Below is a summary of the text of each display panel from the temporary exhibition. You can view a higher resolution copy of the panel in image (JPG) format or PDF format by clicking on the thumbnail image of the board, or the PDF link at the foot of each section of text.
Challenge and Change
350 years in the life of a house and its region
This exhibition looks at some of the ways in which The Folly and the surrounding area of North Craven have responded to the many challenges and changes of the last four centuries.
Most of these changes have been driven by national and international events,
such as economic conditions and war. A few, such as the development of typical
building styles, have their origins closer to home. Individual displays explore
different aspects of the story and included throughout the exhibition are images
of some of the people who have lived and worked in this area and the possessions
they have had around them. As a building which has seen many uses, The Folly
is a living example of the area's response to change and a symbol of the need
to continue to adapt in the face of the ever-increasing challenges of the 21st
Challenge and Change
All Change for Hellifield
Until the beginning of the railway age, Hellifield was just another small village in North Craven.
Centred round an extended crossroads, it had a population of 250 in 1831 and principal occupations were agriculture and small scale cotton spinning.
Hellifield had always been an important junction, situated where the main roads up the Ribble valley from Clitheroe and Gisburn and from Keighley to Kendal converged. The Black Horse, a 17th century coaching inn, was a staging post for the many vehicles which carried passengers, goods and mail along these busy routes.
By the mid-19th century the wind of change was blowing. The arrival of the North Western Railway on the eastern fringe of the village in 1848 made little impact, but it was a foretaste of things to come.
Some 25 years later, the Midland Railway had taken over the North Western and was working on the construction of the Settle-Carlisle line. At the same time the Lancashire and Yorkshire Railway extended their line from Blackburn to link into this important route. In recognition of Hellifield's new prominence as a railway junction, the Midland Railway built a magnificent station, opened in June 1880.
Hellifield's appearance changed forever. There was a huge expansion in population, consisting largely of railway workers, for whom special housing was built. The axis of the village shifted from the crossroads to the railway area. Extensive engine sheds, sidings and cattle docks were built and in 1887 a new Auction Mart was opened by a group of local farmers who saw the advantages of providing a livestock market in an accessible position.
The decline in the railway industry from the mid-20th century and the closure of the Auction Mart have left their mark on Hellifield, but in recent years much new housing has been constructed and the population holds steady at around 1,000. The village continues to thrive, finding new ways of adapting to the challenges of modern life.
Challenge and Change
Clapham is an estate village where change has been carefully managed.
The Farrer family first acquired land in the area in the 18th century and later began to buy up more property during a time of agricultural depression. The intention was to develop a sporting estate and extend an old farmhouse near the church into the building which became Ingleborough Hall.
In order to create an ideal landscape around the Hall, some buildings were demolished and roads re-routed. Clapham Beck was dammed to provide an ornamental cascade and an existing small tarn enlarged to form a picturesque lake. In 1837 Ingleborough Cave was opened up and a carriage drive constructed to cater for the increasing stream of visitors.
The appearance of the village and its surroundings has always been important to the family and estate records give examples of negotiations to ensure that railway routes did not encroach on prime meadowland and that limestone quarries were not opened up.
After World War II, the Hall was sold and the size of the estate gradually reduced. Dr John Farrer came from Australia in 1952 to take up his inheritance and become in his own words 'squire on a shoestring'. The estate has since been run as a business, encouraging local industry and farming as well as individual enterprise.
Challenge and Change
Banking Made Local
Until the late 17th century, banks as we know them today did not exist. Wealthy merchants were entrusted with their neighbours' savings and, along with lawyers, were called upon to provide loans.
The Bank of England was founded in 1694 and during the 18th century local banks appeared in most provincial towns.
The Craven Bank was established in 1791 in Settle, its first partners being William and John Birkbeck, William Alcock and John Peart. The Birkbecks were merchants and the other two partners lawyers, thus providing an ideal combination of business and legal experience.
Before 1817 the banknotes were printed with an image of Castleberg rock and this came to symbolise the stability of the bank during a period when many others were failing. Local diarist, W L Paley noted during the disastrous winter of 1825-26, 'Old Castleberg still stands firm'.
The partners continued to be highly regarded and another master stroke was to bring out a further note bearing the image of the famous Craven Heifer, a magnificent animal which strongly appealed to local farmers.
