Day: March 13, 2012

Dick Hudson’s – Postcard #17

This is a postcard from my own collection.

The picture is of the locally famous Dick Hudson’s in Eldwick, near Bingley, West Yorkshire.

The postcard has some damage to the corners and the back, mainly from being stuck in an album and then removed. Any publisher information is obscured by the damage to the back of the card.

You can see below that the postcard has been postally used. The date is 9 March 1917. I would guess that the card has been sent to a young man fighting in WW1, although there is no postal address.

The text on the card is:-

Dear Fred

Packed your parcel tonight and hope you get it in good condition. The weather is still very winterly and bitterly cold. Had snow all the week. Hope you are keeping well considering state of affairs.

The rest of the text is not very clear. It certainly mentions father and mother but I’m not sure if it was sent by Fred’s parents or if the sender is just mentioning them.

Dick Hudson’s itself has no family connection at all. The pub is still there and I have visited several times.

Since the 17th century there has been a traveller’s tavern on what was an old pack horse trail from Bingley to Ilkley. The original tavern called ‘The Plough Boy’ was at a former farmhouse at Rattle Bank on the Otley Road. However following construction of a new road the liquor license of the old pub was transferred to a Mr Tommy Anderson at Highgate Farm – the site of the present day pub.

Back in 1809 the farm and the public house – now called ‘The Fleece Inn’ became the property of Thomas Hudson in whose family they remained until 1895. Thomas passed on ‘The Fleece Inn’ to his son Richard in 1850 and he stayed as landlord for nearly thirty years. It was during ‘Dick’s’ stewardship that the tavern became so popular with Airedale’s urban workers resulting in the more familiar name of ‘Dick Hudson’s’.

Two other members of the Hudson family subsequently ran the pub following the death of the celebrated Dick Hudson in 1878.

Towards the end of the 19th century an Austrian business man became proprietor of the inn and had great plans to commercialise the site with fountains and pleasure gardens . None of these plans came to pass but in 1900 the old farmhouse and tavern were demolished and replaced by the present day building. The first landlord of this new inn was Mr J Newsome who was succeeded by his brother in law in 1913.

If you ever happen to be in the area it’s well worth a visit – Dick Hudson’s