What's New?
Date of Addition
2nd January 2011 Added the history of Highfield House and Highfield Cottage, Horbury Road, Ossett in the "Ossett Houses" page. This is based on an article by Joan P. Smith, Ossett historian for which I'm most grateful. I have edited Joan's much more detailed article for the www. ossett.net site, but will add the full article to the "Downloads" section soon.
8th January 2011 Added rare Low Laithes Colliery pictures and additional text to "Ossett Collieries", pictures courtesy of Noel Brettoner, NSW, Australia, whose grandfather Joel Brettoner worked at Low Laithes colliery before emigrating to Australia in 1925 with wife Susannah, nee Burdekin and their son Barrie (b. 1912)
11th January 2011 Added list of Ossett Grammar School teachers to the "Ossett School" page courtesy of ex-OGS pupil, Telford Moore, now living in Monifieth, Angus, Scotland. Additions and any corrections would be most appreciated.
28th January 2011

Added three new pictures of pupils and teachers at Ossett Grammar School in 1963 to the "Ossett School" page courtesy of Dr. Janet Graydon (nee Kirby). Any help with filling in the unknown people in the pictures much appreciated!

Added the original text of "Highfield House" in PDF format by Ossett historian Joan P. Smith to the "Downloads" section of the web site.

Added three PDF files by Ossett historian Neville Ashby in the "Downloads" section describing some of the informal Ossett walks we've done recently looking at the area's local history.

Added three PDF files by Ossett historian Alan Howe in the "Downloads" section: "A History of Hagg's Hill, Ossett; A History of Ossett Spa and the History of Owlers Farm, Flushdyke."

9th February 2011

Added new page "Ossett Grammar School Class Photographs" linked from the "Ossett School" page, which shows various OGS class photographs from various years. Sources of pictures and information listed on the new page.

Added "History of Sowood House, Sowood Lane", "Joseph Cox" and "Vicars of South Ossett Church" to the "Ossett Houses" page. Thanks to Joan P. Smith for the original articles, which have been edited slightly to fit the www.ossett.net web site.

13th February 2011

Added two additional class photographs to "Ossett Grammar School Class Photographs" linked from the "Ossett School" page. Thanks Colin Thorpe.

Added some information about the WW1 exploits of pilot Flight Lt. H.L. Taylor who crashed his biplane in heavy fog in Ossett on the 19th November 1918 described in the "Picture Gallery" section. Taylor and his observer Lt. W.I.E Lane shot down German flying ace Walter Göttsche in his distinctive Fokker DR.1 triplane near to Amiens, France in April 1918. Göttsche was the leader of Jasta 19 squadron, and had attacked the RE8 reconnaissance biplane (BE6641) piloted by Taylor.

Taylor clearly was a very lucky man to walk away on both occasions.

26th May 2011 Added "Walkabout in South Ossett" a write-up in PDF format by Neville Ashby in the "Downloads" area describing our recent walk (18th May 2011) around South Ossett.
21st June 2011 Added picture of Ossett Grammar School staff as per 1961 to the "Ossett Grammar School Class Photos" sub-page linked from the "Ossett School" page. Thanks Stephen Gardener.
14th July 2011 Added picture of Ossett Grammar School staff as per 1958 to the "Ossett Grammar School Class Photos" sub-page linked from the "Ossett School" page. Thanks Stephen Gardener. Added names of additional teachers during period 1956 to 1960 in "Ossett School" page thanks to Maureen Taylor. Updated Mitchell Laithes hospital details in "Picture Gallery" thanks to David Lawton. Made correction to an error in "Another Walkabout at Ossett Common" ref St. Aiden's Mission instead of St. Oswald's Mission in the "Downloads" section, thanks Margaret Wilby.
11th September 2011 Added eight more picture pages to the "Picture Gallery": South Ossett War Memorial, "Hollywood", Storr's Hill; Barge at Millbank Lock; Ossett Trinity Rugby League Club in 1961; South Ossett Baptist Church pre-demolition in 1981; J.F. Burrows wagons at Victoria Mills in the 1950s; Female workers at Victoria Mills in the 1950s and Flying Horse public house in 1957.
1st October 2011 Added sixteen more Ossett picture pages to the "Picture Gallery" total now is 152. Made various corrections and additions to existing Ossett picture pages, mainly minor grammatical errors and a few additional comments.
13th November 2011 Thanks to David Scriven, Ossett historian for some detailed notes on Ossett Town Hall, which have now been added with a new picture of Ossett Town Hall in the "Picture Gallery" Also in the "Picture Gallery" a new photograph of early transport at Mitchell Laithes hospital courtesy of Neville Ashby. Thanks also to John T. Longbottom for some additional notes, which I've added to the Roundwood Pit description in the "Flushdyke Sketches" area of the site. Added a poem to the "Gawthorpe" page called "A Gawthorpe Lament" by David Hirst, who was born and brought up in Gawthorpe, but now lives in Australia. He recalls much of life in the village of Gawthorpe back in the 1950s and early 1960s.
24th January 2012 Major Update - Added new page "Ossett Mills" detailing the history of Ossett's many textile mills dating from the 18th and 19th centuries. My sincere thanks to David Scriven, Ossett historian for the detailed notes and references without which this account really would not have been possible. I must also acknowledge the work done by the late Neil Abbott of Ossett who wrote an "A to Z of Ossett's Mills." I am grateful to Neil's widow who allowed me to use Neil's notes for the "Ossett Mills" history on this website. There are still a few Ossett mills that I know existed, but so far I have been able to find out very little about them, therefore the chapter is not yet complete and is still work in progress.
13th March 2012 Added four more pictures to the "Ossett Schools Picture Page" and additional names courtesy of Stephen Gardener and Neville Ashby.
17th May 2012 Added two more pictures to the "Ossett Schools Picture Page" and additional names courtesy of Vivienne Stow. Added latest Ossett Walk "A Walkabout on the High Road" by Neville Ashby to the "Downloads" page.
7th June 2012

