Final 3 green opening dates and 1 correction
Three new dates and one correction to add to the listing of club opening dates involving Paddock I&C, Farnley Tyas, Marsh Lib and Holmfirth BC.
The dynamic duo of Des (of Meltham) and Dave (of The University of Huddersfield) have been spending time in trying to ascertain the green and club formation dates for the final three missing clubs from our YCCGBA listing. We might almost be there. Originally there were 16 missing dates from the list of 45 clubs and with an excellent response by a range of people to fill in the gaps with just three more to complete the set. Just these three remain outstanding and we may almost, but not quite, be there on all three fronts.
Still looking for confirmation of the formation date but I am hopeful that John Townend will be able to follow this up once he can get access back into the office at the Club. Des and Dave have narrowed it down to sometime between the Ordnance Survey maps of 1907 and 1918. It wasn't shown its current Raven Street location on the map of 1907 but was there in 1918.
Dave found a notice in the Yorkshire Post dated 29th July 1911 inviting “tenders for making a bowling green for Farnley Tyas Bowling Club”. If you therefore presume it was constructed that year and used the following year in 1912. However this conflicts with Des's finding that Arthur William Rothery was the club Secretary for 11 years (on Huddersfield Exposed site) and he died on January 7th 1916. This would have made it 1905 or earlier. The inclination is to take the newspaper tender notice as more likely to be correct putting the formation date at 1912.
Marsh Lib It appears that the club had moved to the current site by 1937. The bowling green was definitely not there on the 1948 map but was there by 1960 so Dave can only narrow it down to between these dates. That he says is as much as he can find out. As it is relatively modern surely some of the older Huddersfield bowlers or club members should be able to pinpoint this date given the parameters.
Des has done a bit more digging and begins to think that there were two Liberal Clubs. The earlier one (est 1873) seems to have also been known as Marsh Working Men’s Liberal Club. Another Liberal Club seems to have been established in 1883, so possibly the first one didn’t last long? He also found an 1899 article which says the club was in a building that was too small and they were looking to expand, but annoyingly it doesn’t say where it was! Dave checked the 1937 Street Directory and that puts the Liberal Club at 31 New Hey Road, so they’d moved in by then. So, either they didn’t have their own bowling club until the green was laid out (at some point between 1948 and 1960) or they were using a different green? The conclusion being that the current green definitely wasn’t there in 1948.
The correction being the previously recorded date of 1901 for the opening of the Holmfirth green. Gill Farnsworth contacted me to suggest that the 1901 date should really be 1898. On checking with Geoff Rollinson he tells me that there is a photograph in the clubhouse of the club founder members congregated in front of the current clubhouse and the photo is dated 1898. He suspects the club maybe even older but in the absence of any conclusive evidence he will settle for 1898 for now. As a footnote, Geoff also tells me that I won't recognise the club when I next visit after all the work undertaken during the lockdown period including a new toilet block.