The Craven Savings Bank, opened in Settle in 1818, was an early example of the trustee savings bank movement first established in 1810 with the aim of encouraging thrift amongst working people and enabling them to make small regular savings even in times of hardship. It was managed by a group of voluntary trustees, including members of the Birkbeck family.
The Bank was very successful and in 1865 a new purpose designed building was erected on the south-east corner of the market place, where it remains to this day under the name of Lloyds TSB.
Challenge and Change
Glad To Be Of Service
Until the mid-20th century, the family business occupied a position at the heart of a local community which was still largely self-supporting. Supermarket and internet shopping were still a long way in the future.
The small towns of Settle and Bentham, with their flourishing markets, were important trading centres with a full complement of shops and services, and the surrounding villages all supported their own businesses as well. Outlying hamlets and isolated farms were regularly supplied with deliveries.
There was a wide range of goods for sale. Many were produced locally, but there was also a huge choice of more exotic foods, clothing and household goods, easily transported by the excellent rail network. Hobbies, pastimes and sporting activities were all catered for and skilled craftsmen ensured that most articles could be manufactured, fitted and repaired close to home.
Challenge and Change
Going To Market
The weekly markets in Bentham and Settle are the sole survivors of the many special markets and fairs held since medieval times on regular days throughout the year.
The 150 years after the end of the Commonwealth period was a golden age for trade in Craven. Before the growth of the big industrial cities, Settle was an important centre and a new Market Charter was granted in 1708, allowing for extra fairs to be held for the sale of livestock and the many goods and commodities produced in the area. Many of the surrounding villages also had their own livestock fairs, some being especially associated with the large sales of Scotch cattle driven south for the purpose.
By the end of the 19th century groups of local farmers were setting up livestock auction marts to centralise trade and take advantage of the transport opportunities offered by the railway. The former livestock markets began to dwindle and had virtually disappeared by the 1950s.
Fairs provided a great opportunity for lively celebration and entertainment of all kinds. Travelling circuses were very popular in the late 19th century and an annual fair, with rides and amusements, still arrives in Settle every autumn.
Challenge and Change
The smithy at the entrance to Bowskills Yard (on the old high road behind The Folly) is the sole survivor of several which once existed in the town. Blacksmiths provided an essential service: shoeing horses and producing and repairing all kinds of iron work.
Alf Limmer (1930 - 2009) was a well-known personality in the area and is depicted here shoeing a horse at the end of The Shambles. He spent his whole working life in Settle and many examples of his craftsmanship can be seen around the town
Challenge and Change
David and Rachel Clements succeeded Alf Limmer at the smithy and continue much of his traditional work. They also undertake many specialist commissions and design and produce work of the highest quality, such as the gates which provide wheelchair access to the the garden of the Friends Meeting House in Kirkgate
Challenge and Change
Room at the Inn
The growing prosperity of North Craven from the late 17th century onwards led to the establishment of large numbers of inns, all competing for the business of travellers and tradesmen.
Those inns positioned alongside main routes were important staging posts for the horse-drawn coaches and wagons which transported passengers and goods over considerable distances. They had extensive stables and yards at the rear, catering for changes of horses and the unloading and loading of carts
Some enterprising innkeepers took advantage of the road improvements of the late 18th and early 19th centuries and re-sited their entrances or moved to new locations to catch the passing trade.
Market and fair days were exceptionally busy for the inns and some were meeting places for particular groups of traders. The Talbot in Settle was favoured by tanners and leather dealers who gathered for the twice-yearly leather fairs
Inns maintained their place at the heart of community life until late in the 20th century and hosted all kinds of meetings, entertainments and celebrations. Although recent years have seen a steady decline in their number as people choose other ways of spending their free time, there are some encouraging signs that once again change is on the way.
Challenge and Change
A Community Skill
The combination of a thin coal seam, clay drifts and a plentiful water supply at Burton-in-Lonsdale gave rise to a thriving pottery industry.
Most of the potters were farmers as well and nearly the whole community was involved in the production. To this day, the householders of Burton have the right to dig clay in the parish. The potteries opened in the middle of the 18th century and the first potters may have arrived from Staffordshire in search of new opportunities.
