Saddleworth White Rose Society


in the county of York





Newsletter No 15 Summer 2002



Our Yorkshire Day celebrations will be held on Sunday 28th July at Saddleworth Museum. We hope as many members as possible will help out or at least attend to give support.

The event will commence at 11.00 am. when Mrs. Lord, Chairman of Saddleworth Parish Council will place a wreath of white roses on the Ammon Wrigley statue.

At 11.15 am. until approximately 12.15 pm. Uppermill Band will play - taking a short break at 11.27 am when member Mr. Frank Bradbury will read the Yorkshire Declaration of Integrity.

Saddleworth Morris Dancers will entertain us after the band has played.

At 1.15pm George Ardley will present us with some dialect verse.   Throughout the afternoon there will be Face Painting at the Museum where the Gallery will also be open to serve coffee & Yorkshire Tea, soft drinks and cakes.

The S.W.R.S stand in the Gallery will be displaying Society merchandise.

The Yorkshire Pudding Walk will start at 3.00 pm. and will be going to the Navigation Inn at Dobcross. The meal will be a full Sunday Dinner with Yorkshire Pudding and must be pre-booked through the treasurer Mrs. M. Clay, Tel;-01457 873555 or via Pauline at the Navigation Inn, Tel;-01457 872418 The cost of the meal will be £5.50 per person.

Yorkshire Country Womens Association - Saddleworth Branch

On Wednesday May 29th 2002, the Saddleworth Branch of the Yorkshire Country Women's Association was launched by Miss G. Rowe, the Chairman of the West Riding Committee. She outlined the aims of the organisation which are to further the interests of country women through out the whole of the traditional county of Yorkshire. It is rural in principal and open to groups and individual members.

There was a very good turn out for the initial launch, approximately 25 women attended, which one hopes will be the basis of what will be an interesting and beneficial branch.

A committee has been formed and the meetings will be held at the Catholic Centre in Uppermill at 7.30pm on the last Wednesday of each month.

The aims of the association are to further the skills, knowledge and social activities of its members and to preserve the heritage of our county of Yorkshire of which Saddleworth is still a part. It is run by members for members, it is non-sectarian and non-party political.

We would like to acknowledge all the hard work put in by Mrs. Anne Parry whose efforts have resulted in the formation of the Saddleworth Branch.

For information locally contact;-


Mrs M.F. Clay,

20 Brownhill Lane,



Yorkshire, OL3 6 BZ   Tel ; 01457 873555

Central Office, Agriculture House,

207 Tadcaster Road,


Y0241UD         01904451581



There are still a few subscriptions outstanding. These were due for payment on Nov. 1st 2001.

Please forward these payments to;-   The Treasurer

Mrs. M. F. Clay, 20 Brownhill Lane, Uppermill, Saddleworth, Yorkshire, OL3 6BZ

The Holmflrth Anthem

The Holmfirth Anthem has come to be adopted by the folks in Saddleworth as a sure sign that we truly are still very much a part of the White Rose County! Many local groups such as the Saddleworth Musical Society, the Saddleworth Male Voice Choir, not to mention individuals such as the late John Bacon or the still very much alive Gilbert Symes, have come to adopt the Holmfirth Anthem as their "signature tune". It's origin, apart from it's creation is most unclear. Ammon Wrigley in "Those were the days" tells us that the musical setting was written by Joe Perkins in about 1850, but that the words Ammon suggests were strung together by three or four handloom weavers in some Holmfirth alehouse. Ammon recounts the following meeting at an inn on the moors and a fellow traveller from "over t'other side" said, "Do yo' know wat it wor coalled th'Holmfirth Anthem for?" "I suppose it was because the song had it's origin in the village" Ammon said. "Nah, awll tell yo' this tale just as mi nont Mary teld it I' yar haase a score o'toimes. Shoo comes fro' Holmflrth an' shoo said ther wor beawn to bi a grand concert I' Holmfirth at wor getten op bi a greight musicianer I' Huddersfilt. Soa he put pappers I'th' shop windows 'at said at cloise o'th concert ivverbody wod sing th' National Anthem. Soa one neet Daff o'th Bak Rooad an' Joss o'th'Pig Hoils an Billy Bluenoase wor drinking at Fat Doddy's an Daff said "It's getten abaat toime wi knew summat abaat this Nashunum Anthem, soa wi con bi larnin' th' chorus" "Yus, that's reight" BiUy said, "but wat soart of a song is this Nashunum Anthem"? "Nan o'Slap's is i yar haase" Daff said, "Shooll know summat. Goa an' tell her shoo's wanted Joss. When Nan came into the taproom Daff said, "What's this Nashunum Anthem wi're ole beawn to sing?'"Yo' greight bullyeds!" Nan said, "Aw'm sure ther nivver wor sich silly fooils ivver born of a woman. Aw wodn't ha' believed ther wor sich ignoramusers i'Holmfirth. It's "Pratty Flowers" that's wat it is" "Well nah mi nont Mary said it wor a grand concert an' when th' Chairmon said " Yo'll o' Stand up an' sing th' National Anthem" well up jumped Billy Bluenoase & Joss o'th'Pig Hoills an brasted off wi' Pratty Flowers. Then the ole fooak, women & childer an' ivverybody, started singin' it. Th' Chairmon kept shaati' an' wavin' is' arms for 'em to stop, but thi' thowt he wor conductin, an' thi sang till thi' guiders o' ther necks stuck aat loike whipstocks. By gum, Chairmon wor sum nattle abbaat it"

