That’ll do nicely!

Kendall’s Ice Cream at Hipperholme has come a long way since it was taken over by Jimmy Kendall.

Thursday, 2nd February 2012, 3:50 pm

Thanks to Malcolm Bull’s Calderdale companion website we can look back at a business that is surely an institution in these parts.

Jimmy was no stranger to the world of ice cream when he opened his Denholme Gate Road premises. It was in the cellar of his Coley house where his first efforts were produced.

Seeing an ice cream van on our estate during the 1950s and 60s was a real treat but Jimmy in his early days had no such luxury and had to use a horse and cart to get round the streets of Hipperholme and Lightcliffe. However, once his new ice cream parlour was opened his business grew so much that he was soon able to expand.

With a dozen ice cream vans, an ice cream parlour at Hipperholme cross roads and a kiosk at Shibden Park, the name of Kendall’s was known far beyond the Hipperholme and Lightcliffe areas.

Following Jimmy’s death his son John and step-sons Eric and Kenneth Walmsley took over the business, who once having bought out John’s share, the two brothers ran the business until 1989. It was then that all the ice cream vans were sold and the business concentrated on selling ice cream direct to independent ice sellers.

The business was then bought by Billy Briggs who started originally working at Kendall’s as an ice cream man, a job he did almost 25 years. From being an ice cream man he was now the owner of the company and ran it until his untimely death in 2002, when the company was taken over by his son.

It was the second half of the nineteenth century when ice cream or iced-cream as it was then known became a real treat for ordinary people.

Italy continued to lead Europe in ice creamery and immigrants to the UK from there brought with them a tradition and expertise in what soon became a favourite with everyone and not just children.

Jimmy was born in the 1880s at a time when the popularity of ice cream made it a good business to be in.

Just how he got into the ice cream business is unusual, it is recorded that he won it on the outcome of a card game when Luigi de Luca who had his ice cream business in Halifax between 1930 and 1936 lost it all on the turn of a card.

Of course as I am sure many older readers will remember Kendall’s was not the only place where you could buy ice cream.

How many can remember the lazy hazy summer days walking down to Sunny Vale from Hove Edge and calling at Ripley’s for one of their ice creams?

This business was opened by Fred Ripley, an engineer by trade who started his ice cream business when his engineering work was at a low ebb. For an out of work engineer he was soon providing most of the ice cream consumed at Sunny Vale.

In this week’s featured photograph dating back to the 1960s you see two of Kendall’s ice cream vans – not really ice cream weather judging from the snow on the wind-screens.