A new publication by Honley Civic Society provides a fascinating glimpse into life in the village during the late 19th and 20th centuries.
The 40-page book, Honley Through Old Advertising, is being launched this Saturday at the village’s Christmas Street Market in Church Street.
It has been researched and compiled by the society’s history group leader Peter Marshall, a Scotsman by birth but a dedicated Holme Valley resident since 1985.
The idea for the book was born after the society was given a programme for a 1901 Conservative Club bazaar that contained a range of advertisements for local businesses.
Peter says the programme revealed a village populated by trades people of all kinds from butchers, bakers and fishmongers to a piano tuner.
He said: “It’s a real reflection of how self sufficient the village was. You could get anything you wanted within a couple of streets. One of the things that struck me was the number of butchers. People obviously ate a lot of red meat.
“A Christmas advert for the Co-op in the 1920s seemed to suggest that poultry was not the thing you had at Christmas – it was red meat.”
Honley Civic Society produces two publications a year. A few months ago it published a commemorative book, Honley in the Great War, using archive material gleaned from local people.
Peter added: “We are amassing a wide range of photographs and material that people give us. I’m building up quite an archive and I thought that this 1901 programme was a fascinating collection of adverts that would make a book. But I have also used other sources and researched some of the people who were in the advertising.”
The book, which costs £4, even includes an invoice for Christmas gifts bought at the Honley Co-op in 1936.
One of the former Honley residents featured in the book is Ben Oldfield, an undertaker who was also a prize rabbit breeder.
Peter said: “I found out that one of the cups still presented at Honley Show each year is called the Ben Oldfield cup.”
Funds raised from the sale of the new book, which contains more than 80 illustrations, will go to the society.
Anyone interested in joining the society can go along to the next meeting on Thursday, January 8, at 7.30pm in the Parish Rooms. The meeting will hear a talk from independent film maker John Murray, who filmed a documentary on David Brown tractors in the Middle East.