HISTORY OF THE KNOTTINGLEY
CHAIN OF OFFICE
by RENEE P. HUBY (nee Fozzard)
The Investiture Ceremony on December 8th 1954
In May 1954
my father George Fozzard was duly elected as Chairman of the Knottingley
Urban District Council, having served as a councillor since 1946
representing the East ward of the town.
years the question of the purchase of a chain of office had been discussed
but no action taken and so upon his elevation to the Chair he obtained the
Council's permission to launch an appeal for funds to purchase such an
insignia. In August of that year he addressed a personal letter to
the rate payers and industries and other interested parties of the town
requesting their support for such a fund. The appeal was a success
and Messrs Herbert Brown were commissioned to craft the chain for the
princely sum of £185.00; the badge of office bearing the coat of arms was
took place on 8 December 1954 in the Council Chamber in the Town Hall at
6.30pm and after being dedicated by the Chairman's Chaplin, the Rev. A. E.
Beaumont, the chain was invested upon my father by the County Alderman Sir
Thomas Tomlinson B.E.M.
proceedings continued with a dinner held at the Winston Hotel on Womersley
Road where 52 guests, including fellow councillors and their wives, were
served with a meal consisting of grapefruit juice then either tomato or
chicken soup. The main course consisted of halibut and cream
sauce, roast chicken and vegetables, followed by either apple tart or
mince tart and cream, cheese and biscuits and coffee. All of this
deliciously cooked by Mrs. Bernard Featon, the landlords wife, for the sum
of 10s 6d each [52½p in today's money] Also 12s 6d for 70 Players
cigarettes, something that wouldn't happen today, and £11-17s for drinks
for the toasts.
the Chairman's wife, was presented with a tortoiseshell travelling clock
suitably inscribed to commemorate the occasion.
was brought to a close after the Royal toast followed by a toast to the
council proposed by Bernard Kenyon Esq. (Clerk to the West Riding County
Council) and a response given by my father and supported by his Vice
Chairman, Councillor J.E. Durkin J.P. The final toast to 'Our
Guests' , proposed by Councillor A. Reynolds J.P was responded by County
Alderman Sir Thomas Tomlinson B.E.M.
It was a very
enjoyable evening for all who attended and my father was very proud to
have been the Chairman who obtained such a status symbol for the town.
Mrs. Elena Fozzard and Mr. George Fozzard wearing their Chains of
As there was
some money left over from the appeal it was agreed to purchase a finer
chain with a miniature badge to be worn by the Chairman's wife and it was
presented to my mother at a smaller ceremony in March of the following
father died in November 1972, a few months before Knottingley Urban
District Council was incorporated into Wakefield Metropolitan District
under the local government re-organisation thus making the Chain of Office
redundant and it is now kept in the Museum in Wakefield.
Renee Huby (nee Fozzard)