Francis William Creaser (1858-1954)


Francis William Creaser was born in Lepton, the son of millwright Lewis Creaser[1] and his wife Catherine.

As a young boy, his parents took him to see Charles Brook cut the ceremonial first sod of the Meltham Branch Line on 4 April 1864 at a location near to Folly Dolly Falls. When the line finally opened to passengers on 5 July 1869, he rode on the first train from Meltham to Huddersfield.

By 1871, the Creaser family was living at Owler Bars, Meltham.

By 1881, Francis was working as a millwright.

He married Mary Bower[2], daughter of farmer Emmanuel Bower, on 14 March 1885 at St. Bartholomew, Meltham. The couple had 4 children:

  • Racheal Creaser (1890-1959)[3]
  • Leah Creaser (1892-1993)[4]
  • Lewis Creaser (1893-1975)[5]
  • John Creaser (1895-1954)[6]

Mary Creaser died aged 65 in 1920.

When the closure of the Meltham Branch Line was announced, Francis was selected as a guest of honour. He was pictured shaking the hand of the driver of the last train which departed Meltham at 7:25pm on 21 May 1949.

Francis William Creaser of 40 Calmlands, Meltham, died on 28 March 1954.

In his book The Story of Meltham (1977), the author credits Francis with providing details as to the origin of the naming of Folly Dolly Falls.


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Notes and References

  1. Son of John Creaser (1786-1875).
  2. Born 23 January 1855.
  3. Born 24 April 1890 and baptised 25 May 1890 at St. Bartholomew, Meltham. Did not marry and died 17 April 1959 at Holme Valley Memorial Hospital.
  4. Born 20 January 1892 and baptised 27 March 1892 at St. Bartholomew, Meltham. Died aged 101 in 1993.
  5. Born 19 August 1893 and baptised 21 October 1893 at St. Bartholomew, Meltham. Died aged 82 on 9 December 1975 in Torbay, Devon.
  6. Born 14 June 1895 and baptised 21 October 1893 at St. Bartholomew, Meltham. Worked as a silk dresser. Married Ida Heeley on 26 July 1924 at Holy Trinity, South Crosland.