Jim Shipman

01423 772735

BHS Events: on Thursday, March 7 from 6-7pm in the Show Field, Horticap (renowned winners of the Harrogate Flower Show) are doing a demonstration of how to build a show garden, as in the show categories. Perfect for newcomers to this class. No booking required, refreshments available. Please telephone Heath Robinson on 0754 5009981 for more details.

Chilli Quiz Night: the friends of Kettlesing Felliscliffe Community Primary School are hosting their popular annual Chilli Quiz Night at Fewston Parochial Hall on Friday, January 25 at 7.30pm. Teams of up to six are welcome to compete in this light-hearted general knowledge quiz (including the infamous 80s music round) with nibbles and a lovely chilli con carne supper included in the ticket price of £5. Prizes for the winning team and a champagne and chocolates raffle. Tickets in advance please from Sarah Fisher 01423 880089.

Birstwith walks: both walks on Sunday, January 27 will be four to five miles long and start from The Station. Routes will depend on the weather and ground conditions but will aim to minimise use of muddy paths. The morning walk will leave The Station at 10am returning by 12.30pm. The afternoon walk will start at 1pm returning by 4pm. The walks will be at a pace to suit those taking part. You can do both or only the morning or the afternoon walk. If you bring dogs you must keep them under control. You will need clothing and footwear appropriate to the weather and possibly something to drink and eat along the way. Provisional dates looking ahead Saturday, February 16 starting from the village shop. Sunday, March 10 (Mothering Sunday) starting from The Station. For more details please telephone Adrian Dixon on 01423 770116 or 0771 618 7621 or e-mail

Embroiderer’s Guild: the next meeting of the Nidderdale branch will be held on Saturday, February 16 and will be a workshop entitled A Flower Picture with Kirsty Hopkins from 10am-4pm. As usual this will be held in Birstwith Church Hall and visitors and new members will be most welcome. For further information please contact Mrs Maureen Robinson on 01423 880597 or visit our website at

Birstwith History: the following extracts are taken from The History of the Parish of Birstwith by CS Greenwood, published in 1907. ‘The completion of the 50th year of the ecclesiastical parish of Birstwith, seems a fitting time to place on record some account of what led up to the formation of that parish, and of subsequent events connected with it, more especially the building and furnishing of the Church. The following notes are largely taken from those made in the year 1881 by the late F B Greenwood and further added to by the late Rev. H V Bacon, during the time he was vicar of the parish. Birstwith, derived some say, from “Bir” a wood, and “with” a dwelling. Others that it was originally written “Beristade,” from “bere” barley, and “stade” a steading, ie, a barley village, a place where barley was grown and stored, was formally a township in the parish of Hampsthwaite. In 1805 John Greenwood, of The Knowle, Keighley, purchased the house at Swarcliffe - “Swar” black, “cliffe” a rock - with other lands in the vicinity, and spent some portion of each year there. He considerably enlarged the estate, rebuilt the Hall and many of the cottages in the village below, as they successively became his property. He also purchased a large cotton mill which had been built by Messrs. Arthington and Blesard, the former owners of Swarcliffe, together with a corn mill adjoining. The cotton mill was then worked by Messrs. Colbeck and Ellis, both mills deriving their power from the river. Tradition says he improved the dam across the river, quarrying the stones out of a plantation in Swarcliffe Park, known as the Black Wood.’