old corn mill by the bridge and the drive followed part of the route of the present day George Street. Approaching the house from this direction today, the first view is of its unprepossessing back where the insertion of new entrances has spoiled the original symmetry. A little further along George Street, however, it is worth a short stop to study the front elevation which, although in no less a sad condition, does retain something of its balanced architecture.

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Page 45

The exact date of the house is not known but from its classical style it is likely to have been built in the mid eighteenth century. It is certainly shown, complete with its two fish ponds, on Jefferys' map of 1772. It is believed that the central part of the house was the residence of the owner and his family and that the two sloping wings housed their servants. The grounds, which to the north were bounded by a steep wooded bank, once extended half a mile or more to the east to take in two sizeable fish ponds. In front of the house there was a lawn large enough to use as a cricket field and beyond, the upper fish pond stretched some three hundred yards to the north east. It is worth noting that during cricket matches a boat was kept at the ready to facilitate the retrieval of balls hit into the pond. Whether the batters went on scoring runs until the ball was found is not known. The historical importance of Milnsbridge House is undoubtedly increased by the fact that it was once the home of Mr. (later Sir) Joseph Radcliffe who was born at Alt Hill, Ashton under Lyne and baptised there on 8th May 1744. He was the son of Joseph Pickford of Ashton and Mary Radcliffe of Milnsbridge. In 1795, Mary's unmarried brother, William, died, leaving Joseph his sole heir providing he was willing to change his name from Pickford to Radcliffe. This he gladly did and thus, at the age of fifty-one, found himself the owner of extensive estates and properties in Milnsbridge and the Colne Valley. Joseph Radcliffe was an ardent opponent of the Luddites and, after the murder of William Horsfall in April 1812, he was tireless in his efforts to identify the assasins and bring them to justice. Throughout the summer of 1812 many suspects were brought to Milnsbridge House and held there for questioning. Radcliffe's hope was that as soon as he had trawled the guilty men their accomplices would confess in order to save their own skins and also, of course, to collect the proffered reward. It was not until October that his methods proved successful and he was able to dispatch three of the men accused of the murder to York Castle. Subsequently, at the trial held on 6th January 1813, Radcliffe was a member of the jury who heard the case and brought in a verdict of 'Guilty' on all three. Two days later, he was a spectator at their execution at the New Drop at York. For his enterprise in the matter and for his implacable determination to stamp out all Luddite activity in the area, Joseph Radcliffe was created


Page 46

Baronet in November 1813. Sir Joseph died in February 1819 and four years later Milnsbridge House was sold to Joseph Armitage of Honley whose family retained possession for a hundred years. In the 1870s the house was partitioned into four separate dwellings and sometime afterwards the gardens around the upper fish pond may have been opened to the public, as maps of the 1890s mark the area as Milnsbridge Pleasure Grounds. By the turn of the century the house was in decline and in 1906 D.F.E. Sykes described it as '..hemmed in on every side by mills and the serried and dreary rows of homes of the hardy artisans of Milnsbridge'. In 1919, the Armitage family sold the house to the Armitage Lodge of Freemasons who hoped to convert it into a Masonic Temple. Their grandiose schemes, however, proved too expensive and they soon sold it to Mr. W.H. Robinson for use as industrial premises. The present owner is Mr. Geoffrey Sykes who is fully aware of the historical importance of the house. Continuing along George Street our route follows the southern perimeter of the once beautiful and tranquil grounds. The upper fish pond, later known as the Ratpond, is long gone and, although here and there a few sad bushes and wild flowers struggle for survival, it is difficult to reconcile the intrusive mills, garages and workshops with the lawns, elm trees and elegant flower beds of Sir Joseph Radcliffe's day. The grounds continued beyond Bankhouse Lane (where our route turns left) to the lower fish pond which, like its larger neighbour, has now been filled in. The area, however, is still known as Fishponds. At the top of Bankhouse Lane, Armitage Road, which was built in the second half of the nineteenth century, runs along the estate's northern boundary and it is possible, through an occasional gap on the left hand side, to look over the scene of long departed pomp from the high ground.

SECTION FIVE THE VIADUCT (44) Shortly after rejoining Market Street our route passes under the eastern end of Longwood Viaduct. In 1879, the London and North Western Railway Company received new powers to double their lines in the Huddersfield area and work on the immense task started in 1880. Evidence of the widening of the Longwood Viaduct, which was completed in 1884, may easily be seen in


Page 47

the walls and arched roof where there is a noticeable difference in construction styles.

LOWER GATE (45) (P) Immediately after the viaduct our route turns right into Lower Gate and soon passes the site of Longwood Station on the right. Not much remains today but the site can be identified by a low, red brick wall and a wide entrance now closed by a wooden gate. On the opposite side of the road (just beyond Meg Lane) notice a double fronted house with moulded stone corbels supporting a canopy over the central doorway. This was once the L. & N.W. Railway Hotel which, until its closure on 10th March 1948, catered for travellers using the once busy station. A little further along Lower Gate it is worth a short stop to take in the view over the Colne Valley. From this height it is possible to see the relative positions of railway, canal and road all of which, in their turn, brought in their wake the mills, factories and houses that jostle for position on or near the valley floor. Notice also, on the far hillside, the steep quarry face below Park Road West and, above, the roof and chimneys of Crosland Lodge (see tour 2 No.19).

THE PREMIER (46) On the right hand side of Lower Gate, just before the roundabout at Paddock Head, notice the premises designated 'Premier Works'. This single storey building, which was designed by F. Mallinson, opened as the Premier Picture House, on 18th October 1922, when the silent film, 'The Romance of Mary was shown. Eight years later, the Premier entered a new era when the talking picture 'Sunny Side Up' was screened there on 15th December 1930. After the introduction of sound, the cinema, like many others around the town, presented two different programmes every week to more or less full houses. In 1950, the premises were renovated and new sound equipment was installed after which, under new management, the cinema continued for another decade until, as with cinemas everywhere, the inexorable spread of television eventually brought about its demise. After its closure as a cinema the building was used by a printing company for several years and presently (1995), it is owned by H. & H. Wholesale, trading as retail grocers.


Page 48

PADDOCK HEAD (47) Although the traffic roundabout just beyond the Premier is now thought of as Paddock Head, maps of the mid nineteenth century make it clear that, m those days, Paddock Head was some three hundred yards (273 m) away to the east, along Church Street. It is likely that the name was informally transferred during the tramway era when the terminus or head of the Paddock route was located at this end of Church Street. The same maps show that the area of the present day roundabout, between Lower Gate, Church Street and Luck Lane was then called Royds Hall, a name influenced, presumably, by the nearby mansion. However, the origin of the name is probably much older, as *royds' were clearings made in woodland during the Middle Ages. Until the 1920s, on the sloping ground behind Royds Hall, there were three small woods which were fragments of a much larger wooded area. As there are four 'royd' place names on the hillside it seems likely that this was the location of the origmal clearings made several centuries ago.

ROYDS HALL SCHOOL (48) (P) Shortly after entering Luck Lane stop, if possible, near the drive to Royds Hall to look at the three phases of building, the mansion of the nineteenth century, the school buildings of the 1920s and the modern sports hall. During the First World War Royds Hail played an important part in the local war effort. Initially, the house was used as a reception centre for Belgian refugees, then, in June 1915, it was decided that the grounds would provide a suitable site for a military hospital. Within three months the project, which was funded entirely by voluntary subscription, was complete. Most of the hospital's six hundred beds were located in wooden huts erected near the house which itself was made over to the medical staff for the duration of the war. So great was the number of casualties during those calamitous years that the hospital was always full and by the end of the war more than seventeen thousand men had been treated there. In 1921, both the Huddersfield and West Riding Education Authorities found themselves short of grammar school places and, in September of that year, they opened and jointly ran a new school at Royds Hall. In the first year there were seventy pupils on roll with a staff of ten, led by the headmaster, Mr.


Page 49

E.F. Chaney M.A. A co-educational grammar school was something of a novelty in Huddersfield at that time but the idea proved popular for only two years later numbers had risen to three hundred pupils and twenty three teachers. Such an increase led to problems of accommodation. At first, the children were taught in the mansion but quite soon, what was described as 'The Hut' was brought into use as an overspill. By January 1924, work on a new range of buildings was underway but progress was slowed by the builders' strike in July of that year. By that time numbers had risen to nearly four hundred and, at the beginning of the autumn term, as the new building was still nowhere near completion, the Governors resorted to renting Milnsbridge Baptist School as an annexe for the new entrants. This became affectionately known as the Nursery and continued in use until the new building opened in 1926. Four years later, the ground in front of the school was levelled to provide much needed playing fields for the use of the hockey, football and cricket teams. When Mr. Chaney retired in July 1933 he was succeeded as headmaster by Mr. D. St. J. C. Gurney B.A. M.Ed., who will doubtless be remembered by any of our readers who are Old Roydsians - as will the Semor Mistress, Mrs. Bamforth. Both Mr. Gurney and Mrs. Bamforth retired in July 1959 just before the school began admitting non-selective pupils. Before leaving Royds Hall School it is worth mentioning one of the school's ex-pupils who went on to achieve high office. J.H. Wilson entered the school in 1923 from New Street Council School, Milnsbridge. In July 1928, whilst in form 1c, he wrote an article for the school magazine describing aspects of a visit he had recently made to Australia - surely an exceptional experience for a child in those days. Three years later, the magazine reported that although J.H. Wilson was recovering from typhoid fever, his progress was slow and it would be many months before he could return to school. However, his long absence did not impede his academic progress for he eventually went, by way of Wirral Grammar School, to Jesus College, Oxford. In 1945, he entered Parliament and in 1947, at the age of thirty one, he was appointed President of the Board of Trade. In that year also he accepted an invitation to address the school at its annual Speech Day. In 1963, following the death of Hugh Gaitskell, he was appointed Leader of the Opposition and, a year later, the late Harold Wilson achieved his long stated ambition when he became Prime Minister.


Page 50

LUCK LANE (49) In 1716, Timothy Oldfield produced a map of 'the estate belonging to Sir William Ramsden in his manor of Huddersfield'. The map, which is the first to give a detailed view of the town and its environs, shows Luck Lane running along part of the north west boundary of the estate on much the same line as it takes today. The lane, which is the only highway on the map to be named, connected the uncultivated commons of Marsh and Paddock. By 1716 a large parcel of former waste land to the east (right) of Luck Lane had been enclosed and divided into a number of small closes, the southernmost two of which were called Luck Royd and Luck Banck. It is difficult now to decide whether Luck Lane was so named because it led to and from the two closes or whether the closes took their names from the lane. Interestingly, in the 1716 survey which accompanies the map, the closes are called Luke Royd and Luke Banck which may indicate the dialect pronunciation and spelling of Luck m the early eighteenth century. On the other hand, it may be that the map-maker interpreted Luke as Luck and that, therefore, the lane was originally Luke Lane. About a quarter of a mile beyond Royds Hall and just past Carr Street, on the left, notice how Luck Lane curves to the right (see map below).

.. £ {Shokeapear® "amg Public Gardens FF

This is a result of a diversion made to take the lane round the front of the early nineteenth century Marsh Mill and its dam. Later, new premises were built - the Marsh Mills of today - and the original mill was renamed Providence Mill. Despite the diversion, the old route did not disappear. Such is the power of


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right of way that it remains today as a public footpath which leaves Carr Street to run behind the old mill and rejoin Luck Lane at the far end of the diversion. Although the Luck Lane end of the footpath is now little used, its course can be made out running along the side of the present day Marsh Mills.


JIM LANE AND ELDON ROAD (50) (P.W.) Soon after joining Jim Lane, stop at the end of Eldon Road on the left. Although at first glance we might categorize this area, like so much of Marsh, as typical late nineteenth and early twentieth century development nevertheless, Eldon Road is at least two and a quarter centuries old and, nearby, is a row of cottages which contains what must surely be the oldest houses in Marsh. Until the early years of this century Eldon Road was called Cross Lane a name it took from a farmstead called Cross which, in turn, took its name from a cross or waymark that once stood on the side of the old highway from Huddersfield to Marsh (see map on page 42). The cross is clearly shown on the 1716 map and its presence must have been greatly appreciated at a time when Marsh was a vast tract of wasteland and common with few identifiable landmarks. In the early nineteenth century the old highway through Marsh became part of the Huddersfield to New Hey turnpike and its line (the present Westboume Road) has not changed greatly since 1716. Incidentally, this turnpike took a completely new route between Huddersfield and Gledholt and, as a consequence, the older route, part of which can still be traced along Highfields Road and Mountjoy Road, was abandoned and soon forgotten.* Until the massive development of Marsh began in the late nineteenth century there were only two buildings in the vicinity of Cross Lane: the old Cross Farm and a row of cottages called Newhousing Fold. By 1870, farming had ceased at Cross Farm and the old homestead had been partitioned into separate dwellings where lived a laundress, a cloth dresser, a mill worker and their families and two gardeners. Cross Farm no longer exists but Newhousing Fold remains and readers might like to take a short walk along Eldon Road to the entrance to Marsh United Bowling Club from where the cottages may be seen.

43 * See Appendix No.1 pg.119

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The name Newhousing Fold appears on the 1854 O.S. map but the housing was certainly not new at that time. Although they are not shown on the 1716 map the cottages cannot post-date it by many years as the thick walls, double recessed windows and large quoins are typical of the early eighteenth century. In the mid 1850s, a narrow strip of land at the side of Cross Lane, between the Fold and Cross Farm, was laid out in formal gardens and named Shakespeare Public Gardens and soon afterwards Newhousing Fold became Shakespeare Cottages. One of the residents at the Fold at that time was Charles Iredale, a forty-four year old cloth finisher who lived there with his wife and six children. Twenty years later, he was working as head gardener at the small park assisted, no doubt, by the two gardeners then living at Cross Farm. By the turn of the century terrace housing had encroached on the gardens and only a few years later the lawns, walkways, flower beds and trees had disappeared for ever. The Shakespeare Gardens at Marsh were, locally, at the beginning of the public park movement which stemmed from a growing awareness that the beauties of nature could and should be made available to all classes through the provision of an artificially produced countryside. By the end of the nineteenth century three much larger parks had made their appearance in Huddersfield and it is at one of these that we make our next stop.

GREENHEAD PARK (51) (P. W.) About a quarter of a mile along Park Drive South stop on the left hand side of the road where much of Greenhead Park may be seen. Although Beaumont Park at Crosland Moor, which opened on 13th. October 1883, is generally credited with being the town's first park, in fact the land at Greenhead was opened to the public some thirteen years earlier. Greenhead Park owes its existence to the foresight and understanding of the Borough Corporation m general and, in particular, to the endeavours of one of its members, Alderman Thomas Denham J.P. of John William Street. In May 1869, during a business visit to the Ramsden Estate offices, Mr. Denham noticed plans for buildmg development on the old Greenhead estate, known locally at that time as Rifle Fields. Realising, regretfully, that the scheme would threaten many stands of fine, mature trees he requested a stay of


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execution to give the Corporation time to consider the possibility of acquiring the site for a public park. Mr. Graham, the Ramsden's agent, readily agreed to the request and also promised assistance. To test the strength of public support for a park Mr. Denham called a meeting on 29th May 1869 which was attended by manufacturers, merchants, tradesmen and, as they were described at the time, 'all classes of responsible townsfolk. * The meeting unanimously agreed that a sub-committee be formed to pursue the matter and Mr. Denham was asked to present his ideas to the Corporation. He was sympathetically received and, after some discussion, the project was brought before the General Purposes Committee for estimates to be prepared and the probable costs calculated. Three schemes, varying only in the amount of land to be acquired, were considered, the most extensive of which was an area of just over twenty-six acres which would include Gledholt Glen. However, the owner of the land, Sir John William Ramsden, favoured a smaller area of twenty two acres which, he said, would be sufficient to give Huddersfield a park three times the size of the one at Halifax. On 3rd July 1869 the grounds of the proposed park were thrown open for public inspection. Several thousand people came to explore the newly mown fields and to voice their approval. Mr. Rhodes, a crony of Mr. Denham, in a rousing speech said that a town which could subscribe £15,000 to the Crimean Fund, £5,000 to the Indian Relief Fund and £12,000 in aid of the sufferers of the Holmfirth Flood would also contribute largely to the funds for a public park. Mr. Denham knew that if the land was to be secured for the town, urgent action had to be taken. But, unsurprisingly, there was some disagreement within the Corporation as to how the money was to be raised so the Alderman, who knew only too well the length of time required for new projects to come to fruition, generously agreed to take the land himself on a yearly rental. In addition, he provided, at his own expense, a hundred and fifty rustic seats and built what was described as a large and handsome orehestra for band concerts. On Whit-Monday, 6th June 1870, the town's first park w as temporarily opened to the public. It remained open for only two days that year but during the remaining two years of Mr. Denham's tenancy it was opened for all during the summer months and thousands of townspeople came to enjoy many promenade concerts in the pleasant surroundings.


