YEARS IN FOCUS
KNOTTINGLEY IN 1962
REPRODUCED COURTESY OF THE
4TH MAY 1962
95-YEAR-OLD INDUSTRIALIST RESIGNS CHAIRMANSHIP
KNOTTINGLEY FIRMS MERGER
Ninety-five-year-old Mr. John Jackson made his last speech as chairman
of the directors of Jackson Brothers (Knottingley) Ltd., glass bottle
manufacturers, at the company's 49th ordinary general meeting on Monday.
He expressed his "deep personal satisfaction" that Bagley and Co.
Ltd., another Knottingley glass manufacturing company with whom he had
started work with his brother Tom at the age of 12,were now uniting with
his firm to form one of the largest glass container manufacturers in the
country. It was announced that he is to become President of the company,
which he had started with his brother in 1893 and that his only son, Mr.
Frank Jackson, who was the Managing Director, succeeds him as Chairman.
Presiding at the meeting, Mr. John Jackson said he thought the merger,
which follows offers from Jackson's to buy Bagley's and their associated
firm ‘The Crystal Glass Company’, will strengthen the company's
trading position and produce a useful addition to their profits.
"In acquiring Bagley's we have not merely acquired additional
productive capacity, but a successful trading company whose name stands
high with its customers and throughout the trade generally," he said of
the firm to which he was indentured for five years as a glass worker,
starting at eight shillings a week.
It was stated that the group trading profit for the year, after
charging all expenses, was £24,744 higher than the previous year, and
was due to the new production unit and extensive alterations and
improvements. He revealed sales last year were a record, but "there was
still scope for improvements," said Mr. Jackson. At a subsequent
extraordinary general meeting the proposed increase of nominal capital
from £400,00 to £650,00 was approved.
6TH JULY 1962
HOUSES FOUNDATIONS ROCK WHEN HEAVY LORRIES PASS
BUT JACKSONVILLE FOLK STAY
Heavy road vehicles thunder past, blowing dust and belching soot and
grime accumulate on windows, brickwork, windowsill, while vandals break
the remaining glass panes. Meanwhile, the six remaining occupiers of a
terrace of 18 houses at Hill Top, Knottingley, continue their daily
lives as the dwellings deteriorate into slum property. And the most
surprising thing is that most of them do not mind too much. That is the
position at these houses - formerly known as Jacksonville - which were
built so close to the pavement that their foundations rock each time a
heavy lorry rumbles past.
For two years owner-occupiers and tenants have been moving out, leaving
the houses unoccupied as they have been re-housed under Knottingley
Urban District Council's slum clearance scheme. Owner-occupiers moved
first and now most of the younger families have left. Some of those
remaining have already been offered alternative accommodation by the
Council, but prefer to wait for a better offer.
The Council has now made Closing orders on the properties and the
clerk, Mr. H.B. Probert, says the remaining tenants appreciate the
Council's difficulties. Negotiations have not been completed with the
owners of three houses, but it is hoped that all the families will be
re-housed by the end of the year. Properties will then be ready for
The Council is considering a proposal to build new swimming baths on
land immediately to the south of Jacksonville. But still the traffic
rushes past; the dust and fumes increase, the foundations rock and the
houses - which are well over a 100 years old - look more like slums as
each day passes. And the occupiers continue to wait.
"We were given the chance to get out but we didn't take it, so we are
prepared to wait." said one.
24TH AUGUST 1962
KNOTTINGLEY BOYS ADVENTURES 'ROUGHING' IT IN SCOTLAND
CLIMBING THRILLS FOR CAMPERS
Climbing 4,000 feet in pouring rain and having to wade through roaring
torrents, two Knottingley school boys who went camping with the Boys'
Brigade in Scotland found they never had a dull moment. They were Arthur
Laurence, aged 16, of Eastfield Avenue, a pupil of Selby Technical
School, and Terence Beaumont, aged 15, of Weeland Road, who attends The
Kings School, Pontefract, both of whom have been members of the Boys'
Brigade at Knottingley since they were 12.
Arthur and Terence were among 60 boys chosen by the Boys Brigade
headquarters to attend a week's course at Glenmore Lodge, in the
Cairngorms. They returned to Knottingley on Saturday with stories of
canoeing, rock-climbing, dinghy-sailing and bivouac camping. Describing
some of the highlights of their holiday, Arthur said the course was
"really interesting and educational,'" with a full day devoted to each
subject. Even though the course centred on mountain activities, religion
- the main theme of the Brigade - was not forgotten; short services were
held each morning and night.
On the last two days of the course his group went bivouac camping,
"This type of camping is really roughing it" explained Arthur, "and we
certainly had it rough! We walked ten miles, climbing hills up to 4,000
ft in height, in pouring rain. The rain was so heavy in fact, that when
we came to what should have been a small stream, it had become a raging
torrent which was waist deep, and we had to wade through it. We camped
at night in a shelter, and the next morning we walked back up to the
Lodge, and nearly got lost on top of one hill in the clouds.'' A
Ceilidth (concert) which lasted from Friday night until the early hours
of Saturday rounded off their activities.
"All the boys and officers were really thrilled by their experiences
during the week, and everyone is now waiting for the next course at the
Lodge," says Arthur.