To begin with, the potteries produced earthenware and turned out large quantities of cream pots, bread-making bowls (panchions), jugs and bottles of all shapes and sizes. The pots were sold locally but also sent to Ireland and the Isle of Man. After the discovery of fireclay, it was possible to produce stoneware, fired at a higher temperature. Wand weavers wove individual baskets to protect large jars and bottles in transit. Some of the pottery, such as puzzle jugs, tobacco jars and money boxes, was decorative and produced by the potters in their spare time.
By the late 19th century, the industry began to decline as local coal supplies were exhausted and improved transport meant that mass-produced Staffordshire pottery was easily available. Only two potteries continued to operate in the 20th century and the last one closed in 1944.
(This panel is displayed in the 2015 Exhibition: A Community Skill: the Story of Burton-in-Lonsdale's Potteries. Please see 2015 Exhibitions).
Challenge and Change
Improving on Nature
The general mood of optimism which followed the Restoration in 1660 inspired landowners and farmers to increase their productivity.
Efforts were made to improve soil fertility using a variety of methods, including lime. Lime was shown to transform sour and heavy land into productive pasture. Field lime kilns became a common feature of the landscape, remaining in use until large-scale quarries were opened up in the 19th century.
Liming and other methods of land improvement such as drainage, played an important part in the enclosure movement which dramatically changed the appearance of the Dales landscape. Land enclosure began in the valleys and lower slopes, as areas of former 'waste' were taken in. By the late 18th century, Parliamentary Enclosure was introduced and vast tracts of upland, divided by ruler-straight walls, were apportioned into individual holdings. The object was to improve output and self-sufficiency during the long periods of war with France.
Local agricultural societies encouraged all-round improvements in farming. The North Ribblesdale Agricultural Association, founded in 1848, had classes in its annual show for cultivation and drainage as well as the usual livestock categories. The show was held in Settle until well into the 20th century and others, like those held in Bentham and Malham, survive to this day.
Challenge and Change
Adapting and Surviving
Dales farmers are among the most resilient members of our community.
Throughout the last 350 years, farmers have had to survive many challenges, from changes in agricultural policy, through spells of severe weather to the effects of war and disease. Periods of prosperity have alternated with periods of depression, influenced by local, national and global events.
In the 19th and early 20th centuries many upland farmers worked in mining or quarrying, leaving their wives at home to do much of the farming. The farming depression of the 1930s led to the formation of the Milk Marketing Board which gave stability to the dairy industry for nearly fifty years until it was disbanded in the 1980s. Subsequent price reductions have caused a massive reduction in the numbers of dairy farmers.
Both World Wars led to major efforts to produce as much home-grown food as possible. In World War II, organisation of food production in this area was in the hands of the West Riding War Agricultural Executive Committee, the 'War Ag', who set targets for ploughing land traditionally used only for pasture. The War Ag provided tractors for cultivation at a time when most farmers were still using horses. The wet climate and thin soil were unsuitable for growing corn and yields were patchy. The most useful crops were kale and mangolds which provided winter feed for animals.
The terrible outbreak of Foot and Mouth Disease in 2001 had a massive impact on North Craven. Large numbers of farmers lost their entire stock. The whole countryside was closed off and the local economy slumped. Afterwards, many farmers re-assessed their businesses, re-stocking with different breeds to take account of new market trends and diversifying into other enterprises such as the direct sale of produce and catering for the growing numbers of tourists in the area.
Challenge and Change
How Green is Our Valley?
Mounting awareness of the effects of climate change and rising energy costs has led to the formation of a growing number of community groups determined to tackle these challenges locally.
Clapham Community Co-operative and its Sustainability Group are engaged in projects to produce local food and foster self-sufficiency and community in village life.
Along with the growing of fruit and vegetables and the flowers to feed new hives of bees, bio-diesel is being made, home energy use is under review, and recycling is to the fore. All age groups, including children, are involved in planning, organising, planting and harvesting, and the enterprise is enriched by a generous mix of talent and resources.
Settle Hydro is a community hydro electric scheme which aims to generate about 165,000 units of electricity per year - enough for around 50 homes. An Archimedean screw has been installed at Settle Weir, next to Bridge End Mill using part of the old millrace.
Settle Hydro has recently won the Climate Week Award 2011 for 'Best Community Initiative'. 300 other communities have been inspired by its success to start similar projects of their own.
Burton-in-Lonsdale Village Shop and Post Office is one of around 150 community owned shops in England. It was bought in 2005 when under threat of closure and is co-managed by a small number of paid staff, supported by a dedicated band of volunteers. Many products are locally sourced or home made and the shop is a lifeline, especially to elderly people in the village.
