Anyone ever knit with Emu wool? Emu Wools Ltd was a knitting yarn manufacturer founded and based in Keighley that was particularly successful in the 1940s to 1960s. The spinning company was founded by the Greenwood family as far back as the 1850s and stayed in the family’s hands until the 1970s. Images from the History Society digital archive on Flickr.
Although it remains closed at present due to the Covid-19 lockdown, Cliffe Castle mansion house originally opened as the town’s museum and gallery on Tuesday 14th April 1959. This followed major renovation work largely funded by a generous donation made by Sir Bracewell Smith. A special programme for the occasion was created for guests.
On the 10th April 2019, the History Society organised a visit for members to Wyedean Weaving in Haworth. We had the chance to look around the old mill and see various weaving machines in action (see the videos at the end of the album).
A Keighley Corporation motor bus service opened between Utley and Eastburn Bridge on 9th April 1909. Postcard from the History Society digital archive.
The Bronte family relocated from Thornton to Haworth in April 1820. Images from a ‘Souvenir of Haworth’, published by Lilywhite Ltd. around 1960.
The History Society committee managed to get together last night via a video conference. In addition to the statement issued by chairperson Joyce Newton last month, we have cancelled June’s meeting (a visit to Pennine Weavers). Obviously future meetings will be reviewed dependent on what government guidelines are saying nearer the time.
Also we have agreed that anyone who has paid the membership fees for 2020, that that membership will also cover 2021.
In the meantime we will continue to post items that we hope are of interest on our online channels: Facebook, Flickr and our website.
Best wishes to everyone – stay safe and healthy.
The Committee: Joyce, Anne-Marie, Paula, Sarah, Steve, Tim, Christine and Gerald.
Hopefully we won’t need these again in the near future… This is a Ministry of Food Ration Book issued to Sonia Waddington (now Sonia Bown) for 1953/54. The retailers authorised to provide Sonia with her allowance were Sam Bosworth Butchers at 30 Victoria Road, Keighley Industrial Co-Operative Society (store No 12 on Victoria Road), and Hird & Sons butchers on Oakworth Road (next door to Dewhirst’s newsagents). Rationing came to a complete end in July 1954. The item was loaned to the History Society for scanning by Sonia in March 2019.
Right now we can’t visit the house at Cliffe Castle (but the grounds are still open for fresh air and exercise – just stay a safe distance away from each other).
If anyone needs a reminder of how lucky we are to have this museum in our town, take a look at this album the History Society has just uploaded to the Flickr site.
Following the recent advice from the Government and Health Officials, the History Society committee held an Extraordinary Meeting and voted to suspend all face-to-face History Society events with immediate effect and until at least the start of June.
This covers guest speaker meetings, archive sessions, face-to-face committee meetings and involvement in events. This is so that we play our part in minimising the chance of spreading the Covid-19 virus and in protecting the most vulnerable members of society.
Guidance on practical steps we should all be taking can be found here:
We felt this decision was the most responsible course of action we could take. We know that it will disappoint some people but will reassure others. We will continue to publish photographs and news stories about Keighley’s rich history on our website, Facebook pages and Flickr site, so please stay in touch with us on there. Please pass this message on to people who may not otherwise see it.
We will review the situation at the start of June and will again look to official guidance on best practice at that time.
Right now we are living through a moment that will be written about in the history books of tomorrow. Let us all play our part in making sure it is recorded as a time when we showed extraordinary kindness towards each other and were considerate to the needs of everyone in our society.
Joyce Newton, Chairperson KDLHS 16 March 2020
Next week’s History Society meeting (Wednesday 11th March) is about the forthcoming Transport Festival at the end of May. Festival co-ordinator Graham Mitchell will give an overview of the whole Festival, then History Society committee member Steve Bown will talk about the ‘Ten Tales of Transport’ the History Society is planning to tell in its exhibition in the Civic Centre. We are also inviting people to come along and share their own transport-related stories and bring along any photographs that we could scan and perhaps use in the exhibition. We are particularly interested in photographs relating to the various cycling clubs that operated in and around Keighley in the 50s/60s, and any trips organised by firms or church groups or the like that took people to places like the coast or the countryside. If you have anything you are willing to share, please bring it down.
The meeting will happen in Keighley Library. Doors open at 7pm with the meeting starting at 7.30pm. Tea and coffee will be served. It costs £3 to attend (to help cover our costs) or £1 for History Society members.