So there you have it, Ammon Wrigley also goes on to say that every living thing in Holmfirth that has a voice shouts or sings the Holmfirth Anthem. Dogs Bark it, cats mew it, ducks quack it, cocks crow it and hens cackle it when they've laid an egg!

So when you next sing the Holmfirth Anthem join in with gusto and give it "sum 'ommer".

(How did you go on with Ammon's Yorkie twang as you read it?) By Revd. Duncan Rhodes.

Holmfirth Anthem

A broad for pleasure as I was a-walking It was one summer summer's evening clear.

'Twas there I beheld a most beautiful damsel Lamenting for her shepherd dear.

The dearest evening that e'er I beheld thee Was ever, ever, ever with the lass I adore.

Wilt thou go fight the French & Spaniards Wilt thou leave me thus my dear?

No more to yon green banks will I take thee With pleasure for to rest thyself & view the land.

But I will take thee to yon green gardens Were those pratty flowers grow.

The White Rose " Saddleworth"

Our search for a suitable rose grower appears to have been fruitful after contacting Woodbank Park Nursery; a part of Stockport Metropolitan Boroughs Councils Parks Dept. Mr. Alan Wilson is overseeing the care and propagation of "Saddleworth" and we have delivered the parent plants that are used to supply bud grafting material. The first crop from this source should be available from Nov. 2OO3.

We are also indebted to R & D Caunce (Rose growers) of New Longton, Nr. Preston for donating over 15O briar root stock plus bud grafting ties and paying the full cost of delivery of these to Woodbank Park.  This was indeed a most generous gesture.

Mr. Rawlins, the rose grower from Huddersfield who bred and trailed "Saddleworth" and volunteered to grow this years crop informs us that there should be around 25 plants available from November 2OO2.  About 5 of these will be required by the society for bud grafting leaving approx. 2O available for sale.    Anyone wishing to place an order should contact;-

Mr, P. Davenport,

4 Sycamore Cottage.



OL3 5BT     Telephone;- 01457 - 876881

Constituency Changes

Have you ever driven over the hills into Saddleworth, perhaps coming home from work or returning from a holiday, and found yourself smiling with content as the view opens up before you? Or is the pleasure of coming home spoiled by the signs that say you are entering not Saddleworth, Yorkshire but Saddleworth, Oldham? Well, that might not. always be the case because you now have a chance to have your say on where you want to live. Here's why...

The Boundary Commission for England (BCE) is conducting a periodic review of ward boundaries in the borough of Oldham. The main purpose of periodic reviews is to ensure equality of representation by making each ward contain more or less the same number of people, and for Saddleworth that will entail redrawing the ward boundaries. Why? Because with populations of 9,008 and 10,492 respectively, Saddleworth West and Saddleworth East have far more than the Oldham average of 7,983 people per ward. Other wards with smaller populations return the same number of councillors, making us under represented on Oldham MBC. This is a situation that the BCE cannot allow to continue, and so change is inevitable.