Having been named as best rural retailer in the North West in 2007 and 2008, the shop is now a regional finalist in the 2011 Countryside Alliance Awards.
Challenge and Change
From Land to Loom
In earlier times the grassland farming carried out in this area was largely non profit making and many farmers supplemented their income through spinning and weaving.
From the 16th century there is evidence in most villages of small-scale spinning and weaving of wool, hemp, flax and, later, cotton and hand looms were found in many cottages. Raw materials were often supplied by middlemen who collected the finished work and sold it on.
With the coming of the Industrial Revolution, many of the old manorial corn mills throughout North Craven were adapted for textile production and the number of power-looms increased rapidly. This caused considerable hardship for the hand-loom weavers and several writers record their plight.
Mills for cotton spinning and weaving were established throughout the area, but it was at Bentham that the textile industry really made its mark and became the main occupation in the township. The High and Low Mills specialised in the spinning and weaving of flax and the discovery of a tubular weaving technique for the production of hose pipes was made here. To this day fire hose equipment continues to be produced in Bentham. In the later 19th century Low Mill was turned over to silk spinning and continued in business until 1969. Artificial silk spinning was carried out at Kattan's Wenning Silk Mills until 1976.
Challenge and Change
On the Move
North Craven is overlaid with a network of interconnecting routes of various ages, all of which reflect the changing needs of travellers.
Before the construction of roads fit for wheeled vehicles, the only way for people to move around was to walk or ride on horseback. Goods were transported to and from market by trains of pack ponies, who were able to negotiate rough high ground and carry heavy loads supported by special pack saddles or in panniers. Many of the packhorse routes are still in use today as public rights of way.
Drove roads had a different but equally important purpose. Local tracks were linked by a system of routes stretching far beyond the Dales for the movement of animals for sale. The great cattle fairs of North Craven were a prime destination for Scottish drovers who spent many weeks on the journey.
By the second half of the 17th century, increasing economic prosperity highlighted the need for a better road system so that goods could be transported in larger quantities on carts and people could travel greater distances in the relative comfort of a coach. Turnpike Trusts were set up, with the object of managing road improvements by means of charging tolls to users. In Craven the most important north-south route - roughly the line of today's A65 - was in the hands of the Keighley and Kendal Turnpike Trust, who maintained the road until it was taken over by the Local Authority in 1878.
Ironically, in today's world, it is the desire to travel faster and use ever-larger
vehicles for transport in order to combat delivery costs, that is presenting
this area with some of its greatest economic and environmental challenges.
Challenge and Change
Cruck Frame Buildings
Before 1600 most houses in Craven (apart from Skipton Castle and medieval Churches) were built in timber using a cruck frame construction. This was the earliest form of building technology and was used from as early as the 8th century until the 16th century, when it was superceded by stone. Unfortunately these type of buildings have disappeared but tantalizing fragments can be found in some buildings today.
Crucks were formed by splitting two pairs of crooked trees down the middle, which were then set up on the ground and joined at their apexes by a ridge tree. Each pair of crucks was strengthened by a tie-beam; the cruck feet rested on stone bases, called stylobats, to preserve them.
The sloping walls of the frames restricted the living space and the next step forward was to make the walls vertical. This was achieved by extending the tie-beams outwards till they were equal in length to the width between the bases of the crucks
The rectangular single storey space had an open hearth in the middle for the fire, with a hole in the thatched roof to allow the smoke to escape.
During the 17th c timber in the Dales was in short supply and stone, which was more readily available, became the alternative building material. Tenants were given permission to rebuild their dwellings in stone, which had the advantage of being more durable.
Hearths moved from the centre of the room to the gable and were encased in huge projecting stacks, as in the Folly, which gave fire protection.
Challenge and Change
The Great Rebuilding: Everyman Turned Builder
Following the Restoration of the Monarchy in 1660, there was a period of prosperity in the North of England after the years of Civil War and general unrest. People felt confident that they could build something more substantial and permanent. For the next 60 years there was a period of Great Rebuilding during which time most of the early buildings were destroyed.
