Joining the Jubilee parade

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IS it really 34 years ago since this photograph was taken? It was the occasion of the 1977 Silver Jubilee Hipperholme and Lightcliffe Gala, which was held on The Stray on Saturday, May 14 1977.

I remember attending the planning meetings where trying to get all the local organisations to become involved was no easy task.

But when you had a chairman in the form of the late Norman Lister, who had such a way with words, a calmness in presentation when even the most agitated committee member soon realised that this would be an event to enjoy.

The gala was in aid of Christian Aid and the Queen’s Jubilee Appeal – with all the local organisations on board. This event was destined to be the largest event for more years than anybody in the district could remember.

Such an event had by tradition to have a Silver Jubilee Gala Queen and that honour went to 14- year-old Helen Denney, who was ably assisted by her two attendants, Rachael Blamires and Donna Murray.

Looking through the programme advertisements is a nice reminder of those shopkeepers who year after year served the local community.

They included Dennis and Jean Ackroyd who were the face of Lightcliffe Post Office for many years, Dennis Bottomley who from his shop on Leeds Road had been the TV repairman almost from the days before it was common place to have the box in the corner of the front room.

A. & G. Motors was the garage tucked away off Victoria Road and there were the familiar names of John and Barbara Sutcliffe who were mine hosts at the Hare and Hounds. The last time I saw John was in Shibden Park and he didn’t look a day older.

Someone else who never seems to age is Peter Manning who, of course, in 1977 was the newsagent where everyone in Hipperholme would have bought their newspapers.

One advertisement that caught my eye was that of Charles George Calvert the plumber and glazier in Wakefield Road. I would often call in and see Miss Calvert and over a cup of tea talk about the old days in Hipperholme and Lightcliffe.

She always had a nice choice of cut glass for sale and eventually I did manage to save up and buy a very nice decanter from her.

She was most insistent in cleaning the layers of dust it had gathered over the years in her display cabinet and it is something we still have today.

The jubilee procession started at the junction of Smith House Lane and Wakefield Road, made its way all the way up to Sandholme Crescent and then made the return journey into Sutherland Road.

Looking across from Sutherland Road to The Stray I recall thinking at the time that this was a great day, one when the whole community came together.

Could such an event ever have happened again? Yes, of course, and it did on May 2, 1988, when the Community May Fair was held at the Old Brodleians sports ground.

Returning to this week’s featured photograph we see the Hipperholme Methodist Church Games Group as part of the procession winding its way back to Sutherland Road.

Interestingly the small vehicle towing the trailer was one of those that was seen regularly in Bailiff Bridge from T.F.Firth’s carrying a roll of carpet.

Looking at the children on the back, as slow as the vehicle would be travelling, I am sure there woulpd be a health and safety issue these days!