Funeral procession of Fred Knights, by rushbearing cart, for the co-founder and Honorary President of Sowerby Bridge Rushbearing Festival, to Park Wood Crematorium, Elland

Celebration marks life of Sowerby Bridge rushbearing festival pioneer

A pioneer who help revive the Sowerby Bridge Rushbearing festival was given a fitting send off on one of the traditional rush carts.

A modern rushbearing festival was staged in 1977 to mark the Queen’s silver jubilee, and has continued ever since at Sowerby Bridge, where yesterday a traditional rush cart was used at the funeral of Fred Knights, one of the men who pioneered the revival.

A procession through the town took his coffin to Park Wood Crematorium, at Elland.
A procession through the town took his coffin to Park Wood Crematorium, at Elland.
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Mr Knights, along with Garry Stringfellow, had discovered that there had been a rush cart in the town in 1906, as part of a community celebration.
Mr Knights, along with Garry Stringfellow, had discovered that there had been a rush cart in the town in 1906, as part of a community celebration.
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Mr Knights, who was originally from Portsmouth and lived at Sowerby Bridge with his wife, Rita, had found a cart in nearby Heptonstall and corralled locals to pull it.
Mr Knights, who was originally from Portsmouth and lived at Sowerby Bridge with his wife, Rita, had found a cart in nearby Heptonstall and corralled locals to pull it.
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He remained involved when it became a regular event, and became honorary president of Sowerby Bridge Rushbearing Festival.
He remained involved when it became a regular event, and became honorary president of Sowerby Bridge Rushbearing Festival.
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