Friday, February 28, 2014

World War 1 diary - February 1918

Throughout 2014 we will be tweeting entries from a World War 1 soldier’s 1918 diary. You can follow George Kellett’s diary entries on Twitter @WW1_Diary.

We will also post the full month’s diary entries on this blog.

For George Kellett's January diary entries please see our previous blog: January 1918 diary entries

2 February 1918

Paid 10/- again today

3 February 1918
Working until dinnertime today after dinner I went and had a good hot steam bath.  In the evening Serg.  Knife, Paddy and RMD Went to the service in the YMCA hut.

4 February 1918

I received a parcel from home today with this book enclosed also a Christmas cake and parkin and a few apples

The diary as it looks now
Inside pages
7 February 1918

Received a letter from Pam saying she has got up for a little I also received the Express with the news of Ceo  Haggetts escape from Germany into Holland.  Serg. Knife read the lesson at the evening service at YMCA
8 February 1918

Went to the YMCA playing draughts with Serg. Knife had a short evening service and prayers. Rained very all hard morning. Started making a skittleboard in [?]
9 February 1918

Played draughts with Serg. Knife all the evening until supper came when we went to the YMCA for a few biscuits and a cup of coffee. Drew 10/- For pay today

10 February 1918

Went to church service in the Red Cross Hut this morning. I wrote and told Pam about it this afternoon. The Chaplain had for his text the one word “mother”
11 February 1918

Serg. And I played draughts in the salvation army hut all the Evening then we went to the YMCA hut for supper.  I was warned for the inspection for the draft on Wednesday
12 February 1918

RSM Phillips had us taken off the draft this morning to carry on with the work at the Officers mess and sleeping quarters.  Paddy Morrison and Peter the Painter have both passed fit. So there is just the Sergeant and myself left.
13 February 1918

Paddy and Hancock went away to the base this morning
14 February 1918

Serg. Knife and I went to hear the Con Camp Band and at the YMCA. Then we went on with the old game. I wrote letters to Emma and to father

Emma Horner, George and Emma married in October 1919
Details of George and Emma's marriage, from West Yorkshire Marriage and Banns 1813 - 1935

15 February 1918

There is another inspection this morning but I am not picked for this one nor is the Sergeant. There was a good concert at the YMCA tonight.  Had a good supper with Sergt. who had a parcel from the girls
16 February 1918

Another draft left here this morning. After tea Sergt. and I went to the Salvation Army Hut where we had a few games at draughts.
17 February 1918

Was working until 12 noon today after dinner I took in my trousers a little and wrote a letter to Pam I had a letter and The Leeds Mercury this morning from father. Sergt. and I went to the YMCA service.
18 February 1918

Went to the Salvation Army Hut tonight with Sergt. we had a few good games and then there was a short service. I wrote to our Ada and to Bob
19 February 1918

Went to the YMCA where the Sergt read a few verses out of the Bible
21 February 1918

David and I went to the Salvation Army Hut
22 February 1918

A good concert at the Salvation Army Hut tonight
23 February 1918

Had my name taken this dinner time with the man on the same table for making a noise when the [?] came in. Paid 10/- Today
24 February 1918

Sergt & I went to YMCA service after which we had a good talk on religious matters and in particular the great need for conversion. I resolved then to take Christ as my saviour from sin. Wrote to father
25 February 1918

Received a letter from Pam today.  My pall Harry got married today at Ilkley
26 February 1918

A good comedy was given in the YMCA picture Hall entitled “What Happened to Jones?”
27 February 1918

Posted letters to Bob and to Pam.  Received a letter from father
28 February 1918

Wrote a letter to father in answer to one I received [today is crossed out] yesterday.  Received a letter from Ada and Dorothy. After tea Sergt. and I with our CSM were playing drafts in the SA I won every game I played

George Kellett's diary is now on display at Wakefield Museum for visitor infomation please see: Wakefield Museum visitor information


Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Alice in Wonderland Tea Party

A bright idea came into Alice’s head. “Is that the reason so many tea-things are put out here?” she asked.
“Yes, that’s it,” said the Hatter with a sigh: “it’s always tea-time, and we’ve no time to wash the things between whiles.”

Wakefield Museum is stuck at 6 o’clock – it’s tea time for a while…..  Pull up a chair and join the mad hatter’s tea party. 
Our new atrium case display uses objects from the museum collections to create an Alice in Wonderland tea party.  Here are some of the objects that are on display

A Victorian occasional table

A gateleg oak table dating to c.1680


Victorian ladder back chair, with rush seat


A child’s chair from a barber’s shop. This chair was originally bought from Claughtons of Leeds by Jonny Box when he first started his barber shop business. His barber’s shop was located over Rowells Ladies' Outfitters shop at the top of Carlton Street, Castleford.


