THE DOG AND PARTRIDGE
known as the Sportsman's and the the Top Brink)
Tucked away, just off the main
road in the hamlet of Lumbutts, is the inn that is now called
the Top Brink, but in earlier times it was known first as
the Sportsman's and then the Dog and Partridge. The inn sign
would more than likely have depicted a man with a gun, and
a dog with a bird in its mouth, which to most folk who couldn't
read, would have been interpreted as a sportsman, hence the
1822, John Mitton was the landlord and by 1825 he was replaced by
Elizabeth Mitton, so he may have died and his widow took over for
a time. It was whilst the Mittons were at the pub, which was also
a farm at that time, that work was being done by some Todmorden
masons and labourers on rebuilding a nearby barn and other work
which needed doing. They provided themselves with food for the day,
apart from breakfast, which Mrs. Mitton would make for them.
of the workers had a sken or cross-eye and was wont to play practical
jokes and in general be a contrary sort of fellow. The other men
took it all in good part, being of the opinion that he couldn't
help it as he was "a limb of the devil" and it had to come out in
some form or other. One morning, after Mrs. Mitton had ladled out
the porridge into the various bowls, he failed to appear. On overhearing
the workmen say that he was about some work or other, Mrs. Mitton
voiced her opinion that if God marked anyone, be it animal or human,
in any way, you should beware of it and take heed. She
went on to say that she once owned a cow with a sken and a more
contrary and mischievous beast she had never come across. Just like
the labourer. As she spoke, he appeared, full of smiles and good
humour, and ate his porridge with relish.
few years after this incident, one the masons who had been employed
on that particular job, was inclined to agree with her when things
went wrong, but he said that the chap with the sken was a good worker
and was no doubt showing off a bit as working in a dull rural place
such as Lumbutts needed a bit of jollity to liven the neighbourhood
a little and the man with the sken provided it. It
no doubt gave the villagers plenty to talk about for months to come.
Uttley was the next landlord. He was a local chap and began his
working life at Lumbutts as a grocer like his two brothers, Abraham
and Thomas. They were the children of Abraham and Sally of Lee in
Langfield and their sister Hannah went on to marry William Bayes,
whose son, Alfred Bayes was to become a renowned artist. You can
read his story HERE
along with his brothers Abraham and Thomas, went into the cotton
spinning business. By 1833
Young Uttley had become the innkeeper at the Dog and Partridge whilst
still keeping his interest in the cotton spinning side of affairs.
He died before 1841 and his wife Sarah took over as landlady. Sarah
was the sister of Dr. Gledhill, the well-known Todmorden practitioner,
and married Young Uttley in 1821. Sarah, her son Gledhill and daughter
Ellen, carried on the trade at the pub after Young's death, helped
by a servant, Sarah Ann Sutcliffe.
Uttley was the named as the innkeeper in 1845 but he was also involved
in the family spinning business run by his uncles Abraham and Thomas
Uttley, becoming bookkeeper there. By the mid 1840's, after the
death of Thomas, Messrs. Uttley Bros. of Lumbutts sold Jumb Mill
along with the dams, machinery and other equipment to John Fielden
of Centre Vale.
Uttleys had left the pub by 1851 and a local man, William
Greenwood, had taken over. William had previously kept a beer
house at Jack Lee Gate, which is where he was in 1841. The
majority of the trade at the pub in those days would have
been from the surrounding farms such as Black Dyke and Top
of Brink, plus the mill workers who inhabited the cottages
in the village. Passing trade from travellers would also account
for quite a bit of business and would have been welcome break
on the long moorland road. A
short cut up to the pub from Lumbutts is by a steep lane,
nowadays used as a bridleway.
Greenwood and his family of 3 daughters and two sons ranging from
12 down to 2 moved from the beer house to the Dog and Partridge,
which is how the inn was recorded at this time. William's brother
Joseph was also living with them and worked as a shepherd.
1861, the Greenwoods had given up the pub and the Smith family had
become the new landlords. John
Smith and his wife Betty, who hailed from Walsden, helped by their
daughter Elizabeth, ran the pub and also farmed 13 acres.
who was not a young man, being born in 1800, would not have
found it an easy life especially in the harsh winters which
can affect this isolated area. A
glance at this photo taken in the 1940's shows how bad conditions
by kind permission of Roger Birch
wife died in 1868 and their daughter Elizabeth then took over
the running of the pub, giving her father a well earned retirement.
John died not many years after his wife in 1873 at the age
of 73. They are buried together in the graveyard at Mankinholes
the Smiths time at the pub, one Inquest held there was particularly
heartbreaking. It concerned the tragic drowning of a small toddler.
John William Hirst was the
youngest son of Joseph and Grace Hirst of Carr Green and on
the evening of the 13th of April 1863 he had gone to play
outside their house. He was only 3, and when it got past the
time when he should have been inside, it was found that he
must have wandered off. Maybe his mother had taken her eye
off him for a time, and had not missed his disappearance.
were two other young children in the family 2 year old Mary and
5-year-old James, so Grace may have had her hands full with them.