Page 54

It was fortunate that Mr. Denham had the foresight to acquire the land when he did for it was to be another three years before the Corporation reached agreement on the matter during which time, had he not acted, the proposed building development would probably have gone ahead. When, at last, the Corporation did take over the tenancy from Mr. Denham they agreed to repay him all the money he had spent, including the cost of the seats and the orchestra. Later, the Corporation purchased the land from the Ramsden Estate for £30,000 of which Sir John William Ramsden returned £5,000 as a donation. For nearly a decade the park had remained much as it was during Mr. Denham's tenancy but, once entered into ownership, the Corporation determined to landscape the site and provide the appropriate amenities. On 1 5th March 1882 work began on the construction of a new road, Park Drive, which was to form the boundary of the park. Fourteen months later, on 2nd May 1883, the laying out of the interior was started under the direction of Mr. R.S. Dugdale, Borough Engineer. A broad straight avenue was constructed from the Trinity Street entrance to an artificially heightened mound on which it was originally planned to build an octagonal pavilion, two storeys high, surmounted by a glass dome. The natural slope of the land which was used to create elevated terraces and sunken paths also allowed such features as lakes, ponds, shelters and flower beds to be advantageously placed. Many new stands of trees were planted, the main avenue was lined with elms and new shrubberies were laid out with rhododendrons. When all was finished, the park was decorated with flags, streamers and bunting in preparation for the official opening. On Saturday, 27th September 1884, a grand procession of local dignitaries paraded from the Town Hall to the park. It was appropriate that the procession was headed by the band and four companies of the 2nd Volunteer Battalion, West Riding Regiment as the Greenhead area, in its former guise as the Rifle Fields, had been used as a training ground by the local Volunteers. On arrival, the Mayor, Aldermen Wright Mellor J.P., used a golden key studded with precious stones to open the park gates and then declared the park open to the public. In his speech Mr. Mellor said, ® ...a park would have been of little value fifty or sixty years ago as the people had to work so many hours - that after they got up early in the morning and worked until late at night they


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wanted no recreation - only food and rest. The Factory Bill had so altered things that the position of the working people advanced higher and higher.' It is worth bearing in mind that these remarks were made at a time when few workers put in less than sixty hours a week and shop hours had no limit! After the official ceremonies, celebrations continued late into the evening when the park was illuminated by countless fairy lamps lit by small candles. The original grand scheme for the park, envisaged by Alderman Denham, included croquet and cricket fields, archery butts, an observatory, a museum, a vinery, pubhc baths and homes for ladies and tradesmen. All of these failed to materialize but several features have been added to the original lay-out and, with the help of the map below, readers might like to take a stroll through the park to see how it has faired since its conception.

P.P-Site o! prepesed Pavilisn I luture War Memoria}.

S.AM.M~-South Alrican War Memorial,

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When the park opened it was provided withtwo drinking fountains, one of which remains, on its original site, near to the main avenue. It was presented to the Corporation by the Huddersfield Temperance Society in 1884. All that


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remains of the other, called 'Rebecca at the well', is its circular stone base whiclt may be seen near to the present sports pavilion. A third drinking fountain, given to the town by Sir John William Ramsden, to commemorate Queen Victoria's Golden Jubilee, came later to the park, as it was originally erected in the Market Place and unveiled there by Lady Gwendolen Ramsden on ] 2th June 1888. It stayed on its original site for thirty-four years until it was removed in September 1922 by the Highways Committee who said that its removal was made necessary by traffic requirements. A suggestion that it should be re-erected in St. Paul's Gardens fell on stoney ground as the Corporation, whose members had little liking for Sir John's fountain, refused to prepare a site. Thereafter, it disappeared from view for a time. As rumours spread that it was to be 'dumped', voices were heard demanding its acquittal and eventually a home was found for it in Greenhead Park, near to the children's playground where it remains to this day. The octagonal band stand which has, over the years, been the scene of many popular concerts is presently in a poor state of repair but we understand that there are tentative plans to renovate it for the summer of 1995. If this happens we can only hope that it escapes the attention of the vandals whose mindless efforts elsewhere in the park would certainly have astonished and saddened Alderman Denham. The two War Memorials in the park are worthy of note. The impressive edifice commemorating the dead of the two World W ars stands on the elevated site originally intended for an ornate pavilion which , because of the expense involved, was never built. The other smaller memorial, which was unveiled by General French on 20th May 1905, is much more unusual in that it commemorates local men who fell in the South African Campaigns. The park originally had two small lakes (or large pools) and a number of smaller fish ponds. The ponds, which soon became stagnant, were the first to be filled in as they were regarded as a health hazard. The larger of the two lakes, which had been used for boating, was filled in in the 1930s but the smaller, so called Pear Lake, whicli has been used for many years as a paddling pool, remains. Near to the paddling pool there is part of a pillar, all that remains of the three so called civic pillars which were removed from an old dwelling house in Post Office Y ard, near Oldgate, and brought here for, as it turned out,


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not too successful preservation. In 1926 the children's playground was opened as a memorial to Richard Oastler and around the same time the pasture land between the park and Gledholt Road was taken im for the making of bowling greens, tennis courts and putting greens. Thus the boundary was extended westward and the old boundary road became a wide avenue within the park. The extension was opened on 2nd June 1927. In more recent years several magnificent trees have fallen victim to disease and their removal has left the main avenue sadly denuded. But even the stumps of dead trees have their uses and it is worth looking for a couple, where a clever wood carver, Colin Wilbourn, has practised his art in a most origmal manner. Many of our readers will have their own fond memories of Greenhead Park, of rowing or perhaps skating on the lake, of sailing model boats on the paddling pool, of 'keep off the grass' signs, of band concerts on Sunday afternoons, of the swings, slides and roundabouts in the children's playground which were much more dangerous, and therefore more exciting, than those of the present day. Those who are old enough will remember the entertainments started during the Second World W ar in the form of 'Holidays at Home' which included flower and vegetable shows, military displays, donkey rides, roundabouts, model trains and, of course, the open-air theatre with concerts presented by, among others, Nora Bray and Joan Morris. The Holidays at Home scheme continued after the war when, with the lifting of the blackout, it became customary to provide a grand firework display as a suitable finale. Public parks must surely rank among the greatest innovations of the Victorian Age. It is not too difficult to imagine the pleasure they must have given to an urban population at a time when a day at the seaside was unusual and fortnight abroad, unimaginable. Above all else, parks, at last, provided a reachable destination and people came in their thousands to avail themselves of all the delights they had to offer. Although, in recent years, the popularity of parks has declined, nevertheless, Greenhead is still one of Huddersfield's favourite outdoor recreation areas and the town surely owes a debt of gratitude to Thomas Denham who, over a century ago, had the foresight to recognise an ideal site, the courage to secure the land and the tenacity to see his scheme brought to fruition.


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TRINITY STREET (52) After turning left from Park Drive South our route soon reaches Trinity Street and the main entrance to Greenhead Park, now sadly lacking the gates that were once opened with a golden key. Beyond the entrance there is a fine view along the main avenue to the War Memorial on its mound. Trinity Street, which takes its name from nearby Holy Trinity Church, was originally part of the Huddersfield to New Hey turnpike, opened c.1 805. Beyond Marsh, the turnpike continued through Outlane and over the hills to New Hey on the outskirts of Rochdale. This old road (A640) was, for more than a century and a half one of the principal trans-pennine routes. Today, its importance has been diminished by the M62 but anyone returning to Huddersfield from the far corners of the country might find that there is a lot to be said for leaving the tumult of the motorway behind at junction 21 and completing the last few miles of his or her journey by following the older, quieter, less stressful route. It is at Trinity Street that we end our first tour. Should you wish to join the two tours together (16 miles in all) turn right into Trinity Street and then left to follow the ring road round to Shore Head, the starting point of the second tour.


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An Act of Parliament passed in 1758 gave Huddersfield its first turnpike road. Known as the Wakefield to Austerlands road, it passed through the townships of Horbury, Overton, Lepton, Almondbury, Huddersfield and Marsden on its way to Austerlands on the Yorkshire Lancashire border. There it joined up with a road leading to Manchester which had been turnpiked a quarter of a century earlier. This belated response by the people of Yorkshire to the efforts of their neighbours over the Pennines was a direct result of the growth of trade between the two counties. Our second tour which follows part of the route of this old highway allows us to comment not only on the many interesting features it passes but also on the provision of early turnpikes. As we have described sections of the road at Lepton, Almondbury and Aspley in earlier books, in this tour we pick it up at Shorehead and follow it through Crosland Moor and Holt Head to Marsden. Unlike the first tour which is concentrated into six eventful and industrialised miles near to the town, this tour stretches out to the western hills and, where it crosses moorland and heath, offers panoramic views on all sides.

DIRECTIONS Section 1. From the roundabout at Shorehead (1) follow the Queensgate section of the ring road (2,3,4,5,6) passing the University on the left (7,8). At the traffic lights at the top of Chapel Hill take the appropriate lane to turn into Manchester Road (9) and passing St. Thomas' Church on the right (10) continue to the traffic lights at Longroyd Bridge (11). This is 0.9 miles from the starting point. Section 2. At Longroyd Bridge (12,13) go through two sets of traffic lights (14) keeping to the A62 and soon after the railway viaduct (15,16) fork left at the traffic lights into Blackmoorfoot Road (s.p. Crosland Moor) (17,18,19,20). Continue up the hill (21) past St. Lukes Hospital (22), on the left, through Crosland Moor (23) to Dryclough Road on the left (24). This is 1. 1 miles from Longroyd Bridge.


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Section 3. Continue along Blackmoorfoot Road (25,26) past the caravan park (27,28,29) and the golf course on the right (30). Soon after the white domed Huddersfield Observatory and thirty yards (27 M) before a public footpath sign, on the right, the road passes a small milestone at the foot of the wall on the left. (31,32). This is 1.5 miles from Dryclough Road. Section 4. Continue down the hill to Blackmoorfoot village (33,34) just beyond which Blackmoorfoot Road turns left and our route becomes Holt Head Road. This is 0.8 miles from the milestone. Section 5. Continue straight ahead along Holt Head Road to the bridge across Bradley Brook at Holt Head (41). This is 1.1 miles from Blackmoorfoot Road. Section 6. Soon after the bridge at Holt Head (42,43) turn left at the T junction into Varley Road (s.p. Marsden & Meiltham) (44) and then, with great care, turn right (s.p. Marsden into Chain Road. Follow this up the hill past Jim Hill (45) and the White House (46) and continue along to Lingards Lane on the right where Chain Road Meltham Road (49,50). Continue straight on Meltham Road which, just before the entrance to Badger Gate Farm on the right, passes another milestone on the left (51). This is 1 mile from the bridge at Holt Head. Section 7. Continue along Meltham Road passing Badger Gate, Badger Hey (52) and Chain (53) on the right and then down the hill to the junction with Carrs Road on the left (54). This is 0.9 miles from the milestone at Badger Gate. Section 8. Soon after Carrs Road cross Manchester Road )and continue straight ahead into Brougham Road (56,57, 58,59). In just under a quarter of a mile turn right into Peel Street and soon after crossing the river bridge turn left into Station Road passing the Swan public house on the right. In about 200 yards (182 M) turn left into Church Lane (60,61,62,63) to the Churchyard Gates. This is 0.5 miles from Carrs Road.


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Section 9. At the end of Church Lane turn right into Town Gate across Manchester Road to Throstle Nest (64) and climb Old Mount Road (65) for just over a mile to the junction with Mount Road (66). This is 1.2 miles from Marsden Church. Section 10. Turn right into Mount Road (67,68,69) and continue along to a layby just beyond Gilberts Farm. This is 0.6 miles from the junction of Old Mount Road and Mount Road and 9.6 miles from the starting point of the tour at the Shorehead Roundabout.

Before departing on the tour readers might like to know a little about the advent of turnpike roads. To understand the importance of turnpiking we have to imagine a landscape that is vastly different from the one we know today. Towns and villages were much smaller and the tracks between them were often narrow, unmarked footways crossing long tracts of uninhabited land. The more important long distance routes between various market towns and river and sea ports were little better. They may have been wider but they made small allowance for the difficulties of the terrain and, deeply rutted and muddy as they were, they were often impassable in summer and impossible in winter. For more than thirteen hundred years, since Roman times, little, if any, road construction took place in England and, as late as the eighteenth century, highways followed routes that had been developed naturally over the centuries by foot travellers. In the hilly area around Huddersfield the physical characteristics of the district naturally influenced the course of highways. The bleak harsh summits of the western hills were forbidding to early travellers who tended to cross them where they were at their narrowest, as at Standedge and Blackstone Edge. The marshy wooded terrain of the valley bottoms was similarly unattractive and if early highways had to venture into valleys it was to cross rather than to follow them. Of course, the route across a valley was often determined by the position of the easiest river crossing, whether by ford, ferry or bridge. Before the introduction of the turnpike system, road maintenance was a haphazard affair as each township or parish was in charge of its own roads. Naturally, local attitudes to such aresponsibility varied from place to place and


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neglect was not uncommon. In addition, the financial burden was felt by many to be unfair as some townships were liable for roads which, although of great importance to nearby market towns, were of little benefit to themselves and this too led to neglect. By the mid-eighteenth century it was becoming obvious that road maintenance in our area was failing to keep pace with the growth of traffic brought about by the steadily expanding manufacturing industries. It was this need to provide improved routes that brought the turnpike system, which was already a hundred years oid, to our district. The turnpike trusts undoubtedly provided a fairer system of road management not only through their concerted efforts to improve road surfaces but also through the transference of costs to the road user by the levying of tolls. Of course, as is always the case when new ideas are introduced, there were objections and even riots in some local areas because people objected to paying tolls on roads where they had previously travelled freely. A Tummpike Act was administered by a group of local citizens - often gentry and manufacturers who had a material interest in improving local roads. The trustees were empowered to borrow money for the making of a road and for the erection of toll houses and gates where charges were levied. The collection of tolls was let annually by the trustees to the highest bidder who, in turn, engaged the occupants of the toll houses whose duty it was to open the gate after collecting the appropriate fee. These varied, of course, according to the nature of the traffic with narrow-wheeled vehicles (six inches and under) paying the highest charge because they caused most damage to the road surface. It is important to remember though that whilst the increase in wheeled vehicles was the most common cause of the proliferation of turnpike roads this was not so in the hilly areas on both sides of the Pennines. Here, the stimulus came from the needs of the textile industry which was content to continue using pack horses for several decades after the advent of turnpikes. The main concern in the early days was to provide a good road surface. The earliest turnpikes in our area used the routes of existing highways which were repaired and possibly widened. Very occasionally, where the gradients were exceptionally steep, anew section of the road might be built but only in very short lengths. It follows then, that by tracing our earliest turnpike we are tracing a road that is older by far than the Act of Parliament that improved it.


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SHORE HEAD (1) The name Shore is first recorded locally as 'le Schoyr' in the mid- sixteenth century. Shore derives from the same word as sewer, used in the sense of an open culvert (compare Shoreditch in London) and, as there is a Shore Foot as well as Shore Head it seems likely that there was once in this area a linear feature - a culverted stream perhaps - that was important enough to give rise to an enduring place-name. Although there are no signs of antiquity today at Shore Head there can be no doubt that there has been an important road junction here since the early days of settlement. Travellers approaching the area from the south and east by way of the ancient highway through Almondbury had, depending on their destination, a choice of three routes (see map) when they reached Shore Head: straight ahead along the present day Oldgate into the town; northwards along the now defunct Castlegate to link up with the old road to Halifax and, later, with the turnpike to Leeds; or westwards along Back Green and Outcote Bank to the river crossing at Longroyd Bridge and ultimately to Marsden and Standedge. It was this latter route that was to become part of the Wakefield to Austerlands turnpike soon after 1758. The present day King Street dates only from c.1 800 and was never part of the old highway system.

S1. Peter's Church

lo Hatlitax

to Manchester

M a p o 1 8 a c k G roe e n


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BACK GREEN (2) From Shore Head the turnpike followed an old lane called Back Green which ran to the south of the town on a route that is roughly followed today by a short stretch of the ring-road and then by Ramsden Street and High Street. The 1716 map of Huddersfield shows Back Green running along a broad strip of unitilled green land at the northern edge of Nether Crofts, one of Huddersfield's large open fields (see map p.55). Although by that time some enclosure had been undertaken in the Nether Crofts, a large part was still under strip cultivation and it seems likely that Back Green, in the days before enclosure, would have been the balk used to give access to the communal strips. Such green or town balks were a feature in open-field farming and they often developed into convenient routes across wide stretches of agricultural land. Settlement in Back Green in the early eighteenth century was sparse with just five or six houses along its whole length. In 1716, for example, John Bradley had 'a Cott in his farme' there, Duke Brook had 'a small new Cott, John Hirst 'a new Cott by ye Bowling Green' and Robert Walker 'a Cott at Back o'th Town'. Not all the property was in good order though for Thomas Slack had ©3 Dwellings in an old Decayed House under One Roof within his Farme*'. The bowling green, incidentally, was situated on the left hand side of today's ring-road, in the area opposite the Ship Inn. Eighty years later, the bowling green was still there and a few houses with gardens and orchards had made their appearance in the future High Street along with courtyards, stables, barns and workshops. There was also a skin house (tannery?) near to the bowling green. Despite this activity, Back Green was to continue as a quiet country lane until well into the nineteenth century for it was not until the early 1820s that the western end was completely developed and renamed High Street. The development of the rest of the old road was slower although the name Ramsden Street seems to have been coined in 1825, as the trustees of the Back Green Congregational Church, which opened in that year, announced that henceforth it was to be known as Ramsden Street Chapel. The public library now stands on the site of this chapel. Until well into the nineteenth century, Ramsden Street was a favourite rallying ground for political meetings and torch-light processions. For instance, in August 1838 Richard Oastler addressed thousands of his followers there


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and, two years later, the so-called plug rioters from Lancashire held a noisy meeting near to St. Paul's Church to demand a fair day's pay for a fair day's work. As the rioters had already drawn the plugs from several mill boilers along the Colne and Holme Valleys, thus bringing production to a standstill, their demands met with little sympathy from the mill-owners or, for that matter, from local workers who were temporarily thrown out of work. By 1850 several more public buildings had joined the Chapel in Ramsden Street including St. Paul's Church, the Apollo Gymnasium (later the public baths) the Philosophical Hall (later the Theatre Royal) the Zetland Hotel (now O'Neills) and a Riding School (now a cinema). Later, in 1880, the Town Hall was built to the west of St. Paul's. Today, part of the upper section of Ramsden Street lies beneath the so- called piazza whilst the lower section has become part of the ring-road.

