Whenever I tell friends and family that I find Huddersfield’s Queensgate Market beautiful, they look at me as though I have taken leave of my senses and forgotten to collect them from the Lost Property Department. Beauty may well be in the eye of the eccentric beholder, but, to me, there is something grand and monumental about it, as long as you take the trouble to lift your eyes and look at the ceiling, the window lights and the sculptured figures. The day when beauty is limited to buildings that have gathered enough dust for them to be old and revered, or have been constructed as carbon copies of ancient styles, will be a sad day for all of us.
Tag Archives: Huddersfield
All the walking in this Lockdown Spring sunshine takes us down roads, so familiar, we have long since stopped looking. And then we notice something we must have passed a hundred times, and we see it for the first time. In this case, it was a magnificent stone face on Netheroyd Hill Road in Huddersfield.
I am no animal expert, but that doesn’t look like a deer to me. If it is, it is the most unnatural deer to trot around the deer parks of Huddersfield. And whilst we are talking about unnatural, this photograph was taken in February when the weather is supposed to be cold, dark and dismal. Something is very wrong with the world.
Like many people who take photographs, I can be pretty annoying to walk around with, due to an inability to walk in a straight line from A to B without stopping to take photos at A1, A2, A3 etc. It is not too bad if I am by myself, as long as I leave myself plenty of time to stop ‘n snap. So yesterday, when I needed to catch a train from Huddersfield to Penistone, I left myself time enough to try and capture some of the grandeur of Huddersfield in the winter sunshine.
I had intended to keep snapping away as the train rattled its way from Huddersfield south towards Barnsley and Sheffield, but the sheer beauty of the scenery got in the way. No blink of my smartphone lens could hope to capture what was on view through the carriage window, as the train snaked it’s way through villages that probably don’t exist in real life. The journey took thirty minutes and cost my something around £6. The railway companies are missing a trick; anyone with blood in their veins and a functioning imagination would happily pay twice as much to experience what must be one of the Great Railway Journeys of the World. Alas, I couldn’t bring myself to take any photographs once I was on the train, so you will just have to imagine what it was like. Or make your way to Huddersfield and experience the journey yourself!
This week, our random-number-driven time machine takes us back to the year 1893 and to Huddersfield, where someone has been giving way to the enjoyment of the Conservative Ball. It resulted in ten bob fine plus expenses! Serves him right is all I can say.
OBSTRUCTING A POLICE OFFICER AT THE CONSERVATIVE BALL : Joseph Crow Taylor, innkeeper, Crosland Moor, was charged with having, on the 26th inst., obstructed a police-officer whilst he was in the execution of his duty. Defendant did not appear. The Chief Constable (Mr. Ward) said that on the morning, which would be stated by the officer, in accordance with orders, the officer went to the Town Hall, where the Conservative Ball was being held, to see that proper order was being kept and that the sale of drink had been stopped at the hour fixed by the license. The officer was met by the defendant, who said he should not go up. He said he should, and the defendant used bad language, and tried to prevent him going up. This was not the first time that sort of thing had occurred at balls. The defendant had been to see him and said he was very sorry, and that he had given way to the enjoyment of the evening more than he should have done, and that, perhaps. caused him to do what he did. But it was his (Mr. Ward’s) duty to protect his men, and to see that the orders of the magistrates were carried out. Police-sergeant Jagger proved time facts as stated by Mr. Ward, and the Bench inflicted a fine of 10s. and the expenses.Huddersfield Daily Examiner 6th February 1893
This description of a meeting of the Huddersfield Literary and Scientific Society’s “Microscopical Soiree” is taken from a copy of the Huddersfield Chronicle of the 9th January 1879 – 140 years ago. Old newspaper articles can paint pictures just as well as any art school graduate, and as you read through the list of microscopic treats on offer – spores of a truffle, trout’s ova, section through a coal miners’ lung – you begin to picture a body of frock-coated, heavy bearded Victorian gents fussing over the specimens and speculating about the future of mankind. The youngsters are deriving considerable amusement from Mr Wood’s patent atmospheric stereoscope, and the women – one presumes – are at home supervising the scullery maid.
But history has a habit of catching you out and challenging your perceptions, because in walks Mr Dammann and what has he got with him but a telephone! Logic tells me he has somehow got lost in the time warp that exists near Ainley Top and arrived fifty years too early. Old newspapers, however, never lie …. unlike their modern counterparts!
In 1864, Mayall moved from London to Brighton – leaving the London Studios under the direction of his son – and established a new photographic studio in King’s Road. It is from this period that the small Carte de Visite of an unknown man in a check suit dates. Mayall spent the rest of his life on the South Coast before dying early in 1901 – within a few weeks of the Queen he had famously photographed forty years earlier.
My thanks to the unknown man in the check suit for taking me on such a fascinating journey.
There is a sadness about this woman of two centuries ago. It is as though the instantaneous camera of Mr. William Colton Pearson has captured her in a moment of doubt: not quite knowing what awaits in the new century that lies just around the next bend of Manchester Road.
This isn’t really a “Picture from Nowhere” because I know it is a photograph of children at South Crosland Junior School in Huddersfield and, I would guess, it was taken in the nineteen forties or early fifties. They are, however, faces from nowhere – young faces that went somewhere in life.