The new 17th c houses were more sophisticated; they provided additional comforts and became status symbols. In the Dales they took the form of a longhouse with a barn at one end, divided into a series of rooms stretching from front to back, each with its own function and often heated, if the owner could afford it, for a Hearth Tax was introduced during this period (1660-1697). In Settle most of the houses had one hearth, essential for cooking and heating water. The Folly which was the most prosperous house in the town had nine hearths.
The windows also reflected the wealth of the owner. Again there was a tax from 1697-1851 on the number of windows in each house. Other features were the doorways. In the Settle region many of these have ornate carved stone lintels with the initials of the owners proudly displayed, and the date when the rebuilding occurred.
The new houses were usually two storeyed which necessitated the introduction of a staircase. Originally simple ladders sited at the back of the house, these gradually became an architectural feature in their own right. A particularly fine example is here in the Folly, contained within a substantial stone tower, which rises above the main roof to allow views out over the landscape. The present staircase terminates at the second floor.
Challenge and Change
Early buildings were constructed in the vernacular using local traditions and materials by craftsmen whose names are usually unknown. Builders were unaware of fashions, but this changed in the 18th century as some began to travel abroad discovering classical architecture in Italy. As a result of these journeys many masons became architects and a new profession was born. Many 16th and 17th century houses in Craven were enlarged during the Georgian period, effectively 'Georgianised' with new front elevations.
The term Georgian Architecture describes buildings erected between the reigns of George I to George IV (1714 to 1830) and William IV 1830-1837. The first Georgian houses in Craven appear from 1780 onwards and continued into the Victorian era until 1870 when the styles changes again.
Mewith Head, High Bentham, was probably built around 1750 and is an example of the transition from the 17th century medieval house to an 18th century Georgian design. The façade is symmetrical and the doorway is in the centre with classical columns and a pediment. The windows however are more conservative and have traditional stone mullions and transomes, albeit a different shape to hold the small panes of glass. Dressed stone quoins, all of the same size, have been used at the gable ends, superseding the cruder stone of 17th century buildings.
Most Georgian houses in Craven were extensions of earlier houses. At Bankwell House in Giggleswick, the 17th century house survives on the right, with a link to a larger Georgian house, built in 1820, on the left.
Abbeylands at Stackhouse near Settle, is another example of a large south front added around 1820 to an earlier house at the rear. By this date joinery and building techniques had advanced. Sash windows made of timber replaced the stone mullion windows. These were larger, less draughty, and displayed the joiner's skill in manufacturing a large window, with thin wood glazing bars to hold the larger panes of glass then becoming available.
Marshfield, Settle is very similar to Abbeylands and Bankwell, but there is no earlier building at the rear which is very unusual in Craven.
The old 17th century buildings were often Georgianised. At Goat Gap Farmhouse, Clapham, a row of mullions, under the long dripstone, have been removed and in their place a Georgian window and doorway have been inserted.
Georgian houses are always double pile, i.e. with rooms at the back as well as the front. The staircase is always at the back and is a prominent feature, providing access from the basement to the attic.
Two Trusts - One Museum
Formation of the Settle and District Civic Society (Charity No 504029) - later renamed North Craven Heritage Trust after the reorganization of Local Government in 1974
The Society was founded in 1968, and like other societies in the National Civic Trust movement, aims to help all in its area to understand and appreciate all that is best in town, the adjacent villages, and the surrounding countryside. It has helped through the formation of sub-committees to protect ancient buildings (perhaps the most significant achievement in this field was the designation of Settle as a Conservation Area in 1972 by the West Riding County Council); inaugurated the Facelift Scheme for Settle Market Place, and campaigned to protect wild flowers on roadside verges. It has also watched over footpaths, and surveyed and planted many trees, as well as taking an active role in local topics such as the development of Giggleswick Quarry, and the proposals for Hellifield Reservoir.
A news Bulletin is sent out to all the 250 members twice a year and the Society also arranges a programme of meetings, lectures, films and exhibitions.
The Formation of the North Craven Building Preservation Trust
In the wake of European Architectural Heritage Year 1975 Civic Societies were encouraged to form building preservation trusts to carry out practical restoration projects. For legal reasons, these new Trusts had to be registered as limited companies and have separate charitable status.
In 1976 a group of Civic Society members came together to form North Craven Building Preservation Trust. Their first project was the restoration of Coneygar in Victoria Street, Settle.
