Author Archives: Anne-Marie Fawcett

About Anne-Marie Fawcett

Ownership of this site has now been transferred from Joan P Smith to Anne-Marie Fawcett. Whilst the Owner always uses her best endeavours to ensure the information on this website is accurate and complete, errors may from time to time occur. The Owner will not be held responsible for the consequence of such errors but will make efforts, where possible, to make corrections. Wherever possible it is advisable to consult the source material. E & O E. May 2022


Mark Jubb

Anne-Marie Fawcett July 2021

I have a thing about place names and Jubb’s Yard, just off the Market Place in Ossett town centre, has intrigued me for a few years. I eventually got around to having a look into some of the history of this place. This is what I learned.

Born in Soothill in 1815, Mark Jubb was the son of William (1776–1859) and Mary née Armitage (1786–1855) and he lived with his parents and siblings at Chickenley Lane. 

In August 1842 Mark Jubb and Mary Schorah were married at Wakefield All Saints Church (now the Cathedral). Mary was the daughter of shopkeeper Joseph Scorah and his wife Rachel (née Wilby) who lived and worked at Town End. As a younger man Mark worked as a woollen spinner but when he married Mary he gave his occupation as ‘clothier’; this might imply that he was a self-employed weaver working at home. Later Mark would be employed as a slubber in a woollen mill where he prepared wool for spinning, removing the “slubs” or imperfections in the yarn.

The Jubbs lived at ‘Town, close to the church’. Their first child, a daughter Emma, was born in 1843 and in 1845 they had a son, Edwin. It appears that Mark and Mary may have had at least six children though not all survived infancy. In May 1852 Mary Jubb gave birth to her last child, Joseph Schorah Jubb and died soon after he was born.

In April 1853 Mark Jubb married 33 year old Hannah Jubb (daughter of William Jubb and Mary Lister) a dressmaker of Hanging Heaton. They had two children together – in January 1854 Charles was born, followed a year later by Arthur. In 1861 their address was South Towngate and Mark was now a shopkeeper. Town End, Town, South Towngate or simply ‘near the church’. (This would be the original Trinity Church that once stood in the Market Place). Are they all the same place? Following the enumerators who were responsible for the census returns gives us the answer – yes they were. Could it be that Mark had taken over the business of the parents of his first wife Mary Scorah? 

By 1891 Mark Jubb was widowed again and was still living at Jubb’s Yard with only his eldest child Emma still living at home. In 1881 his son Edwin had married Mary Wilson, the daughter of woollen manufacturer James Wilson and his wife Ann née Megson of Northfield House, Field Lane (now Church Street). Joseph Scorah Jubb had taken advantage of the government funded assistant passage to Australia and set sail for New South Wales in 1884. Also in 1884, Charles Jubb had married Eliza Briggs and they moved to Dewsbury where Charles worked as a clerk for a firm of solicitors. There’s a ‘Jubb’s Arcade’ in Dewsbury. Could there be a connection? The youngest of the family, Arthur Jubb married Maud Elizabeth Nettleton in 1892. They also moved to Dewsbury where Arthur became an accountant. 

Mark Jubb died on January 6 1892. Emma Jubb never married and she continued to live at 8 Jubb’s Yard until her death in 1912. 

I’ve included below the names of those who were resident in Emma’s time. Perhaps your ancestors are among them. 

12 Tom Wilby 44 teamer (highways) Ossett Corporation worker, Mary Eliza 43 née Hampshire, daughter Ethel Josephine 6 b 8 May 1904. 2 rooms 

11 Jane Hannah Tasker 47 née Newsome widow cloth dresser for a rag merchant. Married Charles Herbert Tasker in 1885. Son Joseph White Tasker 24 dyers labourer. Daughter Louisa 18 cloth dresser. Charles Tasker died in 1901. 2 rooms 

10 Joseph Spencer 72 retired wife Selina 69 née White married 23 years. No children. 2 rooms 

9 David Mitchell 58 rag puller, wife Annie 55 née Dixon married 5 years, no children, Annie’s son John Oldroyd 14 trammer below ground, Sarah Harrison 28 boarder milliner. 4 rooms 

8 Emma Jubb 67 no occupation. 2 rooms 

7 Herbert Brown 31 journeyman bricklayer contractor, wife Emily 30 née Dews and two children Ernest 7 and Irene 4. 2 rooms 

6 William Harrison 33 journeyman joiner shopfitter, wife Sarah Hannah 32 née Dews and daughter Nellie 7. 2 rooms 

5 Fred Clayton 47 foreman rag grinder, his wife Ann 46 née Richardson, and their three children: Harry 10, Ethel 9 and Fred 6. 2 rooms

4 Walter Dews 29 journeyman joiner, wife Elizabeth Ann 29, married 3 years, son 7 months old William. 2 rooms 

3 Edward Driver 54 woollen rag merchant, wife Annie 55, son Herman 25 feeble minded at 21. 3 rooms 

2 Emma Acklam née Dawson 36 char woman and taxi driver 34 Fred Marsden. 2 rooms

1 James Smith 44 mill hand, wife Sarah née Spurr 40. Married 13 years. No children. 2 rooms – James filled in this info as ‘house and bedroom’ which I guess would imply a ‘one up, one down’.

Jubb’s Yard, Market Place 

The 200 year old terrace in Jubb’s Yard, made up of eleven houses and a shop, was demolished in April 1968. Mark Jubb is long forgotten and his yard is now a car park.


The Day School was started in 1850, the year of Denis Creighton Neary’s appointment as Curate in Charge, with a view to building up the new parish of South Ossett. It was held in a long room previously used as a weaving chamber in what were called Fawcett’s Buildings on Middle Common, when there were only footpaths where Station Road now is, Sowood Lane and Horbury Lane being little more than occupation roads and Manor Road was the one main road from Ossett to Horbury.

New Church Schools were erected in 1856–7 and opened 15th April 1857, close by the church. A pair of small cottages occupying part of the site was converted into a Schoolmaster’s House and it was to this house that Mr Joseph Cox came as Master in 1858, Miss A. Ainley (known to many later as Mrs Ben Priestley) at the same time taking charge of the infants then in the north end of the big room.


Joseph Cox, the second Mayor of Ossett from 1896 – 1897, when he visited Buckingham Palace on the occasion of Queen Victoria’s Golden Jubilee.

Many people think that the Church of South Ossett was financed by the State – this was not so. The Ecclesiastical Committee, from which the Vicar got his stipend was only appointed by Parliament to secure the best administration of Church funds in public investment, had much the appearance of a State Department, whilst the Government Grants based on the average attendance of scholars did help to finance the school the same grants were made to others e.g. the Wesleyan School in Wesley Street, Ossett.

Joseph COX was born circa 1833 and baptised 4th Nov 1833 in Holme-upon-Spalding Moor, Yorkshire; the son of John COX, an agricultural labourer and Jane BILLINGHAM, who were married in Holme on Spalding 10th February 1829. In the 1851 census Joseph was aged 17, living with his parents, his occupation being given as a ‘scholar’! This suggests that he may have been studying whilst working, (possibly a correspondence course or even as a Pupil Teacher), but this would have not earned much, if any, money to contribute to the family of an agricultural worker. Perhaps we will never know the answer to this but he was evidently very clever and gained his qualifications to be a teacher.

Joseph, aged 24, married Sarah ANELAY, born circa 1834 and baptised 11th January 1835 in Eastrington between July & September 1857 (registered in Howden).Sarah’s family were also agricultural labourers, and in the 1851 census she is described as a servant. Joseph evidently gained sufficient teaching experience during the next 10 years to be offered the post of Headmaster of South Ossett Christ Church School in 1859; Sarah was also installed as Schoolmistress. Perhaps she was taught by Joseph? She was an experienced needlewoman, possibly learning this skill when she worked as a servant.

Sarah COX must have been an exceptional working mother as over the next 20 yrs she produced 13 children! They were: Annie, 1858; Frederick 1859; Eleanor 1860; Lizzie 1862; Bertram 1863; Emily 1864; Mary Jane 1866; Gertrude 1868; Ernest George 1869; Harry Anelay 1872; Florence Edith 1873; Catherine Maud 1874 and Sydney 1877.This was in addition to teaching needlework in the school. How she coped with the demands of a mother, especially nursing the children through the usual childhood illnesses prevalent at that time, such as Scarletina (Rubella) Chicken Pox, Small Pox and Measles, it is hard to imagine.

In 1864 the three youngest children were very ill; two of the children died in the space of 8 days. Bertram was buried on Oct 12th aged 16 months and Lizzie on Oct 20th aged 30 months. Amazingly baby Emily aged 3 months survived. As a working mother for a time, I cannot begin to imagine how difficult and stressful this must have been!

1881 Census Joseph Cox and family living on Manor Road, Ossett

Joseph and Sarah’s daughters Annie, Emily, Mary Jane, Gertrude and Catherine Maud all followed in their parents’ footsteps and became teachers. Two of his sons Sidney and Ernest were ironmongers. His son Harry Anelay COX was a clerk but later became a Rag Merchant with large premises in Dewsbury.Mary Jane married Samuel Norman PICKARD on 17 Oct 1893 in South Ossett Christ Church and Harry Anelay COX was later known to have lived in Highfield Cottage in 1907 (former home of the author) when it was owned by Alfred Hinchliffe PICKARD. He later purchased Sowood House from Lois Pickard.

Joseph Cox retired from his position as Headmaster of the school (sometimes affectionately referred to by ex pupils as ‘Cox’s College’) on 10th November 1899 after almost 40 yrs dedicated service. He helped out again in 1900 and acted as a School Manager for the next 6 yrs. He died on 17th and was buried on 21st September 1906. His wife Sarah survived him by only 8 months and was buried on the 6th May 1907. They lived on Storrs Hill Rd., Ossett and their burial services took place at Holy Trinity Church. They were both aged 72 yrs. Two very remarkable people!

Information from the South Ossett School Log Books, published in the Ossett Observer in 1986), posted on the ‘OLD OSSETT’ website by Joe HONEY, Gt. Grandchild of Joseph Cox.


Transcribed and input by Debbie Hawke-Wareham from photographs taken by Joan P Smith.

Edited by Joan P Smith and Anne-Marie Fawcett.

September 2022.

WY Archive Ref. WDP 189.

Extracts from the log book 1863 – 1865

Pupil Teachers are given lessons by the Headmaster 8 to 9am before classes began and take quarterly and annual examinations from the Education Board. 

The school year runs from about Dec 1st to November 30th when a new syllabus is set. Pupils join the school as they reach the current school age, not having to wait until the start of the school year as in modern times.

The first entry is that of Joseph Cox, Head Teacher, which refers to his pupil teachers Eli Morton, Sarah Poole, John Teal and Mary Blackburn, going to West Town School, Dewsbury to be examined.

A pupil teacher was just that: a pupil learning his lessons from 6:30am to 8:15am and from 4pm to 5pm or even 6pm; teaching his knowledge from those lessons from 9am to 4pm. Each child attending had to pay two pence weekly and if they could not pay they were sent home. Later some of the children of the very poor were paid for by the town’s guardians. Some children however were part-timers, working part of the day or week and going to school the other half. A situation [often] openly abused by the employer despite the law.

Joseph Cox wrote in a clear hand and was, according to his records, a “born” teacher. Strict in his control of staff, always diligent about their work, caring for his pupils, ensuring they were educated in spite of their background and circumstances and not tolerating any of his staff to physically punish pupils – if that was needed, he would do it. His wife Sarah supervised the needlework in the school, in addition to her housekeeping and bearing thirteen children, three of whom died in infancy.

Chicken Pox, Measles, Small Pox, Scarletina (Scarlet Fever?) were things to fear in 1864. Once a case appeared every family affected expected to lose at least one child, and for a family to rear all their children to teen age was exceptional. Another cause of school absence was wet and snowy days. The children (especially the small ones) had poor footwear, and if they got wet they had no others to change into. So they stayed at home. A sick child was a danger to the whole family.

Mr. Cox’s biggest problem was probably his pupil teachers not learning their lessons, certainly not retaining knowledge gained, arriving late, having time off through sickness, bad presentation to the children, leaving to go into industry, and coming back!

Mrs. Cox in the meantime was having her difficulties with the pupils learning needlework. “Even when the material is supplied to them. One parent persists in sending knitting, stating they must have socks to wear.” Mrs. Cox was required to show the needlework done to Government Inspectors, but the mothers said they could not spare the clothes!

The standard of pupils admitted from other schools was a grumble of Mr. Cox. e.g: “She does not know how many pounds in 1 cwt or how many yards in a furlong. I gave her the following 13 ton x 17 cwt x 47 but she could not work it. !!!!!! Religious knowledge is scanty” with children admitted from an independent school “not knowing the Lord’s Prayer or Ten Commandments”. (Mr. Cox’s parents were Dissenters).