A Measham Ware teapot, c. 1890. People that lived on canal boats would order these pots and have them inscribed with the names of their friends and relatives.

A very ornate fruit bowl

A selection of fancy cups and saucers

The display will be in place until May 2014, entry to Wakefield One is free.
Tea party event: Wednesday 26 March, 5PM – 7.30PM
If you would like to take part in our tea party celebrations come to Wakefield Museum on Wednesday 26 March 5.00 - 7.30pm. 
You can decorate a cupcake taking inspiration from our marvellous Alice in Wonderland Atrium Case display.  Then make a cup and saucer to take it home in!
All are welcome… hatters, dormice and March Hares - fancy dress is optional!
Drop in any time between 5pm and 7.30pm. Entry to the museum and all activities are free.
This event is part of Wakefield’s Artwalk.  For more info about the Artwalk visit:

“… I’ll never go there again!” said Alice as she picked her way through the wood. “It’s the stupidest tea-party I ever was at in all my life!”

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Crumbs, it's Wakefield Rhubarb!

Everybody loves a rhubarb crumble...but did you know that Wakefield is part of the rhubarb growing triangle?  Rhubarb has played an important part of the local economy for over 150 years.  For more information about the Rhubarb Growing triangle see: Rhubarb Growing

View inside a forced rhubarb shed

A rhubarb splitting tool used at Brandy Carr Nurseries

Rhubarb packing box used by Brandy Carr Nurseries

To celebrate our connection to this lovely vegetable, Wakefield holds an annual Food, Drink & Rhubarb festival.  The festival this year has even more tasty treats and entertainment planned than ever before.  It takes place in Wakefield City centre and runs from Friday 21 February  to Sunday 23 February,10am - 5pm on Friday and Saturday and 10am - 4pm on the Sunday.

For more infomation about the festival visit: Wakefield Food, Drink & Rhubarb Festival

At the festival there will be lots of stalls selling rhubarb related goods...maybe there will be some rhubarb wine....
Rhubarb wine from 1886

Rhubarb has also been used medicinally over the years:

Glass chemist's storage jar - rhubarb powder was used as a laxative

Recipe, 1890 - 1910, for curing cholera which includes rhubarb powder

If you decide to visit the festival, why not pop into Wakefield Museum as well, where you can hear forced rhubarb growing (it makes an eerie creaking and popping sound!), see some rhubarb objects from our collection and have a go on the Rhubarb Express...

The Rhubarb Express carried up to 200 tons of forced rhubarb from Ardsley station to the London markets of Covent Garden and Spitalfields when production was at its peak in the 1930s.

The train ran every weekday night during the forced rhubarb season between Christmas and Easter. The last Rhubarb Express left Ardsley station in 1966

This Rhubarb Express illustration by artist Liz Kay can be found under a play train in Wakefield Museum
For a yummy taster of what you can find at Wakefield Museum see Ruby Rhubarb talking rhubarb at the Museum: Ruby Rhubarb at Wakefield Museum

Wakefield’s famous rhubarb has joined the hallowed ranks of Europe’s protected foods, with the same status as Champagne and Parma Ham.  The festival in Wakefield is well worth a visit.

Rhubarb pie postcard, 1925 - 1945.

Friday, February 14, 2014

Happy Valentines Day!

Dear reader,
Roses are red,
Violets are blue,
Some cards from the past,
to entertain you...


1880 - 1910

1850 - 1900

1850 - 1900

1850 - 1900

1870 - 1920

1880 - 1900

1914 - 1918


An advert for Shell petrol / valentine card 1950 - 1959

1958 -1963

1958 - 1965
1965 - 1980

1962 - 1968
Happy Valentine's day
Looking for somewhere romantic to take your Valentine? Why not visit Wakefield Museum and search out the 'Love Case'.... for early Love Heart sweets, a wedding dress, love letters and much more....

Monday, February 10, 2014

In the Picture at Castleford Forum Museum

Castleford Forum Museum opened to the public at the beginning of December last year. 

We think it looks stunning...but don't just take our word for it, decide for yourself with these recently commissioned photos of the new museum.

Roman soldiers in training!

A view of the Roman displays

The rugby community case

A visitor plays on the Roman messenger game

Members of FOCAL look at the Queen's Mill community case

A young visitor enjoys the Jack Hulme photographs

Side view of the Iron Age chariot

Henry Moore's early career and Local Studies section

Looking downwards from the museum floor.  Jack Hulme and Harry Malkin pictures are display on the stair walls.

The mining display

Castleford ceramic display

If you like what you see then why not visit Castleford Forum Museum.

Opening times: Monday, Tuesday & Friday 9.30am – 5.30pm; Thursday 9.30am – 7.00pm; Saturday 9.30am – 4.00pm.
Free entry to the museum.
If you have already visited let us know what you think by posting a comment to the blog.