Central Lodge Restoration – Approaching the End

Phew! We suddenly seem to have almost reached the finishing line with the restoration project.

It feels very strange to be at this point, seeing the building without scaffolding, however the workmen are still busy bees. Protective covers are being stripped off in areas and the little radios are slowly disappearing. It was always interesting to hear the diversity of music as we were busy taking photos each week of the work. A bit of pop and then a bit of soul, always a mixed bag – you couldn’t help wandering round with a tune in your head. We loved the banter with the workmen, from “make sure you get my best side” to the ones that made a hasty exit. There was plenty strange scene, like pairs of disembodied legs either on scaffolding or obscured by boards humming along to tunes or talking to the other workmen. It was always a pleasure to answer their questions: “So what was this building then?” “What’s it going to be?” “Why are you taking photos?” All the while being aware not to trip over something or keep people from the restoration work. It will be strange to walk round without a hard hat, hi vis vest and safety boots on.

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Float Like a Butterfly, Sting Like a Bee

Another amazing find from the Central Lodge – did I mention we’d found a boxing flyer?  This is for an event at the Wellington Inn, Horsefair, Pontefract.

The flyer mentions ‘Young Iron Marsh of Pontefract v Young Herberts, Hemsworth.’ that was an 8 round contest followed by 6 rounds ‘Young Rooney (Featherstone) v D. Rowbottom (Hemsworth.)  these were the warm up bouts for the next two 8 round fights.  The first was the ‘Special 8 round contest, for the £5 a-side and Promoter’s Purse between, Hart Reed v. Young Cool’ both from Tanshelf. The big contest was between ‘Darky Bedford, (from)Manchester V. Texay Jack, Y. and L. Regiment, Pontefract.’  The M.C was a Mr. H. Green, the timekeeper M.r J. Carrol and the referee was Mr C. Barratt.  ‘Admission was 1/2 Front Seats were 2/2 (and) Ringside Seats , 3/6’  The printer was ‘A. Tunstall, Printer, Pontefract.’

I have a vision that one of the young army lads stationed in the attic of the Central Lodge had gone to see to these fights in between the training and before going off to war.  Maybe he kept the flyer? Maybe he was one of the boxers? There’s no date and it could have been from the previous tenants, the Bolckow household staff who lived and worked in the Central Lodge – perhaps they’d gone home and seen the bouts?  It’s one of those snippets, almost a sneek peek of somebody’ s history.  Who won each bout?  Is the Wellington Inn still there in Pontefract?  Is there an A. Tunstall printer still going?  Lots of questions, I wonder if someone out there has these answers?

Related posts: What’s cooking…Lost and Found – Newspaper Articles and Disinfectant.

What’s Cooking in the Central Lodge

I had just had to mention what a wonderful post by Chris!  It gives a lovely insight into her role and how we all feel about our roles in Stewart Park.

What’s been happening in the Central Lodge?  It’s seems to be getting very busy.  The contractors found an old range hidden behind boards over a fireplace. It’s a bit battered but still there. It kind of reminds me of the building, battered but still standing.

The work on renovating the Central Lodge is gathering pace and spaces are being uncovered and reworked. It’s exciting and strange at the same time. It feels like it’s being pared back and it is giving up some of its past with the finding of the range, the bottle and newspaper, some old lino and a boxing flyer.  I guess it’s like looking down the back of your sofa!  Rather a strange sofa, but intriguing any way!

I can’t wait to see how the building looks when it’s finished and to hear voices and see people using the spaces.  I think the building will be a fantastic facility and it would meet with past tenants’ approval.

Related post: Lost and Found – Newspaper Articles and Disinfectant.