This is another lovely image from the box of old photos found in the loft.
My grandmother (Minnie Ashworth) is with her three children, Doreen, Jack and Sylvia.
My mum is the little girl on the left. She was born in 1927 and her baby sister in 1932.
So I'm sure the photo was taken in 1932.
My only surviving elderly relative recognised her Uncle Fred and his family in some of the other photos in the box.
The 1939 Register records a Fred Ashworth employed as a Dairy Farm Foreman and living at Pool Crooks Cottage, Wharfedale Rural District, Yorkshire.
Many years ago my mother used to occasionally reminisce about childhood visits to her uncle and his family who lived on a farm in Pool near Otley.
The Pool-in-Wharfedale A Journey Back in Time website identifies a Pool Crooks Farm from 1646 and some of the buildings are still in existence today.
I am confident that this beautifully rustic photo of my grandmother in the hay with her children dates from 1932 and speculate that it was taken at Pool Crooks Farm, Wharfedale.
My grandmother doesn't look too happy sitting in the hay. But that's understandable as she wasn't by any stretch of the imagination a country girl.
Before she married my grandad (Horace Ashworth) in 1927 she lived in the centre of Wakefield (Yorkshire) and worked in a shop. I don't think that life on a farm would have suited her at all!
This is Minnie with Fred's wife, Edith.
Fred and Edith were married in Normanton in 1928. Fred was a farm labourer working at Nunnery Farm, Arthington at the time of his wedding. Edith lived in Normanton where most of the rest of Fred's family also lived. (Nunnery Farm appears to be just a few miles away from Pool Crooks Farm.) By 1932, Fred and Edith had two children, Kathleen and Dennis.
So in this photo, Minnie aged 26 years and Edith, a couple of years older, had five children between them all under five years. I can't imagine the visit was much of a holiday for either of the women.
Minnie Barratt 1906 - 1991
Minnie was the third child of Thomas and Harriett Barratt. She was born on 12th November 1906 at 120, Brickhouse Lane, West Bromwich in Staffordshire. Her father, Thomas Barratt, was employed as a haulier.
By the time of the 1911 census Thomas was working as a labourer and there were five children in the family. They continued to live in West Bromwich but by 1914 the family had re-located to Wakefield in Yorkshire and Thomas had become a coal miner. They lived at 28, Picadilly, Westgate in Wakefield.
Minnie was employed as a shop-girl and at the time of her wedding in 1927 she was still living in the family home. This was now 38, Picadilly and her father was once again working as a labourer. Minnie had nine siblings: Sarah (1902 - 1996) and Thomas (1904 - 1953) were older. The younger ones were: Edith (1909 - 1966); Annie (1911 - 1913); John (1914 - 1914); Mary (1915 - 1987); Celia (1919 - 2006); Edmund (1921 - 1966); Dorothy (1923 - 1941).
Horace Ashworth 1905 - 1984
Horace was the youngest child of John Thomas and Emma Jane Ashworth. He was born on 20th January 1905 at 27, Scotland Road, Nelson in Lancashire. His father, John Thomas Ashworth, was employed as a Master Butcher.
By the time of the 1911 census John Thomas was employed as a Butcher's Manager for the River Plate Meat Company and had re-located to Normanton near Wakefield in Yorkshire. There were six children in the family and they lived at 12, Altofts Road, Normanton.
Horace worked on the railways and by 1927 had progressed as far as becoming a Railway Fireman.
It can only have helped Horace that his older brother Arthur had been working on the railways since Horace was a schoolboy.
At the time of the wedding, Horace still lived in the family home at 12, Altofts Road but his father was by then employed as a night watchman. Horace had five siblings: Richard (1894 - 1969), Arthur (1896 - 1970), Frank (1898 - 1970), Tom (1901 - 1952) and Fred (1903 - 1952).
Fred was the only one of my grandad's brothers to work in agriculture. Arthur, Frank, Tom and Horace were all employed driving steam trains while Richard was a colliery worker. But there was precedent for working in agriculture as their grandad, Richard Ashworth (1839 - 1924) was a small scale farmer near Bacup in Lancashire. At first Richard worked on his parents' 20 acre farm but by 1881, Richard was farming 26 acres for himself. He continued to farm throughout his life becoming a dairy farmer at Holmes Barn Farm in his later years. He was still farming in 1911 aged 71 years and his youngest daughter, Alice, was employed at the farm as the dairymaid.
Richard was known as Dicky and was one of several farmers in the locality who went around the streets with their horses and milk floats, selling milk to householders. It was usual to carry at least two x 12 gallon cans on the float and the farmer filled smaller containers for those who wanted to buy a jug of milk. There's a photo at the end of this blog post taken at Holmes Barn Farm in 1908 of all Richard's descendants including Fred Ashworth, so perhaps that's where Fred decided that he would follow in his grandfather's footsteps and work in dairy farming.
There's no way of knowing how many times Horace and Minnie visited Fred on the farm. Maybe this was their only visit making these photos family history gold!
The marriage between Horace and Minnie took place on July 2nd 1927 at Wakefield Cathedral. This seems to be a wonderfully grand venue but presumably the cathedral was the parish church for the area of Wakefield where Minnie's family lived.
After they were married Minnie and Horace set up home together at 33, Favell Avenue, Normanton near Wakefield. Five months later their first child, Doreen, was born.
By 1933 Horace and Minnie had re-located to Cross Lane in Royston, near Barnsley, Yorkshire. Minnie and Horace had two more children and Horace reached the pinnacle of his career and became a railway engine driver.
Minnie and Horace lived at Cross Lane for nearly fifty years before moving into sheltered housing nearby where they celebrated their Golden Wedding.
In the box of old photos found in a loft were more images from the farm visit by Minnie, Horace and their young family.
This last photo rather looks as though the visit is over and they're going home.
Is that a look of relief on Minnie's face?
Thanks for reading my blog today.
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For over thirty years Cathy Murray worked in British primary education as a class teacher and then as head teacher of four different schools.