Today we start the countdown to the Examiner Community Awards which will be at the John Smith’s Stadium on Thursday, May 24. Between now and then we will reveal who is on the shortlist for each category and the winners will be revealed on the night. Today we start with Community Group of the Year and this category is sponsored by Bramleys estate agents. Tomorrow we will reveal the shortlist for Community Project of the Year.
Bramleys are proud to sponsor The Community Group award for The Huddersfield Examiner Community awards 2108.
Founded in Huddersfield by John Bramley in 1958 with two staff members, Bramleys have grown and evolved into one the regions most respected chartered surveying practices.
It employs more than 60 people locally across its five office network, providing professional advice not only to house buyers and sellers but also to business owners and financial institutions across West Yorkshire.
Owned and run by its five partners, all local to the area, Bramleys is fiercely proud of its independence and track record of supporting local businesses, helping them to grow and prosper in an ever increasingly tough marketplace.
Supporting many local charitable causes, Bramleys staff regularly undertake fundraising challenges to raise much need financial backing for these deserving groups which is why we were so keen to be the sponsor of this category and recognise people putting something back into our local community.
Some people see grotspots in their area but do nothing to clear them up.
That simply doesn’t happen in Linthwaite.
For a group of 30 people have teamed up to sort out their village under the name Pride In Linthwaite and now they’ve started, they never seem to stop.
The list of tasks they have tackled seems endless - they have raised more than £1,000 in just four months, have planted over 1,000 bulbs and installed dozens of planters, collected 150 bags of litter and clear 20 roads of rubbish every week, have a Facebook page with 2,000 members, clear up grot spots, report potholes and faulty street lights, remove graffiti, tackle dog fouling, clean up the River Colne and Huddersfield Narrow Canal, refurbish benches and tidy parks and play areas.
One of its members, Malcolm Coton, said: “I am not aware of any other community group which has attracted so many volunteers and achieved as much in such a small space of time. The group was formed from a number of fragmented individuals and other groups who weren’t working together to achieve common goals. Now we have an active group of like-minded individuals who strive for a better community and better space to live in ... and much more.
“For many years Linthwaite has been neglected and left behind in development by the likes of Holmfirth, Honley, Meltham, Marsden and Slaithwaite who have all enjoyed investment and regeneration over the years.
“Being home to the largest school in Kirklees in Colne Valley High and on a through route has its own challenges in such a built-up and industrial area, home to many grotspots and controlling litter is a constant challenge on a daily basis.”
Pride In Linthwaite has three sub groups - Keeping Linthwaite Tidy which focuses on litter and pruning; Linthwaite Leadboilers Festival which is a new village festival for 2018 and Linthwaite In Bloom which deals with planting bulbs, bedding plants and hanging baskets around the village.
According to the Examiner archive the Linthwaite Leadboilers story started two or three hundred years ago when soldiers used the moors for musket practice. Villagers collected the lead balls and wanted to sell them for scrap but did not know how to melt them down – so they boiled them in water.
The festival will be a fun day with craft stalls, a dog show and live bands and will be held on Saturday, June 30 in the field at the top of Hoyle Ing, off Causeway Side.
Many people reminisce about the good old days when there was a great community spirit.
Few do anything about it but one remarkable mum is determined to bring those days back while also helping families struggling to make ends meet.
Single mum-of-three Monisha Hill has lived in Dalton all her life - and she’s always busy but that’s not stopped the 34-year-old from organising community events for the last four years.
About three years after reminiscing about her own childhood and remembering how communities would come together Monisha thought it would be great to organise a Halloween party for the children in her area and so approached businesses for sponsorship. The first party was a great success and it’s gone from strength to strength which has spurred Monisha on to do even more.
Last year she organised two coaches in the summer holidays to take children and their parents on a trip to Blackpool - and for some this was their main trip during the school holidays.
But Monisha never stops thinking how else she can help her community and after reading about thousands of children missing out on a good meal each day during the holidays as their parents struggling on benefits rely on their children being fed at school, Monisha organised fundraising to put on a lunch club for three days a week during a month of the summer holidays.
On top of all this she has also organised Christmas parties and other events. Every child received a free gift at the festive do.
She was nominated by Dalton resident Lisa Cummins, who said: “Monisha is a positive role model in the community and the children and young people look up to her. People in the community talk very positively about her and say that if it was not for her putting on events and bringing the community together they don’t know what it would be like for many families.
“Monisha is a remarkable young woman who is a testament to our heritage. She is compassionate and wants to make a difference. She is community focussed and family orientated and puts everyone first. Monisha never considers she has done something great or remarkable - she just takes it in her stride.”
Her next target is to hold a fundraising event this summer to promote awareness of sepsis which claimed her mum, Elizabeth Allen’s, life in 2014 aged just 53..
Monisha said: “I just love organising happy events and seeing the smiles on people’s faces. Everyone is welcome and we really want to make this a positive area in which to live.”
Monisha has two boys and a girl, M’kiyas, eight, Shiyla, 7, and Tiyano who is 15 months old.
Colne Valley Museum first opened its doors almost 50 years ago ... but in recent times the museum has been transformed and is brilliantly keeping the heritage of Huddersfield’s textile heritage alive.
Its dedicated team of volunteers successfully applied for a Heritage Lottery grant of £720,000 for its huge restoration project which has cost more than £750,000.
An original 1840s cottage on Cliffe Ash, Golcar, is now at the heart of the museum featuring a kitchen, bedroom and the upstairs working room.
On the museum’s bottom floor there are two kitchens. The one in the end cottage is Mrs Pearson’s period kitchen which makes up part of the complete weaver’s cottage. Next door is the Victorian one for school use and baking demonstrations.
Visitors enter by the middle floor which features a shop, cafe, the new exhibition gallery and period bedroom. The museum is a favourite visiting place for schools and the pupils dress up in Victorian clothes.
Volunteer Sue Starr said: “The museum has been open now since 1970 and has been cheerfully run by enthusiastic volunteers ever since. Today more than 80 people volunteer regularly to keep this most valuable historic asset going.
“We have just been through three of the busiest and most challenging years of our existence. As a result of our energy and enthusiasm we received such a large Heritage Lottery grant, a remarkable achievement for a small voluntary museum. A great deal of building work has taken place to improve the museum experience for our visitors.”
It was a massive job moving everything out before the builders started work - it took three removal lorries three days to get all the exhibits into storage and then when it came back it all had to be unpacked and displayed again by the volunteers. While it was closed the volunteers took the museum’s exhibits into the community, most notably spending a week in the Pack Horse Centre in Huddersfield town centre.
Sue added: “It has been three years of hard labour and our volunteers have stuck by us through thick and thin. They have sorted, cleaned, scrubbed, and polished. They have dealt with finance and forms and all that time they have remained positive, if weary.
“We have also worked on our knowledge and skills which add so much to the delight that visitors have in their museum visits.”
The museum is open Saturdays and Sundays from 1pm-4pm.
Special visits are arranged for schools and uniformed organisations such as scouts - usually around 25 a year - where the youngsters can visit Mrs Pearson’s Victorian weavers cottage to see life from times past in action. The museum also offers workshops on suffragettes, weavers in World War One and the mystery of Spring Rock, which leads children to discover more about the families who lived in the cottages.
Admission charges are adults £2.50, concessions £2 and accompanied children free. Schools can find out more about the history days by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org