A091 – A Local Quarry, Pre 1939.
|A childhood memory of Guiseley shared with us by Brian Triffitt of Guiseley.
At the top right hand corner of Moor Lane was Winterburns quarry, this was by far the largest of all the quarries, a play ground and adventure land for all of us kids.
To the top and under the wall that ran alongside the lane going up to Billy Bells farm that stood at the end and before the lane turned left up past the lone house and over the hill and onto York gate was a sheer rock face probably about 50 foot high.
During the war we stood on Moor Lane and watched soldiers and their equipment going up and they camped in Winterburns quarry.
At the bottom of the rock face they had a small brick building in which water ran. I think that must have been where they got their water from
Also on the rock face they painted a large target which they used to use for shooting practice.
I can’t remember how long they stayed there, but it wasn’t an overnight stop off.
Again looking from the gate straight across the quarry was another rock face but with a valley set bellow. This again was another area where we used to practice our climbing skills, half way down the rock face was a grassy ledge, and if you could climb down to this you were good.
A bit different if you were trying to climb up from the bottom though, as after you started you came across a layer of sandstone and this used to just pull away in your hands so that was like a no go area.
There were plenty of rocks in the valley bottom for the rabbits to scurry under. Plenty of rabbits in the quarries, but up on top on the farm land it was always the hares you saw.
From the gate and under the wall that ran up the side of moor lane, another rock face. This one usually covered in brambles, plenty of blackberries for the picking in September.
But during the spring and summer month’s blackbirds, thrushes, yellow hammers, green finches and wrens, all used this section for nesting in. In the quarry bottom there were lots of ferns and gorse bushes, another big nesting area, especially for linnets.
Looking from the gate right up into the far right hand corner of the quarry above the rock face ran a large wooden beam that carried the wall above it, and that’s where the kestrels used to nest.
There was also a well in this quarry but that was inside a stone built building with a large door to the front. Now this one was kept with a lock on it, but if you went round to the side of the building there was a couple of stones missing so you could get your head in, shine your torch and look down into the well.
To the top left hand corner of the quarry was the top gate, which, once you climbed over you stood on top of a large hill, council lorries would back into the quarry here and tip whatever it was that they had on board down into the quarry bottom, and when they started to fill the quarry in that was where they usually came in.
Of course like the other quarries, now, to most people it’s just an ordinary field
To me I still see it as Winterburns quarry.
But oh the memories, Priceless!
Just wondering if you have any memories of a model car race track in this area. Although I’m not certain, I seem to remember something of this sort in the early 1960s. Possibly across Moor Lane from the quarries, there was a concrete circle with a vertical metal pole sticking up a few inches. I can’t ever remember seeing it in use but do seem to remember being told that its purpose was for racing model cars.
I did try and see if I could locate it when I was visiting the area a couple of years ago – but either my memory is faulty or there are buildings at the location now.
Does this ring any bells?
14 December 2014.
Consolidated by Jack Brayshaw. 03 September 2022.
Last updated: 03 September 2022.