The Formation of the Museum of North Craven Life
The Museum initially was run by a separate committee of the Settle and District Civic Society led by Mrs A Read. Formed in September 1976 it arranged its first display in the Barn in Twisleton's yard (1). Over 1,000 people came to see the exhibition.
By an Agreement between the Civic Society and the Building Preservation Trust the Collection was moved to Coneygar in Victoria Street (2), when the North Craven Building Preservation Trust completed the restoration of the building in 1977 in time for the Queen's Silver Jubilee.
HIGHLIGHTS OF THE LAST 35 YEARS
|1975||Visit of Their Royal Highnesses The Duke and Duchess of Gloucester to commemorate European Architectural Heritage Year Projects at Settle.|
|1976||Committee formed during to establish a Museum in Settle. Exhibition in Twisleton's Yard.|
|1976||Exhibition on the Railway Shanty Towns at Ribblehead to commemorate the Centenary of the Settle/Carlisle Railway Line 1876-1976.|
|1977||The Trust launches an Appeal to raise funds to restore a warehouse in Victoria Street and convert it to become the 'first' Museum of North Craven Life.|
|1977||Museum of North Craven Life opened by the Most Hon. Lord Normanby, Lord Lieutenant of North Yorkshire, as a Silver Jubilee Project.|
|1980||Opening of the Permanent Exhibition "The Story of North Craven Life" grant-aided by the Carnegie UK Trust.|
|1983||The Trust purchases new premises for the Museum nearer the Town Centre at 6/8 Chapel Street.|
|1986-8||Improvements to buildings and exhibitions carried out by MSC (Manpower Services Commission) Schemes|
|1990||Visit by HRH The Duke of Gloucester to the Museum at Chapel Street.|
|1991||Museum granted full Registered Status with the Museum and Galleries Commission.|
|1993||Purchase of No. 4, Chapel Street to extend the Museum display areas and form a better Reception Area.|
|1994-5||Refurbishment of Chapel Street postponed while a move to The Folly was under consideration.|
|1997||Purchase of Central and South Ranges of The Folly.|
|1999-2001||Refurbishment of The Folly.|
|17th Dec 2001||Royal Visit. HRH The Prince of Wales opens the Museum of North Craven Life in The Folly.|
|2010||The Trust purchases the North Range of The Folly. It continues to operate the ground floor as a holiday let.|
TEN YEARS OF EXHIBITIONS
The Folly is the third and we hope the final home of the Museum of North Craven Life. The Carnegie Exhibition 'Life in North Craven' started life in 1980 in the Victoria Street premises and has been updated twice before it arrived in the Folly.
The Trustees decided at the outset that an important means of attracting visitors and repeat visits by local Craven residents is through an annual programme of special exhibitions about aspects of Craven or of work by Craven artists.
1927 Eclipse: as viewed in Giggleswick
Settle-Carlisle line interactive display
Weekend Craft & Flower Festival
|2002||Jubilee Celebrations in the 20th Century
Settle Primary School 1856-2002
Photographs: Some Settle Victorians
|2003||Reginald Farrer: Father of Rock Gardening
'Sight of a Lifetime': 1927 Solar Eclipse
Views of Old Settle; Medicine in Settle
|2004||'A Century of Service': The Family - Business in North
Education in Malhamdale, Shoemaking in Settle
|2005||'Stitching the Story': the Making of the Airton Tapestry
'On the Home Front': North Craven in Wartime
Yorkshire Artists and Craftsman
|2006||'Connections';: Artists and Writers in North Craven
Philippa Troutman: 'The Shanties of Ribblehead' Prints and Drawings
|2007||Elgar in North Craven, his musical friendship with Dr Buck
Settle College Centenary
Settle Orchestra 40th Anniversary
|2008||Annie Farrer: 'Plant Forms on Paper, a fresh approach'
Farm Buildings in the Forest of Bowland
Photographs from the Horner Collection
'Archive Alive': Celebrating North Craven Past and Present
Print Link Group Exhibition - work by Craven Print-Makers
|2010||'A Malham Family of Painters': C Pearson, P Holmes and K Holmes
'Landscapes of the Ribble': Photographs by Andy Latham
Water in North Craven: Life Work & Leisure
'Water Works', Settle Photographic Group
|2011||'Challenge and Change' 350 years in the life of The Folly and its region|
There is never a good time to raise money. The Trust's first Appeal in 1977 (during a recession) raised over £25,000 to pay for the acquisition and repair of Coneygar (1977 prices!)
