SKELTON - IN - CLEVELAND
IN HISTORY

1903

1st January -
NORTH SKELTON BALL FOR 'HOPE TO PROSPER' BAND.
A ball was given by the 'Hope to Prosper' Band in the Institute to clear off the debt on the new instruments. Dancing was carried on from 8 p.m till 5 a.m.
Mr T Ranson and Mr J Thompson being the MCs.

North Skelton "Hope to Prosper" Band, 1903 behind the "Trust House" [Bulls Head Hotel]

16th January -
EMERGENCY TELEGRAPH SYSTEM.
The scheme for affording special telegraph facilities to about 100 villages and rural localities in North Eastern England came into operation this week.
Villages having telegraphic communication with certain head offices will be able to call up after hours in case of emergency.
If a telegram is handed in at a remote village, the sub-postmaster may ring up his head office and secure the delivery of a telegram for, say, a doctor or a fire engine in need, or in any like case of emergency.
In larger offices a bell will ring in the sorting rooms or some part of the office where there are clerks on duty.
The Head Office at Middlesbrough will be connected to - Brotton, Eston, Guisborough, Loftus, Lazenby, Littley Ayton, Marske, Skelton, South Bank, Staithes, Stokesley and Yarm.

21st January -
BANQUET FOR THE NEEDY.
Councillor Robert Cross and Mrs Cross, butchers, entertained all the aged and poor persons in the Skelton and Brotton district to a repast, provided in the North Skelton Institute.
29th January -
SOCIAL FOR ILL MAN.
A social was held in the Skelton Literary Institute for the benefit of Mr W T Videan, who has been off work through illness for a considerable time.
Mr Freddie Bell's Band supplied the music. It was arranged by the committee of the Skelton Tradesmen's Assemblies.
On the 5th March at the Duke William Inn, Skelton in the presence of a large company the proceeds of all the Committee's efforts and 643 subscribers, 42 7s 6d were presented to Mr Videan by Mr W H A Wharton.
Mr Videan has been in Skelton 33 years, of which 25 had been as a Grocer. Mr Wharton advised him to Bank the money and use it as required.
The Secretary said that Mr R P Petch had written to the Bath Hospital Harrogate for a ticket of admission as the Doctor advised him to go there and take the baths regularly. He, Mr Petch, would pay all expenses.
30th January -
WHEEL OFF RAILWAY TRUCK BLOCKS LINE.
Last night the wheel became detached from a mineral truck, when a trainload of ironstone was passing North Skelton Junction.
The line was blocked for several hours and all traffic had to be worked on one set of rails between Lumpsey Mine Crossing and North Skelton Station.

31st January -
CLEVELAND PATRIOTISM.
Nearly 3 years ago, when the South African War was in its darkest phase and men from the Front were being invalided home by every returning transport, Lt Col Wharton J.P. of Skelton Castle established in the village of Skelton a Convalescent Home for wounded soldiers as part of his contribution to his Country's cause.
The Home provided accommodation for 9 patients at a time and has generally been fully occupied.
The men came from all parts of Yorkshire and were tenderly nursed back to health, being permitted when they were able to roam about the neighbourhood and gain health and strength from the pure breezes of the Cleveland Hills.
From the outset Dr Ernest J Burnett of Saltburn has acted as Medical Officer to the Home and given his services readily and freely as occasion required.
The Doctor's services are no longer required, but as a slight recognition, Squire Wharton has presented him with a very handsome inkstand.

Fred Bell's Orchestra. Fred Bell is second from the Left.

17th February -
BENEFIT CONCERT FOR THE BAND.
In recognition of the services which Mr Freddie Bell's Skelton Orchestral Band has rendered during the present season a Concert was arranged by the local Lodge of the Cleveland Miners' Association.
It took place in the North Skelton Institute last night, when Mr D T Petch presided over a good attendance.

19th February -
CITIZENSHIP.
At the Skelton Literary Institute under the auspices of the Skelton Co-operative Women's Guild the Rev R Roberts of Bradford gave an address on the subject of "The Rights and Duties of Citizenship". Songs etc were rendered by local artistes.