Joseph Cox is the master on the right of this photograph

Extracts from the Log Book 1863 – 1865

1864 Jun 2 ANELAY Ruth admitted
1865 Mar 7 ASHTON George A
ex pupil
wrote to say he had been engaged as a clerk to the Leeds Post Office
1865 Jan 9 AUDAY Ellen
Pupil Teacher
commenced her duties
1865 Jan 18 AUDAY Ellen
Pupil Teacher
commenced activities in teaching
1865 Jul 6 AUDAY Ellen
Pupil Teacher
absent with permission to visit Whitlay Hall
1865 Dec 6 AUDAY Ellen
Pupil Teacher
away from school ill
1865 Sep 25 AUDSLEY Sarah Ellen Eliza
admitted [unsure if one name of 3 children of same surname]
1864 Jul 5 AUELAY Miss
took infant class as pupil teachers at West Town for examinations
1864 Feb 22 AUELAY William admitted
1863 Sep 10 BARFOOT Mr
Master of Alverthorpe National School, plus wife and daughter visited school
1865 Jan 16 BATLEY David admitted
1864 May 20 BATLEY Harry admitted
1863 Sep 14 BEAUMONT Elizabeth Ann admitted
1863 Aug 24 BEAUMONT Henry Newtonadmitted
1863 Oct 19 BEETHAM Thomas admitted
1865 Jul 10 BENTLEY Louisa admitted
1863 Sep 21 BENTLEY Philip Thomas admitted
1863 Sep 14 BENTLEY William admitted
1865 Sep 12 BEVIN? Henry admitted
1865 Jul 17 BINKS admitted
1864 Jun 6 BLACKBURN Annie admitted
1864 Jun 6 BLACKBURN Emily Jane admitted
1863 Jul 1 BLACKBURN Mary
Pupil Teacher
went to west town school to be examined
1863 Oct 1 BLACKBURN Mary
Pupil Teacher
observed during lesson on the offering up of Isaac
1863 Oct 13 BLACKBURN Mary
unwell not at lessons
1863 Nov 19 BLACKBURN Mary
Pupil Teacher
observed master’s lessons on Communion of the Saints
1863 Dec 10 BLACKBURN Mary
Pupil Teacher
remained after school to get lessons up to date
1864 Jan 27 BLACKBURN Mary
Pupil Teacher
absent unwell
1864 Feb 17 BLACKBURN Mary Pupil
late , arrived 9am due to sickness
1864 May 2 BLACKBURN Mary
Pupil Teacher
unwell absent in afternoon
1864 Jun 30 BLACKBURN Mary
Pupil Teacher
gave classes 3 and 4 a lesson on Jacobs visit into Egypt to see Joseph
1864 Sep 20 BLACKBURN Mary
Pupil Teacher
went home ill
1864 Nov 8 BLACKBURN Mary
Pupil Teacher
late to lessons
1864 Dec 15 BLACKBURN Mary
Pupil Teacher
at home ill
1864 Dec 19 BLACKBURN Mary
Pupil Teacher
late and tasks not well learned
1865 Feb 20 BLACKBURN Mary
Pupil Teacher
not at lessons this morning unwell
1865 Mar 17 BLACKBURN Mary
Pupil Teacher
not at school – toothache
1865 Mar 27 BLACKBURN Mary
Pupil Teacher
absent in the afternoon by permission
1865 May 19 BLACKBURN Mary
Pupil Teacher
unwell, not at lessons
1865 Jul 13 BLACKBURN Mary
Pupil Teacher
unwell, not at lessons
1865 Jul 26 BLACKBURN Mary
Pupil Teacher
not at lessons nor teaching, must be ill?
1865 Oct 25 BLACKBURN Mary
Pupil Teacher
not at lessons before school, stayed at night
1865 Nov 17 BLACKBURN Mary
Pupil Teacher
left school ill and is off until 21 Nov
1865 Nov 22 BLACKBURN Mary
Pupil Teacher
delivered a lecture to first class on the politics of Israel
1864 May 2 BOOTHROYD Ada admitted
1864 Apr 18 BOOTHROYD Ellen admitted
1863 Nov 9 BOOTHROYD Stanley admitted
1864 Apr 18 BRADLEY Joseph admitted
1865 Aug 16 BRADLEY Mr
the sweeper
was requested to look into the infants to see if it was fit for the children to be in – no answer
1865 Jan 23 BRADLEY Sarah admitted
1865 Mar 20 BRIGGS Annie admitted
1864 Jun 6 BRIGGS Clara admitted
1864 Feb 23 BRIGGS Edward
allowed to commence painting
1863 Dec 8 BRIGGS John William
commenced colouring his maps
1864 Feb 15 BRIGGS John William
commenced drawing a map of Palestine, illustrative of Old Testament history
1864 Feb 23 BRIGGS John William allowed to commence painting
1864 Mar 9 BRIGGS John William commenced colouring his map of Palestine
1865 Feb 6 BRIGGS John William Readmitted
1865 Oct 30 BROADHEAD Alfred admitted
1865 Oct 30 BROADHEAD Clara admitted
1863 Oct 12 BROOKE Ellen admitted
1863 Oct 12 BROOKE George admitted
1863 Oct 12 BROOKE Hannah admitted
1864 May 20 BROOKE John admitted
1865 Nov 27 BROOKE John admitted
1864 Jun 6 BROWN Benjamin admitted
1864 Oct 25 BULLOCK Tom admitted
1865 Jan 16 BUTTERWORTH Harriet admitted
1864 Jan 25 BUTTERWORTH Maria admitted
evening lecture on Phrenology, children admitted for half price
1865 Aug 10 BUTTERWORTH Mr
answered letter requesting the loan of the school
1864 Jun 27 CAWOOD Mary Ann admitted
1864 May 9 CAWOOD William admitted
1864 Jan 12 CHAPPELL Oswald admitted
1863 Oct 16 CLARKSON Mr of Earlesheaton
looked through the school
1865 May 1 CLEGG Arthur Readmitted
1864 Feb 4 CLEGG Joshua
injured thumb crushed in classroom door by carelessness
1863 Dec 14 COX James
received information on death, was at school on Thursday died Sunday
1864 Jan 28 COX Joseph
late 10 minutes – unwell
1864 Feb 26 COX Joseph
did not attend, unwell
1864 Mar 16 COX Joseph
late to give Pupil teachers lessons due to being deprived of sleep while attending a sick child
1864 Aug 11 COX Joseph
1864 Oct 4 COX Joseph
unwell not much in school for 2 days
1864 Oct 10 COX Joseph
two children of head teacher in scarletina and a third began. Teacher fetched out a child in convulsions
1864 Oct 11 COX Joseph
the third child (Bertram Cox 1863-12 Oct1864) who commenced scarletina is dead
1864 Oct 12 COX Joseph
not in school today, child interred Betram Cox 1863-1864
1864 Oct 18 COX Joseph
Master but a little time in school – with dying child Lizzie Cox 1862-1864
1864 Oct 19 COX Joseph
Child (Lizzie Cox 1862-1864) died, other 2 children began to be ill
1864 Oct 20 COX Joseph
at home – internment of Lizzie Cox 1862-1864
1864 Nov 29 COX Joseph
left school at 3:30pm to attend funeral of a late pupil
1864 Dec 2 COX Joseph
absent in afternoon
1865 May 29 COX Joseph
Principai Teacher
unwell did not meet pupil teachers for lessons
1865 Jul 11 COX Joseph
Principal Teacher
did not attend to give pupil teacher lessons, deprived of rest with a sick child
1865 Aug 1 COX Joseph
Principal Teacher
unwell in morning, didn’t give pupil teacher lessons, took them at night instead
1865 Sep 8 COX Joseph
Principal Teacher
at Leeds, Eli Morton came to assist teachers
1865 Nov 14 COX Mrs
wife of principal teacher
ill, Eli Morton assisting in school
1865 Jul 10 CRAB? Morris admitted
1864 Oct 24 DEWS Fred admitted
1865 Jul 17 DEWS Henry admitted
1864 Apr 18 DEWS John Henry admitted
1865 Apr 11 DEWS Lister
absent from examinations
1864 Apr 18 DEWS Mark Lucas admitted
1865 Feb 16 DEWS Oliver punished
told his mother he had been detained in school 2 hours, which is false, so punished him
1864 Jun 6 DEWS Thomas William admitted
1863 Aug 24 DYSON Annie admitted
1863 Aug 24 DYSON James admitted
1863 Jul 21 EASTWOOD Mr
a teacher from Stalybridge
requested look over school
1864 Apr 18 ELI Mary Emily admitted
1864 Jun 22 ELI Mary Emily
brought to school by sister, she had been sent every day but this was her first attendance
1864 Feb 29 ELLIS Edward jnr admitted
1865 Mar 20 ELLIS Eli admitted
1865 Sep 25 ELLIS Gertrude admitted
1863 Oct 14 ELLIS Joseph
absent absented himself because he was not allowed dinner until his task was learnt
1864 Jan 25 ELLIS William admitted
1865 Nov 24 ELLIS William
does not show satisfactory progress
1865 Jan 17 ELY Emily Mary
running away from school
1865 Apr 25 ELY Walter
annoyed teachers and hindered scholars in the infants
1865 Aug 9 FARRAR Mary
on report for idleness at needlework
1863 Sep 21 FLOWES Henry admitted
1865 Nov 24 FOTHERGILL Armitage
does not show satisfactory progress
1864 Jun 6 FOTHERGILL Benjamin admitted
1865 Jan 16 FOTHERGILL Fred admitted
1865 Sep 4 FOTHERGILL Martha Readmitted
1865 Mar 6 GIGGAL Mary admitted
1864 Mar 24 HAIGH Edward cautioned
monitor and pupil teacher Eli Morton caused a disturbance in playground
1864 Nov 9 HAIGH Edward
commenced a system of book keeping
1865 Aug 10 HAIGH Edward
Trainee pupil teacher sent advertisement to Mercury office for Edward Haigh
1865 Feb 3 HAIGH Edward
Trainee pupil teacher
sets up school fires ready for lessons
1865 Oct 31 HAIGH Edward
commenced sweeping the school
1865 Sep 26 HAIGH Edward
Trainee pupil teacher
had to stay to get lessons
1865 Oct 5 HAIGH Edwin
Trainee pupil teacher
not at lessons and task not well learnt
1865 Oct 11 HAIGH Edwin
Trainee pupil teacher
not at lessons
1863 Oct 13 HAIGH Venus admitted
1864 Feb 1 HAIGH Venus admitted
1863 Oct 13 HAIGH Vincent admitted
1865 Mar 13 HAIGH Walter admitted
1865 Mar 21 HALLATT George William admitted
1864 Feb 16 HALSTEAD Bingley admitted
1863 Jul 17 HANSON William
a boy in first class commenced drawing on paper
1863 Dec 2 HARROP Abram
came into school intoxicated and caused confusion and stoppage of school work
1865 Mar 20 HARROP George admitted
1864 Aug 22 HEALEY Oxley
Parent was sent a note to say owing to irregular attendance of children not admitted until they have been seen
1864 Feb 22 HEATON Alfred admitted
1864 Feb 22 HEATON Eliza Ann admitted
1863 Oct 19 HERBERT Mr
visited to solicit the loan of school for a magic lantern and panoramic entertainment
1864 Feb 24 HEY Joseph admitted
1864 May 2 HIGGS Charlotte admitted
1864 Mar 14 HOLDROYD Francis admitted
could be Francis Holdroyd RICHARDS
1863 Sep 21 HOLDSWORTH Hannah admitted
1865 Apr 11 HOWE Sarah Ann
absent from examinations
1865 Mar 16 HOWE Sarah Ann
punished for arriving late by remaining and copying from her reading for half hour after school
1864 Jun 13 HUNTER Emily admitted
1864 Jun 20 HUTCHINSON John
Parent fetched his children out of school without teachers leave to see equestrian parade in street
1865 Nov 27 HUTCHINSON John admitted
aged 13 and not able to pass standards 1 and 2
1865 Feb 13 ILLINGWORTH Annie admitted
1865 Sep 25 ILLINGWORTH Eliza admitted
1863 Sep 21 ILLINGWORTH Emma admitted
1865 Feb 13 ILLINGWORTH James admitted
1864 Jan 18 ILLINGWORTH Walter admitted
1864 May 2 JACKSON Alfred admitted
1864 Nov 28 JACKSON Joseph admitted
8 years old has never been to school
1864 May 20 KOOLS ? Arthur admitted
[hard to read]
1864 May 20 KOOLS ? Hives ? admitted
[hard to read]
1864 Jun 6 LAYCOCK Eli admitted
1865 Apr 11 LAYCOCK Eli
absent from examinations
1864 Jun 20 LAYCOCK Eli jnr admitted
1864 Feb 29 LAYCOCK Francis admitted
1863 Sep 14 LAYCOCK Fred Smith admitted
1863 Nov 9 LAYCOCK Lydia admitted
1864 May 9 LAYCOCK Lydia admitted
1864 Apr 18 LAYCOCK Walter admitted
1865 Sep 4 LAYCOCK Walter Readmitted
1865 Jul 10 LITTLE? Sophia admitted
1865 Oct 23 LITTLEWOOD Mrs
said she would have to give up sweeping school, she could no longer stand it
1865 Aug 21 LOCKWOOD Mary Readmitted
1865 Mar 13 LOCKWOOD Mary admitted
1865 Sep 25 LONGBOTTOM Edwin admitted
1865 Feb 6 LONGBOTTOM Sarah Ann admitted
1864 Dec 5 LONGBOTTOM William admitted
1863 Oct 12 LOOLT ? Ellen admitted
1865 Nov 24 MARSDEN George
does not show satisfactory progress
1863 Sep 11 MARSDEN Godfrey punished for bad conduct towards pupil teacher Eli Morton
1863 Sep 21 MARSDEN Jane admitted
1863 Nov 9 MARSDEN Jane admitted being the third of the same name in the school
1865 Jan 9 MARSDEN Jane admitted
1864 Mar 22 MARSDEN Joe
put back into second class
1865 Aug 9 MARSDEN Martha A
on report for idleness at needlework
1863 Nov 16 MARTIN Mrs
visited to speak with master about her boy
1865 May 1 MEGSON Albert admitted
1864 Aug 4 MERCER John Eli
Aunt requested that he not be kept so close to study
1864 Aug 29 MITCHELL Eli admitted
1864 Nov 7 MITCHELL Joseph admitted
1864 Aug 29 MITCHELL Joshua admitted
1865 Mar 13 MITCHELL Joshua admitted
1863 Oct 26 MITCHELL Sarah Ann admitted
1864 Aug 29 MITCHELL Sarah Ann admitted
1863 Dec 15 MORTON David punished
(brother of pupil teacher Eli Morton) for throwing a stone at another pupil cutting near eye
1863 Jul 1 MORTON Eli
Pupil Teacher
went to west town school to be examined
1863 Jul 9 MORTON Eli
Pupil Teacher
unwell, not at lessons
1863 Aug 5 MORTON Eli
Pupil Teacher
teaching History and composition
1863 Aug 28 MORTON Eli
late half hour late to lessons
1863 Oct 7 MORTON Eli
Pupil Teacher
lesson on miracle of Christ healing nobleman’s son
1863 Oct 20 MORTON Eli
Pupil Teacher
following masters examination of 2nd class in arithmetic, shown some defects in his teaching of it
1863 Oct 21 MORTON Eli
Pupil Teacher
pleased to hear that in the habit of visiting parents of those in his class to make them mindful of importance of them making their children attend night lessons
1863 Nov 16 MORTON Eli
Pupil Teacher
had to remain until 6pm to commit lessons to memory
1863 Nov 19 MORTON Eli
Pupil Teacher
observed master’s lessons on Communion of the Saints
1863 Nov 24 MORTON Eli
Pupil Teacher
35 minutes late
1863 Dec 4 MORTON Eli
Pupil Teacher
did not come to lessons, unable to wake in time
1863 Dec 10 MORTON Eli
Pupil Teacher
remained after school to get lessons up to date
1863 Dec 11 MORTON Eli
Pupil Teacher
came to lessons at 7am
1863 Dec 15 MORTON Mr
displeased with harsh punishment his son received for throwing a stone and complained
1863 Dec 15 MORTON Mr
complained about the master being harsh with son pupil teacher Eli Morton
1863 Dec 16 MORTON Eli
Pupil Teacher
not at school to receive his lessons
1864 Jan 4 MORTON Eli
Pupil Teacher absent to attend funeral of brother in law
1864 Jan 11 MORTON Eli
Pupil Teacher absent unwell
1864 Jan 15 MORTON Eli
Pupil Teacher absent unable to get up
1864 Jan 22 MORTON Eli
Pupil Teacher lesson to 1st class on Lords first miracle
1864 Mar 15 MORTON Eli
Pupil Teacher bible lesson to 2nd class on wanderings of Israelites
1864 Apr 21 MORTON Eli
Pupil Teacher not at lessons
1864 Jul 18 MORTON Eli
Pupil Teacher commenced double entry book keeping
1864 Sep 1 MORTON Eli
Pupil Teacher went off to Scotland for a week or more 1st to 8th
1864 Sep 23 MORTON Eli
Pupil Teacher went to Dewsbury and engaged himself as a book keeper for Messrs Cardwell Iron Foundry
1865 Jun 5 MORTON Eli
helping in school and next day on 6th
1865 Jul 18 MORTON Eli
ex-Pupil teacher assisted in the school a whole day
1865 Aug 23 MORTON Eli
ex-Pupil teacher came to assist in school and on 24th Aug also
1865 Aug 31 MORTON Eli
ex-Pupil teacher took 1st class and principal teachers worked among the lower classes
