Full steam ahead for station garden

The Bronte garden at Sowerby Bridge Station, opened by Pat Allen, Mayor of Calderdale.
The Bronte garden at Sowerby Bridge Station, opened by Pat Allen, Mayor of Calderdale.
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Sowerby Bridge now has its very own Bronte Garden after 18 months of hard work and dedication by local volunteers.

The garden was an initiative of the Friends of Sowerby Bridge, with the aim of providing a haven of tranquility for station users and visitors alike, but also to build on the station’s Bronte connection.

After Branwell Bronte’s desire to join the Royal Academy of Art failed to materialise in 1836, he was appointed as Assistant Clerk-in-Charge- a position he held until March 1842.

And to further draw on this connection, the group also planted flowers referenced in the Bronte’s novels.

Speaking about the opening of the garden, Wendy Riordan, a volunteer with the Friends of Sowerby Bridge, said: “It was really nice to see the hard work and effort pay off.

“It was like a wasteland before, with overgrown shrubs, but everybody just felt really proud of they success they had achieved.”

The opening of the station on August 30 was marked by a special celebration attended by Mayor of Calderdale, Coun Pat Allen along with the Consort of Calderdale, Robert Weeks.

Also in attendance was Harold Wainwright, former Station Master of Sowerby Bridge and the music of the Friendly Brass Band was enjoyed by everyone on the day.

Local brewery, Owenshaw Mill also brewed a special ‘Branwell Blonde’ bitter.

The group now hope that their efforts will be acknowledged in the annual Yorkshire in Bloom competition, continuing their three years of success.