ST. PAUL'S GARDENS (3) Whilst driving along the ring-road look out for a grassy bank on the left opposite to Zetland Street. The bank itself is not of any great interest except that it is the approximate location of a tiny public park called St. Paul's Garden which was once suggested as a suitable site for Sir John William Ramsden's Jubilee Fountain (see tour 1 No.51). The garden, which survived into the late 1960s, is now covered by part of the University complex.

THE TUDOR (4) Just after the grassy bank, on the other side of the ring road, notice the Zetland Hotel (now O'Neilis) and the Tudor Cinema, both scheduled to be victims of the proposed Kingsgate development. The cinema, which over the years has seen many changes, was originally built at a cost of £2,400 as a Riding School. It opened to the public on 21st February 1848 with a performance by Batty's Circus and thereafter various theatrical shows were staged there. The Riding School, however, had a dual role in that, until 1862, it was the headquarters of the 2nd. West Yorkshire Yeomanry Cavalry. In that year the building was sold to the 6th. West Yorkshire Rifle V olunteers who used it as an Armoury until they moved to the newly erected drill-hall in St. Paul's Street in 1901. In 1902 the Armoury was bought by the Northern Theatre Company for


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£2,250 and three years later, after conversion into an up-to-date music hall, it was reopened as the Hippodrome by Miss Vesta Tilley, one of the foremost variety artistes of the times. Over the next twenty-five years most of the great stars of music-hall appeared at the Hippodrome which, after modernisation in 1926, was re-named the New Hippodrome and Opera House. The next great change came in 1930 when the Hippodrome became the Tudor House Super Cinema. The interior of the new cinema was appropriately decorated in Mock- Tudor style with lath and plaster 'timbering', and furnished with pseudo shields, tapestries and suits of armour. In the early years occasional theatrical shows were presented at the Tudor but the practice declined in the late 1930s. In recent decades the cinema has changed hands - and names - several times. Its days seemed to be numbered when it was closed by its owners, M.G.M., on 22nd February 1995 but fortunately, at the eleventh hour, a new proprietor came along who reopened it on the 23rd. and , happily, revived the old name. Although a fire destroyed part of the building in December 1967, much of the old fabric remains and, as Riding School, Armoury, Hippodrome, Tudor, Essoldo, Classic, Cannon and now as Tudor again it has offered entertainment to the people of Huddersfield for nearly a century and half. Moreover, it has the distinction of being the only one of thirty-three local cinemas to survive. Unlike the Tudor, the Zetland Hotel (now O'Neills) with its eight Tuscan pilasters and its splendid ashlar elevation, has remained virtually unchanged since it was opened in 1849. The licence was transferred to the Zetland from the Druids Hotel in Temple Street, Westgate, when all the property there was demolished to make way for the Springwood Tunnel.

ST. PAUL'S CHURCH (5) In 1818, Parliament voted a million pounds towards the building of Anglican churches in new areas. This so-called Million Act was ostensibly a thanksgiving for the recent victory at Waterloo but its underlying cause undoubtedly sprang from the desire of the Established Church to combat the inexorable spread of Nonconformity, especially in northern industrial areas. The churches built as a result of the Act were called Million or Waterloo churches and St. Paul's was one of these. Built at a cost of £6,000 the church, which was designed by John Oates, open in 1 831 and served the town for more than a hundred and twenty years until it became redundant. It closed with a


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special service led by the Bishop of Wakefield on 15th April 1956. The church, now St. Paul's Hall, is part of the university and the venue of a highly esteemed annual festival of contemporary music. Just beyond St. Paul's, the market complex solidly blocks the old route along Back Green and so we must briefly follow more modern roads to the bottom of Outcote Bank where we pick up the turnpike route again as it emerges from the town.

MARKETS - OLD and NEW (6) In the late 1960s, when the fashion in civic architecture was for demolition and rebuilding rather than restoration and renovation, great changes took place in Huddersfield not least of which involved the destruction of the old market in King Street and the building of its replacement on a new site between Ramsden Street and Princess Street. To make way for the new market and its attendant 'piazza' a good deal of old property was demohshed including the police and fire stations in Peel Street and Princess Street respectively and the Theatre Royal, the Picture House Cinema and the public baths in Ramsden Street. It w as at this time, of course, that Ramsden Street lost half its length. As we find we have little to say about the new market perhaps this is as good a place as any to relate something about its predecessor. In 1880, after much public agitation (see tour 1. No. 4) market was built on the site of the old Shambles in King Street. It was designed in the Gothic style by Edward Hughes of Lord Street and cost just under £30,000. There were two floors for trading: a ground floor and a balcony. For more than forty years the greater part of the ground floor was devoted to casual tenancies but after a fire in 1923 the area was rearranged and occupied by permanent stalls. The main entrance to this level was in Victoria Street. From the beginning, the whole of the upper floor, which had entrances from King Street, Victoria Lane and Shambles Lane, was occupied by a general market. The exterior shops on each side of the Victoria Street entrance were reserved for fishmongers whilst those in Shambles Lane and Victoria Lane were occupied by butchers. The letting of shops and stalls was put up for auction on 23rd March 1880 in the presence of the Mayor and Corporation. During the auction there was frequent uproar owing to the successful bidding of traders who were


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considered to be outsiders. By the 1930s, greengrocers had replaced the butchers in Shambles Lane and many of our readers will remember Howarth's, Wilson's, Cowling's and Lindon Smith's. Of its many indoor stalls the best remembered is, undoubtedly, Dr. Dan's (herbal drinks and sarsaparilla) closely followed by Berry's (drapers) Hanson's (secondhand books) Wood's (sweets) and Bucei's, Colletta's, Marchini's and (all ice cream). Also remembered is the atmosphere of the place - the warmth and bustle and even the distinctive smell that gave the old market a charm that is lacking in the new. It may well be that progress is necessary but other towns have successfully kept their Victorian markets and perhaps Huddersfield should have done the same. Although the old building was not architectually distinguished it was undeniably more in keeping with the town than its modernistically awful replacement.

THE UNIVERSITY (7) On the left hand side of the ring-road, opposite the Market, are two buildings, of different dates, which are now part of the University of Huddersfield. The University has its origins in a small Philosophical Society formed in the town in 1825 to provide an elementary education for youths and young men. In 1843, this became the Huddersfield Mechanics' Institution. After some twenty years of using rented rooms the Institution was prosperous enough, in 1861, to open its own newly built premises in Northumberland Street. In that year there were more than seven hundred pupils. Twenty two years later the Institution, with the co-operation of the Chamber of Commerce, established the Huddersfield Technical School and Mechanics' Institution (later the Technical College) in what was then Queen Street South. Their new building, which was designed by Edward Hughes, the architect of the old market hall, opened on 7th July 1883. This is the oldest of the two buildings referred to above. During the 1920s student numbers were such that the college was seriously overcrowded despite the fact that by that time it occupied eight separate buildings at various locations in the town. This situation was somewhat relieved in 1939 when the chemistry block was opened alongside the original building. In 1958 the College was re-named the Huddersfield College of Technology and since then the campus has grown to occupy a huge site


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between the ring-road and the canal. The College was designated a Polytechnic in 1971 and achieved University status in June 1992. Thus, from a very small acorn has a mighty oak tree grown.

MILTON CHURCH (8) Just beyond the original Technical College building is the one time Milton Congregational Church whose founder members broke away from the Ramsden Street Chapel following disagreement in 1881. The church which opened in 1883 became a nightclub and disco in the early 1990s - a transformation that would have astonished and probably dismayed its founders. In March 1995 the former church became part of the University. Beyond Milton Church, the ring-road follows the approximate line of East Parade where David Brown set up his business in 1864 (see tour 1. No. 34).

MANCHESTER ROAD (9) From the top of Chapel Hill to the bottom of Outeote Bank our route follows the 'New Manchester Road' of c.1820. This short section of road, which was part of a large scale realignment of the Austerlands turnpike, was built to replace the steep route out of the town at Outcote Bank. When compiling a book of this kind it is likely that one or two of the buildings it describes will have disappeared by the time it is published. A case in point is the now derelict Grand Cinema which can presently be seen about twenty five yards (23 M) along Manchester Road, on the right hand side. This once handsome building, designed by Clifford Hickson, opened on 4th March 1921 and eight years later, became the third cinema in town to show the new 'talking pictures'. After it closed in 1957 the Grand was converted into a nightclub and later into a disco. The building is reputed to be haunted by a former projectionist whose ghostly footsteps have becn heard in the area of the old balcony. However, the ghost may soon find itself dispossessed as, at the time of writing, 1995, there are tentative plans to demolish its old haunts to make way for a retail development. Beyond the Grand, our approach to the road junction at Outcote Bank runs across what was, in the eightecnth century, a quiet agricultural close called EllinTree Wells. The close was tenanted in 1716 by Thomas Slack, the


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man who, at the same time, had an 'Old Decayed House' in Back Green. In 1794 the Huddersfield Narrow Canal was cut across Ellin Tree Wells to be followed in 1820 by the New Manchester Road and the development that followed ensured that the close - and the pretty name - disappeared for ever. About one fifth of a mile from the traffic lights at Chapel Hill the tour rejoins the route of the 1758 turnpike as it emerges from its steep descent of Outcote Bank.

THE STARKEYS AND ST. THOMAS®* CHURCH (10) On the left-hand side of Manchester Road, work is presently going on to reinstate the Huddersfield Narrow Canal which, for many years, has been blocked between Queen Street South and Longroyd Bridge. In recent years a great deal of old industrial property has been demolished in this area, including the sizeable Springdale Mills which occupied a narrow site between the canal and the River Colne. The factory was the property of the brothers John, Thomas and Joseph Starkey, shrewd businessmen all, who, quick to recognise the potential profitability of new inventions in the textile industry, had, as early as 1835, installed some seventy power looms in their mills. As with all innovations at that time, the looms were regarded with suspicion and some resentment by the workforce and soon after they were introduced fifty women and girls went on strike because their wages were reduced by 1s. 6d. per week. There was more trouble at the mill in August 1842 when the plug rioters succeeded in drawing the plug from the mill boiler despite the stalwart defence put up by Joseph Starkey and his workmen. Thomas Starkey died at the age of fifty three in 1847. Ten years later, his widow and his two brothers commissioned Sir George Gilbert Scott to design the church they intended to build in his memory. Scott was a great advocate of Gothic Revival architecture and St. Thomas' Church with its broach spire and stained glass windows is a splendid example of his work. By the time the church was completed in 1859 John and Joseph Starkey had also died and a magnificent stained glass window was erected in memory of all three brothers. St. Thomas', the first 'high' church to be built in Huddersfield still continues its ministry. After a dramatic but sympathetic refashioning of the interior to meet the needs of contemporary methods of worship, the church was rededicated in 1990.


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THE VIADUCT (11) Just past St. Thomas's Church, the scene ahead is dominated by the Paddock Viaduct which carries the Penistone line (see tour 1. No. 31) across the canal and the river. On the 19th August 1865 the viaduct was the scene of an episode in a drama that might well have been called, in the language of the times, 'The Remarkable Rampage of the Runaway Railway-train and its Regrettable Ruin'. The story starts at Lockwood where an engine was shunting carriages from one siding to another. Suddenly, eleven of the carriages broke loose and started down the incline towards Huddersfield. The engine driver set off in close pursuit and as he passed through Lockwood Station a porter there, named Sykes, with great presence of mind jumped aboard to do what he could to help the driver recover his train. They caught up with the carriages on the viaduct here at Paddock Foot and Sykes courageously scrambled to the front of the speeding engine and somehow managed to hook up the runaway carriages. The driver, relieved that the drama was, as he thought, over, applied the brakes. Unfortunately, he braked too hard, the coupling broke and off went the carmages again. Once more the engine followed and in Springwood tunnel Sykes again tried to couple the train but was unable to do so as the shackle was broken. Meanwhile, the pointsman at Springwood had telegraphed a warning to Huddersfield Station and by the time the runaways emerged from the tunnel a sleeper had been laid across the line at the end of the station. This somewhat desperate measure resulted in a spectacular derailment which severely damaged three of the carriages. Unfortunately, we have no further information about the porter or the engine driver. Immediately after the traffic lights by the Electrician's Arms public house our route veers to the left to cross in quick succession the canal and the river. SECTION TWO

LONGROYD BRIDGE (12) If, as we have suggested, the route of the 1759 turnpike followed the course of an ancient highway to the west, it follows that the river crossing at Longroyd Bridge is of similar antiquity. The upkeep of bridges was a great concern to the community and before the Turnpike Acts local townships were


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expected to keep their own bridges in a good state of repair. The eighteenth century indictment books of local Courts record many complaints about the state of highways and bridges. One such complaint alleges that 'a certain common public bridge called Longroyd Bridge on the highway to Manchester is very ruinous, too narrow and in great decay for want of repairs so that people cannot go past that way without great danger to the common nuisance of all'. The indictment goes on to point out that 'The inhabitants of Huddersfield and Quarmby have from time when the memory of man is not to the contrary been accustomed and still ought to repair the said bridge'. As there is no further mention of the bridge, presumably the repairs were carried out. From Longroyd Bridge the old road climbs some six hundred feet to the high ground at Crosland Moor on a line that has remained unaltered to the present day. It is difficult now to imagine travelling conditions in the eighteenth century wheneven a turnpike road would, to our eyes, be little more than a rough, deeply rutted trackway. In the hilly areas to the west of Huddersfield journeys must have been particularly difficult. For example, between Longroyd Bridge and Marsden travellers were faced with seven lonely and difficult miles across a featureless wilderness with only the occasional wayside inn to offer them shelter and sustenance. It might be appropriate to say here that to trace the route westward we have relied mainly on Jefferys' map of 1772 which, because it is contemporary with the road and because it shows every milestone between Huddersfield and Austerlands, must be the most trustworthy record of the road as it was when first turnpiked. The milestones would, of course, have been the only indicators of how far travellers had come and how far they had still to go.

THE TRAMWAY DEPOT (13) Once across the bridge and through the traffic lights notice, over on the left, a large building presently occupied by a window manufacturer. This was originally a tramway shed built at a cost of £51,000 to provide storage space for up to a hundred tramcars. On 15th July 1921, Alderman E.H. Sellers J.P. ceremonially drove a tram into the new premises and declared them open. Soon afterwards, the shed became the town's main tramway depot, succeeding the older depot in Great Northern Street which was then used for maintaining and repairing rolling stock. Prior to the prestigious new building the site had


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been occupied by the tramway power station and a small shed for twenty-five tramcars. Lost somewhere beneath the tram depot is the site of a small workshop which, because of its Luddite connections, has entered into local legend. John Wood's cropping shop stood on the river bank a little way down stream from Longroyd Bridge. Here, in the early years of the nineteenth century, croppers worked in the old way, raising the cloth nap with teasels or wire cards before cropping the nap with heavy shears. Because the work was so skilled croppers earned high wages and when, from about 1803, the use of shearing frames began to spread, their resentment was great. Soon the new machines, one of which could do the work of ten men, came to be regarded as the symbol of oppression. Resentment was channelled into violent action when the Luddite Movement reached the town in 1812. The leader of the Movement locally was George Mellor, John Wood's stepson, and it is believed that several machine breaking attacks were planned at the cropping shop as well as the assassination of William Horsfall on 28th April 1812 (see No. 25).

THE PLAZA (14) About a fifth of a mile beyond Longroyd Bridge, St. Martin's Catholic Centre, on the right hand side of the road, was once a cinema. The original building on the site, the office of Messrs Edward Fisher & Co., silk spinners, was converted in 1912 into a picture house, called The Cinema. In 1930, the old building was demolished and a new cinema, the Plaza, was erected in its place. The Plaza, which opened on 2nd May 1931, was the first new cinema in the district to be specifically designed for sound.

THE ONE MILE STONE (15) Jefferys' map shows six milestones between Huddersfield and Marsden of which two of the originals remain, two are replacements and two seem to have disappeared. Although the replacements are themselves old they are quite different from the originals both in shape and the information they give and, as the comparisons are interesting, we intend to point out the positions of all the remaming milestones, as we come to


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them. The first milestone, which is a replacement, stands on the left hand side of the road immediately beyond the railway viaduct. (N.B. As it is not advisable to stop in this busy area, we include a small sketch.) Jefferys numbers the stone at this point 1/14 - that is the first from Huddersfield, the fourteenth from Austerlands. On a slightly later map it is marked simply, 'One Mile Stone'. The stone, which is triangular in shape, has inscriptions on the two sides facmg the road. These originally read: From Huddersfield 1 Mile, To Huddersfield 1 Mile. Today, the only legible words are 'To', 'From' and 'Mile'. It might be reasonable to conclude that the missing words have weathered away over the years but this is not so. They were, in fact, deliberately chiselled out during the last war when it was the practice to remove or obliterate all wayside place names and distances in order to confuse any enemy paratrooper or spy who might happen to be passing by. The distance from the first milestone to the second is exactly one mile.

THE 'NEW MANCHESTER ROAD (16) Jefferys' map of 1772 shows that the old tumpike was at that time the only through-route connecting Huddersfield with Marsden and it was to remain so for the next fifty years. During those years, a dramatic increase in whecied traffic led to grow ing demands for road irnprovements in general and the elimination of steep gradients in particular. Consequently, in 1820, the trustees of the Wakefield to Austerlands turnpike set about constructing a new stretch of road which at last broke away from the hilly route of 1759. The new road, which left the old at what soon came to be called The Junction (notice the public house), provided the direct and level approach to Marsden necessary for the swifter mail and stage coaches of the times. Although it was to be another two decades before major improvements were completed beyond Marsden (see No.55), soon after 1820 there were several coaches running daily to Manchester and, indeed, passengers using the 'Accommodation' stage coach could leave Huddersfield at 6.30a.m. and arrive back on the same coach at 9.00p.m. the same day.

BLACKMOORFOOT ROAD (17) Soon after 1820 the old turnpike was, naturally enough, designated Old


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Manchester Road and as such it remained until the late nineteenth century when the section between Longroyd Bridge and Park Road was renamed Thornton Road. The most recent name change, to Blackmoorfoot Road, came in 1920.



Just beyond Oldfield Street, on the right hand side of Blackmoorfoot Road, is the site of Crosland Moor Woollen Mill (see map above) which was founded c.1820 by George Crosland of Crosland Lodge. The venture was successful and by 1850 some three hundred and fifty people were employed at the mill. When George Crosland retired in 1860 he was succeeded by his eldest son, Joseph, who became one of the town's most prominent business men and, briefly, its Member of Parliament. After the outbreak of war in August 1914 the firm worked non-stop to fulfil several orders for khaki cloth for the British, French and Russian armies.


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Sadly, for employer and employees alike, it all came to an end on 26th February 1915 when a small fire could not be contained. The resulting conflagration destroyed most of the premises although, fortunately, there were no casualties. Today, the site of the mill is largely empty but a couple of fragments remain at the roadside in the shape of a ruined wall and a small derelict building with an ashlar front elevation. Even though eighty years have gone by since the fire, evidence of burning can still be seen in the rough walls behind this building.

CROSLAND LODGE (19) A little further up Blackmoorfoot Road there is, on the right, a small octagonal building which, from its appearance and its position at the side of the old turnpike, might well be mistaken for a bar house. Unfortunately, none of the bar houses on this side of Huddersfield have survived and the building in question was originally a gatehouse to Crosland Lodge, the one time home of George Crosland, founder of Crosland Moor Mill, his wife and six children.



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The house, which still survives, has a plain ashlar front with a parapet at roof level adorned with five carved laurel wreaths. Six finely carved square columns support the portico on which is carved the motto vincit veritas omnia (truth above all). In its heyday Crosland Lodge stood in four acres of gardens and grounds. Today, most of the grounds are built over but the lawn in front of the house was made into a crown bowling green in 1927. This remains and is, we are reliably informed, one of the premier greens in Yorkshire, much used by the County side. Crosland Lodge was the birthplace and for many years the home of Joseph (later Sir Joseph) Crosland, businessman, newspaper proprietor and prominent Conservative, who stood for Parliament in 1885, 1886 and 1892. Each time he was defeated by a Liberal candidate but his persistence was rewarded in 1893 when, at the age of sixty-six, he was elected M.P. for Huddersfield at a by-election caused by the death of the sitting Member. His majority was thirty-five. Sir Joseph was Huddersfield's first Conservative M.P. and his feat in winning the seat for the party was not to be repeated until 1979. His spell in the House of Commons was to be brief as in the General Election of 1895 his slender majority did not carry and he was again defeated by a Liberal. In view of his political record it is something of an irony that the one time home of this arch-Conservative has for many years been a Liberal Club.

PARK ROAD (20) A little higher up Blackmoorfoot Road, at the corner of Park Road West, there is another gatehouse to Crosland Lodge, the twin of the first. It would appear that the gatekeepers' duties were not onerous as, in the mid- nineteenth century, the residents at both gatehouses were textile operatives. Park Road, on the left of Blackmoorfoot Road was, between 1890 and 1902, the terminus of the Crosland Moor tramway. The Huddersfield Improvement Act of 1880 authorised the construction of the first eleven tramway routes in the district. The Crosland Moor route which was designated number five in the schedule was, in the event, the eighth to be built being preceded by routes to Fartown, Lockwood, Lindley, Edgerton, Paddock Head, Holly Bank Road and Almondbury. The service to Crosland Moor,


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using steam trams, commenced on 23rd May 1890. Although there were a few houses in the area before 1890 it was undoubtedly the advent of the tramway that stimulated the suburban development of Crosland Moor. By the end of the century new streets with long terraces of Victorian houses had made their appearance within an easy walk of the terminus along with the shops, schools, chapels and clubs necessary for a growing population. On 18th February 1901, the tramway was electrified and extended to Dryclough Lane (Dryclough Road today) thus stimulating further development beyond the new terminus. As time went by architectural styles changed, terraces gave way to semi-detached, stone to brick and pebble-dash and it is not too difficult whilst driving along Blackmoorfoot Road to pick out the small houses of the pre-tramway era nestling among what might be called phase one and phase two of the post-tramway development.

THE WARREN HOUSE (21) About a tenth of a mile past Park Road the old building on the right, now occupied by 'Lindsay's All Sorts', stands on the site of an old inn called the Warren (or Warrener) House. It was there that William Horsfall called for a stirrup cup on his fateful homeward journey on 28th April 1812 and there at about 6.00a.m. on the morning of the 30th that he died.

ST. LUKES HOSPITAL (22) On the left hand side of Blackmoorfoot Road, St. Luke's Hospital has its origins in the Crosland Moor Workhouse and the original tall Victorian buildings of this institution are easily recognised. Until fairly recent times, poverty was generally regarded as avoidable and paupers, vagrants and the helpless poor received little understanding and less sympathy. From 1494 able bodied vagrants could be punished by whipping, the loss of an ear or even by hanging and from 1547 they could be branded on the cheek with the letter V (for vagabond). In 1572, parishes were empowered to elect an Overseer of the Poor who was responsible for administering charitable funds. Twenty-five years later, the Overseer was allowed to levy a Poor Ley (rate) which was used to provide minimal outdoor relief.


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The General Workhouse Act of 1723 required parishes to build small workhouses for those unable to benefit from outdoor relief and eventually there were some two thousand of these in England, including five in the Huddersfield district, at Lockwood, Birkby, Kirkheaton, Honley, Golcar and Almondbury. The next significant move came with the Poor Law Amendment Act of 1834 which was designed to remove from the community all those who were unable to support themselves, by refusing them outdoor relief and admitting them to the workhouse. Following the Act, parishes were grouped together in new Poor Law Unions and elected Boards of Guardians were made responsible for the day to day management of poor relief. Large new workhouses were built where conditions were unpleasant enough to deter all but the most desperate. Sadly there were many such and although it was not deliberately intended that the workhouse regime they had to endure should be a punishment for being poor or sick or old, inevitably with its segregation of sexes, separation of families, institutional clothing, meagre food and rules of silence, this is precisely what it turned out to be. The Poor Law Amendment Act was fiercely opposed in the north where it was not implemented until 1837. Even after that date opposition continued, as northerners considered that they knew well enough how to treat their own poor. Locally, for instance, when the parishes of Almondbury, Huddersfield, Kirkburton and Kirkheaton were formed into one large Poor Law Union there was real fear that the poor, the aged and the infirm would be shut up for ever. Poor Law who visited Huddersfield in 1837 were give short shrift and meetings of the local Board of Guardians were faced with vociferous and unruly demonstrations. Such strength of feeling could not be ignored and for many years after 1837 the old system of outdoor and indoor relief continued in Huddersfield and other northern towns. The move towards large centralised Institutions, however, proved unstoppable and on 30th April 1869 the local Board of Guardians met to consider estimates for the erection of a new workhouse on a fifteen acre site at Crosland Moor. Among the tenders accepted were those of A. Graham, mason, £10,382, Fawcett & Sons, joiner, £4,927 and H. Garton, plumber, £1,395. The total estimated cost was £20,208.10s.0d. The corner-stone of the workhouse, which consisted of a vagrant's


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ward, an infirmary and a school, was laid by the Chairman of the Board of Guardians, Mr. J. Wrigley, on 7th July 1869. After the opening ceremony on Oth August 1872, arrangements were immediately made to close the old workhouses at Birkby and Kirkheaton. As time went by, attitudes towards the plight of the poor eased. In 1913, workhouses were renamed Poor Law Institutions and in 1929 the term pauper was officially abolished. From that time, local authorities were encouraged to convert their workhouses into hospitals and infirmaries and in 1930 responsibility for the Crosland Moor Institution was transferred to the Corporation. One of their first moves was to change the name to St. Luke's Hospital although it was to be another four years before its facilities were made generally available. Since then, through many changes of function and status, St. Luke's has cared for those who would previously have been oppressed. Between January 1953 and October 1972 the running of St. Luke's Hospital was in the capable hands of the Matron, Miss Ellen Simpson (later Mrs. A. Ramsden) who will be remembered with affection by any of our readers who met her whether they were patients or members of staff.

BARTON (23) On the opposite side of the road to St. Luke's, the area bounded by

Matlock Street and Frederick Street was once called Barton Tower. One of the earliest instances of the name is found on map of 1772 but whether the 'Tower' was a building or a landscape feature is unclear. Some eighty years later, the 1 854 O.S. map shows that the present day Ivy Street, which was then called Barton Lane, was the access road to a small sandstone quarry called Barton Delf. At that time there was a Higher and a Lower Barton Tower but these names seem to refer to the land on each side of Barton Lane rather than to specific buildings and again there is nothing to indicate the origm of the word Tower. The name Barton Tower persisted for another forty years by which time several streets of high density housing covered the area. Ten years later, Barton Lane had become Ivy Street, the enigmatic 'Tower' had been dropped and the area was simply called Barton.

DRYCLOUGH ROAD (24) Running down the hillside behind St. Luke's Hospital is the shallow


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waterless depression - the dry clough - that gives the area it name. Dryclough Road, which crosses the clough, was chosen as the new tramway terminus when the Crosland Moor route was electrified and extended in 1901 and much of the development along the road post-dates that time. In the mid nineteenth century, the local Volunteers had a small barracks along the road, which at that time was called Dry Clough Lane, and nearby fields, collectively called Volunteer Close, were doubtless used by them for annual camps, parades and military training (see map p.76). Earlier, in 1812, presumably before there was military presence in the area, Dry Clough Lane was the escape route used by William Horsfall's murderers (see No.25). From the far end of the Lane they had direct access to Dungeon Wood (now Beaumont Park) where a quick descent of the hillside would take them well aw ay from the scene of the murder before a search could be mounted. It seems likely that Dry Clough Lane was laid out around the turn of the nineteenth century as its uncompromising straightness is typical of the new enclosure roads of that time. Like two other similar lanes in the area (see No.29) it led directly to an old route across the moor which might well predate Blackmoorfoot Road.


WILLIAM HORSFALL STREET (25) Just above Dryclough Road, William Horsfall Street was built in the early years of this century and so named to commemorate the fact that it was in this area that Horsfall, the owner of Ottiwells Mill at Marsden, was mortally wounded. The attack took place on Tuesday, 28th April 1812. Two weeks previously a large band of Luddites had mounted a raid on Mill at Cleckheaton which had been repulsed by the millowner, William Cartwright, and a handful of soldiers. Infuriated by their lack of success the Luddite leaders decided to change their tactics from machine breaking to murder. They must have reasoned that the death at their hands of one intransigent millowner would effectively dissuade others from installing the hated shearing frames in their own mills.


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They had no great difficulty in selecting a victim. William Horsfall, an outspoken opponent of the Luddite cause, had gone so far as to install a cannon at his mill to defend his machines from attack. More importantly, perhaps, once a week his journey to and from the market at Huddersfield took him past the Luddite headquarters at Longroyd Bridge and so put him within their reach. On that fateful Tuesday afternoon, the millowner called for his usual drink at the Warren House Inn after which he continued up the turnpike towards the Dryclough area. Unknown to him four armed men had concealed themselves in ambush behind the wall of a plantation on the left hand side of the road. The four, George Mellor, William Thorpe, Thomas Smith and Benjamin Walker had a great deal in common: they were enthusiastic Luddites, they were croppers by trade, three of them worked at Wood's cropping shop (see No.13) and one at Fisher's shop close by, they had all taken part in machine breaking attacks and they were all under twenty-five years old. As Mr. Horsfall approached the plantation several shots were fired and he was severely wounded. Seeing their victim fall forward onto his horse's neck the assassins made their escape along Dry Clough Lane. Mr. Horsfall was assisted back to the Warren House where, despite medical attention, he died some thirty-six hours later. His last words are reputed to have been 'These are awful times'. On the day after the attack, George Mellor and William Thorpe promptly silenced all possible informers by forcing them at pistol point to swear on the Bible that they would reveal nothing of what they knew, and so the secret held until October 1812 (see Tour 1 No. 43). N.B. It should be said here that in their book 'On the Trail of the Luddites' Lesley Kipling and Nick Hall question the guilt of the Longroyd Bridge Four.

THE SECOND MILESTONE (26) One tenth of a mile past William Horsfall Street notice, on the left, the second milestone which is almost identical in shape and size to the first at Longroyd Bridge. Jefferys marked the stone at this point 2/13 i.e. two miles from Huddersfield, thirteen miles from Austerlands. Interestingly, like Jefferys, the two remaining original milestones state the distances to both Huddersfield


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and Austerlands, as we shall see, but this second stone, like the first, merely records the mileage to and from Huddersfield. It seems likely, therefore, that this is a replacement of an older stone set up, perhaps, sometime after 1820 when the importance of the old road as a through route via Austerlands to Manchester had declined. The inscription, which once read From Huddersfield 2 Miles, To Huddersfield 2 miles was, like that on the Longroyd Bridge stone, obliterated during the last war. Both the first and second milestones are, consequently, of little use to travellers but their survival is pleasing not only because of their historical importance to the old road but also because they are graphic reminders of those days during the Second World War when the very real threat of invasion led to such desperate measures being taken country-wide in the forlorn hope of impeding the expected advance of the enemy.

CROSLAND HALL (27) A quarter of a mile beyond the milestone look out on the right for Crosland Hill Road where stands Crosland Hall, one of the oldest houses in the district. Several architectural features reveal the age of the building: the label moulds over the deeply recessed transomed windows, the twisted central chimney stack and the moulded head and jambs of the original central doorway (now blocked). Although the precise date of construction is not know, the hall must be over four hundred years old as there is a record of a Thomas Crosland living there in the mid sixteenth century. The hall remained in the Crosland family until the early years of the eighteenth century when it was sold by the Rev. Thomas Crosland to Matthew Wilkinson of Greenhead whose daughter and heiress marmed Sir John Lister Kaye of Denby Grange. In 1783 the Kayes sold the house and estate to the Battye family who, for some fifty years carried on an extensive legal business there. The estate remained in the hands of the Battye family throughout the nineteenth century although by 1850 the house had been partitioned into separate dwellings.

CROSLAND HILL QUARRIES (28) Above Crosland Hill Road, the old turnpike passes through an area that over the centuries has been extensively quarried and it is not too much of an


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exaggeration to say that most of old Huddersfield was built from the Millstone Grit sandstone that was extracted from the Crosland Hill district. The early quarries would be small concerns, opened up to fulfil a particular local need and then abandoned. As time went by and the population grew, stone was increasingly needed for housing and walling and by the early years of the eighteenth century, long before the road was turnpiked, Crosland Hill stone was being sent to such far away places as Lepton and Whitley. At that time, not surprisingly, stone carting was far more expensive than stone getting. With the passing of the local Enclosure Acts towards the end of the eighteenth century, the readily available stone in the Huddersfield district was seen as ideal material for the new field divisions and, during the early years of the nineteenth century, many miles of dry stone walls were built to enclose the hitherto open common land. The resulting demand for stone led to the reopening of many small abandoned quarries as well as the opening up of several new ones.

---- Quarries 1850 C. --»-uarrtiea 1800

+** "*} Crosiand » es, Hatt % \G

a \

Volyniger Barracks *


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The period between 1820 and 1900 was one of remarkable progress and development in the Huddersfield area. The industrial advances of the times brought in their wake a massive expansion m building activity: mills, factories, workshops, warehouses, houses, churches, chapels, schools, hospitals, institutions, cemeteries, hotels, inns, new highways and byways, the viaducts, embankments, tunnels and stations of the main line railway and the branches, the dams, conduits and reservoirs of the new waterworks, all these and more made their appearance during those eventful years when it must have been impossible to make even a short journey without coming upon a new major building project. This was the heyday of the quarrying industry, the time when several large new quarries were opened up at Crosland Hill to win the much needed building stone (see map p.76). The use of Crosland Hill stone was not, of course, restricted to the local area and it continued to be used countrywide until well into the present century. As late as 1965 there were no fewer than eleven quarries at work here. Today, as a result of competition from cheaper bricks and artificial stone there is just one - Johnson's Wellfield Quarry on the corner of Blackmoorfoot Road and Thewlis Lane. Most of the abandoned quarries have been used in recent years for landfill so that little trace of them remains; it is difficult to beheve, for example, that Goodall's caravan park is situated on the site of the once extensive Spinkwell Quarry. In the days when individuality and even eccentricity were prized there were many men affectionately known as 'characters' in the local quarrying industry, men like Alfred Mellor of the Crosland Hill Quarry Company who never spoke when he could baw! and who never bawled when he could bellow. It was said of Alf that when he ordered his crane operator to 'lower* the other crane-operators all over Crosland Hill obeyed the command. Then there was old Joe Shaw, owner of Spinkwell Quarry, whose method of delivering detonators to the bottom of the quarry was casual in the extreme. He would put the detonators into a bucket and light his pipe then, with one foot on the crane hook and his free hand holding onto the rope, Joe, his pipe and the detonators would be swung out over the void and precariously lowered some seventy feet to the quarry floor. One day, the Inspector of Mines and Quarries caught him in the act and remonstrated with him. This perhaps was the last time Joe used his unorthodox method of delivery - but, then again, perhaps it wasn't.


