WORKERS have stumbled across a hidden well at a popular Huddersfield tourist attraction.

The mysterious water source was discovered at Colne Valley Museum in Golcar.

The museum, based in a row of Victorian cottages at Cliffe Ash, is currently incorporating the vacant fish and chip shop next-door.

Workers stumbled across the well in the cellar beneath the front window of the shop while carrying out the revamp.

The stone-built structure contains clear water, is about 4ft wide and more than 30ft deep.

There are gullies running from the well, suggesting that it served several cottages.

Museum staff believe the well was built in the 1600s or 1700s.

Trustee Edward Shaw welcomed the find – even though it will delay the £750,000 expansion.

He said yesterday: “This is all very exciting, but it has thrown a huge spanner in the works with regard to the next step of the development project.

“It couldn’t have been found in a more awkward place – right in the doorway of the new entrance to the museum.

“Just think how many people have stood over that well in the last 100 years, waiting for their fish and chips!

“The trustees have literally had to go right back to the drawing board with the architect and planning officers, to see what can and can’t be done with a listed building in a conservation area.

“It’s all very frustrating. In the meantime, a history student from Huddersfield University has offered to undertake some research on the water supply system of Golcar in the 19th century, which hopefully will help us in our final decisions on the best interpretation of the well for visitors.”

The museum is looking for a sponsor to help incorporate the well in to the new-look venue.

Anyone wishing to help can email treasurer John Daker at

The chip shop roof has been repaired, stone tiles replaced and mullioned windows installed as part of the expansion.

The row of cottages, which is known as Spring Rock, was built between 1840 and 1845 by James and Sally Pearson.

The shop, which was added at a later date, was originally a butcher’s before becoming a chip shop.

Museum volunteers will be baking the traditional Golcar Lily Loaf to celebrate Golcar Lily Day on Saturday May 14.

The venue will open at 10.30am for the traditional celebration.