3rd March -
NO PUB AT THE STATION.
Stephen William Emmerson, farmer, of Faugh Field [also known as Hollybush] Farm, Skelton, which was 250 yards from the new North Skelton

Hollybush Farm, Skelton. Home of the Emmerson family.

railway station, applied for a full license for his house.
Bookings at North Skelton exceeded 2000 per month at this time and this did not include people who changed at the station. It was intended that the house should be more of a refreshment place rather than just for drinking.
The application was opposed by the tenants of the Bull's Head Inn, North Skelton, the Durham and North Yorkshire Public Houses Trust.
It was refused. I am informed by Josie Bland, a descendant of the Emmerson's that she has heard that this Stephen was a heavy drinker himself and died the following year.
He had inherited Hollybush Farm from Hannah Emmerson, who figures often in the pages of this website.

6th March -
NO COMPENSATION.
Mrs Elizabeth Rice of North Skelton claimed for the loss of her husband, John, who fell with a metal rail on his back in N Skelton mine in 1902 and injured himself.
The mine owners proved he died of natural causes and case dismissed.
At the 1901 census the Rices lived at 46 Wharton St with their three sons and the wife of the eldest son. John was aged 55 and Elizabeth 56. They had both been born in Devon.

9th March -
MINE DEATH.
Skelton Old Shaft Mine. Edward Rix a driver, aged 21, who resided at Guisborough was killed.
"When coupling his horse to a full tub, some distance from the face, about a ton stone fell away at a place end and caused instant death."

11th March-
EDUCATION ACT - SKELTON INFANTS SCHOOL BELONGS TO THE CASTLE.
The Education Act of 1902, which had caused much controversy, abolished local School Boards, the membership of which had been decided for 30 years by village elections, and placed Education in the hands of Councils. The Act also started Grammar Schools.
At the meeting of the Skelton School Board a letter was read from Mr W H A Wharton, reminding the Board that they had the use of the Skelton Infants School, [on Cross Green] during his pleasure at a nominal rental of 1 shilling [5 new pence] per year.
In view of the new Act, he would give them notice that on the day previous to the cessation of the School Boards that they must hand over the School to him and not include it in the list of those to be transferred to the new authority.
Skelton Parish Magazine -
The Skelton and Stanghow School Board will cease to exist and the North Riding County Council Education Committee will take over their buildings, powers, and responsibilities
They have appointed as Managers of the Skelton Schools - The Rev R J Ellis, Messrs T Ranson, W Kingston and W Carter.
The Urban Council will add two representatives to these.


17th March -
NEW RAILWAY STATION ACCESS.
At a meeting of the Skelton and Brotton Council it was reported that the North Eastern Railway Co had agreed to put in thorough repair the footpath leading from the new Railway Station to Faughfield Lane [now Station Lane.]
When this was done the Council agreed to take it over as a public road.

16th April -
TELEPHONES COMING.
The agent for the National Telephone Company, Mr Carey of Redcar, paid a visit to Skelton a few days ago for the purpose of arranging a national telephone office at Skelton.
He promised to continue the Guisborough Branch through to Skelton if he got plenty of support.
He had plenty of this from Mr W H A Wharton, the Rev R J Ellis, Dr Blue and the many tradesmen in the District.
Parish Magazine -
Connections are already being established at Guisbro and we understand that the trunk line will be brought through Skelton and Saltburn and that a public call office and central station will be established in Skelton from which wires will be run to subscribers at Boosbeck, North Skelton, Skelton Green and Skelton.
From this public call office the general public will be enabled at the modest outlay of a penny or twopence to hold conversation with any subscriber at Saltburn, Redcar, Middlesbrough, Stockton, Yarm, Guisborough and the district between these places and at a further charge, graduated according to distance, with any subscriber in England or Scotland.
No doubt many will make this use of the system who do not at present see sufficient reason for having an instrument in their own house or place of business.
In village districts like our own we are far behind countries like Norway, Switzerland and even Japan, where a full service is supplied at half the cost that we are required to pay.


April - Easter Monday -
CHURCH LADS BRIGADE.
On Easter Monday there was a "field day" at the Castle of the Companies of the Church Lads' Brigade that make up the Cleveland Battalion.
The day was bright but very cold. Some 100 lads of the Skelton,Saltburn, Guisborough and Redcar Companies fell in at the Drill Hall and marched down to the Castle led by the massed bands.
They were inspected by Lieut Col Wharton and after going through various drills and manoeuvres had a substantial tea in a marquee kindly provided by the Squire and Mrs Wharton.


30th April -
NORTH SKELTON GRIEVANCE.
"I took a ticket for Guisborough the other night from North Skelton Station and laid down 6d for payment.
I was calmly told the fare was 8.5 pence because the train went via Brotton.
I consider this a great injustice to the people who travel. They have to come via Brotton for the convenience of the Company and not satisfied with that, have to pay extra."

2nd May -
NEW BRIDGES NOW OPEN.
The Surveyor reported that the new bridges between North Skelton and the new Station were now open to the public. The cost was 361.

The old wooden bridge that used to cross Leyland Beck on the footpath from North Skelton to Hollybush and the Railway Station.


14th May -
SKELTON FIRE BRIGADE COVER MARSKE.
At Marske Parish Council the Clerk was instructed to write to Skelton Council thanking them for their offer to give the services of their Fire Brigade when required.

21st May -
CHURCH LADS' BRIGADE CONCERT.
A good audience saw a Concert under the auspices of the 1st Battalion York Regiment of the CLB. Exhibitions of ambulance drill and physical drill were given by local members.
The Choir of the Corps, Mr F Bell's Band and vocals from Messrs Godsmark, Elgey, Innis, Mason, S Shepherdson, W Blades, Staff Sgt Lowther, Cpl Moss and Cpl Blades all contributed.

SPORTY NIGHT AT THE NEW INN.
The Skelton football and cricket teams with their supporters were entertained to a complimentary dinner by Mr and Mrs Charles Skipper of the New Inn, Skelton Green.
There were some 60 guests and after a capital spread loyal and sporting toasts were interspersed with songs.

23rd May -
ANOTHER MINE DEATH.
North Skelton Mine. Edward Kirk, a horsekeeper aged 16, was killed.
"He was assisting to give a horse some medicine when the twitch slipped off the horse's nose. He fell back on to the tramway and his spine was injured."
Edward was the eldest son of Henry and Mary Kirk of 14 Richard St, North Skelton.
They had 8 children at the census of 1901. Edward's father, had come from Hutton le Hole to work in the ironstone mines and was also a horse driver.




Skelton High Street in the Early 1900s. Postcard dated 10th May 1906. Sent from Skelton Green and restamped at Skelton.

28th May -
FARMERS TROUNCE THE TRADESMEN.
Teams representing the two groups met in a cricket match at 'Florison Ground' Skelton. Farmers - 133 for 6 wickets, W Brunton 44, F Brunton 31, J Chapman 12. Tradesmen 46 all out.

29th May -
SERIOUS BIKE ACCIDENT.
Miss Ellen Clark, a school teacher at Saltburn, is lying in a precarious condition as the result of a cycle accident.
She was descending a steep incline at Skelton Ellars when she was thrown from her machine. The base of her skull was fractured.

June 13th -
VOLUNTEERS ANNUAL CAMP.
Our Volunteers joined the rest of the Battalion for their annual week's training under canvas at Scarborough.
The exposed position of their camp on the race course and the inclement weather gave them an experience of the hardships rather than the pleasures of military life.


16th June -
HAM-FISTED THIEF.
George Hanlon, a stranger in the District, was charged with stealing a ham, value 7 shillings, from the coach-house of Mr R W Stevenson, of Trout Hall, Skelton.
He offered to sell it to Mr R Cross, butcher of North Skelton. Remanded for trial.

