66 Union Road, Liversedge, West Riding of Yorkshire WF15 7JF 01924 505 666 david.sheard@ntlworld.com.uk By appointment or 10 till 2 on Saturdays but check Facebook Page for extra days and hours

The Brontes in the Spen Valley – Mabel Ferrett

Mabel Ferrett Brontes in Spen Valley 029

The Brontes in the Spen Valley – Mabel Ferrett
Originally published as Shirley Country in 1973 revised in 1997 102 pages Illustrated by Stanley Chapman with an index. My irrational antipathy to the cult of the Brontes has prevented me from reading this, but having read other works by Mabel I have no doubts about readability.

This copy would be fine but for the annotations (just highlighting paragraphs really) by a previous owner, because of that I am offering it for £5.00

Spen Valley Local History Reading List
The Gate Hangs High – Mildred Coldwell
Published in 1987 by Kirklees Council an account of her growing up in the Spen Valley between the Wars. Well written illustrated by Barbara Ellis.
The Brontes in the Spen Valley – Mabel Ferrett
Originally published as Shirley Country in 1973 revised in 1997 102 pages Illustrated by Stanley Chapman with an index. My irrational antipathy to the cult of the Brontes has prevented me from reading this, but having read other works by Mabel I have no doubts about readability.

This Gate Hangs High

This Gate Hangs High by Mildred Coldwell, I went to the launch of this book in 1987, I met Mildred but knew her son better.

Another interesting account of life in the Spen Valley before the War, well written and a good read.

Mildred Coldwell026

Unfortunately only a good “reading copy” (water stains on the covers) it has been read. I think I have a better copy in the shop, but this one is for sale at £2.50

Mildred Coldwell027

CALL BACK YESTERDAY – Mavis Roberts

Always on the look out for any “Local History Books” especially related to the Spen Valley, I came across this book on a general search for “Heckmondwike”, I had no knowledge of it’s existence prior to the search.

This book is a collection of memories of growing up in the Spen Valley (Cornmill Lane) in the 1930’s. I started reading it and read it in one sitting, not because it is short (158 pages) but because it is well written and fascinating.

SV - Call Back Yesterday by Mavis Roberts 177

My interest was heightened by the fact that she lived only a few hundred yards from my shop and home, less than 100 yards from where my mother was born (in 1919). She also went to the same junior school (Millbridge) and secondary school (Heckmondwike Grammar). I could recognise all the places she was referring to. Even without the local connections the book is a great read, I don’t know why I had not come across it previously as it was published in 1996. It was published by a Welsh Publisher and printed in Derbyshire.

I was more than pleased to find her description of a visit to my shop (in it’s original form that is).

A visit to the Berry Hill Co-op Branch (now “Not in Heckmondwike Book Shop”) in the 1930’s, as described by Mavis Roberts in her book “ Call Back Yesterday”
Inside the store were huge keg-shaped blocks of butter, lard and cheese, all open to the air and enough to give present day hygienists a collective heart attack. From these, the assistants would cut the required amount and wrap it in grease proof paper. They did not go to the lengths of slapping the butter into shape, as did the manager of the Maypole Store.

There was a stack of faded-blue paper bags, into which sugar, loose tea and dried fruits were weighed out. There were also huge sides of bacon to be sliced to the customer’s preferred thickness, on the lethal, red bacon-slicer with its rotating blade. Biscuits were also sold loose from large, square tins with glass windows on the lids, so the contents were easily identified.

SV - Call Back Yesterday by Mavis Roberts 178

All Saints Robert Town Parish Magazine

Roberttown Parish Magazine Jan 1938 062

Not a great deal about Roberttown mostly Wakefield Diocesan News but I like them for the local adverts as they capture the flavour of the time. You can but your coal (weekly Payments taken) get a permanent Wave, order your coffin, help a Waif or Stray or even get a High Pressure Greasing.

I have January, June and August available at £2.50 each.

Spen Valley & Dewsbury (two books)

Dewsbury as it Was and Spen Valley a landscape of hamlets, written by Christopher Scargill and Richard Lee (I worked with Richard at Metro in the early eighties before it was sold off for a bargain price).

Both books are 12 X 8 (inches that is) and both are very well illustrated.Dewsbury as it was 011The pages are not numbered but there are 66 illustrations. Given how big Dewsbury is this should be the more common book but isn’t. published 1985

In this one the illustrations aren’t numbered but the pages are (48) but just as well illustrated. published 1986

There are no inscriptions or stamps both look new and are available for £7.00 each.

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