Decorated gate-posts with abstract patterns can be found all over Yorkshire, but Abraham Hirst of Elland took this one step further in the middle of the 19th century.

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Gatepost on Blackley Road

Hullen Edge is an area of Elland in West Yorkshire, deriving its name from holly bushes, which were presumably more common there once upon a time.  Its Hall, originally built in the 15th century and belonging to a branch of the omnipotent Savile family, was rebuilt twice in the 19th century and none of the original remained.  The park of the same name, part of the estate, was given to the people of Elland in 1887.  The adjacent cricket ground was, in June 1878, the site of a three-day match between the first Australian touring side and an 18-man team from Elland.  The Australians scored 90 and 85, their opponents 29 and 66, and won by 80 runs.

In the 1850s it (and its nearly 150 surrounding acres) was occupied by Abraham Hirst (1790-1864), a rich woollen merchant from Huddersfield.  Unmarried, his next of kin was a spinster niece, and the property was sold on his death. 

Abraham left his mark on the estate with the name Hullen Edge on several stones and gateposts to denote the boundary of his property.  They bear different dates, 1847, 1854, 1859 and 1862, and some also have his initials, AH.  They can be found on the roads (or tracks) to Rawroyds, Holywell Brook and Blackley. 

Sources: Albert Rinder: A history of Elland (1987); www.ellandcc.co.uk/about-ellandcc.asp; www.calderdalecompanion.co.uk

RWH / August 2020