Added one more picture from 1966 to the "Ossett Schools Picture Page" with additional names courtesy of Vivienne Stow. Added additonal pictures of Shaw Cross pit and Roundwood pit to the "Ossett Collieries"page. Added detailed Stan Barstow biography to "Ossett People" and a picture of Ossett chemist S.N. Pickard also in "Ossett People". Added additional picture and information in the "Picture Gallery" about WW1 Belgian refugees in Ossett and in particular the story of Armand A. Krahe, one of the Belgians who stayed in Ossett after a marrying a local girl. Thanks Carol Krahe for the picture and the information about her great-grandfather. Added new picture from a postcard of Park House circa 1907 just after it was converted to Ossett Grammar School in the "Ossett School" page. Added information about the Firth family pictured in Belgrave Street, Ossett in the "Picture Gallery" courtesy of Helen Bickerdike who now lives in the house pictured in the photograph.

28th June 2012

Added a shortened web version of the "History of the formation of Christ Church, South Ossett 1851-1964." by Ossett historian Joan P. Smith. It is well worth downloading this detailed account of how the new South Ossett parish and church were founded in the 1850s and the amazing work of the Reverend Denis Creighton Neary who from 1851, by the sheer force of his character and willpower breathed life into the new parish and church. There are also some truly fascinating extracts from the vicar's log book begun by the Reverend John H. Ward and then continued by other incumbents that give us a real insight into life in Ossett in the 19th and early 20th century. (3.5MB PDF file, 27 pages with many illustrations)

This work is part of a much larger publication entitled “The South Ossett Triangle”: copies of which have been deposited in the West Yorks Archives, Newstead Rd., Wakefield; Christ Church South Ossett Parish Centre; Ossett Library and Wakefield & District Family History Society. A separate publication, containing more detailed information entitled “Christ Church South Ossett, Extracts from the Vicars Log Book", is available from the Society.

18th August 2012

Added four more picture pages to the "Picture Gallery" page. These include: Gawthorpe primary school, class of 1960/61; Celebrations outside Ossett Town Hall to mark the end of WW1; Hepworth Brothers, Owl Lane Mill in 1952 and Gawthorpe Bethesda Cricket Team in 1915.

5th January 2013

Added section about artist Christopher Cavania Sanders, RA (1905-1991), an ex-pupil of Ossett Grammar School who went on to become an eminent artist and was responsible for the iconic Birds Custard logo circa 1938. The new information is in the RH sidebar with pictures on the "Ossett School" page. Thanks to Roger Sanders for the information and pictures.

27th January 2013

Major Update - New section named "Sowood" featuring four parts: Sowood Manor, Sowood Farm, Matty Marsden Lane and Rock Cottages. The new Sowood section is based entirely on new research carried out in 2012 by Ossett historian Alan Howe. The website version is an annotated summary of Alan's work, which is reproduced in full in the "Downloads" section of the website as four separate PDF files. The full version is recommended if you want to study the Sowood area of Ossett in more detail. My thanks to Alan Howe for giving me permission to put his research work on this website.

7th April 2013

Corrections to the "Ossett Spa" page in respect of the Montpelier Pleasure Grounds, Ossett Spa and the performance at Easter 1884 of the "African Blondin" as opposed to Charles Blondin, which was originally assumed. My thanks to Kylie Robinson for her work on this.

25th August 2013

Added Richard Glover's detailed history of Gedham Mill to the "Downloads" section of the web site as a PDF file.

23rd October 2013

Major Update - Added sixteen new picture pages to the "Picture Gallery" area showing various view of Ossett from yesteryear and in some cases the same view from this year. Added information about "Rock Cottage" by Alan Howe to the "Sowood" page.