125 Years Ago - 1894

The weekly meeting of the Ilkley Branch of the Yorkshire Penny Savings Bank was held on Monday last, the number of depositors being 39; amount deposited, £11 15s 7d. Total amount standing to credit of depositors, £3,426 16s 10d.

We see that we are to have a visit paid to us of the world renowned circus of Sir John Sanger on the 30th of this month.

100 Years Ago - 1919

Demobilised - A. J. Robinson, Boot Maker and Repairer, Little Lane, Ilkley. Business re-opened on Monday, March 24th. I shall be pleased to receive favours from old and new customers.

In connection with the Ilkley Branch of the British Women’s Temperance Association, a temperance meeting was held in the Wesleyan Assembly Hall on Monday evening. Mr. R. S. Dower presided and said he regretted the relaxation of the control of the liquor traffic, and thought that the control should be carried on as part of the nation’s re-construction.

75 Years Ago - 1944

Wharfedale people may be interested to learn a little of the life of a now forgotten Yorkshire poet, John Nicholson, who was born at Harewood. He was drowned on Good Friday, 1843, in the flooded river at Saltaire, after a rather tragic life. Married at 19 years of age, Nicholson was left a widower only two years later. When only a few months old he was taken from Harewood to live at Eldwick and he spent most of his youth on Rombalds Moor. He was educated at Bingley Grammar School, and was a Methodist local preacher at Idle and Eccleshill. Later in life he went to Bradford where he met Richard Oastler, the man who exposed the working conditions of children employed in the textile factories and who commissioned Nicholson to write poems on the subject.

Sig. G. H. Schofield, who for the past three years has been a prisoner of war in Germany, writes home saying that he has now received 4,400 cigarettes and eight clothing parcels, including three from the British Legion, two from the Ilkley Parcels Committee and one from the Town Hall. People at home, he says, have no idea what these gifts and messages mean to the boys out there.

50 Years Ago - 1969

A Carleton girl became a bride on Wednesday - 11 days later than was originally intended. The marriage should have taken place a week ago last Saturday but while the bride to be was under the drier at the hairdressers she became ill and had to be rushed to hospital for an emergency operation for appendicitis. It was too late to stop the guests, many of whom came from long distance, so the wedding reception was held and also a dance in the evening. But all ended well on Wednesday when Miss Roberta Alise Goddard was married to Mr Christopher James Gray.

Air pollution in Ilkley was discussed at a meeting organised by the Ilkley Civic Society on Thursday. Mr. Mark Seaward, a biologist at the Horsforth Training Colleges, indicated that the problem has been growing steadily during the last 120 years, for it is associated closely with the growth of population in close density urban districts. As far as Great Britain is concerned the chief culprit is the domestic coal fire.The effect on health is serious. It is estimated that more than 4,000 died as a result of the London smog in 1952, and one person dies every ten minutes from bronchitis.

25 Years Ago - 1994

Severe punishments should be handed out in prisons so that criminals are too frightened to return, say Ilkley councillors. Town leaders say the time has come to put punishment before rehabilitation if rising crime is to be tackled effectively. Now they are set to lobby MPs and call for changes which they believe will put an end to the problem of cheeky criminals who offend again and again.

A vet is calling for the owners of a ferret to come forward after it was found wandering around an Ilkley street. Pam Braithwaite and staff at the Ashlands Veterinary Surgery in the town have taken one lost-looking male polecat ferret into their care after it was found in Leamington Terrace. Mrs Braithwaite said: “I would love it if the owner could come and claim it back because these male ferrets have a very strong odour!”