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THEWLIS LAND AND SANDS HOUSE LANE (29) (P.W.) On the left hand side of Blackmoorfoot Road, opposite the caravan park, notice Thewlis Lane and a quarter of a mile further on, Sands House Lane both of which were laid out in the early nineteenth century across the newly enclosed land between the turnpike and an old route to Almondbury (see map p.76). The latter, which has survived as a narrow trackway, crosses Sands House Lane not far from Blackmoorfoot Road. Such links with the distant past are of great interest and, if time allows, readers might like to park near the inn and take a short walk (350 yards, 318 M) to sce this once important route. The name of the old track, if it ever had one, has not survived and so, as it coincides exactly with the boundary between South Crosland and Lockwood, we will call it, for the sake of convenience, the boundary lane. To the west of Sands House Lane the boundary lane is found as a narrow, overgrown but still walkable path running between a wall and a fence. To the east, however, modern quarrying operations have obliterated its ancient course between Sands House Lane and Thewlis Lane. (The path beyond the boulder on the left is not the boundary lane.) In medieval times, extensive parishes were established in the Pennine region to serve the needs of a sparse and widely scattered community. The old manor of Marsden, for example, lies at the western edge of the old parishes of Huddersfield and Almondbury and was originally divided between them, the dividing line being the river Colne. Parishioners from Marsden and from other settlements along the way making the long journey to their respective parish churches would follow a common route as far as Crosland Heath where there was a parting of ways. Those bound for Huddersfield would continue along the line of the present day Blackmoorfoot Road whilst those bound for Almondbury would strike off to the east to cross the moor by way of the boundary lane. Beyond the moor their route followed today's Woodside Road and Hanson Lane to the river crossing at Lockwood and thence up the steep hillside to Almondbury. Standing on the line of the boundary lane today it is difficult to believe that this rough narrow track was once part of a major highway used over the centuries by wedding parties and solemn funeral processions and by countless people on their way to church to celebrate the great Christian festivals of Christmas, Easter and Whitsuntide. Equally difficult to imagine is its role as


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a trade route used by pedlars, hawkers, traders, merchants, clothiers and farmers taking their wares to the small medieval market at Almondbury or, perhaps, to markets further afield for Almondbury was the outlet to the south and to London. Several factors must have led to the decline of the boundary lane including, from the fifteenth century, the provision of Chapels of Ease in the Colne Valley townships, the granting of a Market Charter to Huddersfield in 1671, the town's development as the major centre of trade in the area and the consequential turnpiking of roads leading there rather than to Almondbury. Roads, of course, survive only through continuous and frequent use; neglected, they are soon overgrown. Whether the neglect in this case was gradual or sudden it is now impossible to say but certainly by 1850 the boundary lane was little more than the rough, overgrown track we see today. During the last decade of the nineteenth century the boundary lane and the land nearby was used as a thousand yard (903 M) rifle-range (see map p.76). Today there is no trace of the small magazine or the target although the site of the latter may be seen from Sands House Lane. To locate it stand in front of the boulder on the east (left) side of the lane and look west. About four hundred yards (363 M) away there is what appears to be a large mound which, according to our calculations, 1s on the very spot. It is tempting to think that this actually was the stop-butt against which the targets were placed but closer investigation reveals that the mound is the end of a spoil heap some 250 yards long. The range had marker butts at hundred yard (90 M) intervals and beyond five hundred yards (454 M) the markers were very close to the boundary lane. Looking across the quarry towards Thewlis Lane the approximate position of the nine hundred yard (818 M) marker may be calculated (with the help of the map). To hit the target from such a distance must surely have called for expert marksmanship and more than a little luck. Whilst walking back along Sands House Lane be sure to look over the walis on each side to see the enormous extent of Johnson's Wellfield Quarry. The Company, which was founded in 1895, opened up Wellfield in 1927 and over the years the quarry has produced fine ashlar stone for public and private buildings all over the country. Now owned by Readymix (Huddersfield) Ltd., Wellfield is the only remaining working quarry in the area. Its products include building and monumental stone, gritstone for paving and steps,


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walling stone, broken stone aggregate and sand. The present day Sands House Lane was laid out in the nineteenth century on the line of a short section of a route to South Crosland, called Sandy Lane. The old name continued in use for many years and when a private residence was built near to Sandy Lane it was called, appropriately enough, Sand House. The slight name change, whether deliberate or accidental, occurred when the house became an inn in 1873 and shortly afterwards Sandy Lane became Sands House Lane - but only as far as the boundary. Beyond, the old name remains unchanged.

CROSLAND HEATH GOLF CLUB AND THE ROYALTY (30) The golf club, which was formed in Cowlersley in 1896, moved to its present location, the fields and homestead of Barkerite Farm, in 1914. Until the farm buildings could be converted into a clubhouse members used the nearby Sands House Inn as a clubhouse. After the lease expired in 1920 the land was bought by the club and a limited company was formed About half a mile beyond Sands House Lane, look out on the right for a short section of the golf course boundary wall that is higher than the rest. This coincides exactly with the one time edge of a closely set stand of trees, originally called Batty's Plantation and later, The Royalty (see map p.76 ). Old plantations like this one usually contained just one or two species, often a mixture of a conifer and a broad leaf variety. Unlike trees in natural woodland, plantation trees were not coppiced and they did not therefore renew themselves through natural regrowth. On reaching commercial maturity, plantations were felled and replaced by newly planted stock. Although the tradition of plantations in this country goes aack toc.1600 it is unlikely that Batty's Plantation is any older than the early nineteenth century, as its straight sided rectangular shape is typical of the landscape that resulted from the Parliamentary enclosures of that time. The name change to the Royalty occurred in the late 1890s. Unfortunately, we can find no explanation for this impressive name. Today, the Royalty, no longer managed for timber crops, has been invaded by a number of native trees. Although it no longer reaches the roadside it may still be seen (through a convenient gap in the wall) beyond and between the fairways and greens of the Crosland Heath Golf Club. Doubtless it is the repository of many lost golf balls.


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A few yards beyond The Royalty stop briefly by a gateway on the left for another view of the boundary lane, this time at the point where it parts company with the road to Huddersfield. N.B. This is the narrow lane running down the hill, not the path across the field. A few yards further on, notice on the right a public footpath sign. The path once led to an inn called Hole in the Wall (or Th' oile in t' Wall) which stood a hundred and fifty yards (147 M) back from the road. Intriguingly, this house sat on the line of an old footway (not the present path) which aligned perfectly with the boundary lane and which ran along the present day golf course and the fields beyond towards the bridge at Blackmoorfoot. Like the boundary lane, this footway also followed a boundary, here between South Crosland and Linthwaite. Such a combination of path, alignment, boundary and inn strongly suggests that this was the predecessor of the present route to Blackmoorfoot but if so, it is difficult to decide when it was replaced although, obviously, 1759 springs to mind. If a footway has been used regularly, some indication of its presenee often remains on the ground. Unfortunately, no trace of this one remains today, presumably because when the golf club closed it in 1914 they disturbed the ground to build their new course. Strangely though it is not evident in the fields beyond the golf course where we might have expected to see it as a faint sunken way descending the hillside towards Blackmoorfoot. So, although the possibility of this old road can be suggested, lack of evidence on the ground means it cannot be asserted. The Hole in the Wall was demolished soon after 1914 and all that remains to remind us of its presenee is the right of way across the golf course.

THE THIRD MILESTONE (31) (P) In the eighteenth century, three Turnpike Acts (1744, 1766, 1773) made statutory provision for the erection of mile markers along turnpike roads, and one of these, the milestone marked third and twelfth on map, may be seen a third of a mile past The Royalty, nestling at the bottom of the wall on the left hand side of the road. This milestone differs in one or two obvious ways from the two already encountered: the stone itself is rough- hewn rather than worked, the incising is less proficient and the distance to Austerlands as well as to Huddersfield is stated. Clearly it is much older than the other two and probably, therefore, contemporary with the turnpike. We


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have already mentioned that this third milestone is 1.3 miles from the second and this is, perhaps, further evidence of its age as the customary mile which was longer than the statute mile survived in some places into the eighteenth century. Although in later years adjustments were undoubtedly made it is quite likely that this old stone, so far away from civilization, would easily be overlooked or ignored. It was certainly ignored during the Second World War as the inscription 'To A 12 M* remains plain to see on the side protected from the weather. The other inscription, 'To H 3 M* is less easy to make out. Perhaps this stone escaped the chisel because the authorities believed its message too cryptic for the enemy to understand.

THE VIEW (32) (P) Near to the third milestone the turnpike reaches a height of 875 ft. (265 M) having climbed some 600 ft. (182 M) since leaving Longroyd Bridge and it is well worth a short stop to take in the interesting and extensive views visible from this altitude. Taking Castle Hill as a starting point and moving round in a clockwise direction the more obvious features to pick out include the mast at Emley Moor, Thurstonland Bank with the top of the church spire just visible beyond, the stepped landscape of the Lower Coal Measures, Honley Old Wood (where there are the remains of a tannery), Holy Trinity Church at South Crosland and, nearby, the regular fields of the Parliamentary enclosures, Holme Moss with its television mast, Cop Hill, West Nab and Shooters Nab, the embankment of Deer Hill Reservoir and the Standedge Hills beyond Marsden. The view to the right of the road at this point is less extensive but about thirty yards beyond the milestone there is, on the right, a public footpath leading across two fields and along a short walled lane to the edge of a steep bank and the site of an old quarry. As an old footway - it leads ultimately to Linthwaite - it is of interest in itself but perhaps an even greater attraction, and well worth a short walk, is the magnificent view that may be obtained from the top of the bank over a large part of the Colne Valley.


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THE RESERVOIRS (33) Descending the hill towards Blackmoorfoot notice the nearby Blackmoorfoot Reservoir and, further away, to the right of Shooters Nab, the embankment of the Deer Hill Reservoir. After Huddersfield became a Municiple Borough in 1868, one of the first problems addressed by the new Corporation was that of an adequate water supply for both domestic and industrial purposes. Application was made to Parliament and on 12th July 1869 the Huddersfield Waterworks Act was obtained. The first reservoir to be constructed as a result of the Act was at Deerhill where the first sod was cut in August 1870. The reservoir which had a capacity of a hundred and sixty million gallons was filled to overflowing on 3rd. September 1875. Compensation water to industrialists and riparian owners amounting to four hundred and eighty thousand gallons per working day was delivered from Deerhill. A twelve inch (300 mm) main was laid from this reservoir to a tank at Shepley Marsh to supply the higher parts of Shepley, Shelley, Lepton and Emley. Since 1861 Blackmoorfoot had been recognised as an excellent site for a reservoir and on 1st May 1871 work began on what was to be the largest of Huddersfield's Victorian reservoirs. Some two hundred navvies were recruited to join the two hundred already at work at Deerhill and soon afterwards a Navvies' Mission was set up by the Rev. C.S. Green, Vicar of Helme. The navvies at both reservoirs were paid three shillings (15p) per day and worked a fifty and a half hour week. In early February 1872, an attempt by the Waterworks Committee to increase the navvies' weekly work ing hours to fifty-five and a half resulted in an all out strike. On 15th February the Deerhill men accepted an offer made by the Committee to meet them half way but the Blackmoorfoot men refused and continued to hold out. Eventually, after several heated meetings, the Committee offered a working week of fifty one and half hours. This was accepted and work resumed on 25th March. Whilst working on the reservoirs a few navvies rented houses and became landlords to other navvies but most lived near to the work site in


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specially erected huts. On Lingards Moor, for example, there were seven huts each accommodating between twelve and fifteen persons. There was usually one married couple per hut, the wife presumably there to clean, cook and wash. They came from all over England but surprisingly perhaps, in view of our received knowledge of navvies, none came from Ireland. Their reputation as hard drinkers and hard spenders is belied somewhat by the fact that when a Navvies Mission Post Office Savings Bank opened on 15th June 1851 at Blackmoorfoot, £21.4s.0d (£21.20p) was deposited in the first two hours. The foundation stone at Blackmoorfoot was laid on the 25th October 1872 by Ald. Wright Mellor, Chairman of the Waterworks Committee. The ninety acre reservoir which is situated at the foot of Meltham Cop at an elevation of 832 ft. (25 1 M) was filled to overflowing by 20th December 1876. The original capacity of six hundred and seventy five million gallons was eventually increased to seven hundred and five million gallons by twice raising the overflow shafts by twelve inches (300 mm) in all. Water is conveyed to the reservoir from the hills above Meltham and Marsden by means of two catchwater conduits (see No.48). Shortly after 1878 the supply of water from Blackmoorfoot to the town and neighbourhood was three million gallons per day plus more than eight hundred and forty thousand gallons of compensation water. The water main to Huddersfield passed through Linthwaite, Milnesbridge, Longwood, Paddock and Marsh to the now defunct tank at Snodley near Greenhead Park. From there the water was distributed through the town. The main from the south entrance tunnel supplied Netherton, Berry Brow, Honley, Almondbury and Kirkheaton. It should be said that the advent of piped water was not greeted with universal acclaim. Many people distrusted 't' tahn watter' and for many years continued to use their local troughs and wells.

BLACKMOORFOOT (34) Travellers from Huddersfield and Almondbury would, no doubt, be delighted to reach Blackmoorfoot with its useful amenities, a trough, a well, a pump and a smithy. In addition, the aptly named Travellers Inn offered rest and refreshment before the next ardous stage of the journey over Black Moor. This old inn which, until the mid-nineteenth century was the only sizeable institution of its kind for miles, stood just beyond the '40° traffic sign on a site


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now occupied by a modern house. The present inn at Blackmoorfoot, the Bull's Head, was established in the second half of the nineteenth century, although the building itself may be older. The small settlement at Blackmoorfoot grew up around a bridge over a small stream called Well Clough which flowed off the hillside to the south. After the reservoir was built the lower course of the stream was culverted and used as run-off channel but the old bridge abutment remains and may be seen at the roadside on the left. Over on the right the water tumbles out of the culvert into a deep narrow valley (or clough) and flows northwards towards Upper and Lower Clough at Linthwaite. At or near Blackmoorfoot, Gillroyd Lane, Upper Clough Road and High Royd Edge are all side roads joining the old highway from various parts of Linthwaite to the north. There are also side roads coming in from Helme (originally Elm) and Meltham to the south although to a certain extent their routes have been affected by the reservoir. In his 'History of the Countryside', Oliver Rackham says: 'A genuine ancient long distance road is nearly always a parish boundary at least in parts." In our area, where the old parishes consisted of several townships and where streams and rivers generally served as parish boundaries, old highways, we believe, were just as likely to be used as township boundaries. Interestingly, for the next mile over Black Moor the boundary between Meltham and Linthwaite, except for one short section (see No.39), follows the exact course of the road. Here again there is evidence of the age of the road for according to Rackham although in early Norman times minor boundary changes were possible in order to keep lands in one ownership, by 1180 the system had frozen and boundaries could no longer be altered when land changed hands.


HOLT HEAD ROAD (35) About a third of a mile beyond the bridge, having left Blackmoorfoot behind, the name of our route changes to Holt Head Road. Shortly after the name change notice two small settlements on the left. Built at the edge of a large parcel of enclosed common land these probably date from the early nineteenth century. They were originally called New London


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and Black Moor but by the end of last century New London had become Little London and Black Moor, presumably influenced by its near neighbour, had become Windsor. Behind Windsor there was briefly at the turn of the century a running track some three hundred yards (273 M) long. At the end of the dry stone wall just before Windsor a careful look will reveal an old stone incised with the letters I.M.B. This is a boundary stone, a not unexpected find along this section of road.

BETHANY (36) About two hundred yards (182 M) beyond Windsor, on the right hand side of the road, two white gateposts stand at the entrance to an old farmhouse called Bethany. Here again the name of one farm must have influenced the naming of its neighbour for nearby, to the north west, is a farmhouse called Jerusalem. It was quite a common practice in the eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries to give to outlying settlements names that suggest distance and all over the country there are isolated houses and farms with names such as Alaska, Botany Bay, Quebec and Egypt. The people who named Jerusalem and Bethany in the eighteenth century were simply following this fashion and, perhaps, proclaiming their scriptural knowledge for the Biblical village of Bethany, home of Lazarus, lies just to the south east of Jerusalem. Built in the eighteenth century, Bethany is typical of many moorland smallholdings where both weaving and farming were practised - there is evidence of the former in what was, before the mullions were removed, a long row of windows at first floor level and of the latter in the barn and mistal and the small area of cleared and cultivated land in front of the house (compare this with the rough uncultivated heathland opposite Windsor). We have already mentioned the enclosure of the wastes and commons in the early nineteenth century but, of course, some land, even out here in the wilderness, had already been enclosed by that time. By the early seventeenth century settlement was reaching out from townships towards the moors where land was plentiful. A man receiving permission to intake an acre or so of unused land would first clear and then cultivate it. As he added further intakes to his holding he would build a homestead at the centre for himself and his family. The land would support a few animals and an annual crop of cats,


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water was plentiful and, near at hand, there was abundant peat for fuel. The rewards of farming at this altitude barely reached subsistence level and from early times the hillside farmer, working in his own cottage on his own loom using his own materials, would produce a 'piece' of cloth every week. In this endeavour he was helped by his family who, from the youngest to the oldest, were responsible for such processes as cleaning, carding, spinning and finishing. Thus, in the moorland region there developed a dual economy although in time, weaving, originally the subsidiary occupation, became more profitable and, increas ingly, families found their livelihood in the loom rather than the land. Of course, the growth of the factory system during the nmeteenth century inevitably brought about the decline of the independent cottage based textile industry. In 1850, Bethany was still occupied by a clothier but twenty years later textile activities had ceased and the occupant was a smallholder who farmed the twenty acres around the house and sublet part of the premises to four waterworks employees.

THE LOST FOURTH MILESTONE (37) Allowing for the uncertainty of the eighteenth century mile we would expect to find the fourth milestone somewhere along the stretch of road near Bethany. Unfortunately, we can find no trace of it although it may well have survived, inscription concealed, as part of a dry stone wall.

A BOUNDARY STONE (38) A hundred and fifty yards (136 M) beyond the entrance to Bethany, just before the crest of the hill, look out for an old stone built into the wall on the left hand side of the road. Another boundary stone, this one has the inscription M+R and there is a crude representation of a hand with spread fingers above the inscription. Interestingly, this stone is exactly 1.3 miles from the third milestone. Elsewhere on this turnpike an old boundary stone was re-used as a milestone (see and it is just possible that the same thing happened here but as the reverse of the stone is concealed we will probably never know. As well as township boundaries, several other types of boundaries meet here on the high ground including Parliamentary, borough, county, civil parish, municipal ward and urban district divisions, most of which are of fairly


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recent origin. For example, in the nineteenth century many new parishes with new bounds were carved out of the enormous ancient parishes of Almondbury, Huddersfield and Kirkburton. Later, in the 1970s, reorganisation of local government resulted in the rationalization of various boundaries for administrative purposes. Nevertheless, we believe that boundaries between townships, although they too could be subject to dispute, claim and counter- claim, are most likely to be unchanged from ancient times and the survival of a number of obviously old boundary stones reinforces that belief.