Terence, who was in a different group, spent a similar week to Arthur -
with one difference. He accidentally capsized a sailing dinghy and
everyone on board was soaked.
The boys came from all parts of the British Isles and the course is
regarded as preliminary training for the Duke of Edinburgh's ‘Outward
26TH OCTOBER 1962
AIRE STREET - THE FIGHT BEGINS
TRADERS FOR ASSOCIATION
A new group to protect the interests of Knottingley Aire Street traders
was formed on Monday. An inaugural meeting held in Ropewalk Methodist
Hall attracted 38 shopkeepers who appointed officials and formulated
policy. During a two-hour discussion, the group selected the name
‘Aire Street Traders Association.’ Mr. W.G. Watt is chairman; Mr. W.
Benton, Secretary; and Mr. L. Cook, Treasurer, The main aims are to
brighten the appearance of the town's only existing shopping centre and
to oppose Urban Council plans to develop a site at Hilltop, adjoining
the station, for new shops
A three-point plan was formulated to further the aims: -
Central Ward representatives on the Council will be approached with a view
to improving the slum area adjoining Aire Street. "The Association wants
to see houses erected on the derelict sites and to change the area from
slums to a presentable shopping centre which will be better for the town
and the tradespeople," explained Mr. Benton.
SECOND: The association plans to approach the Council itself if
plans to lobby Central Ward representatives fail.
THIRD: If these approaches are unsatisfactory the Association
will nominate its own candidates for future elections.
"In the past, the Urban Council seems to have demolished old property
around Aire Street and then left it. We are fighting for our living, and
if we can't stop a racket we'll join it," admitted the Secretary.
The Association's opposition to Council plans for a new centre at Hill
Top are based primarily on two factors;
- The dangers to shoppers using the Hill Top area, which adjoins the
main Weeland Road.
- Their claim that the Hill Top area is not central.
They believe the proposed site will be no more central than Aire
Street, which is only half a mile away, and that Aire Street can offer
better parking facilities away from the main road than could be planned
for the proposed Hill Top site.
23RD NOVEMBER 1962
TRADERS MEET COUNCILLORS IN PRIVATE
Over 50 members of Aire Street Traders Association met Knottingley
Urban District Council Housing, Highways, Lighting and Allotments
Committee in private at the Town Hall, on Tuesday. They heard the
Council's consulting architect, Mr. M. Turner, explain the controversial
plans he has drawn on the Council's instructions, for the comprehensive
re- development of Aire Street, and then put counter proposals. The
chief spokesman for the traders was Mr. W.G. Watt, (chairman) and the
discussion became heated at some stages.
The Committee promised to consider the counter proposals at its meeting
on Wednesday. It is understood the Committee spent more than two hours
discussing the counter proposals. Mr. Watt was not available to tell
‘The Express’ of counter proposals put forward by the traders, and
Mr. W. Benton (secretary) said he did not want to comment and prejudice
the traders case, but he was optimistic of the outcome.
The Council Clerk, Mr. H.B. Probert, was not available on Thursday to
comment on either of the meetings.
14TH DECEMBER 1962
AIRE STREET TRADERS REJECT PLAN
The Council plan which includes the erection of 15 shops, two banks,
one public house, 176 dwellings and 92 garages, was rejected by the Aire
Street Traders Association, when they met the committee.
"Old buildings at the rear of Aire Street should be demolished, the
site cleared and houses built to bring more trade to the area," propose
the traders. They say the Council should acquire all vacant shops in the
street and demolish them along with the council-owned shops. New shops
with flats above should be erected and let to existing
tenant-shopkeepers at a reasonable rent. A new road should be
constructed to link Chapel Street and Cow Lane with a service road to
meet Aire Street near the Post Office. Both the new road and Aire Street
should be made one-way streets and a bus service provided.
Councillor’s A. Cardwell and Mr. M. McLauchlan, debated whether the
plan would have to be re-drawn or merely modified. Councillor McLauchlan
said he regarded the proposal as a skeleton plan to which the
specialists could make adjustments. It would be for them to decide which
properties could be retained, but the answer was not 15 shops. That may
be the idea of Town and Country Planning officials but it was not his
A cutting from The Express of November 23rd, showing the
architects plan for Aire Street shopping centre was produced by
Councillor W. O'Brien who claimed that this was the plan - with only 15
shops - which was approved in principle. Now Mr. McLauchlan was saying
old shops could be included. He agreed that this was possible and had
been effective in neighbouring towns. Councillor A. Wood, urged that
some form of understanding should be reached with shopkeepers if the
housing development started "at the back of Aire Street" but Councillor
C. Tate objected that this was as good as referring back to the plan.
The Council had plans for the back of Aire Street before it considered
comprehensive re-development. It may be best to develop the back of Aire
Street first but it would be advisable to stick to some sort of plan.
Councillor O'Brien moved and Councillor Cardwell seconded an amendment,
"That the scheme should not be rejected – but should be deleted." The
mover explained this would allow the architect and officials more
latitude to modify the plan, The Council would not be committing itself
to ‘x’ numbers of shops. The amendment was carried.
Councillor O'Brien objected that only members of the Housing, Highways,
Lighting and Allotment Committee had met the Aire Street traders at a
special meeting. He thought all the members of the Council should have
been invited to such an important meeting.
As reported in the Pontefract and Castleford Express 1962
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