For our first feature Jacquetta Hartley visits Skidby Windmill, near Beverley. This windmill has been grinding floor since 1821 and survived two World Wars. Jacquetta gives an account of the history and the workings of the mill which ceased to operate commercially in 1966. Today Skidby Windmill is the last working windmill in Yorkshire which now forms the Museum of East Riding Rural Life and continues to produces wholemeal flour in the traditional way.
Then Margaret Mills visits Brodsworth Hall and the gardens, near Doncaster. The hall and the families that lived there have a fascinating history which Margaret outlines and includes many of its interesting features. The gardens were designed and laid out at the time the Hall was built, so are a perfect example of the taste of the 1860s. Also linked with Brodsworth Hall is Thellusson’s infamous will, Daniel Theyer details its complications. In fact the Thellusson Will is still renowned in legal history, and it is widely believed that it was immortalised by Charles Dickens in Bleak House, as the Jarndyce versus Jarndyce case.
Charlotte Brontë first stayed at Filey in the summer of 1849, after the tragic death of her sister, Anne. Claire Mason retraces Charlotte’s steps in her article on Charlotte Brontë’s Association with Filey. Claire is able to give us some insight on how Charlotte perceived Filey and the state of her mind through Charlotte Brontë’s letters that she wrote during her stay there.
Next Stephen Riley takes us back in time to the days of steam trains and explains how two small seaside towns on the Holderness Coast in East Yorkshire developed into holiday resorts. These are Hornsea and Withernsea which became a place to relax once the railway arrived in 1854 at Withernsea and 1864 at Hornsea. Railway advertising posters that were produced played an instrumental part of their development. Stephen gives a full description of the success and sad demise of these seaside towns.
Christmas of course is associated with singing carols in churches accompanied by an organ. But sometimes these organs need to be restored. During a visit to All Saints’ Church, Roos, East Yorkshire Daniel Theyer discovered that the 1881 pipe organ was undergoing such a restoration. Daniel gives a full account of the restoration work and returned to the church the following year for a dedication organ service.
Our last feature is also about singing and medieval acoustic technology in trying to improve the quality of sound of medieval monks’ singers in the choir of Fountains Abbey church. Jeremy Clark explains in detail that medieval pottery jars found placed in the choir were intended to improve the acoustics.
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