A second Appeal to acquire 6/8 Chapel Street and expand the Museum in 1980's raised £200,000.
What we said in 1996
The Folly - Long Term Strategy
The proposals are based on the Trust acquiring the Hall and South Ranges of the Folly. In the short term the works proposed are initially only those essential to relocate the Museum of North Craven Life ensuring the building is useable and accessible by disabled visitors and has adequate fire protection and security. The works proposed would also establish the holiday let or residential use on the first and second floor of the South Range.
In the longer term two scenarios may arise for the Folly which will affect the strategy adopted by the Trust. These are:
(i) either the North Range may become available which would allow the Trust to extend the Museum facilities and bring the two parts of the Folly back into the same ownership,
(ii) the North Range does not become available in which case the Trust may wish to take alternative steps to improve the basic provision made initially - for example converting the existing garage premises to provide more extensive visitor sanitary facilities, school facilities or a new tea room in conjunction with the gardens.
It is the Trust's intention to bring the Folly back into a single and beneficial ownership and thus to seek to acquire the North Range of the Folly if it comes to the market, if an acceptable acquisition price can be negotiated and if adequate funds can be raised. In this case, which relates to the first of the scenarios outlined above, the Trust would seek to pursue a three phase strategy for the Folly.
Phase I - Hall and South Range
Acquisition and Essential Works
The objective of Phase I is to acquire the Hall and South Ranges, to complete the necessary fabric repairs and to undertake the minimum works required to relocate the Museum, establish public and disabled access at a basic level and generate income from simple tea/shop facilities and the holiday let.
The financial objective is to secure ownership and complete the works within the resources available as grant aid or if this is not possible to avoid any long term borrowing which cannot be repaid in the medium term (5-10 years) using existing income from Chapel Street and the Folly itself.
By limiting the Phase I works the Trust can marshall its resources so that it can act quickly if the North Range comes to the market. This may be important if the property market improves or if the marketability of the North Range is improved by the Trust's own acquisition and reuse of the remainder of the building. An urgent Trust response may also be necessary in the event of a forced sale of the North Range. In this situation there might not be the opportunity for the Trust to embark on a prolonged fund-raising campaign to raise the acquisition costs.
This Phase has been completed and was opened by HRH The Prince of Wales on 17 December 2001
Phase II - North Range Acquisition
The objective of Phase II would be simply to acquire the North Range and continue to generate income from its current ground floor retail use and from the existing residential accommodation either through straightforward residential leasing or as a holiday let. Essential repairs only would be undertaken.
The financial objective of this second phase would be first and foremost to secure the ownership of the North Wing within the resources that can be raised quickly as grant aid, or from any financial reserves the Trust has set aside from Phase I or any other income. As a last resort any shortfall might be raised as medium-term borrowing repaid from the income generated from lettings of the North Range ground and upper floors. The phase is limited in its scope to minimise the overall funds the Trust has to have in place in order to proceed with the North Range acquisition thus allowing a quick response.
The physical consequences of this phase are illustrated on Panel I. This shows a ground floor retail area of approximately 102 sq m. and a two/three bedroom residential unit on the upper floors assuming the recent existing internal subdivisions of the 17th c. rooms are retained.
The Trust was able to acquire the North Range in February 2010.
Phase III - Removing the Divisions and Enhancing the Museum
The third and final phase of the long term strategy will be to reinstate and reorganise the building removing the 1994 subdivisions. This will allow the expansion of the Museum, the improvement of disabled access and visitor sanitary facilities and the improvement of the trading elements, the 'tea-room' and shop, to generate increased revenue income. These works can be planned in detail and a fundraising programme implemented at any stage following the completion of Phase II - North Range Acquisition. If funds cannot be raised to meet the entire cost of the Phase III proposals then they in turn could also be phased according to the funds that are available.
The main Phase III physical changes other than the removal of the blocking of the doors between the North and Hall Ranges, and subject to consents, would be likely to be::
The Trust's financial objectives would be to minimise any borrowings whilst maximising grant aid and to maximise the opportunity for revenue generation in support of the Museum's operational, staff and maintenance costs.
Fifteen years later we are rethinking the Strategy. What do you think we should do? We would like to know your views.
Temporary Exhibitions for other years may be found by clicking on the relevant links below: