Huddersfield Corporation made history a century ago, in October 1919, when it agreed to buy the 4,300-plus acres of the Ramsden Estate — nearly half the land within the Borough boundary and the whole of the town centre — for £1.3 million. The deal was struck via locally-born entrepreneur Sam Copley and finalised a year later, on 29 September 1920.
To mark the centenary, Alderman Clifford Stephenson’s lively account of events, The Ramsdens and their Estate in Huddersfield: The Town that Bought Itself, has now been republished on three local websites — those of Huddersfield Civic Society, Huddersfield Local History Society and Huddersfield Exposed.
Stephenson, who chaired the Corporation’s estates committee, published his booklet in 1972. It follows the story of the Ramsdens in Huddersfield from their purchase of the manor in 1599 to the sale in 1920.
- Publication by the University Press and Local History Society of a full-length book on the Ramsdens in Huddersfield, edited by locally-born historian Edward Royle, now emeritus professor of history at York. This will cast new light on the story told by Stephenson.
- A mobile exhibition, curated by University history students, which will tour the town, featuring the archives of the Ramsden family and Huddersfield Corporation.
- A Ramsden Town gallery trail and family activities at Tolson Museum.
- Other walks, talks and events as part of Discover Huddersfield, Heritage Open Days and Local Democracy Week.