A REALIGNMENT (39) About two hundred yards (182 M) beyond the boundary stone notice a straight vertical joint in the drystone wall on the left marking a distinct change in construction style. It is at exactly this point that a short stretch of the road diverges from the Meltham Linthwaite boundary which runs at a higher level just behind Burr and Slacks farms (see map below).

Map of lho Burt arsa c. 1900

The early residents of local townships coming out here to the featureless uplands to delineate their territorial boundaries would find it difficult to use


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any but artificial means: they would, perhaps, dig ditches, build cairns or earth mounds, set up boundary stones, even plant trees. However, all these had drawbacks in that they could be destroyed, removed or moved. Consequently where occasional linear features such as cloughs, streams and trodden ways existed they were undoubtedly brought into the boundary system because of their permanence. It is likely then that the boundary here is following the original course taken by the old way and that the present road is a realignment made at the time of turnpiking. Looking at the terrain it is not too difficult to see why the road makers thought it necessary to construct a new section here although, for the times, this was an unusual practice. Although nearly two hundred and forty years have elapsed since the line of the road was altered it is still just possible to make out part of the old route running in front of the broken down wall on the hillside. In the mid-nineteenth century a ten acre mixed plantation covered most of the hillside beyond the boundary. By 1900 most of this had been felled and the land reclaimed although the small area call Burr Wood remained (see map). Over the next thirty years this too was cut but here the underlying land was not reclaimed and it provides an interesting contrast with the cultivated fields around. After a third of a mile the boundary and the road are reunited at the entrance to Green Gate Farm. From here they run together down to Bradley Brook where they once again part company, this time for good. Just past the entrance to Green Gate Farm notice a small waterfall near the top of the hillside ahead. This is Bradley Book near the beginning of its steep man-made descent to Holt Head (see No.41). N.B. dry weather reduces the run off to a trickle and at such times the waterfall is difficult to pick out.

HOLT LAITH (40) Dropping down towards the bridge at Holt Head, stop about fifty yards (45 M) past the 'road narrows' sign to look across the valley on the right to a group of newly renovated buildings. This is Holt Laith where the oldest building on the site sits squarely at the centre, its south facing gable, deeply recessed windows, large quoins and footstones dating it to the early seventeenth century. To the left there is a range of eighteenth century buildings including


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a cottage with a weaving chamber and the laithe that gave the property its name and to the right is a large nineteenth century family house. If we include the modern rebuilding and alterations we have, on one site, an excellent example of how fashions in vernacular architecture have changed over four hundred years. Laithe houses are common in West Y orkshire and usually date from the eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries. They are farm houses where the laithe or barn was built as an extension to the living quarters and often, as here, there is a high arched entrance which allowed hay carts to enter and unload within the barn. In recent years many laithe houses have been converted into 'desirable residences' although in some cases the treatment of the arched doorways has been less than sympathetic. The Sykes family was early associated with the settlement at Holt and two of them, Benjamin and William, both woollen manufacturers, were living at Holt Laith in 1850. Twenty years later, a different Bejamin Sykes, a farmer, shared the property with a woollen warper, a widow, a waterworks manager and their families. Approaching the bridge at Holt Head, notice the narrow wooded valley to the right. This was probably the source of the place-name, for 'holt' is an old word for a small wood. During the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries Bradley Brook, at that time called Bridley Brook, featured in a long running boundary dispute between Meltham and Lingards. At the heart of the matter was the ownership of the common land and the turbary rights on Deer Hill. Allegations were made that men from Meltham had removed boundary markers, re-sited boundary stones and even altered a watercourse in a fraudulent attempted to justify their claim to the disputed land. In defence, John Kay, owner of the Lingards estate, set out a detailed statement of Lingards' claim citing the testimony of the oldest residents and quoting from documents hundreds of years old. The dispute continued for several decades until in 1741, after arbitration, it was decided that the moor should be divided equally between Melitham and Lingards. There is, of course, much more to the story than these bare facts and anyone interested will find a full account of this fascinating dispute in 'Slaithwaite Places and Place Names' by Dr. George Redmonds.


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As Bradley Brook was part of the boundary it may well have been the very watercourse altered during the dispute. Later it became a run-off channel from Deer Hill reservoir along which water is supphed to the Blackmoorfoot conduit. The supply is controlled by weirs and sluices and any excess is sent away to flow along the original bed of the stream.

HOLT HEAD (41) At Holt Head, Bradley Brook has cut a deep narrow valley which is crossed by a stone bridge of one arch which, viewed from below, is quite surprisingly massive. Its narrow stone courses suggest age but modern strengthening work makes it difficult to decide whether or not it is contemporary with the turnpike. Just beyond the bridge some of the buildings on the left were once part of Holt Head dyeworks, established here in 1799. The trade of dying, always a skilful one with its own mysteries, has becn practised in and around Huddersfield since medieval times. For example, there is a record in 1340 of a dyechouse at Almondbury and the surname Lister (=dyer) is found in some of the earliest local subsidy rolls. The dyeworks at Holt Head, built on a prime site at the side of the road to Manchester prospered for fifty years or more. In 1850, the dyer, a John Kenworthy, would be working very much as his predecessors had done using natural or vegetable dyes. However, great changes were in the offing for the production of synthetic dyes from coal tar commenced in 1856 with Perkin's discovery of Mauve. Later that same year Magenta was produced in France by Natanson. This was first manufactured in England, under patent, by Messrs. Simpson, Maude and Nicholson in 1860. The Huddersfield firm of Read Holliday & Co who were very much leaders in the burgeoning chemical industry challenged the patent as being 'bad and void in law'. During the long drawn out litigation Magenta was often produced secretly by other manufacturers. For example, Daniel Dawson, a Huddersfield dyer, made the dye in his domestic oven and sold it at the Huddersfield Cloth Hall, it was said, for approximately its weight in gold. The case was finally settled in Holhday's favour and the whole dyestuffs industry began to produce Magenta. During the next two decades several other synthetic dyes were produced and new methods of applying them were introduced such as the


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hydrosulphite vat which soon became generally known as the 'Holliday vat'. Such new processes had to overcome a good deal of inertia and prejudice among dyers who, preferring their age old ways, resented and resisted change. Whether this unwillingness to learn new tricks had any effect at Holt Head dyeworks is uncertain but it seems to have ceased trading c. 1870 and certainly in his later years John Kenworthy became a grocer.


WOOD LANE (42) Just beyond Holt Head we must deviate briefly from the route of the turnpike to follow more modern roads round to the White House. Before

making the left turn into Varley Road notice the path curving up the steep hillside ahead.

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Now called Wood Lane this rough trackway is a little changed section of the turnpike and despite being overgrown it is as good an example as we


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have of the road's original condition. Although the Turnpike Acts generally required the new roads to be thirty to forty feet (9 to 12 M) wide, here, because of the terrain and beeause the road surface is on the natural rock, the turnpike builders were obviously content to keep to the road's original width. N.B. This old section may, of course, be walked.

THE LOST FIFTH MILESTONE (43) Jefferys shows the milestone marked 5/10 just after the stream at Holt Head and modern measurements suggest that it should be somewhere along the abandoned section. Unfortunately, despite careful searching, we have

found no trace of it. Should any of our readers have more success, we would be delighted to hear from them.

VARLEY ROAD (44) Running directly north from Holt Head, Varley Road was constructed in the nineteenth century and named for the Varley family who had mills in the vicinity. It provided a direct and easy route to Lingards and Slaithwaite from Holt Head and Meltham. Although it was completed by 1850 it was still being called the 'New Line' in the 1881 census.

JIM HILL (45) After negotiating the right turn into Chain Road, notice Jim Hill on the right where there are indications that at least one of the houses dates back to the early seventeenth century. Jim Hill is typical of the settlement pattern that evolved during the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries in our upland areas. A single homestead would eventually be joined by others until there were three or four houses or more clustered together to share a favourable living site and a common water supply. . The original occupants of such settlements were probably mainly concerned with farming and weaving but by the late nineteenth century the majority of bread-winners were occupied as general labourers or quarrymen.

THE WHITE HOUSE INN (46) Shortly after Jim Hill stop near the White House and look back across the valley to see the direct route the road takes as it crosses the moor towards


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the bridge at Holt Head. Notice also, near to the car-park, the original section of turnpike emerging from the steep hillside. The path running northwards in front of the inn was, until Varley Road was constructed, the way to Slaithw aite from Holt Head. The White House Inn, now a country restaurant, probably dates from the end of the eighteenth century. An inn rather than a beer house it was originally called the Dyers Arms, presumably because there were two or three dychouses nearby. In the days when local churches and chapels held an annual Whit-Monday Walk, the inn was the destination of the walkers from Holt Head Sunday School and the place where they held their 'Sing'. In preparation for this event the inn was white-washed every year, a custom that no doubt accounts for its present name. In addition to its two official names the White House has had at least two unofficial ones. One or two long time Holt Head residents remember their grandparents and possibly their parents, for old nick-names linger, refer to the inn as Alcander's. This was from the time in the 1860s and 70s when Alcander Holroyd was the landlord. Alcander was also a wheelwright and in 1880, when he was sixty, although still living at the inn, it seems that he was concentrating on his trade for at that time his Aunt Anne Holroyd, ten years his senior, is recorded as 'landlady'. During her term, the inn was known as Holroyd's.

CHAIN ROAD (47) Beyond the White House the old road rises to 950 feet (287 M) near Causeway Foot and then begins its long descent towards Marsden passing a number of small settlements on the way, including Badger Gate, Badger Hey and Chain. Although a section of road from Causeway Foot to Gate Head is today officially designated Meltham Road the whole stretch from the White House to Gate Head is still generally known as the Chain or Chain Road, a name of some interest. When a new section of turnpike was opened it was obviously in the trustees' best interests to make sure that it, and more particularly its toll gates, were used by travellers. They, on the other hand would continue to use the old sections and thus avoid paying tolls. Such avoidance would be comparatively easy in the open countryside but at the edge of towns, where watch could be kept, the trustees often paid local householders to erect blocking chains on


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their property. Further along the road, on the outskirts of Marsden, there is a small settlement now called Chain and it is likely that soon after the new road to Manchester opened, such an obstacle was set up there and that thereafter, the name Chain Road began to be used. Prior to this the name of this section of the road was undoubtedly Badger Gate Le. the road used by 'badgers'. Badgers were licenced (badge holders?) corn hawkers, several of whom lived in Marsden and made regular use of the turnpike as a trade route. It seems likely that the verb 'to badger' meaning to repeatedly entreat originates with these itinerant salesmen.

THE BLACKMOORFOOT CONDUIT (48) (P.W.) About a fifth of a mile past the White House notice the catch-water conduit which comes very close to the left hand side of the road. Starting at Scout Holes above Marsden at an altitude of 1000 feet (303 M) the conduit is constructed along the contours of the hills to Blackmoorfoot Reservoir at 830 feet (251 M), a fall of 170 feet (51 M) im 3.5 miles. Notice the quality of the stonework in the small bridge over the conduit which is typical of all nineteenth century waterworks construction. Even on the high moors where the bridges are, and always were, used mainly by sheep they are just as solidly built. If it is possible to park safely it is worth taking a short walk onto the bridge to look at the construction of the drain itself. When viewed from the bridge a curious optical illusion makes the water appear to be running uphill. Somewhere near to the conduit notice the view to the right over a pleasantly rural part of the Colne Valley. With a little neck craning river, canal and railway can be glimpsed (more easily in winter than in summer) but the road of 1820 is hidden beneath the hillside. Opposite the conduit, Moor Lane and, a little further on, Lingards Lane are two of a number of paths and lanes coming up from Slaithwaite and Marsden to join the old road to Huddersfield and Almondbury. On the far hillside it is possible to make out a number of steep and circuitous routes. Most of these are local in that they lead to small hillside settlements but one or two push on to Moorside Edge and OQutlane and doubtless they provided people living north of the river with alternative routes to Huddersfield.


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LINGARDS CROSS (49) Shortly after the conduit bridge, the first house on the right, near the top of Lingards Lane, is called Lingards Cross. It must have taken its name from a waymark of some kind probably marking the junction of Lingards Lane, or possibly Moor Lane, with the Chain Road. Obviously, on the featureless moor such navigational aids would be of assistance to travellers at all times but especially during the winter snows.

CAUSEWAY FOOT (50) Near to Lingards Cross and set back from the road is another house with an interesting name, Causeway Foot. The name would seem to indicate the one time presence of a paved way, a causey laid, perhaps, to provide a year-round negotiable surface for packhorses. However, it is difficult to decide where the causey, if there ever was one, was located. The pre-turnpike road springs to mind as a likely candidate but here it is at its highest point before Marsden and it is unlikely that this section of the road was ever thought of as a 'foot'. For similar reasons we must dismiss Lingards Lane and having done so we are left with the steep and narrow grassy path which climbs up the hillside on the left of the road, passing a settlement called Causey Foot Green on the way. Unfortunately nowhere along its length is there anything to suggest that there was a causeway here either and so with such lack of firm evidence we must leave the problem unresolved.

THE SIXTH MILESTONE (51) The milestone marked 6/9 on Jefferys' map has survived. Although without close inspection it might be mistaken for an old gatepost and in summer it is hidden in the long grass, it is worth seeking out as it is the most interesting of all the milestones between Huddersfield and Marsden in that it had a dual role. It stands two fifths of a mile past the conduit bridge on the left-hand side of the road almost opposite the entrance to Badger Gate Farm. Notice that as well as the directions to A 9 M, to H 6 M (to Austerlands nine miles to Huddersfield six miles), cut into the stone there are the letter and one or two other abstract incisions. Such inscriptions, their meaning now forgotten, are of a type often found on boundary stones and as this stone certainly stands


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on the line of the old Lingards/Meltham boundary, which crosses the road, it seems likely that this was its original function. According to the 1854 O.S. map it was at that time the last of a series of eight stones which defined the line of the boundary straight down the hillside to the road. From the other side of the road the boundary follows the stream in Badger Gate Clough down to the ver Colne. It is impossible now to explain the 're-cycling' of the stone with any certainty but the most obvious solution is that the road makers, having discovered the stone standing conveniently at the six mile mark, made use of it as a milestone in order to save themselves a little time, effort and money.


BADGER GATE AND BADGER HEY (52) Just past the milestone notice on the right a small settlement below and at a little distance from the road. This is Badger Gate where one of the cottages is dated 1726. A little further on is the larger settlement of Badger Hey where most of the houses pre-date the turnpike although one, Badger Hey Cottage, is its exact contemporary. It is likely that the houses in both settlements were built alongside the original line of the old highway and that the section of present-day road between the milestone and Chain is a realignment at a higher level made to avoid the marshy ground near to the cottages. Because of the date of Badger Hey Cottage is it unlikely that this improvement was carried out at the time of turnpiking but it might well date from c.1780 when the turnpike trustees, having obtained a further Act to increase and extend their authority, were taking steps to improve the line of their road. Just after the last cottage at Badger Hey look out on the left for a path marked by a public footpath sign. The path is one of several on this side of the road leading to old quarries and to the Blackmoorfoot and Deer Hill conduits. Near to the foot of the sign there is a tall blackened stone with a couple of parallel grooves worn into the side facing the road. Similar grooves found on stones on canal banks have always been caused by ropes and it is possible therefore that there was once some sort of rope pulley here used either to bring down stone from the quarries or to take up building materials to the conduits.


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CHAIN (53) Just after the footpath there is a row of cottages on the right-hand side of the road, once collectively called Chain and, opposite, the site of a single house also called Chain, now demolished. Because of the name it seems likely that it was somewhere here that a blocking chain was stretched across the road to prevent travellers using this route after the new Manchester Road was opened through Marsden in 1839 (see No.55). It is of course impossible to decide now exactly where the chain was anchored aithough Chain Cottage itself and the demolished house must both be likely candidates. Notice the floor level of the derelict cottages at Chain, some two feet below the level of the modern road, evidence, surely, that the present road has been raised, at some time, above the original line. Note also that the latter can be seen in front of the cottages where it began its descent towards Badger Hey. In the late nineteenth century eight families, some forty people in all, lived at Chain. The breadwinners were, with one exception, quarrymen or general labourers occupied in the ganister and sandstone quarries then being worked on the opposite hillside. The exception was John Firth who farmed seven acres and kept a beerhouse in the next but one cottage to the end (nearest

Marsden). Just beyond Chain where the road begins its descent towards Marsden

notice an area of spoil heaps to the left. These are the remains of one of the largest local sandstone quarries, Hey Heads. A little further down the hill stop near the 30 m.p.h. sign to pick out the line of the turnpike where it leaves Marsden. It can be seen running diagonally across the far hillside above a long row of terrace houses. The challenge this steep section presented to travellers, especially in wet or icy weather, is not difficult to imagme and it is not surprising that this was the first lengthy section to be replaced. Continuing down the road look out on the right for Gate Head. Although a bar house stood in this area between 1759 and 1820 the name, of course, has nothing to do with toll gates. 'Gate', in fact, derives from the Old Norse 'gata' meaning a way - which is appropriate enough here. Until the turnpike system was introduced into the country in the seventeenth century the word road was little used. Locally, people travelled along gates and lanes and the occurrence of these words in a name can, with caution, be taken to indicate age.


