Wednesday, 2 October 2013

Clifton Gardens, Goole

This last month seems to have flown by and now we are in October. The pond is still dry and although the grass had grown in some parts of the garden where it is under trees it was brown and flat when I gave it all a last cut.

I have been picking, eating and giving away apples. It is a good year in that there are lots of them and the eating varieties - Laxton Superb and James Grieve are quite sweet - but they are also smaller than usual.

I have now begun teaching my WEA local history classes in both Howden and Goole and in both there are plenty of students. Sadly however the class which I had hoped to run in Gilberdyke did not recruit well and so it has closed.

One of the topics which came up in the Goole class was Clifton Gardens, a street built in the 1890s and consisting of impressive Victorian houses.

Student Pauline Stainton searched the Goole Times files and came up with an interesting obituary for Frederick Chambers who lived at number 17 Clifton Gardens. She has transcribed it and I have included it below.




        It is with deep regret that we record the death, which occurred on Thursday of last week, at his residence, Thorne Croft, Clifton gardens, Goole, of Mr. Frederick Chambers, L.R.I.B.A., architect and surveyor. He was 67 years of age, and had been confined to his house since October 1 as the result of a seizure.

       The late Mr. Chambers was a native of Hatfield. The family subsequently removed to Thorne and later to Goole, where his father was the owner of a number of schooners which at that time were the chief vessels sailing from the port. His son, however, had no inclination for a career connected with the sea, and after qualifying as a sanitary inspector and surveyor, he ultimately occupied each of these positions in turn under the local authority at Goole. He later became a member of the Goole Urban District Council and established an extensive practice as architect and surveyor, which he carried on upon to the time of his death at offices in Belgravia. During the war, in the absence on military duty of the surveyor to the Urban District Council, he occupied the position of consulting architect and surveyor to that body, and at the time of his death the firm was acting as architect to the Goole Rural District Council in the carrying out of their housing scheme.

 Among the numerous buildings designed by him were the Temperance Hall at Thorne, the Wesleyan Chapels at Reedness and Rawcliffe Bridge, and Ashfield, the residence of the late Mr.G.B. Wadsworth in Hook Road. He also took an active part as architect in the erection of houses in the more recently developed portions of Goole, notably in the Marshfield district, and his last work was the successful transformation of the Sailors’ Institute, Goole, into the local headquarters of the Y.M.C.A., a task which he carried out for the good of a cause which had his keenest sympathy.

      Mr Chambers was an active member of the Wesleyan body, and was closely associated with the church in Boothferry Road. He was a local preacher, and held every lay office in connection with the Goole Wesleyan circuit. He was a welcome attender at various church functions, and could always be relied upon to give a pithy and appropriate speech on any occasion. Interested in education, he served on the local education committee, and was a member of the governing body of the Goole Secondary School.

       An ardent student of archaeology, the late Mr. Chambers was well versed in the historical associations of the district, and he was also an authority on wood-carving.

       He leaves a widow, four sons and three daughters.

Goole Times 30 December 1920

Goole was an expanding and flourishing town in the 1890s and it is interesting to find out about the local architects and builders who gave us much of today's townscape.

One of the sons of Frederick Chambers was Herbert E Chambers, for many years headmaster of Boothferry Road school. Herbert's daughter Kathleen who died in 1990 taught music to many local children, including the late Frank Ella.

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