1865 Sep 5 MORTON Eli ex-Pupil teacher assisted in the afternoon with a division of the 3rd class
1865 Sep 8 MORTON Eli
ex-Pupil teacher assisting while principal teacher at Leeds
1865 Oct 2 MORTON Eli
ex-Pupil teacher officiating for John Teale who is at Buxton
1865 Oct 19 MORTON Eli
ex-Pupil teacher assisting
1865 Oct 26 MORTON Eli
ex-Pupil teacher assisted in school for the afternoon
1865 Nov 1 MORTON Eli
ex-Pupil teacher came in the afternoon to assist in school and on 2nd Nov
1865 Nov 14 MORTON Eli
ex-Pupil teacher assisting in school as principlal’s wife is ill and for rest of week assisting
1865 Dec 13 MORTON Eli
Pupil Teacher given special lessons between 5 and 7 o’clock
1863 Oct 19 MOSS Mary readmitted
1863 Oct 26 MOSS Mary admitted
1864 Jun 6 MOSS Thomas admitted
1863 Aug 5 NEARY Revd D.C.
School inspector report received
1863 Sep 16 NEARY Revd D.C.
School inspector visited, heard class read and examined 2nd class in arithmetic
1863 Sep 18 NEARY Revd D.C.
School inspector visited, gave lessons to 1st class in scripture, reading and geography
1865 Jan 19 NEARY Rev’d D C visited school
1865 Feb 3 NEARY Rev’d D C
settled with Haigh and Smith for school fires up to Feb 1865
1865 May 3 NEARY Rev’d D C
received letter from committee of council on school improved performance
1865 Oct 19 NEARY Mr visited the school
1865 Sep 25 NETTLETON Alexander admitted
1865 Jul 17 NETTLETON Emily admitted
1865 Feb 13 NETTLETON Emma admitted
1865 Nov 24 NETTLETON Kate does not show satisfactory progress
1864 Jun 6 NORTH Annie admitted
1864 Jun 2 NORTH Ebenezer admitted [hard to read]
1864 Jun 23 NORTH Philip Henry truant
1865 Jul 31 NORTH Philip Henry
Sent home because mother objected to paying school fees owing, amounting to 3/6
1864 Apr 18 OAKES George admitted
1864 Feb 1 OKLEY Eliz admitted
1865 Mar 20 OLDROYD Zillah having stayed away from school some time, returned
1865 Mar 21 OLDROYD Zillah admitted on promise from mother that she would attend regularly
1864 Feb 1 OSWALD Mary Jane admitted
1863 Nov 12 PARKER Mrs of Bronsholeae Hall visited and was pleased with intelligent looks of children
1865 Jun 28 PEACE Frank
2 boys laid in wait and punished him when returning home from school
1865 Mar 13 PEACE John William admitted
1863 Aug 4 PEACE Mary
mother came to school to request that Mary should not have such heavy night tasks as health is not good
1864 Jan 13 PEARCE Mrs enquiring about authority letter, cautioned boys to be more gentle in play
1864 May 9 PEARCE Eli admitted
1864 Mar 23 PERKINS Mr
Scripture Reader came to school to teach 1st class on the Catechism of the Ch of England
1864 Apr 1 PERKINS Mr
Scripture Reader gave scripture lesson to 1st class
1864 Apr 8 PERKINS Mr lectured 2nd class on Palestine
1864 Apr 19 PERKINS Mr visited but did not take a class
1864 Apr 22 PERKINS Mr took 2nd and 4th class in scriptures
1864 Jun 16 PERKINS Mr visited and took 2nd class in scriptures
1864 Sep 14 PERKINS Mr gave 3rd class a lesson church Catechism
1864 Sep 16 PERKINS Mr took 1st class in scriptures
1864 Sep 19 PERKINS Mr visited and took a class
1865 Jan 19 PERKINS Mr visited school
1865 Jan 31 PERKINS Mr visited, heard 1st division of the 3rd class read
1865 Mar 1 PERKINS Mr visited and took a class on scriptures
1864 Feb 1 PHILIP Thomas admitted
1863 Oct 5 PHILIPS Rachael admitted
1865 Jan 16 PICKARD Annis admitted
1863 Sep 21 PICKERSGILL Jane admitted
1863 Aug 5 POOLE Sarah
Pupil Teacher Teaching composition
1863 Aug 21 POOLE Sarah late didn’t awake on time
1863 Dec 17 POOLE Sarah
Pupil Teacher not at school to receive her lessons
1863 Jul 1 POOLE Sarah
Pupil Teacher went to west town school to be examined
1863 Jul 10 POOLE Sarah
Pupil Teacher gave scripture lesson to infants, rather lacking in simplicity
1863 Oct 7 POOLE Sarah
Pupil Teacher lesson on miracle of Christ healing nobleman’s son
1863 Oct 7 POOLE Sarah
Pupil Teacher lesson on miracle of Christ healing nobleman’s son
1863 Nov 16 POOLE Sarah
Pupil Teacher had to remain until 6pm to commit lessons to memory
1863 Nov 20 POOLE Sarah
Pupil Teacher 20 Minutes late
1863 Nov 26 POOLE Sarah
Pupil Teacher heard first class read from Old Testament
1864 Jan 11 POOLE Sarah
Pupil Teacher 20 minutes late
1864 Jan 15 POOLE Sarah
Pupil Teacher absent unwell
1864 Jan 20 POOLE Sarah
Pupil Teacher given Stow’s Training System to read over
1864 Jan 22 POOLE Sarah
Pupil Teacher lesson to 3rd and 4th class on Lords first miracle
1864 Jan 25 POOLE Sarah
Pupil Teacher conduct not satisfactory
1864 Feb 8 POOLE Sarah
Pupil Teacher absent in afternoon to attend cousin’s funeral
1864 Mar 15 POOLE Sarah
Pupil Teacher bible lesson to 1st class on wanderings of Israelites
1864 Apr 27 POOLE Sarah
Pupil Teacher scolded for late arrival
1864 May 5 POOLE Sarah
Pupil Teacher absent – unwell
1864 Jun 21 POOLE Sarah
Pupil Teacher absent attending aunts funeral
1864 Aug 30 POOLE Sarah
Pupil Teacher received circular from Ripon Training College
1864 Sep 13 POOLE Sarah
Pupil Teacher gave a scripture lesson to the 1st class
1864 Sep 27 POOLE Sarah
Pupil Teacher gave a scripture lesson
1864 Nov 21 POOLE Sarah
Pupil Teacher absent unwell
1864 Dec 16 POOLE Sarah
Pupil Teacher last day of teaching in the South Ossett Sch as PT, goes to try for scholarship Monday next
1865 Jan 16 POOLE Sarah
Pupil Teacher paid £10 for the last months ending Dec 31st 1864
1865 Jan 25 POOLE Sarah
ex Pupil Teacher passed in the second class of Queens Scholars
1865 Jan 27 POOLE Sarah
ex Pupil Teacher went to Ripon Training College
1865 Jul 7 POOLE Sarah
ex-Pupil teacher visited school with a friend
1864 Jan 18 PRIESTLEY Joseph admitted
1864 Jan 18 PRIESTLEY William admitted
1863 Nov 12 RAMSDEN Mrs of London visited and was pleased with intelligent looks of children
1865 Jan 9 RAWORTH admitted two children of this family name to infants school, [first names not recorded]
1865 Jan 30 RAWORTH Harry admitted
1865 Jan 23 REDFERN Eliza admitted
Trainee pupil teacher
1865 Jan 30 REDFERN Eliza Readmitted
1865 May 17 REDFERN Eliza
Trainee pupil teacher commenced assisting in teaching in preparation for her Pupil Teachership
1865 May 25 REDFERN Eliza
Trainee pupil teacher not at lessons
1865 Aug 2 REDFERN Eliza
Trainee pupil teacher not at lessons
1865 Aug 22 REDFERN Eliza
Trainee pupil teacher had to leave school ill
1865 Sep 21 REDFERN Eliza
Trainee pupil teacher lessons badly learnt
1865 Sep 26 REDFERN Eliza
Trainee pupil teacher had to stay to get lessons
1865 Oct 4 REDFERN Eliza
Trainee pupil teacher Late at lessons
1865 Oct 11 REDFERN Eliza
Trainee pupil teacher not at lessons
1865 Oct 12 REDFERN Eliza
Trainee pupil teacher gave a lesson to the 4th class on the whale
1865 Nov 23 REDFERN Eliza
Trainee pupil teacher arithmetic badly worked
1863 Nov 9 RICHARDS Henry admitted
1865 Aug 9 RICHMOND Jane on report for idleness at needlework
1864 Oct 25 ROBINSON John admitted
1865 Jan 16 SAXTON Edward Readmitted
1865 Jan 9 SAXTON Emma admitted
1864 Dec 19 SAXTON Mary admitted
1864 Feb 29 SCOTT Ellen admitted
1865 Oct 24 SENIOR Mrs refused to admit because of their irregular attendance and no promise of improvement
1864 Mar 14 SHAW Charles admitted
1864 Mar 14 SHAW Frederick admitted
1865 Apr 11 SHAW Fred absent from examinations
1864 Mar 2 SIMPSON Eliz Ann from 3rd class was about to leave school because she could not come for 2nd part of week
1864 Feb 22 SIMPSON Mary Ann admitted
1863 Sep 8 SMITH Alice requested she be kept home till she gets a little older
1865 Jan 2 SMITH Eliz Ann admitted
1863 Oct 23 SMITH Elliot
Censured for disobedience to John Poole
1864 Nov 9 SMITH Elliot commenced a system of book keeping
1864 Nov 22 SMITH Elliot Monitor sent home ill – scarletina
1865 Feb 3 SMITH Elliott
Trainee pupil teacher sets up school fires ready for lessons
1865 Mar 16 SMITH Elliott punished for disobedience
1865 Mar 29 SMITH Elliott
Trainee pupil teacher unwell
1865 May 18 SMITH Elliott
Trainee pupil teacher for the afternoon
1865 Sep 11 SMITH Elliott
Trainee pupil teacher retuned to school after along illness
1865 Sep 26 SMITH Elliott
Trainee pupil teacher had to stay to get lessons
1865 Oct 31 SMITH Ellis commenced sweeping the school
1863 Sep 21 SMITH James Archer admitted
1864 Jun 14 SMITH Martha went for a walk without parents knowledge
1865 Feb 27 SPURR Hartley admitted
1863 Aug 31 SPURR William truant just as he did at his previous schools
1864 Apr 18 STANSFIELD Samuel admitted
1864 Dec 12 STEAD Scholy? readmitted [hard to read]
1864 Feb 15 STOKER Eliza admitted
1863 Jul 1 TEALE Arthur John
Pupil Teacher went to west town school to be examined
1863 Aug 5 TEALE Arthur John
Pupil Teacher Teaching Reading
1863 Oct 15 TEALE Arthur John
Pupil Teacher absent
1863 Oct 23 TEALE Arthur John
Censured for roughness in playground
1863 Oct 28 TEALE Arthur John
Pupil Teacher after examining 3rd class in arithmetic and finding lack of progress master showed him their ignorance
1863 Nov 3 TEALE Arthur John
Pupil Teacher granted leave of absence to attend uncle’s funeral
1863 Nov 17 TEALE Arthur John
Pupil Teacher observed masters lessons on 2 of Lord’s miracles to 1st class
1863 Nov 20 TEALE Arthur John
Pupil Teacher 15 minutes late
1863 Nov 25 TEALE Arthur John
Pupil Teacher allowed to leave school at 3:15 to fetch medicine from Wakefield for his father
1863 Dec 10 TEALE Arthur John
Pupil Teacher remained after school to get lessons up to date
1864 Jan 22 TEALE Arthur John
Pupil Teacher lesson to 2nd class on Lord’s first miracle
1864 Feb 5 TEALE Arthur John
Pupil Teacher 15 minutes late to lessons
1864 Feb 17 TEALE Arthur John
Pupil Teacher left school for the day due to sickness
1864 Mar 1 TEALE Arthur John
Pupil Teacher absent – unwell long period 1st-7th and then a few more days
1864 Jul 18 TEALE Arthur John
Pupil Teacher commenced double entry book keeping
1864 Aug 19 TEALE Arthur John asked for leave to accompany his father
1864 Nov 16 TEALE Arthur John
Pupil Teacher showed how poorly the 3rd class had advanced under him in arithmetic
1864 Nov 29 TEALE Arthur John
Pupil Teacher left school at 3:30pm to attend funeral of a late pupil
1864 Dec 19 TEALE Arthur John
Pupil Teacher late and exercises badly done
1865 Feb 20 TEALE John
Pupil Teacher not at lessons in the morning laid in too long
1865 Mar 22 TEALE John
Pupil Teacher requested to stay home in the afternoon as his uncle had died
1865 Mar 23 TEALE John
Pupil Teacher permitted to remain home until after uncle’s interment as father is unwell
1865 Mar 27 TEALE John
Pupil Teacher not at lessons
1865 Mar 28 TEALE John
Pupil Teacher not at school, unwell, father sent note. Off until 31 March 1865 (last day of school year)
1865 Apr 27 TEALE John
Pupil Teacher poorly, allowed to go to sisters for half hour to get some refreshment
1865 May 23 TEALE John
Pupil Teacher not at lessons
1865 Jun 29 TEALE John
Started drawing a ????? of St Pauls to exhibit at forthcoming Wakefield Industrial Exhibition
1865 Aug 8 TEALE John
Pupil Teacher not at lessons this morning
1865 Sep 20 TEALE John
Pupil Teacher not at lessons unwell with headache
1865 Oct 2 TEALE John
Pupil Teacher off duty, at Buxton, Eli Morton officiating for him
1865 Oct 11 TEALE John
Pupil Teacher not at lessons
1865 Oct 13 TEALE John
Pupil Teacher absent, no reason given
1865 Dec 13 TEALE John
Pupil Teacher given special lessons between 5 and 7 o’clock
1865 Jun 7 THOMAS Miss of Alverthorpe School visited
1865 Jul 3 TOWNSEND Francis William admitted
1865 Nov 8 THOMPSON Mr of Manor House visited the school
1863 Oct 5 VICKERS George Edwin admitted
1863 Oct 5 VICKERS John Henry admitted
1864 Nov 23 VICKERS John Henry of 3rd class died of inflammation of the brain which induced scarletina 1858-1864
1865 Mar 21 VICKERS Nancy admitted
1864 Apr 18 WARD Andrew admitted
1864 Apr 25 WARD Andrew removed.
Pupil Teacher John Teale called on family to get ages and was told they will not be attending anymore
1865 Sep 18 WARD Andrew admitted
1864 Apr 18 WARD Olive admitted
1863 Sep 21 WHITAKER Sophia admitted
1865 Aug 21 WHITE Albert Readmitted
1865 Jul 10 WHITE Thomas admitted
1864 Jun 2 WILBY Adeline admitted
1863 Nov 10 WILBY Annie
Sent home for leaving school to go to a dance school, but teacher was ill so she returned to school, to be sent home
1864 Oct 17 WILBY Annie dau of Edwin Wilby
1864 Nov 21 WILBY Annie admitted
1865 Mar 24 WILBY Eliza
Mother wishes her to go to Mrs Burton’s School on Monday to learn music
1863 Oct 5 WILBY Emily admitted
1863 Sep 22 WILBY Emma Jane injured
Finger cut by one of doors while playing
1864 Jun 20 WILBY Fred punished
for going home without leave before doing his night lessons
1864 Jun 24 WILBY Fred punished
of 2nd class for putting dung in the mouth of another infant
1864 Jun 29 WILBY Fred taken home ill
1864 Aug 30 WILBY Harry admitted
1863 Dec 15 WILBY Herbert injured another pupil threw a stone at him and cut near his eye
1864 Jul 19 WILBY Jane sent home because mother would not pay same fees as others
1863 Aug 17 WILBY Joseph Benjamin admitted
1863 Nov 6 WILBY Joseph expelled for bad conduct, swearing and lying
1865 Aug 29 WILBY Joshua
Mr Joshua Wilby’s men claimed the outer offices today
1864 Jun 13 WILBY Mary Alice admitted
1863 Oct 5 WILBY Sarah Ellen admitted
1863 Aug 11 WILBY Thomas punished for truancy
1864 Jun 13 WILBY Thomas admitted
1864 Jun 13 WILCOCK Arthur admitted
1865 Nov 27 WILLIAMSON Martha admitted
1863 Sep 28 WILSON Jane Ann admitted
1864 Feb 29 WOOD Rose Ann admitted
1863 Sep 28 WRIGLEY Hannah admitted
1863 Sep 28 WRIGLEY Jane admitted
1865 Apr 24 admitted 11 boys and 11 girls [no names recorded]
1865 Jul 24 admitted 3 new scholars [no names recorded]
1865 May 6 Pupil Teacher received their Stipends for past 9 months (a fixed regular sum paid as a salary or as expenses to a teacher)
1865 May 15 admitted several scholars into infants [no names recorded]
1865 Nov 9 got a ton of coal from Terry and Greaves Pit 1865 Oct 16 admitted 6 new children [no names recorded]
September 2022



