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Demolition of the Pavilion at Hardcastle Crags

From David Mack

Tuesday, 16 September 2014

Walking in the Crags at the weekend I saw that the Pavilion just below Gibson Mill, which has been in a poor state for years, was surrounded by security fencing.

I see now from Calderdale's Planning website that it is to be demolished later this month, and that this dosen't require planning permission. Details on the Calderdale website planning section - search for application no 14/80012/DNO.

So much for the National Trust being guardians of our heritage!

From Tim M

Wednesday, 17 September 2014

Yes, I'd noticed this too. The building while obviously in a state of near collapse is a vital part of the Crag's history - the last survivor of many refreshment pavilions. Perhaps there's a way of getting the Trust to reconsider (it would require reconstructing, but i note they have plans to build a kiosk a few metres away anyway).

From George Murphy

Saturday, 20 September 2014

It will be a shame if this building can't be restored. I've given away my copy of 'I haven't unpacked', but from memory the pavilion/chalet was part of a holiday camp owned or managed by William Holt of in the 1920s.

Holt was a conscientious objector, scourge of the establishment, sometime millworker and trade union activist, author of 'Trigger round Europe' about his travels on horseback and a key figure in local history.

Glynn Hughes wrote about him in his account of Upper Calder in his early seventies - almost classic - 'Millstone Grit'. There must also be people in these valleys who remember staying in one of the pavilions as children. I'd have thought the NT could have produced an interesting guide to support renovation. How much would it take to keep this wooden structure in place?

(See HebWeb feature on William Holt- ed)

From Dai Hallgarth

Tuesday, 23 September 2014

I believe the threatened pavilion was not part of Billy Holt's 1919 Hawden Hall Holiday Camp, a photo of which appears on the HebWeb feature alluded to at the foot of this thread.


The pavilion appears in the attached photo taken from "Looking Back at Hebden Bridge by Frank Horsfall and Terry Wyke. With the growing popularity of Hardcastle Crags as a resort in Victorian times, a string of refreshment houses from Station Road up to and throughout the Crag rapidly appeared.

"In 1887 Mrs Mitchell opened one of the first purpose-built pavilions close to Gibson's Mill. Others followed, and at such places the less energetic tourists could rest and refresh themselves whilst their companions went on to climb the Crags ........."

From George Murphy

Tuesday, 30 September 2014

Thanks for your explanation Dai - and it's a great photo! Is there a comprehensive history of the Crags in print? Although the pavilion is set to be demolished, it's interesting to see that camping is being encouraged once more. Old photos of the woods show how popular that used to be.

From Molly Sunderland

Tuesday, 30 September 2014

Dai, as far as I am aware the photo that you have shown is of "The Chalet" and was situated about 100 yards above Gibson Mill and just below the "Hardcastle Crags" themselves. This was demolished many years ago. Again, as far as I am aware "The Pavilion" referred to in this thread is situated below Gibson Mill and was where the boat swings were.


From Dai Hallgarth

Tuesday, 30 September 2014

Thank you Molly. I wasn't sure at first but got fooled by the candy-striped planks and the barge boards. Your boat swings pavilion photo is a perfect match to the one on the planning documents.

I have found another photo of the demolished "The Chalet" in Milltown Memories issue 4. Sure enough there is Gibson Mill in the background, as Molly recalls, about 100 yards downstream.

Apologies for the misinformation!