Wednesday, 7th August: LONDON KINGS CROSS AREA
Although listed under ‘excursions’, today’s visit is more of a ‘make-your-own-way’ visit, albeit one with a difference.
After 150 years of industrial use, the area to the north of the King’s Cross and St Pancras stations is being transformed into a vibrant new city quarter. This significant regeneration combines modern development with the repurposing and refurbishment of buildings of historic interest. Kings Cross is home to Tileyard Studios, the Wakefield equivalent of which will form part of the Rutland Mills redevelopment at Wakefield waterfront.
We have arranged a two-hour guided walking tour of the area starting at 2pm from a point close to Kings Cross Station. The idea is that anyone taking part makes their own way to London, booking and paying for their own railway tickets. Doing this also allows the flexibility for people to either go down and return on the same day, or to extend their stay in London and book overnight accommodation before or after the tour if they wish.
There is plenty to see and do in the area and a number of cafés and restaurants for people wishing to have a meal.
Numbers for the walk are limited and will be offered on a first-come basis. Once we have final numbers confirmed, we will add more detail to the options available and pass these on to people who have booked.
Cost: The Society is making a charge of £5 per person for this tour, payable on booking.
This excursion (visit) is being organised by Kevin Trickett and Alison Sykes. Please contact Kevin on firstname.lastname@example.org or 01924 361180 if you have any questions. On the day, you can contact Kevin on 07751 501049.
Tuesday, 3rd September: GORTON MONASTERY AND BRAMALL HALL
Leaving Wakefield at 9.00 am
I hope this will be a very interesting visit to Manchester and the Tudor house of Bramall Hall in Stockport. I thought so when I have visited them over the years.
We begin our excursion with a visit to Gorton Monastery, a place we last visited eleven years ago. We shall have coffee/tea and a Danish pastry (included) followed by a talk and a self-guided tour.
In the 19th century Gorton saw the immigration of a huge number of Irish workers who set up a community in the area and the huge monastery/ friary was designed by Edward Pugin, to be larger than the nearby Church of England’s church. Officially it is the Church and Friary of St Francis built 1863-67. However by the 1970s the local community had declined due to slum clearance. In 1997 it was put on the World Monuments Fund watch, the friary having closed in 1986.
Led by members of the local community a trust was set up to restore it. Some of you may remember Griff Rhys Jones describing the building and what needed to be done in the 2003 BBC series ‘Restoration’. The first phase of restoration was completed in 2007 and it was this that we saw on our earlier visit in 2008. Since then other amounts of money have been acquired to continue the restoration and to develop the community project: this is a project to benefit the whole community of the area.
After our visit to Gorton, we depart for Bramall Hall, set in 70 acres of Country Park, where you can freely wander, have your own lunch in the gardens or buy one from the café. At 2.30 pm, a guided tour has been arranged, there will be seating available on the tour, but no lift to upstairs, however there are interactive videos. Hopefully we will find time for afternoon refreshment at the café or a further look at the grounds before heading back to Wakefield.
From Saxon times there has been a hall with its hunting grounds at Bramall. This magnificent black and white building of the 16th century is renowned for its wonderful plastered Elizabethan ceiling in the Withdrawing room over the oak beamed Great Hall. In the Upper Banqueting Hall, Elizabethan wall paintings are evident, one depicting “ride a cock horse”. Restoration of this building and its important works were completed in 2016. The Davenport family had lived there for over 500 years until 1877. Then it was bought by a local business man and sold to the government in 1935.
Please note that, to enable the visit to proceed, we need to secure a minimum of 20 bookings, so please book early as we shall otherwise have to cancel the excursion.
Cost: Coach £16; entry to Gorton Monastery £10; tour of Bramall Hall and tour £7.50. Total payable on booking: £33.50
This excursion has been organised by Christina Sherborne. To contact Christina, should you have any questions, please email: email@example.com or telephone 01924892681. On the day, you can telephone Christina on 07484 638832.