7th July -
WRINGER MANGLED.
A small boy, named George Morgan, was charged with damaging a wringing machine, belonging to Albert Tuck at North Skelton.
Mr Tuck, who is a dealer in the machines, had placed one on the footpath outside his shop and the lad on his way to school had overturned it, causing 10 shillings worth of damage.
Fined 5s 6d.
1903 RECORD YEAR FOR BAD WEATHER.
Parish magazine -
"The year 1903 has established a record for rain and stormy weather. The harvest everywhere was seriously hindered and late, and many crops were of little value when gathered."
10th July -
UFO TERRIFIES LOCALS.
On Friday night a strange novel scary sight came across the North York Moors and nearly went out to sea.
It originated in York and passed over Westerdale and Castleton and continued its course to Skelton.
It finally alighted in a field before it reached Saltburn.
There were 3 occupants in it who had a narrow escape from coming down in the sea.
Nothing of the sort had been seen in the district before, which may account for the somewhat curious actions of some of the residents on seeing it.
A correspondent states that one farmer went into his house for a gun, and the consequences may have been serious, only it had disappeared when he emerged with the weapon.
A lady, not caring for the sight of it, went into her house and sought to make her possessions safe by locking the door.
It was a hot air balloon that had taken off at the Gala in York.

29th July -
SKELTON DISTRICT AGRICULTURAL SHOW.
The 27th Annual show was held in a field near Skelton, with 565 exhibits - cattle, sheep, pigs, poultry, pigeons and produce.

8th August -
BAN STREET BETTING.
At the meeting of the Skelton and Brotton Council, Councillor Carter of Skelton brought up the question and moved that the County Council be requested to put the bye-law prohibiting street betting into force in the Council's area.
He spoke of the evils of street betting and instanced a case at Skelton, where a bookmaker was waiting for children coming out of Sunday School and they went and made bets with him.
Petitions were handed in from strong deputatons from all the local villages Nonconformist Churches.
Councillor West said that as long as horse racing was a popular form of sport, the miners would bet on it.
The motion was carried by 10 votes to 9.

11th August -
YOUNG GAMBLERS NABBED.
4 Skelton youths, E Boughen, A Flowers, Percy Kime and William Rowe were each ordered to payr 2s 6d and 5s 6d costs for playing pitch and toss on the footpath between Airy Hill and Skelton Green.

18th August -
WALKING RACE.
A walking competition took place when 11 competitors started from Mr C Skipper's New Inn at 6.55 p.m. The 9 mile route was through Boosbeck, Charltons, Guisborough, Skelton Ellers, Old Skelton and back to the New Inn.
The route was lined with 100s of spectators. Only 4 finished with the winner being W Sadd of Skelton in a time of 1hr 27mins 43secs to claim first prize of 15 shillings.
7th September -
MINER ATTACKS VEG - THEN A BOBBY.
Samuel Gratton, a Skelton miner, was charged at Guisborough Police Court
with maliciously damaging vegetables growing in the garden of Edward Posey at Skelton on Saturday night.
He was further charged with assaulting PC George Boynton in the execution of his duty.
The Constable was passing Posey's garden about 10.30 when he heard movement and went in to investigate.
On seeing Gratton and another man damaging the vegetables he got hold of him, whereon the prisoner started striking and kicking him.
After a struggle Gratton was taken to the lock-up, but the other man got away. The Bench remanded Gratton in custody until the Petty Sessions.

11th September -
FOOTBALL - 'SKELTON WEDNESDAY' STARTED.
A well attended meeting at the Wharton Arms agreed to arrange a Wednesday football team.
All officials and a Committee of 14 were elected with Dr J Thorney as President. Each member to pay a subscription of half a crown, 2s 6d, [12.5 new pence] for the season.
This makes 3 Clubs in Skelton with Skelton United and Skelton Green in the Cleveland Minor League.

