High Royds Memorial Garden Newsletter – March 2013


buckle lane march 1013 sm.jpgWest Riding Pauper Lunatic Asylums cover sm (2).jpgHigh Royds Memorial Garden Newsletter - March 2013High Royds Memorial Garden Newsletter - March 2013High Royds Memorial Garden Newsletter - March 2013High Royds Memorial Garden Newsletter - March 2013

Since we started to restore the Memorial Garden in 2011/2012 it has twice been highly commended by Yorkshire in Bloom when they gave a prestigious Silver/Gilt Award to Menston.  Now, despite a very soggy period!! plans are in hand to improve the garden further to ensure the maximum advantage in the brighter months (we hope!) ahead.

We have been fortunate to obtain a grant from the Northern Horticultural Society (the organisers of the Harrogate Flower Shows) to help with this.  Work will commence shortly to improve the soil and flowerbeds (including copious amounts of manure! which we applied before the winter set in) so we look forward to further developing an even more colourful and peaceful garden.

Once this is done we will of course have to maintain the work by regular weeding etc.  If you wish to help in keeping the flower beds neat and tidy please let us know.  The heavy work (i.e. grass cutting, hedge and tree trimming is contracted

out) but light weeding and similar light work does require the help of volunteers.


6, JULY 2013 – 10AM to 1PM

 An Open Day will be held on 6th July 2013.  This will give the opportunity to see the further work which has been carried out on the garden and also the improvements to the interior of the Chapel.  In this connection we have been very fortunate as last year we had to borrow chairs, a lectern, candlesticks etc.  Now, due to the generosity of Ilkley Parish Church and St. Hughes Church, Scunthorpe (which incorporates The Church of the Reconciliation) we have been given 40 chairs, a lectern, a beautiful oak offertory table, two brass altar and two floor standing  candlesticks and a lovely brass cross.  This will help to create a real atmosphere of peace and aid to quiet thoughts/reflection which can be so necessary in our often busy and sometimes stressful lives.

The brassware and the Chapel do however need cleaning periodically so if anyone could spare a little time for this very necessary task we would be very grateful.  The time taken may be limited but will make such a difference in helping to keep the Chapel neat and tidy and be a credit to the community and those it commemorates

Mark Davis, a photographer, author and historian, who is a Founder Member of the Friends of High Royds Management Committee has in the past year written two books dealing with local history namely:  Ilkley Through Time and Bradford Through Time.  He has just completed a third one West Riding Pauper Lunatic Asylum Through Time, which will be published in March.  This deals with the Mental Asylums in West Yorkshire and in particular High Royds.  The text is beautifully illustrated with some stunning photographs.  They will be available at a cost of £14.99.

As many of you may know the restoration of the Chapel was successfully completed and was opened officially for a National Heritage Weekend on 8th/9th September last year.  The weekend concluded with a Thanksgiving Service conducted by the Venerable David Lee, the Archdeacon of Bradford,  together with the Vicar of Menston, Revd. Ruth Yeoman and members of the Friends.

The service was very well attended; so much so that all available seats were taken and the chapel was filled to capacity. The Ladies Please Choir, who have given invaluable support to the Chapel, helped yet again in leading all those present in the singing of well known and loved hymns.  They were led and accompanied by Arnold Boddy the organist of St. John’s, Menston.

 Occasional services of this nature seem to meet a need and we have been asked if we could repeat the experience. There will therefore be a service at the conclusion of the 2013 National Heritage Weekend which is being held on Saturday 7th September 2013 11-00 to 1pm and 2-4pm. Sunday 2-4pm with the service starting at 4pm. Further details of the weekend will be published nearer the date.

The restoration of the garden and the chapel has already had some positive results and whilst we have been fortunate in obtaining grants for specialist work and other churches have been generous in supplying furniture etc we still need to raise funds for insurance, heat, lighting, grass cutting, hedge and tree trimming etc.  We are very grateful to Ladies Please, also David Lynch and others who have organised Gigs at Swarthmore College.  Thanks are also due to those of you who have very kindly made a Standing Order and we would welcome others, who could spare a few pounds a month, to do the same.

The amounts, we emphasise, need not be large but it is surprising how small sums from a number of people do make a difference over a year.


Additionally we have Collection Tins situated in The Menston Arms, The Malt Shovel, Menston, The Ings Pub in Guiseley and at High Royds Social Club.  These only need emptying every three or four months but it would be helpful if someone could undertake to do this for us.




There are six benches, of which two have been dedicated and plaques placed in memory of loved ones.  In addition to the thought behind the dedications, the money contributed is also useful.  If you wish, or know of anyone, who wants to dedicate a bench please contact us and we will be happy to discuss the matter with you.




 After a short AGM to elect the Management Committee and receive the Annual Accounts there will be the opportunity over tea/coffee/biscuits to talk about possible future developments and ideas for fund raising.  All are welcome to attend.


We are very grateful for all the support that has been, and is being, given and the following is a summary of what is still needed:

1.  Fund raising events

2.  Standing orders

3.  Occasional help in cleaning the chapel.

4.  Occasional help with weeding etc.

5. Collecting tins, from four locations, every few months.



 1.  Ladies Please Concert – Methodist Church – Friday 15th March 2013 at 7.30pm. Tickets available from Liz Sharp 01943-872067 or Quentin Mackenzie  01943-876625.

2.  A.G.M and Open Meeting – Wednesday 24th April 2013 at 7-30pm – Methodist Church Hall.  All welcome

3.  Ben Rydding Mothers Union visit Chapel on 3 June

4.  Chapel Open Day and Book Signing:  Saturday – July 6th – 10am to 1pm

5.  Heritage Weekend: Saturday 8th September  11am to 1pm and 2-4pm. Sunday 9th September  2- 4pm – Service at 4pm.