The Sands House is an inn situated on Crosland Moor at the junction of Blackmoorfoot Road (formerly Wakefield and Austerlands Turnpike) and Sands House Lane (formerly Sandy Lane).
The earliest records show that Sand House was originally a farmhouse owned by the Eastwood family, with Charles Eastwood (c.1811-1857) in residence by 1841. The house most likely took its name from Sandy Lane and later became known as "Sands House".
By 1861, his son William Henry Hirst Eastwood (1841-1927), was the head of the property and was named as a farmer of 26 acres in the Census that year.
An attempt to obtain a licence for the property in August 1868 was rejected, despite there being only one other public house within in the vicinity and the fact that traffic on the turnpike road was increasing. However, it seems that a subsequent application was successful, as William H. Eastwood was named in newspaper articles as the licencee of the Sands House Inn by 1870.
The 1871 Census listed Eastwood as a "Beer House Keeper and Farmer of 7 Acres".
In June 1871, Eastwood placed the inn and his land up for auction, although it seems likely they did not sell.
In November 1871, brewer Henry Stocks of Milnsbridge brought an action against Eastwood to recover a debt of £21 13s. 4. Eastwood argued that Stocks had sold him 3 barrels of bad beer and that Eastwood had promised to return them, but had failed to do so. After some discussion, the costs were reduced by the magistrates to £12 9s. 11d.
At around 8pm on the Sunday 11 August 1872, Joseph Brook, Joshua Brook and Thomas Fearnley, all of Butter Nab, together with Buckley Broadbury of Aspley, Jonathan Stoddard of Folly Hall and Thomas Moreley of Paddock, entered the inn "with the intention of kicking up a row." After one of them threatened to murder the landlord, they "commenced a disturbance" and damaged a number of items of furniture. The damage was estimated at £1 12s. Brought in front of the local magistrates, the men were found guilty.
In November 1872, both the inn and the adjoining land were again placed up for auction:
All that Capital MESSUAGE or DWELLING-HOUSE, now used as a beerhouse, and called Sands House, situate on the south side of the Wakefield and Austerlands Turnpike-road, at Crosland Moor, aforesaid, together with the shed, outbuildings, yard, and premises thereto belonging, and now in the occupation of Mr. W.H.H. Eastwood.
Also all those Four Closes of LAND bounded on the west by the highway leading from Crosland Moor to South Crosland, and situate near to and occupied along with said house, and containing by estimation seven acres of thereabouts.The above property is within 2½ miles of Huddersfield. The house is well and substantially built of stone, and the purchaser will have the privilege of drawing water for household purposes from an excellent well on an adjoining plot of land.
In late January 1873, Eastwood was charged under the Licensing Act with "allowing disorderly conduct" at the inn after Mr. E. Gledhill ("an old and infirm man") had gunpowder sprinkled over his head which then ignited and burned off most of his hair. In court, Eastwood claimed that he had already transferred the licence to "a man named Senior" and was technically no longer the landlord, so could not be prosecuted under the Act. The exact sequence of events was strongly contested by prosecution, defence, and witnesses, although it seemed to point towards a practical joke that had gone dangerously wrong. Ultimately, the magistrates suspected that the powder had been ignited deliberately, but that it had not been proven, so the case was discharged.
Charles Senior was the next licensee of the Sands House Inn.
In November 1873, the Borough Police Court held a special session to consider applications under a new Act to allow music, dancing and the playing of games in public houses — in all, 135 applications were considered. Charles Senior was granted a licence to allow music and the playing of dominoes on his premises.
A licence to sell wine on the premises was granted on 22 August 1884.
On Saturday 6 September 1884 there was a shooting contest at the nearby rifle range and Private Henry Vizzard left his rifle at the inn. He returned on the Monday and drank several beers before retrieving his rifle and heading back to the range. A short while late, he committed suicide and, after his body had been examined by the police, it was brought back to the inn to await the inquest.
In June 1891, Senior was fined 40s. plus 14s. expenses for "keeping open his house during prohibited hours" on 31 May. Three police officers had visited the inn and found seven men drinking, most of whom gave false names and addresses. In his defence, Senior claimed that he thought the men were travellers "from Marsden" rather than locals, which meant he was allowed to serve them out of hours.
Following the murder of servant girl Catherine Dennis at the Ivy Hotel in Linthwaite on 21 August 1891, the prime suspect, James Stockwell, went to ground in the Crosland Moor area. At one point, a witness claimed to have seen him in the vicinty of Sands House Inn.
In October 1891, the inn was placed up for auction but bidding stalled at £1,250 and the property was withdrawn from sale.
1854 Ordnance Survey map showing the location of Sand(s) House: