Newsletter – May/June 2018

1868 We, in Huddersfield, can run our own town!!!

From July 1868 the development of the growing town and surrounding villages would be managed by a council elected by the residents. Not every resident had the vote, you had to be a male and a £10 a year householder. The borough was divided into 12 wards and 14 Alderman and 42 councillors were elected. They selected the first Mayor of Huddersfield who was Charles Henry Jones.

What was Huddersfield town like in1868 when it became a borough? According to Owen Balmforth in his ‘Jubilee History’ written in 1918, “There were no tramways, no electric lights, no parks, no Town Hall, no Public Library, no publicly managed schools and restricted water and gas supplies.” The newly elected council which met on 7th September 1868 had something of a challenge! They began their task with great industry and within thirty years there were massive improvements, even becoming the first borough to run their own tramcars. This subject will be further explored at the Tea &Cake meeting on 11th July.

Turn to 2018. It was quite a day in Ravensknowle Park on Sunday 22nd. In the morning we celebrated the fact that the Tolson junior parkrun has been going for 2 years. At 9am 55 children ran the course with the usual 15 volunteers organising the event. There was a party for all afterwards.

Later in the morning, in an early celebration of St George’s Day, the scouts of the Huddersfield South East District paraded round the park with a band playing and they then renewed their vows in the shadow of the Clock Tower. They were addressed by the Mayor of Kirklees Cllr Christine Iredale. The scouts then dispersed to take part in various activities in the Park and Museum and the distinguished guests were entertained in the Morning Room. The ‘Friends’ continued to serve cream teas for the rest of the afternoon.

Tolson Museum – Tea & Cake

2pm – 3.30pm 2nd Wed in month. Free.
Donation for refreshments. All welcome.

9th May. Flower Demonstration. Learn how to make the best of a bouquet by an expert, Karen of Finishing Touches.

13th June. Visit to Oakwell Hall. Visit to this fine Elizabethan House near Batley. Please contact Ann for details.

11th July. Incorporation 1868. What did it mean to the people of Huddersfield?

Tolson Museum – Table-top Sale

Saturday 16th June.
11am – 4pm

To book a table contact Linda.


Sunday 20th May 2pm

Come and have your say.
All are welcome.

Heritage Memorial Garden, Tolson Museum

Free events, refreshments served.
Some seats but bring your own if you can.

13th May. 2pm – 3.30. Brass in the Garden. Kirklees Musica youth band

10th June. 2pm – 3.30. Brass for All. Emley Brass Band

8th July. 2pm – 3.30. Jazz in the Garden. New Orleans Wiggle

Huddersfield in 1849 by William Cowan

A stunning painting of Huddersfield from Ashes Lane (just below Castle Hill). This picture of Huddersfield was painted not many years before it became a borough and, although it was a rapidly expanding town with a built up town centre, it was still very rural. This picture is in the Tolson Museum.

About Friends of Tolson & Ravensknowle

The Committee of Friends of Tolson & Ravensknowle meet once a month to plan the programme for the local community and support the work of the Museum. We look after the Heritage Memorial Garden. We would welcome any one who is interested in working with us.

For more information please contact Volunteer Ann, Friends of Tolson & Ravensknowle. m: 07803159506 email: