All posts by Admin Tim

Tim is a committee member of the Keighley and District Local History Society, with responsibilities for archiving the physical and digital collections, and managing some of the social media channels. He moved to Keighley about ten years ago and joined the Society to learn more about the area.

Christmas Meeting

It’s the last History Society meeting of the year next Wednesday (11th December) and we are marking Christmas with something special. Firstly there will be (quite literally) a pub quiz – identifying pubs past and present from the area. Then we have a recording of the late Ian Dewhirst talking about Christmases past that we will play accompanied by postcards and images of old Keighley. We will also be serving mince pies alongside the usual tea and coffee.

The meeting is upstairs in Keighley Library on Wednesday 11th December. There is a lift for those who need it. Doors open at 7pm and the evening kicks off at 7.30pm, usually ending around 8.30pm. It costs £3 to attend (£1 for History Society members).

Anyone wanting to join for 2020 can do so on the evening. Membership costs £10 for an individual (£15 for a couple), which goes to supporting the work we do and gives you reduced entry to the monthly meetings and access to the members-only events.

The late Ian Dewhirst.
Do you recognise this pub?
Join in our Christmas Pub Quiz at the December meeting for more.

Review of 2019

If you want to see what the History Society got up to in 2019, have a look through this presentation. If you are interested in joining in with or supporting what we do, please consider becoming a member for 2020. Come along to any of our monthly meetings or see the Support Us page on the website.

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History Society review of 2019

From Stables to Beer Garden

The building on North Street in Keighley is undergoing a transformation at the minute as it becomes a beer garden for the Wetherspoon’s pub next door. It was erected as the Town Hall Livery Stables in the early 1890s, before becoming the Regent Picture House in 1920. It then became the Star Bingo & Social Club from 1964 to 1976. The premises reopened during 1980 as the Orbit DIY store then after further closure it returned as Champers Night Club upstairs and Charolais Steak House on the ground floor. The building’s final incarnation was as Last Orders which closed in 2015. In August 2019 the entire building was demolished except for the front wall overlooking North Street. With thanks to Eddie Kelly, David Seeley and Tim Neal.

North Street, Keighley, 14th July 2019. Photograph by David Seeley.
The hollowed-out Livery Stables building photographed from Scott Street. Photographed by Tim Neal on 24th August 2019.
Advert for Joseph Smith’s Town Hall Livery Stables from the 1902 Keighley Yearbook.
Announcement in the Keighley News of the 24th July 1920 of the Grand Opening Programme for the Regent Picture House on North Street. Courtesy of Eddie Kelly.
Advert for the gala opening of the Star Bingo and Social Club’s Regent Bingo on Thursday 10th December 1964. The advert appeared in the Keighley News on 5th December 1964. Courtesy of Eddie Kelly.
Advert for the Orbit Home Decorating Centre opening on 26th September 1980. The advert appeared in the Keighley News on 26th September 1980. Courtesy of Eddie Kelly.
Advert for the Charolais Steak House on North Street, Keighley. The advert appeared in the Keighley News on 18th November 1983. Courtesy of Eddie Kelly.
Advert for the opening of Champers night club on North Street on Wednesday 9th November. The advert appeared in the Keighley News on 4th November 1983. Courtesy of Eddie Kelly.

St John’s Church Visit

The History Society has arranged a visit to St John’s Church in Ingrow next Wednesday (14th August). All are welcome.

There will be a talk about the history of the church, the opportunity to explore the graveyard, and a guided look around some behind-the-scenes parts of the church. There will also be the chance to look through some of the archive albums of photographs of the church and its role in the community.

Entry costs £3 (or £1 if you are a History Society member). There will be tea and coffee served. Please note the main presentation, access to the graveyard and seeing the albums are on the level (there are a couple of steps to get into the church), but steps and stairs are involved in most of the tour so please wear sensible shoes.

Doors open at 7pm. No advance booking is required.

St John’s Church, Ingrow. Photograph taken in 2019 by History Society member Tim Neal.

Bus Museum Open Day

The Bus Museum’s second event of the year will be on Sunday July 14th 2019, at Riverside off Dalton Lane, with refreshments, displays and a regular free bus service linking the Museum at Dalton Lane with Keighley Town Centre. Public entry to the Museum is £3.00 on the day. This is a chance to see their restoration projects including Keighley Number 5 the 1924 Straker Clough the world’s oldest double deck trolleybus, together with a selection of other such vehicles in the Museum. The History Society will have a display for people to look at. For more information visit

The History Society at the Keighley Bus Museum, April 2019. Photograph by Tim Neal.

July Guest Speaker

Next Wednesday’s (10th July) guest speaker talk is Cross Roads Parish Councillor Peter Clarke talking to us about the history and traditions of the University of Bradford from being a small technical college to becoming a prestigious institution with Harold Wilson as chancellor. His talk is entitled “McKinlay’s People – History & Academic Traditions of the University of Bradford”. It follows other recent ‘broader’ talks such as those on Richard III and the Bradford sweet poisonings.

Guest speaker events happen upstairs at Keighley Library. Doors open at 7pm and talks start at 7.30pm, usually lasting around one hour. A lift is available for anyone with access concerns. Tea and coffee is served. Everyone is welcome and admission costs £3 (£1 for History Society members).

Photographs provided by Peter Clarke and (c) University Archives, Special Collections, University of Bradford.

Guest speaker Peter Clarke

Quarter 3 Newsletter

Our latest newsletter is available now. Read about St John’s Church in Ingrow and find out details of upcoming meetings and events. Anyone is welcome to attend our meetings. Come along and find out more about the Society and how you can support us.

KDLHS Newsletter (Jul-Sep 2019)