The family lived at Sizer Hill House, Henshaw Lane.
On the back row left to right:
Grace, Florence, Elsie, Gilbert, Winnie, Sydney and Laura.
Front left to right:
(William) Thomas Denison, Madge, Ruby and Martha Denison (nee Wilkinson).
In 1810 a Thomas Denison built Henshaw Mill (now the site of Hustler & Greaves Plumbers) (May 2014), he died in 1814.
One of his 4 sons mortgaged the mill and made a swift exit to Australia with the money leaving the family in dire straits, the mill and contents had to be sold to pay off debts.
William Thomas Denison (known as Thomas) was born in 1842, he became a textile worker and book-keeper at Nunroyd Mill, he married Martha Wilkinson and they rented Sizer Hill House.
Of 13 children born to the couple 9 survived, several of them became local school teachers.
Grace was the eldest born 1867, she died in 1953 having been an active member of the Chapel Hill Methodist Church and involved in many local organisations as many of the family were.
The sisters had taught at South View School, Elsie becoming Headmistress. Ruby taught at Aireborough Grammar School and brother Gilbert at St. Oswald’s Guiseley.
Two of the sisters, Laura and Florence kept house for their working siblings.
Sydney became a well known joiner and builder.
D426 – Grace Denison, c1900s.
Grace Denison – c1900s
The woman 5th from the right is Grace Denison, she was the eldest daughter of the Denison family of Sizer Hill House, Henshaw Lane. The photo was taken on an expedition to the Alps.
C336 – John Denison, 1943.
John Denison & Family – 1943
The family are on cycles ready for a trip to Boroughbridge.
On the left is Kathleen, then father Harry Denison, John Denison (aged 16) and mother Kitty Denison on the right.
Donated by John Denison.
Below is an Email we received from Marjorie Dufton, 25th August 2015.
I was delighted to see the picture on the ‘Wharfedale’s looking back page’ of my fathers family and thought you would like some more background information.
My Grandfather was Sydney Denison who is standing second from the right in the picture.
The only other members of the family I remember were Marjorie, Elsie and Grace. I think Marjorie was the youngest and I remember her the most as she lived into her nineties, so my mother and father were quite involved in looking after her in her later years. She and Elsie bought a house together in Green Lane, Rawdon, and they later moved to a bungalow on Greenace Park.
Marjorie the eldest child pictured standing on the far left lived at Sizers Hill until her death.
Sydney and my father Thomas had a workshop attached to the end of the house which was reached by an external stone staircase. We lived at Sizers Hill, until I was four years old and my sister was one year old.
Grace was a great character, who was very involved with local affairs. As well as her work for the Methodist Church which you mention in the article she was a member of the Board of Governors at Aireborough Grammar School. She was also a keen member of the Liberal Party.
Ruby Denison was one of the few women to go to university and her name is listed on one of the panels in the foyer of Yeadon Town Hall. These panels were moved there when the Grammar School was demolished.
The photograph is taken in the field opposite Sizer Hill House, which is now the Industrial Estate at the bottom of Henshaw Lane. I think the garden of the house now comes to the edge of the property but when we lived there it was just a field.
I hope this additional information will be of use to you, and if I can help with any other memories of the area I would be glad to.
Consolidated by Jack Brayshaw. 23 June 2022.
Last updated: 23 June 2022.