Helping visitors to appreciate Killinghall's village history

FROM Ripon Cathedral to Castle Howard, God's own county can claim its fair share of historic landmarks – and now Killinghall is striving to secure its place in Yorkshire's history books.

Young and old united this week to unveil plaques highlighting two of the village's most significant buildings, the boarding school-turned-village hall, which dates back to 1876, and the Church of England school, built in 1852.

Dressed in period costume, students at the school invited past pupils along to a ceremony lead by Killinghall Parish Council chairman Anne Holdsworth.

Attending the event was one of the village's eldest residents, 90-year-old Clarrie Clarkson, who has lived in Killinghall for all but five years of her life.

She said things have changed dramatically since she went to the school in the early 1920s.

"Everything was so strict," she remembered.

"I've been so amazed at this school because it's so bright and there's so much here to help children to learn.

"The children are all so beautifully well behaved."

Fred Furness, 70, a former pupil and now the school's lollipop man, also dropped by for the ceremony.

The two metal tablets come after the village's oldest building, the 17th century Kennel Hall Farm, was adorned with the first blue plaque last year.

Funding from the Action 2000 committee has enabled residents to celebrate the history of their village and the plaques follow a history book, Reflections of Killinghall, written by villagers.

Colin Waite, who helped pen the book, said the plaques were an ideal way to give the community the historical recognition it so rightfully deserves.

"We've got a history that's as strong and impressive as Ripley or Hampsthwaite," he said.

"I felt that this was important. Because of the huge volume of traffic that goes through here, people don't appreciate the antiquity of the village, which goes back to the Domesday Book."