Bell (beerhouse), Greensend, Meltham

This page is a bare-bones entry for a specific location marked on an old map. More detailed information may eventually be added...


  • location: Greensend (now Greens End Road), Meltham
  • status: no longer exists
  • category: beerhouse (later a lodging house)

According to a list held by the Huddersfield & District Family History Society, the Bell beerhouse was situated at Greens End on the site now occupied by 5 Greens End Road. The boundary wall of the current property incorporates a stone window frame from the original St. Bartholomew’s Chapel and marks the location of Meltham’s pinfold.

These details correspond with the 1861 Census entry for 52-year-old widow Mary Ann Crosland (née Thewlis) of Greensend whose occupation is given as "beer retailer". Her late husband, Joseph Crosland (1805-1857) was listed in the 1851 Census as a "wool dyer’s labourer and beer shop keeper" of Lower Hill, near Greensend.

The name of the beerhouse is presumably a reference to the church's bells, or perhaps specifically to the traditional story recounted in the Rev. Joseph Hughes' book The History of the Township of Meltham that during the building of the second Chapel, the stonemasons claimed ownership of the old chapel's single bell and "refused to give it up, except on condition of it being filled with ale".

Although the baptismal records for Joseph's children (1831 to 1850) only give Joseph’s occupation as clothier, labourer and "blue dyer", Pigot's 1841 trade directory names him as a "retailer of beer".

In October 1857, Mary Ann was fined 2s. 6d. plus expenses for "keeping open her house after eleven o’clock at night" after a passing police officer found three persons drinking in the beerhouse.

The beerhouse presumably closed in the 1860s, as a local court case heard on 18 June 1868 described the premises as a lodging house and White's 1866 trade directory does not include an entry. Mary Ann died aged 61 in July 1868.

Joseph and Mary Ann's son Allen Crosland (1840-1901) continued to run the property as a lodging house before converting it to a grocery prior to the 1881 Census. An article in the Huddersfield Chronicle reported that on 19 September 1856, 15-year-old Allen was involved in a serious accident at Messrs. Ainley & Taylor, Spinks Mere Mill, in which "his left arm was torn completely off, a little above the elbow". By the 1890s, he was the chairman of the local lodge of the Ancient Order of the Golden Fleece ("Great Eastern", Lodge no.125) who met at the Victoria Hotel.

Further Reading


The approximate former location is shown below:

Notes and References