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CARRS ROAD (54) In 1778, the turnpike trustees obtained a new Act for 'altering and enlarging' their powers and sometime thereafter they engaged Blind Jack Metcalf, who had worked on the original turnpike some twenty years previously, to construct a completely new section of road that would bypass Marsden and thus avoid the steep climb out of the town from Throstle Nest to Mount Bar (see No.64).

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About half a mile after Chain, on the left, Carrs Road was the beginning of this new route which crossed Wessenden Brook by a new bridge, also built by Metcalf, at Ottiwells (see map above). From the brook it turned south to follow an easier gradient around Pule Hill, below the original line, and the two routes were united at Mount Bar. This project was the first of a series of major route changes made to accommodate an ever increasing volume of wheeled traffic and it marks a new


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confidence on the part of the trustees who, for the first twenty years of their trust, had clung to the old route despite its undisputed and oft-criticised difficulties. Later improvements included, of course, the new Manchester Road which was opened between Huddersfield and Marsden c.1820 and which origmally followed the present day Stubbin Road (on the right) and crossed the older turnpike to connect with the Carrs Road route (see map p.99). It is likely that soon after 1820 the Gate Head Bar would be moved to this junction where it could catch traffic using both routes.


MANCHESTER ROAD (55) Shortly after the Stubbin Road - Carrs Road junction the old turnpike is crossed by the second stage of the 'new' road to Manchester (the present A.62). As already mentioned, the first section from Huddersfield reached Carrs Road by way of the newly built Stubbin Road. Nineteen years later, engineering and surveying skills had advanced sufficiently to allow the traditional routes across Pule Hill to be discarded and the new section, ignoring Stubbin Road, adopted a new route round the northern side of Pule Hill (see map p.99). From there it crossed the summit plateau by means of an embankment and a cutting. When this section was opened in 1839 it provided a significantly faster route over the hills and the old turnpike, which followed a centuries old route, was finally eclipsed. After 1839, the Gate Head Bar was moved again, this time to the junction of the present Meltham Road and Manchester Road at Green Bower. Tolls continued to be levied on the new road until 1st. November 1882. The new routes that bypassed the centre of Marsden did not in any way bring about a decline in the town's growing prosperity. Coaches and carriers continued to call there and, more importantly perhaps, in 1794, several years before work started on the 'new' Manchester Road the Huddersfield Narrow Canal was being pushed through to Marsden and even before the great tunnel through the Pennines was completed the canal was opening up the Colne Valley to industrial development. Then, less than a decade after the final section of the new road was completed in 1839, the railway came to Marsden and brought with it all the


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benefits of fast travel and easy movement of goods. At last people could travel faster than a horse and it is small wonder that roads did not come into their own again until the motor-age. Of course, the story of Marsden began long before the days of industrial evolution and, although the subject has been much discussed, it might be appropriate here, as we approach the small town, to give just a few glimpses of the area through the ages. The name Marsden has its origin in the Old English words *mearsce' - boundary and 'denu' - valley and, with the natural boundary of the Pennines looming over the town, the name is undeniably descriptive of its position. In 1067 Marsden was part of the honour of Pontefract granted by William the Conqueror to Ibert de Laci, one of his supporters at the Battle of Hastings. Nearly three hundred years later an Inquisition made during the reign of Edward III describes Marsden as a forest (hunting ground), two and half miles long by two miles wide, reserved for the lord of Pontefract. Within the forest there was one house and a few agricultural buildings. In the early years of the fifteenth century a chapel-of-ease was built at Marsden with accommodation for a congregation of just over three hundred and we can assume that this number reflects the sparse population of those times. The Hearth Tax rolls of 1666 reveal that at that time there were eighty- one households in Marsden from which we can assume a population of between three hundred and seven hundred. As a comparison, at the same time Huddersfield had a hundred and forty households and Holmfirth had no fewer than four hundred and thirty seven! The houses in the mid-seventeenth century would be scattered in small hamlets on the sides of the hills; there would be very little settlement down by the river although a corn mill may have been at work there. Of the houses, sixty one had one hearth, thirteen had two hearths, four had three hearths and one had four hearths. One or two of the houses with more than one hearth would doubtless be beer houses or inns. Only two households were 'omitted by reasons of poverty', an unusually low percentage (1.62%) when compared with Huddersfield, 15% and Holmfirth, 25.4%. The Hearth Tax also reveals that more than half the population of Marsden at that time shared just five surnames: Haigh (14 families), Marsden


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(13), Shaw (13), Firth (7) and Mellor (7), all names still numerous in the Colne Valley today. John Wesley visited Marsden twice. He came first in 1746 when he spent the night either at the old house called Gate Head (now known as the Manor House) or at the Old Hall in Church Lane. Seven years later he came to preach at a cottage in Badger Gate. Perhaps it was the people of Marsden he had in mind when he wrote in his diary: 'I rode over the mountains to Huddersfield and a wilder people I never saw in all England'. Entering Marsden, there is evidence in the buildings all around that much of the town's prosperity was based on textiles. Originally a cottage based industry the only processes the householders found difficult to carry out were scouring and fulling and in 1710 a new fulling mill was built at Hey Green, about a mile west of Marsden town centre, after forty-two clothiers had signed a contract promising to use the mill. Probably in earlier years fulling hammers were at work at the corn mill which stood near Snail Horn Bridge. Of course, the development of the turnpike routes followed by the canal and the railway, to all of which local clothiers and merchants had virtually instant access, ensured Marsden's place in the textile market.

BROUGHAM ROAD (56) Our route into Marsden follows, as far as is possible, the line of the first turnpike although unfortunately part of it is now lost. Brougham Road was named in honour of Henry (later Lord) Brougham who, in the early nineteenth century, championed the cause of education for the 'lower orders' and who was a leading figure in the Mechanics' Institute Movement. Notice on both sides of the road long terraces of houses built in the late nineteenth century to house workers at the nearby mills. There are several such terraces in Marsden. On the left side, somewhere in the region of the small school, the brothers Enoch and James Taylor set up a smithy in the early 1800s. Here they produced the cropping machines so detested by the Luddites and their sympathisers. Later, the brothers moved to a new site at Ready Carr, on Carrs Road, where they established Marsden Foundry a prosperous business which remained in the hands of the Taylor family throughout the nineteenth century.


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BROUGHAM ROAD SCHOOL (57) Following W.E. Forster's Education Act of 1870 local Boards of Education were set up to provide elementary schools where free education could be offered to children whose parents were unable to pay. Further legislation in 1876 established the principle that all children should receive free elementary education and as a direct result the school in Brougham Road was opened in 1877. Four years later, it became compulsory for all children between the ages of five and ten to attend school. The advent of compulsory education was not, as we might expect, universally popular. In many local areas there was a fierce determination on the part of a few parents to resist sending their children, especially their daughters, to school. There was, they believed, much more important work to do in and around the home.

THE MECHANICS® INSTITUTE (58) Many years before compulsory education was introduced in England local Meclianics' Institutions were providing elementary education for young working men and youths. The Marsden Mechanics' Institution was founded in November 1841 when classes were held in a cottage in Carrs Road. Four years later the Society moved to larger premises at Ing Head, near Marsden Foundry. At that time as well as the three R's pupils could attend classes in grammar, drawing, geography, chemistry and botany. The teachers, who included several local businessmen, were unpaid volunteers. Inevitably, the numbers of students wishing to attend the classes grew rapidly and a public meeting was held in the late 1850s to consider the way forward. A committee was formed and with the enthusiasm and efficiency so typical of the times raised, through public subscription, the necessary funds to construct their own purpose built premises. A suitable site was found near the centre of the town, work commenced and the new Mechanics' Institute, built at a cost of £2,550, opened in 1862. The opening day with its processions, brass bands, flags and banners, teas and speeches was one of those great self-congratulatory celebrations at which the Victorians excelled. The building with its columns and capitals and its handsome wooden clock tower still stands on the corner of Peel Street and the aptly named


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Brougham Road. After the introduction of education for all the main function of the building changed and, as Marsden Public Hall, it became a venue for important local social, political and business events.

MARKET PLACE (59) At the end of Brougham Road notice the street named Market Place. During the Luddite years, when it was said that Huddersfield resembled a garrison town, many of the district's inns were commandeered to provide billets for thirty soldiers each. The Red Lion which stood in the Market Place here was one such inn and the troops were mustered and paraded in front of the inn every evening before being marched off to guard the premises thought to be at most risk from attack. These included Woodbottom and Ottiwells Mills and probably the Taylor Brothers' smithy in Brougham Road. The 1759 route entered the Market Place and then crossed an old stone bridge over the Wessenden Brook. From Brougham Road it is just possible to make out, at the end of Market Place, something of that bridge's successor, a not very attractive iron structure, made at Taylor's Foundry in 1876. From the bridge the turnpike continued along Town Gate to the Marsden staging post at the Old Ram Inn. Unfortunately, this part of the route is now blocked by a modern housing estate and to rejoin the turnpike near the site of the Old Ram we must follow Peel Street, cross the poetically named Snail Horn Bridge where the Wessenden Brook and the River Colne meet, turn left into Station Road, left again into Church Lane and continue to its junction with Town Gate.

MARSDEN CHAPEL (60) (P) Before Town Gate stop somewhere on the left hand side of Church Lane to consider the site of the old chapel and the church that replaced it. The few gravestones on the left hand side of the road lie in the graveyard of Marsden's old chapel of ease. We have already mentioned the long journey early Marsden inhabitants had to make to their parish churches in Almondbury and Huddersfield and the difficulties they must have encountered along the highways of those times. Eventually in the early years of the fifteenth century a small chapel of ease was built at Marsden for the greater convenience of public worship and local tenants found and paid a minister to hold daily


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services there. Attendance at the parish churches was still required however for the great Christian festivals and ceremonies.

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Before 1480 the chapel had fallen into disrepair and the people, finding it difficult to contribute towards their chapel as well as pay their minister, appealed to King Edward IV for help. In a warrant dated 18th May 1481 the King granted the sum of four marks annually for the use of the Minister (one mark = 13s.4d. or 67p). This endowment was renewed during the reign of Queen Elizabeth I when the incumbent was also to have the usual tythes and 'competent and sufficient firebote, ploughbote, gatebote and cartbote' (firebote was the right to remove underwood from the common for fuel and the others the right to remove timber or wood for various agricultural and domestic repairs).


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The first minister of whom there is any record at Marsden is Rauf Haygh in 1545 who, with that surname, was probably a local man. In the early years of the eighteenth century the Rev. Isaac Walton of Marsden had a great reputation as a preacher. His sermons were so long that they had to be delivered in instalments and he was, apparently, in great demand at funerals throughout the district. By 1754, the chapel, by that time more than three hundred years old, was in a perilous state and it was decided to demolish it and build a new one on the same site. Work started at much the same time as the nearby road was being turnpiked and the new chapel opened in 1759. Built in a plain classical style the chapel, which cost £1145, was described as a roofed-in space with a central pulpit, three galleries and square box pews. So that the dead could have the privilege of being buried within the chureh there was no flooring and it was not long before bodies were being interred only a few inches beneath the surface. When, in 1798, black fever killed some two hundred and fifty people in Marsden there was not enough space in either church or churchyard to receive the dead. To solve what was obviously an urgent problem many loads of soil were brought and spread over the churchyard to accommodate the bodies. Consequently the ground level was raised some three fect (0.9 M) not only by the volume of soil but also, presumably, by the volume of corpses. By 1850, the churchyard had become so overcrowded and such a danger to public health that urgent action was needed. On the opposite side of the road, the fields behind the Old Ram Inn offered a solution and in 1852 a new graveyard was consecrated there by the Bishop of Ripon. At the same time the old churehyard was closed. Like Huddersfield, Marsden had (and has) a strong musical tradition and well attended oratorios were regularly performed in the chapel durmg the first decade of the nineteenth century. When, in the 1830s, it was decided to replace the organ the practice was revived and concerts were held in 1836, 1838 and 1840. The profits, amounting to a total of £69. 5s. 8d. (£69.28p) was invested in the organ fund. At a subsequent meeting it was decided that a new organ be obtained at a cost of £200 and subscriptions amounting to £68.10s. were promised and another concert, held in 1844, raised a further £16. Some years later, the organ project was dropped in favour of the more


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ambitious one of building an entirely new church to seat eight hundred people for which plans were prepared in 1865. Work began on the foundations in 1866 but the project foundered owing to a dispute between the building cominittee and the contractors. Thoughts turned once again to providing the old chapel with a new organ. Meanwhile, the organ fund which had been deposited with the Huddersfield Savings Bank had remained so long unheard of that rumours began to spread that the money had been put to other uses. Happily, such uncharitable thoughts and hints of corruption were silenced when, in 1870, on the death of Mr. Fisher is whose name the fund had been invested, the money was produced and transferred to the account of Mr. T. Whitney, minister. In the intervening years the sum had grown to £235.5s.9d. (£235.29p). The new organ built by Messrs J. Conacher of Huddersfield was installed in the chapel in 1874.

THE CHURCH OF ST. BARTHOLOMEW (61) Marsden Parish Church, dedicated to St. Bartholomew, stands opposite the site of the old chapel on the other side of Church Lane (originally Back Lane). As there is far more to be said about St. Bartholomew's Church than can be included in a work of this kind we must restrict our commentary to just a few of the main events in its hundred year history. Should any of our readers wish to know more they will find an excellent and detailed account in Eileen Pearson's book 'Saint Bartholomew's Church Marsden 1453 - 1980' which is on sale at the church. In 1888, Marsden in Almondbury and Marsden in Huddersfield combined to become the parish of Marsden. Four years later, the Vicar of Marsden, the Rev. R. W.Buller, describing the old chapel as 'unsightly and insanitary' once more set in motion plans for building a new church. On Saturday, 31st March 1894 a procession headed by four brass bands wound its way through the town to the chosen site for the stone-laying ceremony. This was followed, of course, by tea, speeches and a concert. The nave and aisles of the new church, built by James Whitehead of Oldham, were consecrated in October 1895. Three years later work began on the chancel and the Lady Chapel, which were completed and consecrated in 1899. Work on the massive tower began ten years later and when it was


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completed Bishop Eden in a letter (quoted by Eileen Pearson) compliments the Vicar on the completion of the church and the dogged perserverence of Marsden churchmen and adds 'The tower is a great addition to the valley and it seems to claim Yorkshire for Christ as you emerge from the (Standedge) tunnel". On 31st March 1923, exactly twenty nine years after the memorial stone was laid, a new peal of bells was dedicated by the Ven. Archdeacon E.C.M.Harvey of Huddersfield. The whole peal was fitted in what was described at the time as 'Messrs. John Taylor and Co's (Loughboro') newest iron bell frame.' The belis were rung in festival on 21st April 1923 from early afternoon to nine o'clock p.m. by twenty four teams visiting from other churches. The new bells cost £1,634 which sum was raised by the local community. Inside, much has been given to the church over the years and there is a great deal to see and admire: a lofty ceiling, wonderful stained glass, pitch pine pews which fortunately have not been removed, a magnificent chancel arch, a rood beam with its three customary figures, an oak reredos and oak alter rails, a good deal of intricate carving, many memorials to local people and so much more. It is with good reason that St. Bartholomew's is known locally as the Cathedral of the Colne Valley. It is a sad reflection on our times that the church has now to be kept locked as a defence against thieves and vandals. However, Mrs. Renee Brice (tel. 01484 847099) has kindly expressed her willingness to show (by appointment) the church to any of our readers who might be interested.

CHURCH LANE (62) (P.W.) As parking is usually easy in Church Lane, readers might like to take the opportunity of inspecting at least the exterior of the church and also its extensive graveyard which is, like all graveyards, full of interest. The handsome lych gate at the corner of Church Lane and Clough Lea which was constructed in 1928 on the site of the old church school was the gift of Mr. & Mrs. J.E. Crowther of Marsden. The school was demolished in that year along with a good deal of other property to make way for the widening of Church Lane. Beyond the lych gate, along Clough Lea, look out for a pretty little hump back bridge. This happy survival is called Mellor Bridge and its design is


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probably typical of most of Marsden's early bridges. Whilst in Church Lane notice, on the left, the area of the old chapel and its graveyard which was laid out as a recreation area in the 1960s. If time allows, follow the gravestone path to inspect the outline of the chapel which has been marked out in stone and then continue down the grassy bank into Town Gate and turn left behind the modern houses to see Taylor's iron bridge over the Wessenden Brook. Returning to Church Lane along Town Gate, notice on the right the village stocks, last used in 1821, and the level of the old graveyard, three feet (0.9 M) above the level of the road. Town Gate was the route the old turnpike followed through Marsden to the halt at the Old Ram Inn. Not surprisingly, the inn was more familiarly known as Th' owd Tup and its largest public room, t' Tup Chaumber was regularly used by the Foresters for meetings and social gatherings. The Old Ram lasted until 26th December 1925 when it was closed and subsequently demolished to make way for an extension to the churchyard. It is difficult now to pinpoint the inn's exact position but an inspection of the lie of the land in the corner of the modern churchyard bounded by Church Lane and Town Gate and the extent of the gravestones which post date 1925 will help determine its approx imate location. Adjoining the Old Ram and demolished at the same time was an important house called the Old Hall. A report of the demolition, printed in 1926, has it that when John Wesley visited Marsden in 1746 he slept at the Old Hall and certamly its site, near to the centre of Marsden, makes it a more likely candidate for the honour than the outlying Old Manor House favoured by modern writers. Walking back along Church Lane from Town Gate notice, within the confines of the old graveyard, a large tombstone which has been preserved (although not in its original position) because of its historical associations.

