Reflecting on sacrifices of ordinary men and women I
COLIN Secker, who is 87, has thrown light on questions about Beast Market and Rosemary Lane in Huddersfield that have been asked recently.
The name of Rosemary Lane was lost with the ring road and development of Kirkgate.
It used to be the stretch of road from Lord Street down to Southgate, but has become part of Kirkgate.
Beast Market branches off to the left from Lord Street at the Boy and Barrel. Many years ago, Colin says, on the left of Beast Market was Taylor Brothers, a company that made fish and chip ranges.
The chimney that was part of the works is still there.
Then came the motor garage of Albert and Frank Jessop of Lepton, who were vague relatives of Colin. Upstairs were the company offices STARTED researching with a trip down Primrose Lane and got lost in Huddersfield history for three hours as I went back to when cavalry charged protesters down King Street in an echo of the tragedy of Peterloo.
On the huddersfieldhistory.org. uk website, I found the memoirs, first published in the Examiner, of businessman J W Robson.
His father was a tea dealer from Liverpool who bought a business in Huddersfield at the junction of King Street and Victoria Lane. The family travelled here by coach in 1938 during one of the bitterest winters of the century.
As there was no railway link, they sent their furniture by canal. It was trapped for a month at Standedge by ice.
His new home overlooked The Shambles and the stocks – “where the drunk and disorderly were laid by their heels to reflect on their evil ways”.
The prison – The Towser – was at the back of the Shambles near the Pig Market and three constables were employed to keep order in the town.
When the railway did arrive, third class travellers were packed into open boxes, with no roof and no seating, that were called standups.
One of his vivid memories was of the cavalry charge in 1842 that had shades of the Peterloo Massacre in Manchester 23 years earlier, although this one did not result in and an electrical engineering works.
“My brother learnt his trade there as an electrical engineer and started in 1942. Two weeks ago, he was 90.”
He added: “Next is a small shop that is now a locksmiths. It used to be owned by an Italian called Ferrari who was a knife grinder and scissor sharpener. I was told he sharpened the scalpels and scissors for Huddersfield Royal Infirmary.
“Then came Goddard’s fish and chip shop, that also advertised tripe and cow-heels in its window. Then a radio shop.
“Across the road at the bottom was a pub (The Bulls Head) and at the top was the Boy and Barrel.”
Down Rosemary Lane was Darwent’s French polishers and the West Riding Education offices. death. In Manchester, 60,000 men, women and children had gathered in St Peter’s Field for a peaceful protest to demand Parliamentary reform and voting rights.
The authorities over-reacted, militia charged, 15 died and hundreds were injured.
Mike Leigh’s film, Peterloo, will premier next month in Manchester. It’s message, of disaffected people and a government out of touch with reality, remains relevant.
Campaigns for better conditions continued and in 1842 striking factory workers would pull the plugs on the steam boilers that drove production. Beast Market in Huddersfield, one of the locations featured in the book Beerhouses, Brothels and Bobbies by Huddersfield historian Professor David Taylor
Robson’s account is vivid but dispassionate, reflecting a comfortable middle class point of view of his time, and accepting the possibility of establishment inflicted violence.
“There was a good deal of plug rioting in Huddersfield. A lot of half-starved Lancashire people came over here and pulled the plugs out of the boilers. I could not see what they expected to get by it. There was some commotion in the town and the magistrates sent for the military from Leeds.
“A troop of Lancers came over and I remember seeing them charge down King Street, which was much steeper than it is now, at