When Susan Naylor Peace was born in March 1844 in Gawthorpe her parents, Ann and James were farmers of 32 acres of land at New Park. She was the second of five children and by the time she was 14 years old she was apprenticed to a dressmaker, walking to and from work every day, two miles each way. She worked incredibly long hours from 6am til 8pm and earned 2s 6d a week. A long, tiring day for anyone but imagine if you were born with an impaired leg or foot as Susan was.

By the time he was 65 years old James Naylor Peace was retired from farming and had moved his family to a home on Upper Street. To better understand where that was, the Hammer and Stithy was just a short stride away. Susan was now a milliner and her younger sisters Sarah and Elizabeth were dressmakers; both respectable occupations for young women from middle-class or lower middle-class families. The oldest of the four girls, Mary, had married a year earlier and moved to Batley, whilst John, their only brother, had died in 1854 aged only four.

In 1874 Susan’s sister, 27year old Sarah, married George Henry Wilson, a mungo manufacturer and the owner of Heath House on Chancery Lane. George would be elected as the Mayor of Ossett in 1894 and their son George Frederick Wilson would go on to be the mayor for five terms! Later, their grandchildren Peter and Margaret would also serve Ossett. More about them here: Ossett Through TheAges (OTTA)

On August 19 1875 Susan married John Wray at West Parade Chapel, Wakefield. John’s parents, William and Maria (née Richardson), had a grocer’s shop at Northgate in Horbury. The shop passed to John and Susan (now Susannah) and for almost two decades they worked side by side. Records reveal that their shop was a part of their home.

John Wray was a member of the Horbury Urban District Council (formed in 1894) and both he and Susannah were prominent members of the Congregational Church. John’s time with the newly formed HUDC was short-lived and he retired in 1894 due to his ill health. At this time they also retired from their grocery business and moved to Portsmouth where John stood as a candidate for the Town Council.

Horbury Town Hall, Westfield Road.
Photo: Anthony Oldroyd.

In 1915 six cottages, for poor widows or spinsters over 60 years of age, were erected by John and Susannah Naylor Wray at Leeds Road, Ossett, not far from where Susannah once lived with her family. The Wray’s Homes Charity was constituted on October 25 1915 and still exists today. The six cottages were eventually converted into four to make them a better living space and all had extensions added at the back.

John Wray died in Portsmouth in 1927 and in 1934 Susannah had four ‘Wray’s Homes’ built on Northfield Lane, Horbury, in memory of her beloved husband. In 1967 the Common Lands Trust, with the approval of the Charity Commission, disposed of these almshouses and proceeds from the sale were invested for the benefit of the people Susannah and John Wray intended to help.

Duke Street Cemetery Southport, Metropolitan Borough of Sefton, Merseyside, England
(image sourced from Find a Grave)

As a child, Susannah was described as ‘delicate’ and wasn’t expected to live very long. Well she proved everyone wrong when she passed away on May 9 1946 at the age of 102.

If you have any more information about Susannah and John Wray, or the homes they built, please email:




by Michael Frankland

A History of Ossett

Ossett is a corporate town with a population of rather more than 11,000 souls. It stands in the West Yorkshire coal field; the carboniferous rocks are overlaid with glacial debris. The Grammar School, selected by the officers of the ordnance survey as the centre of the town, lies in longitude 1 degree 34 minutes 4 seconds West and latitude 53 degrees 40 minutes 46 seconds. The railway station is 9 miles from Leeds, 11 from Bradford, 3½ from Wakefield and 2 miles from Dewsbury.

Roughly speaking, the principal streets lie in the form of a horseshoe, stretching from Flushdyke to the eastern extremity of the Common. The greater portion of the town is built on a plateau whose surface is some 300 feet above the level of the sea. The area of the township is 3,105 acres and it is traversed by 15 miles of highway.

The town was lighted with gas in 1855; the sewering of the town was completed in 1878 and the water supply in 1877. Up to the middle of the last century Ossett consisted of four villages, Gawthorpe, Street Side, the Towngate and Southwood Green. The pack horse road from Rochdale to Wakefield crossed the Calder at Healey; the track in those days ascended the hillside and crossed the fields at the bottom of Kay Lane, where portions may still be seen trending to the Common. A Roman road ran 1600 years ago along Street Side from Wakefield to KIrklees.

The town forms part of the ancient parish of Dewsbury, of the Wapentake of Agbrigg, of the County Council District of Ossett and Soothill, and the Parliamentary Division of Morley.

The word Ossett means God’s Hall and Gawthorpe means Cuckoo Town.

From the Domesday Book compiled about A.D. 1086 we learn that Osleset contained 3½ carucates of land, 4 villanes, 3 bordars and 2 ploughs; Orberie, 2 carucates, 7 oxgangs; Ettone, 1 carucate; Morlei 6 carucates. Ossett, Earlsheaton and Horbury belonged to the king. In Osleset stood a wood half a mile long and half a mile broad. We may note that no church or chapel stood here, that there was no great local lord, and that the district escaped the devastation that fell upon the East Riding.

In the year 1379, when Richard II was King, and two years before Wat Tyler’s insurrection, we find that the Poll Tax levied that year: Ossett paid 27s 0d, Soothill paid 13s 8d, Dewsbury paid 14s 4d, Horbury paid 18s4d, Ardsley paid 19s4d, Thornhill paid 26s6d, Batley paid 39s0d, Morley paid 11s4d, Mirfield paid 48s8d, Wakefield paid 95s8d, Leeds paid 60s4d, Bradford paid 23s0d.

Ossett contained at that date 74 householders, representing a population of about 400, that of Leeds being between 180 and 200. In the list of names we find a merchant, two tailors, two shoemakers, a blacksmith, a joiner, and other trades. Below are a few of the names with the amounts they paid in silver pennies, which may be taken as the equivalent to eighteen pence or two shillings of our present money: Thomas de Westerton, marchaud – xijd. William, filius Hugoni, taillour – vjd. Johannes Bull, souter – vjd. Ricardus, filius Johannis, smythe – iiijd. Magota Scott – iiijd.

Thus, in 1379, Ossett was a considerable town for the middle ages. Handloom weaving had already been introduced, and also coal mining, alas also with its accidents. Thirteen years previously, Adam Adamson of Gawthorpe had fallen down a pit and broken his neck.

Ossett from the earliest times has been inhabited largely by middle-class people; I can find no record of any rich man living here; on the other hand the extremely indigent seem to have been equally absent.

A rate was levied in 1662 on the basis of an assessment made in 1568: Bradford paid 1s8d, Batley paid 0s7½d, Dewsbury paid 1s 0½d qr, Horbury paid 0s 10d, Halifax paid 1s7½d qr., Mirfield 1s1½d qr., Morley 0s10½d, Soothill 0s10d, Thornhill 0s10d, Wakefield 2s3d, Leeds 3s4d, Ossett 1s0d.

But in 1523, a tax had been levied on a principle somewhat resembling that on which income tax is now levied, and towards this: Bradford paid £4/2s/10d, Batteley paid £1/8s/8d, Mirfield £0/15s/10d, Morlay £0/6s/0d, Ardislaw £0/7s/0d, Wakefield £37/9s/10d, Dewysbury £2/1s/10d, Horburry £1/9s/8d, Sotehill £2/17s/8d, Ossett £0/9s/0d.

John Awdislay was the largest contributor; he owned lands valued at 40s. a year in rental. This return shows very plainly the marked absence of rich men in our township.

Insomuch as Ossett lay near the fortress of Sandal it has seen military operations. During the wars of the Roses, the Battle of Wakefield was fought in the Ings between Horbury and Sandal; bands of insurgents streamed through the township in the Pilgrimage of Grace. Fairfax passed Ossett on Sunday morning, May 21 1642. Thornhill Parish Church was bombarded by cannon planted at the foot of Runtlings Lane.

Ossett was strongly Royalist during the Civil War. William the Conqueror granted the government of Osleset to William de Warrene, and this caused our town to be ruled from the Manor Court in Wakefield, remnants of whose jurisdiction remain in the testing of weights and measures by that court and in the “copyhold” of the land. The lordship reverted to the Crown in 1315; in 1362 Edward III gave it to his son Edmund de Langley. After passing through various hands, the Duke of Leeds purchased the lordship of the manor in 1700. In 1816, William Ingham, Charles Adams and Joseph Smith made an attempt to rid the township from the galling burden of the soke, but failed. In 1853 Wakefield, Ossett and Sandal purchased exemption at a cost of £18,000.

The year 1834 saw the formation of a Select Vestry, followed in 1836 by the Board of Surveyors, by the Local Board in 1870, and the Charter of Incorporation in 1890, Alderman Clay being the first mayor. A borough bench was granted in 1894.

During the present century Ossett has made steady progress. In 1801 the population was 3,424, in 1811 it was 4,033, in 1821 it was 4,775, in 1831 it was 5,325, in 1841 it was 6,077, in 1851 it was 6,265, in 1861 it was 7,950, in 1871 it was 9,200, in 1881 it was 10,952 and in 1891 it was 10,984.

To come to matters ecclesiastical, Sir John Gillott emerges out of the darkness in 1538 as the probable curate-in-charge of Ossett, and Sir George Mawde with more certainty in 1557. The first three entries in the parish registers of Dewsbury are Robert Longley, Richard Nettleton and John Audsley; all these names are strongly suggestive of residence in our town. In 1572, Richard Bowman, “reder” of Ossett, was buried at Dewsbury.

The year 1729 saw a gallery erected in the Chapel-of-ease, which stood in the Market Place; this chapel was rebuilt in 1806. South Ossett was made a separate ecclesiastical district in 1846; North Ossett in 1858, and Gawthorpe in 1894. South Ossett Church was consecrated in 1851, Holy Trinity Church, the pride of Ossett and a beautiful edifice, in 1865, the foundation-stone having been laid by Mr. B. Ingham of Palermo in 1862. The Rev. H.C. Cradock, M.A. is the present vicar.

The history of the Non-conformist Church at the Green has been told in an admirable manner by Mr. E. Pollard. Itself a branch from Westgate, Wakefield, and organised in 1717, the first meeting being held in a dry-house, it became the mother of seven other churches. The present handsome chapel was opened in 1883.

Wesleyanism dates in this town from 1758; the first chapel, situate in Land’s Fold still remains. Mr. John Phillips was an enthusiastic supporter of the movement; in fact, the denomination has had a Phillips as its most prominent member for 140 years; the fine chapel in Wesley Street was opened in 1868. Horbury introduced Primitive Methodism into Ossett in 1822; the denomination now owns chapels in this parish which have cost in the aggregate £4,900; the Rev. B. Haddon, an author of ability, is the present minister.

The pretty chapel in Dale Street is the home of the Methodist Free Church; this body dates from 1849.

Altogether there are 20 separate congregations in Ossett, most of them possessing handsome places of worship; the number of “sittings” exceeds the population of church-going age. A feature of all these churches and chapels is their excellent organs – the Ossettonian loves music.

Ossett Mechanics’ Institute was commenced in 1850; the present building. “The Ossett Mechanics’ Institute and Technical School,” dating from 1890; County Councillor H. Westwood is the president; it contains a reading room, library, chess and committee rooms, a lecture hall, seven classrooms, a laboratory, and is well supplied with the requirements for instruction in science, art and handicraft. The Reference Library, presented by Mr. C.M. Gaskell, is noteworthy for its collection of Ruskin’s works. There is also a small Grammar School, founded as a Town’s School in 1745, and five excellent elementary schools.

The compiler’s space is more than exhausted; still mention must be made of the staple industry of Ossett, namely, the manufacture of mungo, introduced into Ossett by Mr. D. Phillips in 1845; it gradually supplanted cloth weaving; one hand-loom, however, is still to be heard; when that is silent, the craft, which dates in Ossett from the days of the Magna Carta, will be extinct; “power-loom weaving” is a rapidly declining industry. In other towns, “rags and poverty” go together; in Ossett, “rags and riches.” This trade suggested the Borough Motto –Inutile utile ex arte.

In Ossett we find Liberal and Conservative Clubs, a Temperance Society, Band of Hope, a Benevolent Society, the Choral Union (1837), two Brass Bands, a Chamber of Commerce, a Tradesman’s Association, a Cricket Club, a Football Club, with numerous auxiliaries. The writer has already collected enough information on Ossett’s past and present to fill a book instead of a leaflet, but the publication of this material must be reserved. This curtailed account is written to furnish an ephemeral description of our township for the convenience of the delegates to the Annual Meeting of the Union of Yorkshire Institutes in 1895, and to assure our visitors of the hearty welcome which Ossett has from time immemorial given to its friends.

M. Frankland. 1895

Sourced by: Anne-Marie Fawcett 2022


Many in Ossett have memories of Mr Klat. You may recall his shop that stood on the corner of Church Street and Dale Street.

Zbigniew Franciszek Klatkiewicz was born in Oporów, Poland on March 28 1922. He had dreamed of being a pilot ever since he was a child. But, as his dreams began to come true, World War II broke out and his family lost sight of him for over half a century.

Zbigniew Klatkiewicz’s war had begun whilst he was still a cadet at Szkola Podoficerow Lotnictwa dla Maloletnich (SPLdM), the Polish Air Force Non Commissioned Officer’s School for Minors. Prospective candidates were between the ages of 16 and 17 years and had to attend two days of rigorous examinations, be physically fit and possess the recognised aptitude required by the Polish Air Force (PAF). Zbigniew’s first year would likely have consisted of drill, physical training and formal learning of military regulations. By the end of the year the authorities would have selected those who would go forward for pilot training.

Zbigniew Klatkiewicz (far left) as a 17 year air cadet.

Due to the pressure to train more pilots a satellite airfield was opened at the end of July 1939 and this is where Zbigniew Klatkiewicz was on September 1 1939 when Germany invaded Poland. At 6am almost thirty German airplanes attacked the school. It is reported that over 60 aircraft out of the 200 on the ground were destroyed and many others damaged. The bombs fell into the anti aircraft ditch, where the students had taken cover. The airfield was not prepared for defense – the only bomb shelter was badly disguised and the anti aircraft ditch was clearly visible from above. Thirty two were killed and many more were wounded. As a result of the attack, the Polish Air Force encouraged the students and their instructors to escape to England or France. The decision to evacuate was based on the notion that after the fall of Poland, its navy, soldiers and airmen would be needed in the defence of France and Britain.

Zbigniew and his sisters

On September 5 1939 SPLdM cadets, including 18 year old Zbigniew, set off from Moderówka to Warsaw, but on the way they were directed to Łuck (Lutsk) and from there to Sniatyn (both now located in the Ukraine) where there was a pre-war Polish border with Romania. In September 1941, Sniatyn came under German administration, but had previously been briefly under Romanian, and then Hungarian, control. Between September and December, hundreds of the town’s 3,000 Jews were murdered in death pits in the nearby forest. In April 1942 deportations began from the ghetto at Sniatyn to the death camp at Belzec. By September almost the entire Jewish population had been transported there and murdered.

On September 17 Zbigniew and the other cadets crossed the border and were interned. Almost all those interned in transit camps in Hungary and Romania escaped between the autumn of 1939 and the summer of 1940. The Hungarian and Romanian governments became anti-Polish while the people remained largely supportive and assisted in escapes. Conditions in the camps were very poor and medical support at best totally inadequate. The cadets managed to escape the camp, either by bribery or due to the lack of supervision by the guards. Many headed for the Polish Embassy in Bucharest where their photographs were taken, passports were made and forged visas under assumed names were issued.

Zbigniew became ill with dysentery and so his escape from the camp was delayed. Once his health improved sufficiently, he secured for himself the necessary forged documents and eventually arrived, via Syria, in France.

Zbigniew was one of thousands of Polish servicemen who made their way to France. He said: “After six weeks they (the French) moved the Poles to Lyon, where they waited for further piloting instructions. However, it all went slowly and the French sent the Poles to the front as infantry with rifles from the Napoleonic era and with ten cartridges”. It was only later that Zbigniew won “a decent rifle after some German was killed”.

They retreated all the time in the direction of Toulouse, where he threw away everything he had. He was left with only a rifle, a haversack and a pouch. He walked from Lyon to Toulouse – a distance of over 400km. From Toulouse the Polish were driven to the Mediterranean. They had hoped that they would find a ship to take them onward, but they failed, making it necessary to move back through the Pyrenees to the Atlantic, where Zbigniew said he “managed to get on the penultimate ship from France to Africa“. The Germans tried to intercept the ship but failed and, after 10 days of sailing, Zbigniew reached Africa.

The first Polish pilots arrived in Britain on December 8 1939 and by the end of July 1940 the total of Polish airmen on British soil had reached 8,384. The Polish named Britain “Wyspa Ostatniej Nadziei” – “The Island of the Last Hope“.

The British, like the French before them, were doubtful about the flying skills of the Polish pilots but the fact that the British airmen were exhausted and the air force undermanned eventually overcame any reservations. It soon became clear to the British that the Polish were extremely skilled pilots and they quickly gained a reputation for being fearless to the point of recklessness.

Zbigniew Klatkiewicz arrived in England in 1941 and in May 1942 he graduated from RAF Henlow, Bedfordshire. During the war years, RAF Henlow became one of the largest RAF Maintenance Units in the country and was used to assemble the Hawker Hurricanes which had been built at the Hurricane factory in Ontario, Canada. After test flying in Fort William, they were disassembled and sent to Henlow in shipping containers and reassembled.

On May 25 1943 Zbigniew began combat training at RAF Finningley, Doncaster and graduated in August that same year. He was then incorporated into the 300th Squadron, a bomber squadron which was formed at Bramcote, Warwickshire on July 1 1940. During WW2 the RAF base was best known as the front line bomber command base and as a centre of excellence for training pilots and air crew. Robin Hood Airport now sits on the former site of RAF Finningley.

Zbigniew said: “I was very lucky. I made a lot of flights, until at the end of January 1944, my machine was shot badly, two engines fell on bombardment at one of the first airports, the machine fell apart. The whole crew went out, though no one was injured. Only I was crushed. I broke my left collarbone and a pair of ribs”. On March 20 1944 Zbigniew was sent to rest after combat flights at an air base in Blackpool.

Blackpool became the RAF’s largest training area during WW2. The Tower was requisitioned and had 10 feet removed to enable the fitting of a Radar Aerial. Another requisition was Burton’s, a Restaurant come Ballroom. This was used for testing Wireless Operator’s on their Morse Code – hence the phrase ‘gone for a Burton’.

Stanley Park Municipal Airport, which is now Blackpool Zoo, opened in 1931. The airport was commandeered in 1939 by the Royal Air Force as No3 Technical Training School; Wellington Bombers were also assembled there. RAF Squire Gate, now Blackpool International Airport, was used as a fighter squadron base; it was also a training base. Hurricanes and Defiants were flown from here by British and Polish squadrons.

After a month of recuperation Zbigniew travelled to Scotland to RAF Evanton where he served as a staff pilot, tirelessly flying navigators into the air to train over the featureless mountains and lakes. The airfield was by the seashore of the Cormarty of Firth, 16 miles north of Inverness.

From Scotland Zbigniew found himself assigned as staff pilot, instructor and test pilot to RAF Manby, Lincolnshire. RAF Manby was built as an Armament Training School and was responsible for training armament officers, bomb aimers, air gunners and armourers, using a variety of aircraft ranging from Hawker Hinds to Wellingtons.

After the war fewer than 3,000 Poles returned to their homeland; 2,800 emigrated from the UK to other countries of residence, and 500, mostly flying personnel, joined the RAF.

Zbigniew’s parents, Marta and Marcin, didn’t know what had become of their son. He had simply vanished. They had spent many years looking for him with the aid of the Polish Red Cross (Polski Czerwony Krzyż – PCK). Not until 1947 did the family learn that Zbigniew had survived the war and had settled in England.

After a courtship which lasted at least two years, on Christmas Eve 1946 Zbigniew Klatkiewicz proposed to Marjorie Iseton. They were married in the Spring of 1947 in Sedgewick, Durham. Marjorie, born on July 29 1922, was the oldest of two daughters and before her marriage she had been a typist. Her parents, Thomas and Ethel née Dyke ran a draper’s shop, selling children’s clothing. Her younger sister Constance (born December 3 1923) worked in the shop with them.

Zbigniew and Marjorie on their wedding day in 1947

In January 1947, Zbigniew finally managed to establish contact with his family in Poland. After all of his previous letters had been “returned to sender”, he almost gave up hope of ever finding them. He said he was overjoyed to finally be in touch with everyone and to know that everyone was “all right and healthy.” Zbigniew’s parents were still alive then. His father Marcin died in 1950 and his mother Marta in 1961.

In August 1948, Sergeant Pilot Zbigniew Klatkiewicz transferred to the Polish Aerospace Adaptive Corps (PRC) at RAF Hednesford, Staffordshire. He left military service in February 1949. Zbigniew Klatkiewicz was awarded the Polish Order of the Virtuti Militari which recognises and rewards outstanding military valor above and beyond the call of duty. It is one of the oldest decorations for valor in the world and is equivalent to the US Medal of Honour and the British Victoria Cross. He was also awarded the Polish Cross of Valour (Krzyż Walecznych) which is awarded to one who has demonstrated deeds of valor and courage on the field of battle. He also received: the Air Crew Europe Star, a medal awarded to Commonwealth aircrew who participated in operational flights over Europe from UK bases, between September 3 1939 to June 5 1944 (outbreak of war until the start of the D-Day Normandy Invasion), the 1939-1945 Star and the Defence and War medals.

Also in 1949 Zbigniew and Marjorie had their first son, Bernard who was born in Newcastle. By the summer of 1950 the family had moved to Wakefield where Zbigniew took a job in a bakery. They lived at 19 Duke of York Street, just off Jacob’s Well Lane. Their second son Paul was born in Wakefield in 1954. They then moved to Ossett where they opened a grocery shop at the junction of Dale Street and Church Street. “Klat’s”.

Zbigniew did plan to visit his family in Poland, but he was discouraged by the political situation. It’s certainly no coincidence that he waited until September 1991 to visit his sister in Poznań, with Marjorie and his granddaughter; 1991 saw the first parliamentary elections since the fall of communism and Soviet troops started to leave Poland.

All the remaining family were awaiting his arrival in Ostroróg and, as he greeted his sister Jadwiga, Zbigniew who was 69 years old, was overcome with emotion. He hadn’t seen her since he was 17. There was a huge celebration at the Mercure Hotel, after which he then travelled on to the home of his nephew where he greeted his relatives whom he had not seen for over 50 years. He had been there only two hours when he was taken ill and a doctor had to be called. Dr Tadeusz Tanalski diagnosed a heart attack.

An ambulance took Zbigniew to hospital where he stayed for almost three weeks. However, his broken heart could not be cured and Zbigniew Klatkiewicz died on September 21 1991 in the Szamotuły hospital.

Marjorie flew his Zbigniew’s coffin back to England where he was buried at the cemetery in Newark on Trent, Nottinghamshire with other Polish airmen from 300 Squadron. Sadly, the Polish Air Force’s 300 Squadron suffered the highest number of deaths of any Bomber Command unit.

The family in Poland cherish the memory of their uncle and they tell their children about Zbigniew Klatkiewicz, who left his home in Oporów in 1938. And how, in 1991 when Poland was a free state, he returned to his homeland to die among his own people.

Much of this research had been translated into English from Polish. My grateful thanks to Michael Klatkiewicz, the grandson of Zbigniew Klatkiewicz, for pointing me in the right direction.



©️ Anne-Marie Fawcett June 28 2022

In 1940 more than 1,400 appeals by Spitfire Fund Committees were set up nationwide by councils, businesses, voluntary organisations and individuals. The townships of Ossett and Horbury combined to raise £5,000 for a Spitfire.

A poster on display at Horbury Library in 2017

The fund was officially launched on Thursday 29 August 1940 and by the following Saturday morning had reached a total of £1,533. A week after its launch the fund was £1,000 away from the target.¹ To give that a little perspective, £5,000 in 1940 would now be around £270,000.

At a time of severe austerity when money, food and every other basic need was in short supply, it is incredible to think how the community rallied together to achieve this. An excerpt from the Ossett Observer in 1941 proudly reported: “The response which was both immediate and generous, was covered by every section of the community, from the richest to the poorest.”

The young pilot is Herbert Gledhill who flew this aircraft above Ossett and Horbury during the fundraiser.

By September 28 the total stood at £4,620 but the next day, at an auction of woollen rags at Eastwood & Nephew in Dewsbury, a further £400 (£16k) was raised. The rags were donated by Ossett, Horbury, Dewsbury and Batley rag merchants; WH Kilburn, head of the auction house, put up five mystery parcels which went on to raise a further £55 (£2k+).²

In just four weeks these communities had smashed their target and on June 13 1941 Spitfire P8346 was delivered to RAF Northolt, the home of the Polish 303 Squadron.

Jozef Bondar was born on July 8 1916 in Treze in the pre-war Białystok Province, to the parents of Aleksander and Anna, née Łozowska. He attended four years of elementary school in Trycze, then at the Teachers’ College in Grodno. He spoke fluent French and Russian and he passed his secondary school-leaving examination in 1936.

Jozef Bondar

From September 1, 1936, Jozef served in the Polish Army, initially undergoing a unitary course at the Infantry Cadet School in Różan. In the September campaign, this young pilot made a total of 9 sorties (during 16 hours), fought the enemy 6 times, and his plane was hit 3 times. His commanders assessed him as a very good, brave, willing pilot with a very positive attitude to flying. He was even presented for decoration with the Silver Cross of the Virtuti Militari War Order, but he never received it.

From January 1937 to mid-June 1939, he was a student of the Aviation Cadet School in Dęblin. He finished it in the twelfth promotion, with a 20th position on his yearbook. Trained as a fighter, with seniority on August 1, 1939, he was promoted to the rank of second lieutenant. On June 15, 1939, he was assigned to the 151 Fighter Squadron, as part of the mobilization of the Independent Operational Group “Narew”, flying obsolete PZL P.7 fighters, during the Polish Campaign of 1939. After travelling to France, he was posted to Morocco where he flew non-operational flights.

During the invasion of Germany, Polish pilots were among the many who were forced to flee their homeland. They came to fight for freedom and their country, they came to fight Germans. Men of the Polish Air Force, who had escaped first to France and then to Britain, to fly alongside the Royal Air Force just as Fighter Command faced its greatest challenge the Battle of Britain.

Many of the Polish airmen joined existing RAF squadrons. The Polish also formed their own squadrons, but only four became operational during the Battle of Britain: Nos. 300 and 301, were bomber squadrons, with another two, Nos. 302 and 303, being fighter squadrons. Flying Hawker Hurricanes, both 302 and 303 squadrons were active by the middle of August 1940, just when they were most needed, at the height of the Battle of Britain, with Fighter Command stretched to its limit.

The Polish squadrons, battle-hardened from their encounters with the Luftwaffe during the invasion of Poland and Battle of France, soon made their mark. In particular, 303 Squadron became the highest-scoring unit of Fighter Command.

In total, 145 Polish pilots, the largest non-British contingent in Fighter Command at the time, fought in the Battle of Britain. While Winston Churchill praised the contribution of the Few, the pilots of many nationalities who had defended Britain, Air Chief Marshall Sir Hugh Dowding was more specific: “Had it not been for the magnificent material contributed by the Polish squadrons and their unsurpassed gallantry, I hesitate to say that the outcome of the Battle would have been the same”.³

Jozef eventually made his way to England to join the Allies in the fight against the Nazis and in June 1941 he was posted to Polish 303 Squadron, the squadron which was named after the Polish hero General Tadeusz Kościuszko.

On July 26 1941 a ghetto was created in Jozef’s hometown of Białystok. The town was initially captured by the German army on September 15 1939 but was handed over to the Soviet Union a week later. It became a prison for about 60,000 Jews from the city and nearby towns. The Germans seized Białystok again on June 27 1941 and burned down the Jewish district, together with the Great Synagogue, with almost 2,000 people locked inside.⁴

The following day Pilot Officer Jozef Bondar was shot down by Unteroffizer Emil Babenz 1/JG26 at Aubers, nine miles west of Lille, northern France. He was flying the Ossett and Horbury Spitfire.

Jozef bailed out but didn’t survive and is buried at Aubers Ridge British Cemetery, northern France. He is remembered on many memorials, including one that was unveiled at the crash site on June 28 2003 – 62 years after his death.

This memorial plaque was unveiled on June 28 2003. Photos: Michel Coste.

The people of Ossett and Horbury were never formally told that the Spitfire they raised £5,000 to build only lasted nine days before crashing and burning. Did they ever know of Jozef’s death? There was no memorial for Jozef Bondar in either township.

Photo: Rachel Driver
Former and current members of Ossett Civic Society

In July 2021 a small group of us saw a privately funded memorial plaque for Jozef Bondar installed in Ossett Market Place, close by to our War Memorial where so many from Ossett are remembered. We thought it a fitting place to remember this man who is connected to our town.

Anne-Marie Fawcett ©️ June 28 2022

  1. Ossett Observer 1941
  2. Bradford Observer September 1940
  3. Polish Airforce
  4. The Polish Few
  5. Laguna’s Spitfire Legacy

Zbigniew Klatkiewicz, a former resident of Ossett, also came from Poland to fight with the Allies. You’ll find his story here: Mr Klat


Lady Fanny Lucy Houston DBE was known as ‘the mother of the spitfire’ and saved the Spitfire from becoming obsolete.¹ Unfortunately, Lady Lucy never saw the Spitfire come to fruition, as she died on December 29, 1936.

Dame Lucy Houston was born in 1858 and grew up on the fringe of Victorian England; her father was a maker of boxes. Lucy always maintained that she began her career at age 11 as an actress and ballet dancer; others thought not. By age 16, she was in Paris, being tutored by Madame de Polès , a hostess skilled in the art of money—investing, divesting, and acquiring. Back in London in 1883, Houston dabbled withthe women’s suffrage movement.²

Lucy was a chorus girl known as ‘Poppy‘ when she attracted the attention of a man named Frederick ‘Freddy’ Gretton. Gretton’s father was the resident partner of Bass, Ratcliff and Gretton, making Freddy extremely wealthy. Lucy and Freddy never married, but they were together for ten years. Freddy Gretton died in 1882 at age 42, but before his death, he bequeathed her £6,000 a year for life – an enormous sum of money at the time.

Although Lucy was now financially set for life, she married the wealthy Theodore Frances Brinckman, the eldest son of Sir Theodore Brinckman, a baronet, in 1883. However, the marriage wasn’t meant to last, and the couple divorced in 1895. Lucy was remarried to George Frederick William Byron, 9th Baron Byron of Rochdale in 1901, but she really only got social status and nothing else from her second husband as he was already bankrupt.³

The majority of her wealth was bequeathed to her following the death of her third husband, Sir Robert Houston, who died and left her £5.5 million in his will. It was with this money that she supported the RAF.

Lady Lucy donated the money in 1931 in order to keep research going into the Spitfire’s predecessor – the Supermarine S6, a single-engined racing seaplane – when Labour Prime Minister Ramsay MacDonald’s government pulled funding for the project during the Great Depression in 1931. Her intervention led to the creation of the iconic aircraft, which played the critical role in defeating the German Airforce at the Battle of Britain in October 1940 and prevented Britain from being invaded for long enough to ensure the Allied forces eventually won the war against the Nazis.⁴

  1. War History Online
  3. War History Online
  4. Lady Lucy Houston DBE: Aviation Champion and Mother of the Spitfire. Author Miles Macnair.


©️ Anne-Marie Fawcett 2020

Rev. G.H Marshall

In 1931 a new vicar, the Reverend George Herbert Marshall, was taking up residence at the Holy Trinity vicarage on Dale Street, Ossett. Few in town knew then, or even now, of his connection to Baron Manfred von Richthofen, aka the Red Baron; the Prussian aristocrat who was said to be the deadliest flying ace of World War I.

I aim to try and change that with research I collated over a period of four months.

On July 15 1889, George Herbert Marshall was born at Old Royd, Heptonstall, situated in the hillside above the Calder Valley, and he was baptised at St James’s Church¹, Heptonstall on September 17 that same year.

Below: St. James’s Church, Heptonstall

George was the fourth of five sons born to Richard Marshall and Annie Elizabeth Gomm who had married on Christmas Day 1882. Whilst their sons flourished, Clara, their only daughter, died in 1888 before she reached her first birthday.

The Marshall family, circa 1910. Left to Right: Amos, mother Elizabeth, William, Norman, father Richard, George, Thomas.

In 1892 George’s father moved his family to Bankfoot House, Hebden Bridge, where he set up in business as a corn dealer. As the boys grew older, two of them in particular: George and his youngest brother, Norman, attracted the attention of the Reverend Sidney Marshall Smith, who was then the vicar of Hebden Bridge, and he encouraged them to enter the ministry. George matriculated at the University of Manchester and in 1912 he took his Bachelor of Arts degree. A year later he became a Master of Arts. He studied for Holy Orders at Egerton Hall, a new theological college in Manchester, and in 1913 he became a deacon, licensed to the curacy at Kirkburton, Huddersfield. The following year he qualified as a priest.During his time at university, George had been recruited by its Officer Training Corps. In the first sixth months or so of WW1 over 20,000 officers and more than 12,000 other ranks were recruited from British universities. On May 13 1915 George was commissioned as a Chaplain of the Armed Forces² with the rank of captain. On July 15 1915, instead of celebrating his 26th birthday, George embarked on the journey to Gallipoli with the Mediterranean Expeditionary Force. According to the requirements of King’s Regulations, his role was to “conduct the army’s compulsory religious services and bury its dead.”

The Army Chaplain

On August 23 1915 George joined the British 13th (Western) Division. Up to then he had, for the most part, been acting as chaplain to one of the hospital ships, with the Australian troops, and had been in the trenches with them until he was taken ill with enteric and dysentery.³ When the troops were evacuated from Gallipoli on January 8 – 9 1916, George went with them. He was still attached to the 13th Division and was with them throughout the Mesopotamia campaign. The British Army in Mesopotamia would grow to about 440,000 men with almost three quarters of those who fought from the Indian Army. The 13th Division was sent to relieve Kut al-Amara in Iraq and it was during this journey that George spotted a wounded officer laying out in the open and in obvious imminent danger. For more than an hour, using an entrenching tool, George worked to build a protective shield over him; all the while in full view of the enemy. A bullet struck the shield but all that George said was: “Not this time Brother Turk”. The officer he was protecting stated that it was a mystery to him how George escaped being hit.

A tram on rails being pulled by horses, on the way to relieve Kut al-Amara. 1916.

The relief force never reached the British troops at Kut al-Amara who were, by then, starving⁴ and desperately running low on ammunition. The British Army did make several attempts to lift the siege but all were unsuccessful and on April 29th 1916, after 147 days, they surrendered to the Turks. At that time, it was the longest siege in British Army history. At home in Hebden Bridge, in May 1916 Richard Marshall received a letter from his son George saying that he was in hospital with fever. George had contracted typhoid and was hospitalised in India from where he was subsequently sent home to England. George then spent time at the Third London General Hospital in Wandsworth. The hospital had been the Royal Victoria Patriotic School but was requisitioned in August 1914 by the War Ministry and the children transferred to local houses nearby. There is no record of George having been the chaplain of this hospital which leads me to deduce that he was there as a patient. I have to wonder if this is where he first met Irene Carruthers, his future wife, who was by this time a qualified nurse. The medical staff were seconded from the Middlesex Hospital, St Mary’s Hospital and University College Hospital. It is quite possible that Irene could have been among those seconded.

Postcard displaying the 3rd London General Hospital, Wandsworth. November 1916.

Upon leaving Wandsworth, George took a post as chaplain at the Guards Training Depot at Caterham in Surrey.⁵

In the London Gazette of December 22 1916 George was “mentioned in despatches” for his heroic actions in Mesopotamia (Iraq). British commanders-in-chief of a theatre of war or campaign were obliged to report their activities and achievements to the War Office in the form of despatches, which were published in The Gazette. 

On April 25 1917, George was summoned to Buckingham Palace where King George V invested him as a Companion of the Distinguished Service Order. The DSO is awarded for meritorious or distinguished service by officers of the armed forces during wartime, typically in actual combat, serving under fire, and usually awarded to those above the rank of captain.

In October 1917, George was stationed in France, as the chaplain to the GHQ Machine Gun School in Wisques. The British Expeditionary Force had established the school three years earlier to train new regimental officers and machine gunners. From there George joined the Royal Flying Corps, 101 Squadron at Bertangles as their chaplain. The RFC had formed at Farnborough on July 12th 1917 and it was only two weeks later that it moved to France to operate as a night bomber squadron.⁶

The Red Baron

Baron Manfred von Richthofen was born on May 2 1892, into an affluent Prussian family. Growing up in the Silesia region of what is now Poland, he led a life of privilege playing sports, riding horses and hunting wild game. Under the instructions of his father, he was enrolled in military school at the age of eleven. Shortly before he turned 18, he was commissioned as an officer in the German cavalry.

After the outbreak of WWI, the Baron served on both the Eastern and Western Fronts and he was awarded the Iron Cross for his daring trips, carrying messages along the front lines. In 1915, he transferred to the German air corps, initially serving as an observer and later as a pilot. He crashed during his first solo flight, but his determination eventually caught the attention of Germany’s top ace, Oswald Boelcke, who recruited him for a new fighter squadron.

The Baron claimed his first confirmed aerial victory on September 17 1916. Over a period of 17 months he shot down 80 allied aircraft, though some historians believe the unofficial total to be closer to a hundred. He once said, “I never get into an aircraft for fun. I aim first for the head of the pilot, or rather the head of the observer, if there is one.” 

The Baron’s victims were members of the Royal Flying Corps, many of whom were boys, often with barely a dozen flying hours under their belts. The RFC was soon known as “the suicide club” because pilots were only in the air for a maximum of 11 days before they were shot down. The Baron said that the English pilots were “dare devils personified and that their intrepidness made them foes to be respected.”

In January 1917 the Baron was given command of the German squadron Jasta 11. He celebrated the promotion by painting his Albatross biplane red, soon becoming known as The Red Baron. He is reported to have said: “I want them to see me. And I want them to be afraid.” He decorated his walls with the serial numbers of the aircraft he shot down and had a jeweller make him a small silver cup engraved with the date and make of each aircraft. He would eventually acquire sixty cups before a silver shortage eventually put a stop to his commemorative trophies. But the killing continued.

The End of the Red Baron

The Red Baron was eventually shot down whilst chasing a British fighter pilot. In 1997, almost 80 years after his plane was brought down, it was claimed that British flier Captain Tilden Thompson was the pilot who had deliberately lured the German ace into his final dogfight. By flying a two seater spotter plane low over German lines as a decoy, Captain Thompson is said to have set the trap. Officially, the death of the Red Baron was credited to Canadian pilot Captain Roy Brown. With an advance in ballistics and forensics, it is now considered by some military historians that the Red Baron was actually killed by an Australian machine gunner, firing from the ground. Lewis gunners attached to the 3 Squadron Australian Flying Corp were firing at the Red Baron when his machine spun to earth. Although he was shot in the torso the Baron still managed to land his plane but soon died from his wounds.

On April 21 1918, the Allies recovered the body of the Red Baron from a field in Vaux sur Somme, France. Captain George Herbert Marshall was still serving as chaplain to the Royal Flying Corps 101 Squadron at the time that the Red Baron was shot down. He was the closest Anglican chaplain to the scene and, as the Baron was a protestant, George was given the duty of officiating at his burial.

These stills from rare film footage shows Rev George Herbert Marshall walking at the head of the funeral procession ahead of the service which took place with full military honours.

A crowd of soldiers and several townspeople gathered around as a eulogy was given by George, and then the coffin was lowered into the grave. The brass plate on the coffin said that Baron von Richthofen was killed in action and that he was 25 years old. A firing party, made up of Australian forces, fired three volleys and a bugler sounded the last post.

After WW1

Rev. George Marshall later proceeded to the 18th Division, where he remained during the allied retreat of March 1918 and the subsequent victorious advance. Demobilisation began on December 10 1918 and by March 1919 the division ceased to exist. As well as the DSO, George was awarded the Victory and British Medals and the 1915 Star. After the war, George returned to Kirkburton and to his wife, Irene. At the age of 28, George had married 36 year old Irene at Westminster St James the Less. At the time of their marriage, on February 5 1918, Irene gave her address as 165 Vauxhall Bridge Road, Pimlico, just five minutes from St James’s. Home on leave from the war, George’s address at that time was “Ivy Bank”, Hebden Bridge.

Irene was the daughter of Scotsman, Rev George Thomas Carruthers MA, and his second wife Elizabeth (née Cartwright). Rev Carruthers had been a senior chaplain in the Bengal Ecclesiastical Establishment and several of Irene’s siblings were born in India but Irene was born in Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk on November 20 1881. By the time she was 18, both of her parents had died and Irene, with her sister Mabel and their brother Vincent, had moved to Edinburgh where Vincent was studying medicine. But the three siblings were soon separated when Mabel died in 1908 at the age of 31. In 1909 Vincent married and then joined the Royal Army Medical Corps and went to serve in Ceylon (now Sri Lanka).

In 1911 Irene enrolled as a student nurse at the East Suffolk and Ipswich Hospital, Anglesea Road, Ipswich. In June 1919 Rev. George Herbert Marshall DSO., MA became the curate at St Matthew’s, the Anglican Parish Church of Burnley. He and Irene had been there for less than a year when, in early 1920, George was offered the office of the Vicar of Shelley, a church connected to that at Kirkburton. The vacancy arose when Rev. Hay, who had been at Shelley Church for twenty years, moved to Gawthorpe, Ossett.

George was said to have taken a deep interest in the social side of church work and had a strong connection with the Young Men’s Institute. He had also earned the respect of his parishioners and they were sorry to see him move on. He didn’t want them to think that he was keen to leave and explained that the Vicar of Kirkburton and the Bishop of Wakefield were anxious that he should accept the new place at Shelley. George accepted the office and, at Easter that year, he left Lancashire and, with Irene, returned to Yorkshire.

On March 7 1922, whilst at Shelley, George and Irene’s son was born; they named him George Carruthers Marshall. George was the Vicar of Shelley for three years, until June 1 1923, when he was inducted as the Vicar of St Augustine’s Church, Pellon, Halifax. Traditional parish life at St Augustine’s was apparently in decline by this time but, with George’s natural enthusiasm and energy and the support of his wife Irene, the church gradually began to regain something of its former prosperity. Almost a decade after he first arrived, the Easter Sunday Service saw the largest congregation it had had for a quarter of a century, which was further testament to George’s determination and tenacity.

Along with his role of Vicar of St Augustine’s, George acted as chaplain to Alderman Robert Thomas who was the Mayor of Halifax in 1923-24. Both men were strong supporters of missionary work and, whilst at St Augustine’s, George was the Chairman of the Halifax Auxiliary of the Church Missionary Society.⁷


During his time in office at St Augustine’s, George was offered the living at Holy Trinity Church, Ossett but he chose to not accept it. He remained at St Augustine’s for eight years until July 1931 when he was again offered the living at Holy Trinity Church in Ossett. This time George did accept the offer and he moved with Irene, their son and George’s widowed mother Annie Elizabeth, to the Vicarage on Dale Street.

Postcard of The Vicarage, Dale Street, Ossett. Date and photographer unknown.

Rev. G.H. Marshall is mentioned many times in local newspapers in connection with births, deaths and marriages at Ossett’s Holy Trinity Church. In May 1936, the Rev. G.H. Marshall was mentioned in the Ossett Observer for something entirely different. The church was having a “Gift Day”.

The church exterior, floodlit by the Electrical Distribution of Yorkshire Ltd. The photograph was taken by local photographer JT Neville and it became widely used as a postcard.

Holy Trinity Church was built in 1866 and the total of the construction costs was more than £20,000. Today’s equivalent value is over one and a half million pounds so it’s hardly surprising that 70 years after it was built there was still a deficit of £200 (now just shy of £10,000). A Gift Day was established to raise the £200 needed to pay off the debt. To raise the funds, Rev. George Marshall volunteered to sit in the west end of the church for 24 hours between Friday and Saturday midnight and people took or sent their gifts to him. George had to break off during the day to perform two weddings and the congregation at each contributed generously to the fund. In total 580 people contributed to this novel way of raising funds for the church. Those who donated included many non-church people and many prominent Nonconformists.

The first gift of a shilling was received from an unemployed man and the last came by post from Staincliffe. After 22 hours the total stood at £170. Mayor Gladstone Moorhouse, who was also the church warden, arrived with over £25 which he had collected from friends. Shortly afterwards the £200 mark was passed and at midnight the total had reached £225.

George was in the newspaper again in September 1936. This time he was explaining why he believed that the lack of trees in the town was connected to the lack of Ossett weddings almost two decades later.

During WW1, Ossett’s many mills had used sulphuric acid in the process of making military uniforms. George explained how the acid which spewed from the mills killed off the trees in Ossett, leaving the town with no “Lover’s Lane” and no leafy parks, turning the town into “a cheerless, romance discouraging waste, in which the marriage bells are virtually silent.” George said that the amount of marriages at Holy Trinity Church in 1936 was almost zero. He was reported as saying that he had been “prodding” the Afforestation department of the Ministry of Agriculture to plant some trees in “the one treeless town in Yorkshire.”

George and Irene left Ossett in 1943. In 2001, his son, George Carruthers Marshall remembered his father telling him: “They (3 Squadron Australian Flying Corp) gave my father a cylinder from von Richthofen’s engine, which he kept in a tin box, wrapped in a sack. When he went back into the Army in WW2 he had to leave his Vicarage, so he donated the cylinder to the War Effort Scrap Drive!!!!”

Steel and iron were in short supply and so 1943 saw Ossett talimg part in the national drive to collect scrap metal. By recycling unused or unwanted metal the government could build ships, aeroplanes and other equipment needed to fight the war. How ironic then that the Red Baron, indirectly, contributed to the building of Allied aeroplanes.

This photo is in storage at Holy Trinity Church, Ossett. The photographer is unidentified. Thank you to Duncan Smith for bringing it to my attention.

The Enigma Connection

On October 9 1943 George was appointed as Army Chaplain to the Wireless School at Forest Moor near Harrogate. The establishment was part of a network of British signals intelligence collection sites which tracked and intercepted German radio transmissions.This information was so sensitive that it was taken by motorcycle riders directly to Bletchley Park, home of the famous Enigma; the encoder used by the Germans to encrypt secret messages.George served at Forest Moor until July 5 1945 when he became the vicar of St Paul’s Church in Alnwick, Northumberland.


George returned to Ossett, and to Holy Trinity Church, to officiate at the wedding of his son, George Carruthers Marshall, and Ann, the daughter of his old friend Gladstone Moorhouse, on April 21 1949, which was the 31st anniversary of the death of the Red Baron.The Yorkshire Post, dated Friday April 22 1949, reported the wedding, saying that the bridegroom had served in the RAF during WW2 and, at the time of his marriage to Ann, was employed on the Duke of Northumberland’s estate where he was engaged in forestry. Perhaps he was inspired by his father?

Alnwick – His final years of service

1949 was a year for celebration, but it was also a year for mourning when, on September 13th, George’s wife Irene was found dead on the lawn at St Paul’s Vicarage, Alnwick. At an inquest their son George gave evidence, saying that his mother had carried some carpets to the front lawn to be cleaned with a vacuum cleaner. At first it was thought by a maid that Irene had merely fainted. George went out and found her, lying on her back. She was dead and the vacuum cleaner was still running. The pathologist’s report stated that death was due to cerebral haemorrhage.

The last mention in the newspapers of George was a small notice, announcing his death in 1953.

MARSHALL – January 6, aged 63 years, the Rev George Herbert Marshall, of St Paul’s Vicarage, Alnwick, Northumberland, sometime Vicar of St Augustine’s, Halifax and Holy Trinity, Ossett. Service at St Paul’s Church, Alnwick on Friday at 2pm: interment Alnwick Cemetery 2:30pm.

George and Irene’s gravestone in Alnwick South Road Cemetery


The British Newspaper Archive


1.This church was consecrated by the Archbishop of York in 1833 and was one of the “Waterloo Churches”; so called due to being built with the reparations paid by the French government after the final defeat of Napoleon at Waterloo. To celebrate the end of the Napoleonic Wars, parliament passed the Act for Building New Churches, allocating £1 million for the task.

2.At the outbreak of war there were just 116 chaplains. The chaplains themselves embarked on overseas service with no special training and very little idea about the nature of the task ahead of them. Many were exposed to an environment which churchmen at home could not begin to comprehend. By the end of the war some 4,400 Army Chaplains had been recruited and 179 had lost their lives on active service.

3.The whole time the 13th Division was at Gallipoli the men were in the trenches and the chaplains’ work had to be carried out there. Sometimes they had Communion there, with boxes and bombs for an altar, and the men crowded to the services. They did so mostly when in close contact with the enemy within trench bombing range. It was understood that the chaplains of the 13th Division had suffered very heavily, both from wounds and disease. From early 1916, as chaplains were called upon to preach the justice of the Allied cause, they were given much greater access to the front line and they could be deployed wherever senior chaplains saw fit.

4.The multi-cultural nature of the British and Indian soldiers in Kut al-Amara complicated the feeding of the troops under siege conditions. Dispensation from different religious leaders in India was obtained for their followers to eat foods which they were normally forbidden to eat.

5.For more than a century the depot at Caterham played a major role in military history, with thousands of recruits; Grenadiers, Coldstream, Scots, Irish and Welsh guards, passing through its gates on their way to their regiments. The garrison’s Chapel of St Michael the Archangel was built for the Brigade of Guards in 1885-86 by William Butterfield, the acknowledged master of Victorian Gothic church architecture.

6.Around 14,000 Allied pilots were killed during the war – rather shockingly, but perhaps hardly surprising, more than half of them died during training. At the start of WW1, the aeroplane was barely a decade old and had never been used in battle. In 1914, when 64 unarmed aircraft set off from England for the Western Front, it was an achievement just to make it the 21 miles across the Channel.

7.In July 1930, two missionaries – Edith Nettleton from St Augustine’s, and her colleague Eleanor June Harrison were kidnapped by Chinese bandits who demanded a ransom of £7,500 before they would be released. In August 1930, when the ransom had not been paid, Miss Nettleton’s severed finger was sent with threats that the women would be murdered if the ransom was not forthcoming. On October 4 1930, the women were beheaded by the bandits. A memorial service, conducted by George, was held and in July 1931 a memorial to Edith Nettleton was unveiled in St Augustine’s Church, Halifax. In 1933 Nellie; the daughter of George’s friend, Alderman Robert Thomas, took up missionary work in North China, taking the place of Edith.

©️ Anne-Marie Fawcett

October 2020



Transcription of a Deed showing the purchase of the plot of land on which the house was built, by Philip Ellis.

John ELLIS, Philip ELLIS, Eli ELLIS of Ossett, Cloth Manufacturers the 1st Pt, John and Eli ELLIS 2nd Pt, Philip ELLIS 3rd Pt and Edmund TEALE of Ossett, Bookkeeper 4th Pt. Of & concerning Plots of land, Mansion house* dwelling house, hereditaments etc comprising the 1st of 2 schedules. Firstly plot of land at Ossett 3a 2r 2and 1 third p. Bounded NW by Storrs Hill Rd W by Ossett Green S & E by other hereditaments of J, P & E ELLIS. Secondly that other plot of land cont. 3a 1r 21 and 1 third p. Bounded NW by Storrs hill Rd W & S ????? partly by hereditaments belonging to John BRIGGS devisees & partly by other hereditaments belonging to J, P & E ELLIS on the SE by land & hereditaments described in the 2nd schedule & NE by land & hereditaments described in 2nd schedule and also that messuage/dwellinghouse with outbuildings upon the lastly described plot & now in the occupation of George HARRISON and John BEAUMONT all delineated on Plan (NO PLAN). Second Schedule plot of land cont 3a 1r 32p NW partly by hereditaments secondly described in First Schedule & partly by plot described on SW by other hereditaments to J, P & E ELLIS, SE side thereof by public footway and NE by land & hereditaments recently purchased by Philip ELLIS and also that MANSION HOUSE & outbuildings now in the course of erection (( “PARK HOUSE” ?)) on the said plot. Secondly, all that other plot of land in Ossett cont. 1r 14 and 1third p NW by Storrs hill Rd SW by land & hereditaments secondly described in the first schedule on the SE by part of land & hereditaments lastly thereon before described & NE partly by land & property of David ELLIS & partly by land & hereditaments recently purchased by Philip ELLIS (Ref: 1866 ZH 95 109)

* Is this the house named ‘Sowood House’ marked on the old map, also known as the ‘Manor House’?? 




                 Park House became Ossett Grammar School in September 1907                                                                                          



West Yorks Archive Service at the West Yorks History Centre, Wakefield (Ref: WMT/OS)



(dates not known)


ossett-grammar-school-staff-1952Back Row L-R: Miss Patten; Miss Hemingway; Mr North; Mr Rablen; Mr Banks; Mr Hughes; Mr Lucas; Mr Atkinson; Mr Moore; Mr Yates; Mr Cathcart ; Mr Salter; Miss Longley & Miss Waddington

Front Row L-R: Mr Bailey; Miss Linley; Mr Parsons; Miss Mann; Mr Axford; Mr Akehurst; Miss A Robertson; Mr Van Der Veen; Mr Clark

OGS 1949


Back Row L to R: Gerald Flintoff; Brian Deighton; Arnold Rose; Ian Joseph Wilson; John Thewlis; Brian Crook; David Moore; Geoff Dodgson; Barry Watson; Brian Whittell.

Middle Row L to R: Christine Lee; Joan Worth; Jeryl Boothroyd; Mary Dunn; Avril Summers; Shirley Gomersall; Mary Parish; Kaynita Dixon; Pat Milner.

Front Row L to R: Brenda West; Doreen Walshaw; Daphne Cragg; Shirley Cairns; Anne Green; Mary Hutchinson; Una Radley; Barbara Schofield; Eileen Walmsley; Betty Brearley.


This is the old stables block at Park House which were being used in 1909 as laboratories in the recently moved grammar school. (Information and images supplied by Neville Ashby). – AMF 2022

Click on the images for a better view. 


In 1895 the Royal Commission of Education instructed a number of Assistant Commissioners to report on the condition of secondary schools around the country. The report on Ossett Grammar School wasn’t particularly favourable …

Ossett was described as ‘a small manufacturing town devoted to the sorting and preparation of rags for the making of mungo’. It was said to be a ‘mean looking town‘ with no large mills but many small factories.

Postcard c1900. The Grammar School is on the far left.

Mr AP Lowrie, the assistant commissioner, described the Grammar School as a small building consisting of a house for the headmaster – that would be Mr Frankland – that had the ‘look of a regular workman’s house’, and one dirty, dilapidated classroom. The fees were £3 a year for boys under 12 and £4 a year for those over 12. There were no girls in the school.¹

When Hannah Pickard died in 1891 she left the Grammar School provision for two scholarships, totalling £4,200 (around £344,607 today), for the education of boys from Ossett.² I wonder how many boys, who otherwise would have been denied an education, attended the school on a Pickard scholarship. How many of you, your parents or grandparents attended the later Grammar School on a Pickard scholarship?

Postcard c1904. A different view of the town. The Grammar School is off centre and to the right.

For an extra fee the boys could learn Latin, Greek, German, chemistry, algebra and trigonometry. The assistant commissioner found that this was the only school in the West Riding to charge an extra fee for Latin and Greek. The headteacher, Mr Frankland, had to take all these lessons himself, as well as the ordinary school work. There were four boys taking Latin, one taking Greek and five taking chemistry. Mr Frankland must have had his work cut out for him!

Mr Frankland.
This portrait is on display in Park House at Ossett Academy.

Mr Lowrie reported that the ‘stuffy, dilapidated, filthy room with old benches and inferior equipment’ was enough to see the building condemned and that ‘it was far better that this school should cease to exist’ and the boys be sent to Wakefield or Dewsbury. The school was demolished in 1905 and for a while it was housed in the Central Baptist schoolroom in old Church Street. In 1906 it relocated to Park House on Storrs Hill. This is still a part of the school today.

Did You Know … this was the first school in the West Riding to accept both boys and girls!

  1. Ossett Observer 1895
  2. Hannah Pickard’s Will and Testament

Anne-Marie Fawcett