With the kind permission of Chris Dyson, I am happy to introduce his very own, regularly updated, blog to this E-zine

'Real Ale, Real Music'

A refreshing collection of his own pub tours and experiences both local and some not so local since March 2014 


This was the old 'Volunteer Arms' (originally part of Copley Hall) which stood immediately behind the present one in Copley Lane until it was demolished in 1915.

Big Daddy's was quite a nightclub, attracting some international chart toppers including The Everly Brothers, Marty Wilde, Donovan, Wayne Fontana, Roxy Music, Status Quo, Supertramp and Genesis and many more.

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Brickmakers Arms - The Coffin

1 Godley Road/144 New Bank


The Brickmakers Arms was seen as you approached Godley Bridge. The unusual shape of this pub meant that it became known as 'The Coffin' but was originally named after the nearby clay and brick works industries. The pub was closed in 1969 and demolished in 1978 when the area was redeveloped.

This was a Stocks pub (ale house with no license to sell spirits) in 1898 and was bought by Websters in 1933.

The row of houses was known as 'Coffin Row'

Do you remember the two rows of houses at the far end of Godley Bridge?

Another two pubs appear in this photo. The Albion and The Beacon were at the near end of Godley Bridge and the Old Masons Arms was just out of picture left by the bus.

Manor House, Southowram


The Manor House brings many happy memories back to me. This is where I had my 21st birthday party, I played football for them and had some of the best drinking times you could wish for.

Sundays were best. We would attempt to play our football match (home games on the Long Lane pitch, Beacon Hill) after a night on the booze. We would often get thrashed 8-0 and worse, but later, back at the pub, you would think we had won the FA Cup the way we partied.

The drinking went on until teatime and we met back at the Manor ready to go to town in the evening. There were regularly well over a dozen of us made this trip. We had to be back by 10.30 if we wanted 'afters'. So there was a mad scramble for taxis in town by our crowd and a few other Manor locals with the same idea of drinking until the early hours. Thanks to Kev and Pat for that and the DJ Peter Quarmby who often fell asleep (inebriated) while spinning the discs. Great days.

The Manor House was supposedly haunted by the ghost of Sarah in her white wedding dress who was sometimes seen, standing at the bedroom window. One of the stories Kevin (the landlord at the time) once told me was that when the lines were being changed to the new slimmer lines, the man who was fitting them in the cellar ran up to the bar as white as a sheet and shaking like a leaf.

Kevin asked him what was the matter and the man eventually replied 'That cup of coffee you brought me - it was floating around the cellar on its own.'

All that is left of the Manor House is this signpost in one of the gardens of the houses that now stand in its place.


Did you know that the Old Rishworthians used to change in the Manor House and play at Southowram

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White Swan Hotel and Posting House


Built in 1585 and demolished in 1858, it was originally called The  Swan it would have stood up Crown Street on the top side of the corner with Princess Street. It has also been a Coaching House which ran services to Leeds, London, Manchester and London.

The new White Swan Hotel, which stands just round the corner and nearer to the Town Hall, was built in 1857. The landlady of the old hotel, Sarah Daxon, then became the new landlady in the new hotel. This hotel was built to accommodate the businessmen and company visitors to John Crossley's mills.

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