29 January 2019

My Father’s Old Stomping Ground.

Kirklees and Calderdale Blog.

Hi Folks, thought I would post a wee piece about my recent visit to the Kirklees and Calderdale area of West Riding, Yorkshire. My Dad was born in Sowerby Bridge near Halifax and I still have relatives in Yorkshire. So, I have a deep affection for Yorkshire, its towns and its people, it is always a pleasure to visit Yorkshire.

The Schools.

So, after the Christmas break it was good to be out speaking at schools again. We started off at Ryburn Valley High the first of our two visits to this cracking school. What a way to begin the tour! There were plenty of questions from the students and some great discussions.

Thornhill Community Academy was next on the list. We were lucky enough to revisit this school in the second week as well. I met some wonderful students here, especially an incredibly inspiring young lady called Tahira. This school was a genuine joy to visit.


Halifax Academy was our next port of call for the tour. I had wondered if my Dad had gone to this school because it looked so old. It turns out to be much younger than my Father’s Day. It was originally the barracks for the Duke of Wellington’s Regiment, the students were as well turned out as I am sure the regiment was.

Another day and another school saw us visiting the ancient King James School in Almondbury.  This school first came into being in 1547, this I think is the oldest school we have ever visited. We were warmly welcomed by the students of this grand school on our first and second visit. It felt like we were walking in history here.

Honley High School was next on the list. The former school of the footballer Jonathan Stead. There were some really interesting discussions with the students here. Once again, the school was very appreciative of our visit.

Royds Hall Community School of Huddersfield was the school of the twice Prime Minister Harold Wilson. In the foyer of this cracking school there is a quite amazing wood and paper sculpture of Harold Wilson. There were many questions from this audience of well-informed students.

The imposing edifice of Rishworth School saw our next visit. Once again, a very old and venerable place of learning. The facilities at this school were quite staggering. Certainly, from the students I got a sense of their deep respect for its halls.

Calder High School was last on the list. It had been a busy two weeks and I must admit I was tired and looking forward to going home. However, the students of this fine school soon had me fizzing with energy and emotion as they encouraged me to give the presentation. It was a fitting end to the tour.

Local Press.

At one point we were joined by a reporter from the Herald Examiner. You can see what he thought of the campaign here. https://www.examinerlive.co.uk/news/west-yorkshire-news/country-danger-you-must-act-15709815


The Thoughtful Bit.

Well that was Kirklees and Calderdale. Yorkshire has always been a proud County and a proud people, my Dad used to claim his nationality was Yorkshire. Over this past two weeks we have visited all over the area and have found that warm hearty welcome that Yorkshire is known for. The only flat cap was on my own head!