September -
SKELTON STATION
Parish Magazine - The following items, the result of the first year's working of our Railway Station show that though little in buildings it is by no means little in usefulness.
Many much more pretentious stations and commodious cover to shelter passengers from the weather bring much less revenue to the North Eatern Railway Company.
The passenger traffic shews 9,000 passengers booked from Saltburn, 1700 from Brotton, while Skelton has booked 17,000 to different stations.
The goods department has dealt with 7,000 tons of coal and merchandise and 3,500 parcels.
We think the management are convinced now that they were wrong in their ideas and that Skelton Station has come to stay.


CASTLE LODGE.
Building of the Castle lodge on Marske Lane. For years before it had stood on the Guisborough Rd near Barns Farm.

14th September -
NORTH SKELTON SHOW FOR THE POOR AND AGED.
The miners of North Skelton held their first Horticultural Show in the Institute. The proceeds are their novel way of adding to the Fund for providing Christmas gifts for the needy of New and North Skelton.
There were 40 Classes of excellent produce, which was auctioned at the end.
At night a social gathering and dance to the Skelton String Band added to the Fund.

10th October -
NORTH SKELTON POLITICS.
Mr Herbert Samuel MP addressed a crowded meeting at North Skelton Institute with a large contingent of the N Skelton Women's Liberal Association.
He alluded sympathetically to the aspirations of Labour and a resolution was passed calling on the Government to prosecuted those important questions of social reform that have long been promised.
South Skelton Miners, 8 October 1903.

24th October -
SOUTH SKELTON MINE
COMPENSATION CLAIM FOR AMPUTATED FOOT.

James Sibly, a miner of 7 Dixon St, Lingdale at Stokesley County Court claimed compensation of 12s 7d per week from 20th March last.
He had been injured in Bolckow and Vaughan's South Skelton Mine and had to have his Left foot amputated at the ankle.
Sibly had gone to work on March 16th and at the assembly station underground with his mate Bentley was told by one of the Deputy Overmen, named Arnold that there had been a roof fall on the 'straight road' and they had better sit down and wait a bit.
Later Arnold told them to go round to their work by 'Jack Dodds' old road and that he would follow them with a baulk for the roof of the place they worked in about "Tommy Time".
His Honour the Judge - "Summer time ?" [Laughter].
Mr Barron for Sibly - "Tommy time, your Honour, breakfast time."
Sibly said that he tested the roof with a scraper and commenced to drill a hole for a shot and was joined by Bentley.
Half an hour later part of the roof gave way and caused his injuries.
Both Sibly and Bentley said that Arnold had not warned them that the roof was unsafe.
Arnold claimed that he had told them. However in answer to the Judge's query he admitted that he had not entered an account of a dangerous place in the book specially prepared for that purpose.
Arnold also, he said, should have put up a Danger board in the place.
For the defence it was claimed that Sibly and Bently had wilfully disobeyed the rules by going to their place of work without obtaining the permission of the Deputy.
The Judge decided that Arnold had neglected his duty and allowed Sibly's claim in full.

30th October -
VOLUNTEERS ANNUAL DINNER.
On Saturday night the "G" Company of the Skelton Volunteers, 1st Battalion, Alexandra, Princess of Wales' Own Yorkshire Regiment held their annual dinner at the Wharton Arms Hotel, Skelton, when some 100 men [including the 4 soldiers at the Convalescent Home, kindly invited by Lt Col Wharton] sat down to an excellent spread provided by the hostess, Mrs Pattinson, to which ample justice was done.

3rd November -
WOUNDING AT THE MINERS' ARMS.
John Robert Duranor, Richard Baker and William Harvey were charged with unlawful wounding and common assault at the Miners' Arms, Skelton Green on Saturday night.
The complainant, James Rice, a miner of Skelton, assisted at the pub and was serving in the Smoke Room.
The prisoner, Baker, persisted in the door being closed, while Rice said it must be kept open. Whereupon, Baker threw down a challenge to fight.
Baker was turned out and the other two followed him.
Baker returned to apologise and asked for more liquor, which request was refused.
As he was leaving he conversed with Rice and the Landlord heard a fall in the passage, where he found Rice stunned with a wound in the top of his head.
Baker claimed Rice had challenged him and after arguing for a few minutes had his fists up. Baker struck out and Rice fell against the door.
Baker was sentenced to a month's imprisonment and the other two discharged.

7th November -
SCARLET FEVER.
At the Council meeting it was reported by Dr Stainthorpe that there had been 25 cases of Scarlet Fever, 15 of which had occurred in 12 houses in North Skelton.
It was more than probable that the outbreak was the result of a child in an infectious state attending North Skelton Infant School.

Frank and Mary Ward in 1903, with their children left to right, Gordon, Andrew and Frank.
Mary was a direct descendant of John Andrew, of smuggling and hunting fame. Frank senior was an ironstone miner and the family lived at 26 Yeoman St.
William Ward, the old gentleman pictured on Chemists Corner on the page for 1901 was Frank's father. The baby, Andrew, is the ironstone miner pictured on the page for 1922 - 1926. Young Frank is the footballer for Skelton Celtic, pictured on the page for 1919 to 1920.
[Photograph kindly contributed by Alan Ward, son of Frank, junior.]

14th November -
REFEREE ABUSED AT NORTH SKELTON.
At a meeting of the North Riding of Yorkshire Football Association held at Middlesbrough, Mr Wake, a referee lodged a complaint regarding the conduct of the North Skelton spectators in a match against Lingdale.
He stated that as soon as the game was over he was mobbed and struck by stones thrown at him by youngsters.
The Club officials refused to give him protection when he asked for it. An official of the Club denied that mud had been thrown, but admitted no protection had been given.
The ground was suspended for 14 days and the club ordered not to play a home match within a radius of 2 miles and to pay Mr Wake's expenses.

30th November -
SKELTON OLD BAND PRESENTATION.
The members of the Skelton Old Band had a knife and fork tea, after which a 'Smoker' was held.
Mr J Ramage, the band master, was presented with a gold Albert [pocket watch chain, as worn by Frank Ward on the photograph] and a purse of money, subscribed by the patrons and members of the Band.

10th December -
SERIOUS MINE ACCIDENT.
A North Skelton miner, named Winspear, sustained a compound fracture of one of his legs while working in Bolckow and Vaughan's North Skelton Mine. He was caught by falling stone and removed to the Brotton Hospital.

15th December -
WHARTONS OFF TO EGYPT.
Mr W H A Wharton of Skelton Castle, accompanied by Mrs Wharton, left Saltburn yesterday for London, en route for Cairo, for the benefit of his health. He will probably return home about the end of April next.

17th December -
FIRST POWERED FLIGHT.
Wright brothers made first powered flight in USA.

THOMAS PETCH DEAD.
Parish Magazine - On Thursday morning there passed away from us one widely identified with public life in Skelton, after a lingering illness of over a year.
As Chairman of the Skelton and Stanghow School Board for over 20 years, as a Guardian and lately Chairman of that body, as member of the Urban Council and as a conspicuous figure in the hunting field, he has occupied a very prominent position in the district. In agricultural matters as farmer and valuer he was widely known.
He was buried on the 19th at Liverton, where other members of his family are interred.


22nd December -
FENCE DAMAGE.
At Guisborough Police Court John Lightburn and William Scuffham were each fined 10 shillings, including costs, for damaging a fence at Skelton belonging to Mr Wharton.

24th Dec -
MINE DEATH.
South Skelton Mine. George Smith, a deputy aged 32, was killed.
"Thigh fractured and back injured by a fall of stone from face. Died the same day."

29th December -
CHRISTMAS DRUNKARD ASSAULTED CONSTABLE.
At the Guisborough Police Court, James Armstrong was charged with being drunk and disorderly at North Skelton early on Christmas morning and further with assaulting PC Stainthorpe.
He had a previous conviction and was sentenced to one month's imprisonment.
South Skelton Miners, 2 December 1903.


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