A brief history of Badsworth
Domesday book to the 21st Century
In common with most villages, Badsworth has existed since before 1086. It is listed in the Domesday Book as Badesuurde meaning Bades or Baedi's enclosure.."In Badesuurde, Uttone and Rugartorp two brothers had 9 carucates and 5 bovates of land for gold where 6 ploughs can be............
A church is there and a priest and one and a half acres of meadow. Pasturable woodland one leuga in length and three furlongs in bredthe"
This seems to indicate an Anglo Saxon settlement with open fields around a nucleus of houses and it is believed, a wooden Anglo Saxon church.
The Anglo Saxons set up many "springline" villages which offered an assured good quality water supply from natural local springs. Close to the edge of the village heading out towards Thorpe Audlin can be seen the legacy of the strip system in the somewhat corrugated appearance of the field whereby each peasant was allocated a number of strips in open field, ploughed deep to gain more surface area.
The remains of the strip system - from space!
The village today still reflects its past, being of a "nucleated" character with the Church of St Mary as its central focus. It is thought that there was a village green situated close to the church at which a community well was sited for use by the villagers. There remain several wells in and around the village - some apparently still useable but others which are filled in or disused. This seems to suggest that the village green was not necessarily a dominant focus for the community.
Whilst the village is of nucleated character, its shape is broadly rectangular and typical of many villages in the North of England.
The History of the Hall and Grange
At the moment information is very sketchy on the Hall but we have some notable dates and residents.
In 1653 the forfeited Manor of Badsworth was purchased by Sir John Bright, after Parliament sequestered it from the Dolman family during the Civil War, for £8600. The hall became his principal residence, he was appointed Sheriff of Yorkshire 1654 - 1656.
He died on 13th September 1688 and was "buried with great pomp in the Chancel of Badsworth Church" on 21st September, there is a wall monument in Badsworth Church paying tribute to him.
The Sir John Bright Monument in the Church
According to the 1852 census the Hall was the residence of Joseph Scott Esq.
The famous architect John Carr (Born in York, lived in Horbury, married in Featherstone) was associated with the building, renovating, extending or demolishing many buildings - public, churches, bridges and domestic throughout Yorkshire and the Country as a whole and his last great unfinished work was the San Antonio's hospital in Oporto Portugal.
He was the Lord Mayor of York in 1770 and 1785 and died, unmarried in 1807 leaving property worth between £150,000 and £200,000. Unfortunately all we can find in the records is that he demolished Badsworth Hall in 1780!
As the last Hall was described as Georgian (1730 - 1800), we assume the Hall was built shortly after this demolition.
Badsworth Hall - earliest picture we have
The Hall in 1926
The seat of power in the village was Badsworth Hall which was demolished in the late 1940s
The last Lord of the Manor was Richard Heywod Jones, who purchased the Manor in the 1850s, and his family is much in evidence in the Church. Richard himself was killed by lightning whilst at camp with the local militia in Harrogate in 1900, he left a widow and daughters.
The Crest of Richard Heywood Jones
All the Daughters married men who had estates in their own right so, on the death of his widow in 1926 the Badsworth estate was broken up and auctioned off
The Estate was described in the Sale Catalogue as:-
Comprising the picturesque old Georgian Mansion
with Modern conveniences
10 Dairy Farms
Important Building Sites
and the greater part of the Village of Badsworth
amounting in all to about
At one time the Hall was connected to the "Bothy" - Weavers cottages - by an iron bridge.
Rumour has it that this fell down as a cart passed under shaking the foundations, the remains of these are still visible on Ninevah Lane. The original cottages have been converted into "The Cottage", an extremely attractive property.
After the Sale, Major Holliday lived in the Hall before renting and eventually buying Copgrove Hall in 1936
The present building bearing the name is in fact the original entrance to the drive up to the Hall and consisted of the archway and stables, this is now a Grade II listed building.
The original entrance and the hall today
Badsworth Hall is mentioned in "God's Good Man - A Simple Love Story" by Marie Corelli.
It was the home of "Sir Morton Pippitt". The site of the Hall is now occupied by the houses of Badsworth Court.
Badsworth Grange standing on Back Lane was built for Richard Heywood's unmarried sisters.
Early pictures of the Grange
Around 1940 Mr E.C Hamilton-Russell, a director of the Netherton Coal Company (Newcastle), was resident at the Grange and subsequently listed after 1947 (Nationalisation of the Coal Industry) as living in Hexham.