Dewsbury History Group,

- known until 2019 as Dewsbury Matters, was formed in 1999 with the aims:

  • to provide a forum for discussion and exchange of information relating to the history of Dewsbury
  • to organise and promote events celebrating Dewsbury's history - walks, talks, exhibitions etc;
  • to lobby for the protection of Dewsbury's history be it buildings, artifacts, land etc;
  • to raise sufficient funds to cover expenses of running the group.

In 20019 the group was obliged to change its name to avoid confusion after a Facebook group was unfortunately registered with the same name.  


We hold regular meetings including presentations on local history .  Information about meetings is published on our Facebook page


Over the years the group has published a series of Bulletins and other publications containing research carried out by members, several of whom have developed substantial reputations as local historians.

Their work and other posts relevant to the history of Dewsbury are posted here in order to make it more easily available to the current generation.  

Ann Ellis and the 1875 Weavers Strike

‘Working women coming to the front and taking on labour and there wasn’t another place in England where they had done that…’ (Huddersfield Chronicle, 16 February 1875).As a major beneficiary of the industrial revolution, Yorkshire’s textile mills employed thousands of female and male workers in textile production and particularly in the Shoddy trade. During the

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The Great Dewsbury Ram Hunt

Dewsbury’s prosperity was founded on the woollen trade. It is therefore not surprising that, with the renowned local skill in stone carving, many of the town’s warehouses and other buildings are adorned with ram’s head carvings.It has been claimed that the heads were intended to show foreign customers where they could buy cloth. This is

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Brewing From A Bygone Age – the tale of Jose Luis Fernandes

Foreword by Mike FieldSome years ago now David and Maureen James set up M & D Homebrew in premises on Kirkgate in Wakefield. I had heard that the premises had been a ‘mailings’ and was not too surprised when in 1997 David started brewing. But why call it Fernandes?  In fact the ‘makings’ had belonged

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The First Dewsbury Telephone Numbers

Our bulletin number 3, which carried an article on early telephone subscribers in Dewsbury, included a list of some 79 names of early users of the service, together with their numbers.Much of the information relating to these names and numbers had been culled from early advertisement in local journals and newspapers. It was also augmented

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Memories of Batley

Pride of PlaceA film by Simon Roadnight gathering personal memories of the way things were with our neighbours in Batley and Birstall.

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Interested in a better life in a better Dewsbury?