ENOCH TAYLOR (63) The tombstone commemorates Enoch Taylor who, with his brother James, operated a small smithy in Brougham Road in the early years of the nineteenth century. There they began making cropping frames to supply to local mill owners. There is something of a mystery regarding the feelings of the Luddites towards Enoch Taylor. Most historians make no reference to any


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threats against or even feelings of animosity towards Taylor and some even go so far as to say that perhaps he escaped the Luddites' anger because he might have been a free-thinker and even a Jacobin. However, threats are never as well documented as violent action and this idea of Taylor's immunity must be suspect as it would surely occur to the Luddite leaders that an attack on the machine maker, whatever his politics, would go a long way towards solving their problems. Certainly it was animosity rather than respect that led the Luddites to call their destructive hammers, 'Enochs' and to use the battle cry 'Enoch made 'em and Enoch shall break 'em.' A local author, Charles Hobkirk, writing in 1868, so much nearer than most to those turbulent times, gives a very different account of Taylor's standing with the Luddites. In his book Huddersfield its History and Local History' he quotes a contemporary of the Luddites who told him: 'Mr. Enoch Taylor was the man whose life they most wished for .... the most vindictive feelings were entertained by the Luddites towards himself and his brother. During that fearful winter {181 1-1812) Mr. Taylor's life was in constant jeopardy and he was assailed by the most malignant Hobkirk goes on to say that Taylor frequently accompanied Willliam Horsfall on the way home from Huddersfield Market. On the day of the murder, however, he was detained but afterwards, *.. it was whispered to the Taylors that the chief victim was to have been the eldest brother.' It seems that some of this ill- feeling followed Taylor to the grave for when he died in 1837 - twenty five years after the Luddite troubles - a local preacher declared that he was in hell, making castings for the devil.


THROSTLE NEST (64) Leaving Church Lane behind, the old turnpike (and our route) turns right mto the upper end of Town Gate where, at the top, it is once again crossed by the 'new' Manchester Road. Now called Old Mount Road it leaves Marsden by way of Throstle Nest and climbs some four hundred and fifty feet (136 M) to Mount Bar in just over a mile. It was to avoid this steep gradient that the Carrs Road route was constructed circa 1780. In the late eighteenth century there was, in Marsden, a group of children


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known as the Throstle Foundlers. They were foundlings brought from the foundling hospital in London, to work at the local cotton mill. They lived together at Throstle Nest in a large, cold, sparsely furnished building and in return for their unremitting and arduous labour their employer provided them with old clothes and fed them a subsistence diet consisting mainly of oatmeal porridge. They received no wages and when the mill closed in 1805 they at once became paupers. As such they were resented by many who saw no reason to pity the destitute who were a constant charge on the poor rate. It is unlikely that the pleasant cluster of houses at the bottom of Old Mount Road was the scene of so much misery. Maps of only a hundred years ago show that at that time the only Throstle Nest in Marsden was about a hundred and fifty yards (136 M) away in Fall Lane, near to the arch of the road bridge. It may well be that when the buildings in that area were demolished the name was transferred to its present location in a deliberate attempt to preserve it.

OLD MOUNT ROAD (65) Just past Throstle Nest, notice over on the left the massive premises of Bank Bottom Mills and, climbing the hillside behind, the rows of terrace houses built to accommodate the mill workers. Somewhere in the area of Bank Bottom Mills is the site of William Horsfall's much smaller Ottiwells Mill. Where the road levels out notice, again on the left, the embankment of the Butterley Reservoir, the last of four reservoirs to be built in the Wessenden Valley. It was completed on 11th June 1906 after a set-back when the half-full reservoir began to leak. Puddle clay for this reservoir was brought from Greenfield to Marsden by main-line railway and then conveyed to the site by a specially constructed rail track, the retaining wall of which still survives behind a private garden in Mount Road. The Wessenden Valley which can be seen stretching away beyond Butterley was, with its four picturesque reservoirs, once a popular walk for people living in the Huddersfield district. A tram or bus ride to Marsden, a picnic lunch and a satisfying seven mile tramp through the valley to Meltham was regarded as a great day out in less sophisticated times. Now, as often as not, the Wessenden Valley is left alone to the sheep and the birds. On the hills above the reservoir the straight line of the Deerhill


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catchwater conduit can be made out. About half a mile beyond Throstle Nest, Gate House on the right stands at the entrance to a track leading uphill to a late seventeenth century cottage called Clark Hill. Beyond Clark Hill the track continues to High Gate which was built in 1611 and is one of the oldest surviving houses in Marsden (unfortunately it is not visible from the road). It was at High Gate, now known as the Manor House, that John Wesley is believed to have stayed when he visited Marsden in 1746 although, as we have already mentioned, that honour might well have belonged to the Old Hall in Church Lane. W.B. Crump and others have suggested that there was a route even older than Old Mount Road - a packhorse way perhaps - higher up the hillside and old maps certainly show a distinct track between Throstle Nest and Mount which passes the Manor House. Although it is possible that this was in part a cart road leading to the quarries on Pule Hill the old name of the Manor House, High Gate - literally high way - adds weight to the theory that the track was once a well used thoroughfare, older by far than the quarries.* A little further on, another old cottage, Green Top, built in 1671, sits comfortably in the old landscape. In her book 'Marsden through the Eileen Pearson tells of Mary Firth, a resident at Green Top who lived on alms begged from travellers whose practice it was to rest their horses in this area after the long climb out of Marsden. She must have made a reasonable living for when she died in 1784 Mary Firth was a hundred and eleven years old! Just beyond Green Top notice over on the left a sports complex, unusually large for such a hilly area. It was laid out on some seventy acres of land in the mid 1920s at the suggestion of Mr. John Edward Crowther. As well as the golf course which naturally makes use of the hilly terrain there are football and cricket fields, a bowling green and tennis courts all of which, of course, require level ground. Incidentally, in June the rhododendrons grow ing around the golf course are a rewarding sight. The road dissecting the golf course is Mount Road, a continuation of the Carrs Road route built to replace the steep and narrow older road in the 1780s when the use of wheeled traffic was increasing in our area. But even on the new road the gradient must have proved difficult for the new mail and stage coaches to negotiate as, to spare the horses, it was customary for all the outside

112 * See Appendix No.2 pg.120

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passengers and some of those inside to alight and walk up the hill. The next house on the right, called Bowser, seems to have been built as two dwellings each with its own weaving chamber, one with seven lights and the other with eight. The houses were possibly built in the mid eighteenth century although the small barn door on the left appears to be earlier and could have been re-used. Three tenths of a mile after Bowser look out on the right for a large stone gatepost behind which are the ruins of Old Mount which was a bar house and possibly an inn on the old turnpike. Later, when the new Mount Road opened a new toll bar was built near the junction. Opposite Old Mount notice a path leading down the hillside. This once connected Old Mount with the Old Moorcock Inn in Mount Road of which only the levelled site and a few stones remain. The Old Moorcock, which was fairly new in 1812, is said to have been the haunt of the Luddites, where many of their sympathisers were sworn-in. This ceremony involving the swearing of many bloodthirsty oaths was called 'twisting-in' by the Luddites. Soon after Old Mount the old turnpike and its replacement, Mount Road, meet. Today there is no trace of the new Mount Bar which was situated in the middle of the junction where it could catch traffic using either route. Before joining Mount Road it is worth a short pause to take in the majestic moorland scene.

MOUNT ROAD (66) After Mount Road was completed up to the junction at Mount Bar few if any route adjustments were made to the road on this side of the Pennines for two decades. But eventually, the demands of the increasingly speedy mail coaches led to the building of a new, level, two mile stretch to take the place of the difficult section between Mount Bar and Standedge Foot. This new road which took a less direct route across the moor started just beyond Mount Bar, passed to the south of Warcock Hill and Red Brook Reservoir and rejoined the older route near Standedge Foot. Ironically, unlike the older route which, as far as Gilberts Farm, is still in use, this new section, completed circa 1815, probably fell into disuse soon after the 1839 Manchester Road was opened. It can however still be seen. Once in Mount Road look out on the left beyond a deep ditch for a


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footpath marker sign placed on top of an embankment running diagonally away from Mount Road. This is the 1815 section and it may still be walked although the ditch must first be negotiated. Although it has been said that the ditch was dug to prevent toll dodgers using this section after Gilberts Bar was set up in 1839 this seems unlikely as the ditch must surely be natural. Obviously during the life of the road there had to be a connection with Mount Road. On the far side of the ditch notice the remains of a wall constructed of large stones which could just possibly be all that is left of an abutment that once supported a bridge. Certainly a timber bridge would be an easy way of spanning the ravine and its removal after 1839 would leave few traces. As additional evidence there was in the mid nineteenth century a structure nearby called Old Bridge House although the presence of the bridge mentioned below prevents certain identification. If a bridge did not exist then the link must have been made by filling in the ditch and the link broken by removing the filling at the appropriate time. Just after the junction, the road crosses an area called Slades which is a dialect word for a marshy hollow surrounded by rising ground. In this area, which is easily recognisable from that description, the pre-turnpike road probably crossed the marsh at a much lower level than the present road. The line of the original road and the low bridge that carried it across a stream can

be seen from the road and inspected by anyone prepared to scramble down the bank on the left hand side.

Blind Jack Metcalf who constructed some twenty one miles of the 1759 turnpike achieved one of his greatest successes on the mosses in the Pule Hill area. Despite his disability he was an extremely competent engineer who was able to recognise and solve the different problems presented by difficult terrain. The turnpike trustees had assumed that Metcalf, in the marshy Slades area, would excavate through the peat to bedrock and then backfill the trench with hardcore, well consolidated to provide a solid foundation for the road. However, such a process would have been lengthy and Metcalf, conscious of the cost involved, suggested another method which he had previously used with complete success on the Harrogate to Knaresborough turnpike. Despite their doubts the trustees gave their approval once they had been assured that if Metcalf's scheme did not work he would, at his own expense, revert to


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theirs. Metcalf immediately dispatched some fifteen percent of his work-force to gather heather of which there is a plentiful supply in the area. This was tied into bundles of a manageable size. Meanwhile, a strip forty feet (12 M) wide was cleared of vegetation and a shallow trench some thirty feet (9 M) wide was dug to a depth of only twelve inches (0.3 M) the bottom of which was cambered for drainage. The bundles of heather were arranged in the trench in two overlapping layers and finally, stones, decreasing in size to a surface layer of gravel, were laid on top of the heather. In the narrative of his life Metcalf remembers that whilst all this was going on, 'Numbers of clothiers usually going that way were not sparing in their censure'. However, he had the last laugh as the road he floated on a raft of heather needed no repairs for twelve years. Soon after Slades look out on the right for a stone standing a few feet away from the road. It is tempting to think that this is one of the milestones marked by Jefferys on his map but unfortunately it is in the wrong position. The last milestone we encountered was 6/9 at Badger Gate. The next two, which we have been unable to trace, are shown by Jefferys, 7/8 in Marsden and 8/7 at Old Mount. The next one, 9/6, then should be a mile or so from Old Mount, some distance beyond Gilberts Farm which is where Jefferys marks it. Of course, it could be that this stone has been removed from its original position and set up here for some reason but, apart from an O.S. bench mark (and a possible E H in certain lights) it is impossible to make out any inscription that might confirm such an identity. The 1894 0.S. map records the height of the bench mark here as 1175.5 ft. above mean sea level. Bench marks were cut into b----< milestones, gateposts, field walls and other permanent / x structures to assist surveyors in calculating altitude. Long before the computer age, the instrument used was an angle iron which was positioned on the horizontal part of the mark to provide a support or 'bench' for the levelling stick. The lower part of the mark was adapted from the broad arrowhead used to mark crown property since medieval times. On modern maps, spot heights, given in metres, have replaced the old B.M. heights.


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PULE HILL (67) Behind the stone, Pule Hill rises another two hundred and fifty feet (75 M) to fourteen hundred and forty three feet (437 M) above sea level at its highest point. From earliest times there have been periods of human activity on or near Pule Hill. A Bronze Age burial site (c.1 500 B.C.) containing vessels with cremated human remains was found on the summit in 1896. In the 1980s, just below the summit on the southern face, members of the Huddersfield Archeological Society found part of the Roman road which connected the forts at Castleshaw and Slack as well as a medieval route on much the same line. In the eighteenth century the first turnpike road in the district was constructed round Pule's south flank and a canal tunnel, the highest and longest in the country, was bored beneath the hill from Marsden to Diggle. This was joined in the nineteenth century by three railway tunnels, the first of which was completed soon after the opening of the 1839 Manchester Road which followed a new course round the north and west of the hill. Throughout the last century quarries were worked on the hill to gain the prized millstone grit building stone for these and other projects. As might be expected, the remains of these later activities are still to be seen on Pule, mainly on the west side of the summit (A62 side), in the shape of spoil heaps, shafts, an engine house and a very obvious inclined plane leading down from the quarry at Pule Edge to the road. The oldest quarries are on the east side of the summit and they could well have been opened up to provide stone for Mount Road and perhaps even for the 1759 turnpike.

GILBERTS AND BEYOND (68) (P) Just past the stone a small area of rough ground provides a convenient stopping place to take in the view ahead. The range of buildings to the front right is Gilberts Intake, a farmstead built in 1769 soon after the turnpike was completed. Later, towards the end of the eighteenth century a terrace of nine cottages was built at right angles to the farm to provide accommodation for canal workers. Only one of these, the


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building on the extreme right, now remains; the others were demolished before 1890. When the Manchester Road was opened in 1839 a toll bar was set up at Gilberts near the junction of the old and new roads. Tolls continued to be collected until lst November 1882 when the road was freed. The last toll collector at Gilberts Bar was James Pogson. Running across the scene behind Gilberts, Manchester Road cuts across the line of the earlier turnpike which it destroyed and replaced. The tremendous amount of work necessary to keep the road to a manageable gradient is obvious in the embankment carrying it over the small valley ahead and the enormous cutting, nearly half a mile long, to the left. Looking straight ahead to the moorland beyond Manchester Road notice that the line of the 1759 turnpike can be clearly made out even though more than a hundred and fifty years have gone by since it was abandoned. Just out of view it drops down to the lonely Thieves Bridge from where it continues in a south westerly direction over the high summit plateau to Standedge Foot and then, as a modern road again, on through Bleak Hey Nook, Delph, Thurston Clough and Doctor Lane Head to the Yorkshire Lancashire border at Austerlands. T wo buildings on the hillside beyond Manchester Road are of interest. To the left is the Great Western public house named after Brunel's 'Great Western' which, in 1838, was one of the first two steam ships to cross the Atlantic. To the right, the plain square building is the Red Brook engine house built in 1803 to house an engine for raising excavated spoil from the canal tunnel. The building enclosed two shafts, each 490 ft. (148 M) deep, one of which reaches the canal tunnel. The other is offset and may have been an expensive mistake. An upsurge of interest in industrial archeology has recently led to measures being taken to preserve the engine house but for many years it received little if any attention and it is remarkable, considering its exposed position, that it has survived more or less intact (apart from its roof) for over a hundred and ninety years. In 1890, anew shaft was sunk a little way to the south west of the engine house whereby spoil was removed from the double track railway tunnel then under construction. The enormous spoil heaps in front of the engine house are a result of these diggings.


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THE OLD TURNPIKE - A FINAL VIEW (69) For a closer look at the abandoned stretch of the turnpike stop on the rough ground just past Gilberts. Unlike the present road which swings right to its junction with the A62, the original route went straight forward and its line, where it drops down into the small valley ahead, can still be seen. The section crossing the valley was, of course, destroyed when Manchester Road was constructed and the moorland section beyond would fall into disuse soon afterwards. It is at this point that we end our second tour. Of course, if time and energy allow, an exploration of the abandoned section is of great interest although it must, of necessity, be undertaken on foot. Up to Thieves Bridge the route is easily followed; beyond it is less clearly defined but it can still be traced most of the way to Standedge. The name Standedge, originally stone edge, is self explanatory and when standing on the old road it is easy to see how this rocky outcrop dominates the landscape. Bey ond the summit the route is briefly lost in the quarries which were opened up after the road was abandoned but it can be picked up again as it descends towards Standedge Foot on a slight embankment. Readers returning to Huddersfield might like to take the A62 to compare it with the older road and to reflect that the land that it passes through was, at the time of its construction, virtually empty.



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The pre-turnpike route from Huddersfield to Marsh.

¥ o s Parges®s Toe oin Tce«a

o A E E N H E a v # \

The shaded line on the map above shows the route of the old highway from Huddersfield to Marsh. Shortly after the New Hey turnpike was constructed (c.1 805) on a more direct line the older route fell into comparative disuse and a long stretch of it was significantly called Old Lane. Later, towards the end of the last century Old Lane was developed and renamed Mountjoy Road. Unfortunately, the modern ring road has destroyed the first section of the old highway but the Highfield area may be reached by way of St. John's Road, Clare Hill and Belmont Street and from there the route may be followed to the present day Gledholt roundabout where old highway and later turnpike joined.


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APPENDIX No.2 High Gate

On page 112 we mention the existence of an old way, possibly called High Gate, which runs up the hillside between Throstle Nest and Mount at a higher level than Old Mount Road. For any of our readers who enjoy moorland walking and who might like to explore for themselves the possibility of this ancient highway, we include here convenient directions for reaching it. Park near to the Gate House in Old Mount Road and follow the nearby lane up the hillside to an old house, Clark Hill, dated 1674. Continue along the lane towards the Manor House where there are extensive views over Marsden and the Colne Valley. Immediately before the Manor House turn left and go through a small iron gate then turn left again passing a small trough on the left. From this point a section of High Gate may be seen as a sunken way climbing steeply up the hillside. After a difficult quarter of a mile the old route veers left to join a level roadway which once provided access to the nearby quarries. As several paths connect this quarry road with the old settlements in Old Mount Road it is possible that it follows the original line of High Gate. The road continues along to Mount Bar where it is marked as a footpath by the National Trust.


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Most of the books and documents listed below are available for consultation at the local studies department of the Huddersfield Central Library where the unfailingly cheerful and courteous staff are

always delighted to do their utmost to help with genuine inquiries.

Books dealing with Huddersfield & District:





E.M. HUGHES (printed privately)

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1975 1978 1982 1986 1991

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ISBN 0952474719

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