125 Years Ago - 1894

Hearty thanks were accorded to Mrs Steinthal, of Ilkley, by the Executive of the Yorkshire Ladies’ Council of Education for her lecture on “Brush-making” at the Arts and Crafts Exhibition.

In England money is plentiful and commodities are cheap. there is accordingly no difficulty on these grounds in conducting business abroad.

100 Years Ago - 1919

Two local men who were prisoners of war in German hands - Private J. Gell and Private W. Mennell, M.M., had experience of life in “The Black Hole of Lille,” and a picture in one of the illustrated papers, reproduced from a drawing by another soldier incarcerated here, gives a very vivid impression of the terrible experiences these prisoners had to pass through. The drawing is the work of a master hand, and the naked, dirty, and unkempt appearance of the men, and evident filthiness and unhealthiness of the place, contrasted with decent conditions German prisoners were allowed to live under in our own prison camps, is enough to make one’s blood boil with very righteous indignation.

75 Years Ago - 1944

More letters have been received by the Ilkley Parcels Committee from local men and women serving in the Forces expressing their thanks for the Christmas parcels and the message of goodwill they have received. Lt.-Colonel H. C. Pepper of the C.M.F. writes: “It is very nice for those of us who are unfortunate enough to be away from home at the festive season to know that we are not entirely forgotten by our friends at home. I would like to congratulate you on the contents of your parcel, as all the things in it are most practical, and just the things that we most need. You have no idea how much these parcels and thoughts of yours are appreciated by the men in my regiment who come from Ilkley.

During a discussion on the Education Bill at the annual meeting of the Leeds Chamber of Commerce on Tuesday, Sir Granville Gibson, M.P. for Pudsey and Otley, criticised the clause in the Bill dealing with the compulsory part-time attendance at young people’s colleges of all boys and girls from 15 to 18. It places a great burden on industry. The boys and girls would have to attend such colleges for not less than 330 hours a year and while they were there the employer would have to pay their wages.

50 Years Ago - 1969

When people heard of Ilkley they thought of factory chimneys, but nothing could be more wrong, said Mr. Franklin Engelman, interviewer for the BBC radio programme “Down Your Way” which featured Ilkley last Sunday. As he looked down from the bracken and heather moors into Wharfedale with its lovely fishing river he told his listeners “there is no trace whatsoever of industry, just farmland all round.”

It was John and Michael Dobson, the grandsons of William, who kept the Station Hotel, the coaching-house in Brook Street, who paid a deposit on land later to become the site of the Railway Station which they intended as the place to build a chapel for the Primitive Methodists of Ilkley. But though they tramped to Otley, Keighley and Leeds about the land being conveyed they never achieved their aim and the railway took it for the station and the Primitives made a profit of £70.

25 Years Ago - 1994

Work has started on restoring a historic landmark which was rescued from a waste tip. The wrought-iron canopy is being re-fitted to the entrance of the Winter Gardens in Station Road, Ilkley, after a five year absence. It was taken down after being damaged by a passing lorry and later discovered lying discarded in the town’s Golden Butts Road waste tip.

Schoolgirl Elizabeth Hanson has received a get-well message from the Queen after the pair suffered identical accidents on the same day. The four-year-old wrote to the monarch after the two Elizabeths fell off their horses and fractured their left wrists on January 15. And her Majesty’s lady-in-waiting this week replied to thank the pupil at Moorfield Girls School in Ben Rhydding for her sympathy.