Fortunately for us it isn't just a matter of arithmetic. The interests and identities of local communities also play a part in influencing the Boundary Commission's recommendations, and this creates an opportunity for us to shape our own future. Although some of the issues are quite complex it all boils down to this; the more we can loosen Saddleworth's association with Oldham the greater the prospect of a future formal return to our Yorkshire identity. We can do this by persuading the BCE that culturally, geographically and historically, our villages have much in common with each other but share little if anything with the urban areas of Oldham, even if they do adjoin Saddleworth. We must try to make sure that as well as evening out the population per ward, the new boundaries also reflect the traditional Saddleworth, not the one most convenient to Oldham MBC.

The importance of having wards that reflect the true Saddleworth is heightened when seen against the backdrop of Regional Assemblies. If these are created (and the indications are that they might well be), a Saddleworth that included parts of Oldham would surely be drawn into the North West Region in the slipstream of our larger, more influential neighbour. But if our area were described by boundaries that made it easier to define ourselves as separate from Oldham we would stand a better chance of being included in the proposed Yorkshire Region, where we belong. And when you think about it isn't that the main reason why the White Rose Society exists?

So what can we do, both as a society and as individuals? Well, one thing is certain; if we do nothing then the BCE will make its own plans, and we wouldn't be entitled to complain if they turned out not to out liking. We have to make our views known, and we have until 16th September 2002 to do so. Obviously it is not for us to redraw the ward boundaries ourselves, but we can put forward a case that protects our interests. The more of us that do so, the better.

Printing deadlines make it necessary to keep this article short, and so the intention is more to raise awareness than to set out detailed arguments. However if you want to consider how we might begin to approach the task then the following information might prove useful:


This is very straightforward. The BCE is not impressed by petitions, so there is really no point in raising one.

Format of proposals

There is no precise recommended format that proposals should follow, but to succeed a case should include three basic elements:

the proposal for or against change;

the arguments to support the proposal;

the evidence to justify the arguments.

Simple assertions of opinion, however fluently or passionately argued, will be given no weight.

Interests and identities of communities

These are important but if any proposal is based mainly on interests and identities then it would be more favourably received if it also incorporated balance in population. The greater the imbalance arising from a proposal, the more persuasive the argument would have to be.

The case should outline how the local identity manifests itself. For example it should cite the existence of active social clubs, residents associations etc. that draw their membership from a clearly defined area. The existence of a parish council is also a favourable factor, as are local community facilities such as libraries, clinics, surgeries and primary schools.

Number of councillors per ward

Under the Local Government Act 1972 there is no limit to the number of councillors who can be returned from a Metropolitan district ward, but the figure must be divisible by three. In practice it is always three, so any case we make should bear this in mind.

How to make your views known

You can write to the BCE at:

The Team Leader (Greater Manchester)

Boundary Commission for England

Trevelyan House

Great Peter Street



Please think about the boundary changes and what they will mean. Whatever your opinion of them, they present an opportunity that we cannot afford to ignore.


Members of the Saddleworth White Rose Society did an historic walk, trekking the medieval Boundary of Saddleworth on Saturday 29th June. The route they followed had not been officially completed for 200 years. Councillor Riaz Ahmed joined 20 members of Saddleworth White Rose Society The walk attracted two people from Perth, Australia who were visiting the area independently, Colin & Hilary Holt from The Yorkshire Riding Society Dave & Linda Russell from Friends of Real Lancashire, Craig & Paula from Unite Craven Campaign were all present. Councillor Brian Lord & Pat Lord Chairman of Saddleworth Parish Council also enjoyed this event. The members had lunch at the Kings Arms, Grains Bar and Mr. Mike Buckley-thanked everyone for supporting this event.


Congratulations to Howard & Rachel Beckwith on the birth of their daughter Holly Mary, Born 24th May 2002.


Condolences to Mrs Betty Boon whose husband died on 8th April 2002.



SWEATSHIRT                                      £18.00 each

ROUND NECK T-SHIRT                     £10,00 each

V NECK T SHIRT                                £10.00 each

BASEBALL SHIRT                              £17.00 each

TIES                                                       £ 9.50 each

SILVER TIE PINS                                £9.25 each

SILVER CUFF LINKS                         £22.95 each

All these items are in blue with the Yorkshire motif and White Rose, plus many other items of Yorkshire merchandise.

Sweatshirts and polo shirts only may be ordered with the Saddleworth logo. However to be viable we need to accumulate a minimum of ten orders. Obviously  therefore these orders may take sometime to fulfil

İSaddleworth White Rose Society