As soon as his disappearance was discovered, the alarm was raised
and the family and neighbours immediately organised a search, but
even though they searched all through the night it wasn't until
the morning that the poor little mite's lifeless body was found
face down, in a Clough nearby.
Clough runs up the right hand side of the road leading to
Horsewood Farm and its sides are quite steep, especially to
a toddler of only 3. It is also overgrown and in parts is
invisible. If he had fallen in he wouldn't have stood a chance
of surviving the night and would have been hard to find in
it had been raining, the Clough would have been running
full, but even without much rain there would have been enough
water for a small child to drown in.
inquest, held a week later, returned the verdict of accidental
drowning. He was buried at Mankinholes Chapel.
and Elizabeth Spencer were the next keepers of the Dog and Partridge,
having taken over by 1881. Henry's family were farmers at High Greave
in Wadsworth and Henry returned to farming after he left the Dog
and Partridge. It was during Henry's time, on the 21st of August
1883, that the Dog and Partridge and 4,185 yards of adjoining land
were sold at auction at the White Hart for £850. Mr. J. H.
Ogden of Charlestown was the purchaser.
the time, the provision of food had become a necessity for inns
to provide if they wanted custom, and it seemed particularly good
at the Dog and Partridge. Ham and eggs could be rustled up at any
Lumbutts Friendly Society, along with various other societies, used
to hold meetings at the pub, but in March 1884 they held their last
meeting. The members had decided to wind up the society. Their lodge
property at Wellfield Terrace, Todmorden, had been sold and members
were given £8-19s-9d. The Society had been in existence from
at least 1796 when Ingham Hollinrake was its head.
1889 Martin Jackson had become the new landlord, taking over from
Young Lord, about whom little is recorded. Martin was the son of
lock keeper Zachariah and his mother, Susan Mitchell, was the daughter
of Ogden Mitchell of the Sun Inn at Walsden. Martin's three sisters,
Betty, Mary and Alice were all involved in the licensed trade; Betty
at the Bird in Hand, Warland, Mary at the Woodcock, Warland, and
Alice at the Rose and Crown at Castle.
Martin began his working life
by taking over from his father at Longlees lock as the lock
keeper. He married Alice Bulcock and he and his young family
of Betsy, Frank and Herbert moved to Langfield shortly after
their marriage in 1883 and later to the Dog and Partridge
was the daughter of James and Betty and had lived at Cornholme,
but moved to Old Lane with her widowed mother just before her marriage.
Martin and his family stayed at the Dog and Partridge until after
1891 but moved to live with Martin's sister Betty at the Bird in
Hand at Warland in later years.
the Jacksons took over, the valuation of the premises and stock
stood at £105-1s-4d. This included the dog kennel, which was
under a seat in the taproom. The pub had nine rooms and it seems
from the stock that the customer was well catered for with cigars
and champagne listed. Not the usual fare you would expect at a village
inn in those days. How it had grown from the small pub it had started
as into a thriving business that provided employment for all the
next people to inhabit the Dog and Partridge were Richard Mills
and his wife Susy. Richard was the son of Thomas and Sarah of Gut
Royd. Thomas was a handloom weaver, but by 1861 he had left the
trade and become a stonebreaker and then a baker in the village
of Lumbutts. By 1881 he and his wife had moved to Dulesgate and
were living with their married daughter Jane and her husband John
youngest daughter, Caroline, married James Lord of the Black Horse
at Butcher Hill, and by 1891 Thomas and his wife Sarah, daughter
Jane and son-in-law John Fielden were living next door to them in
Butcher hill. Thomas was now 77 and was still working as a stone
getter. He died in 1893; a year after his wife Sarah, and they are
both buried at Cross Stone in the old yard.
Mills, their son, was born around 1848 and stayed in Lumbutts working
in the cotton mill for most of his early years. He married and by
1891 he and his wife Susy along with their children were at the
Dog and Partridge. Unfortunately,
Richard's life was cut short in August 1898 when he developed inflammation
of the lungs and died as a result. His wife had died in 1895 and
both are buried in the graveyard at Lumbutts Chapel.
Hirst had taken over by 1901 after a brief spell by Richard Hargreaves.
James married Hannah Barker daughter of John and Sarah, and she
and James started married life
living with Hannah's widowed mother at Castle Street and later moved
to Every Street. James was
a cotton weaver and it seems a keen gardener and horticulturist,
as in the September of 1901 he and few friends of like mind held
the first flower and vegetable show at the Dog and Partridge. There
were 27 entries and a remarkable 349 people paid to see the show.
Two local luminaries, James Lacy and William Austwick, judged the
Austwick was the gardener at Stoney Royd, so he was well equipped
to be one of the judges. Tragically, in June of 1902 his body was
found in the Catholes Dam and it was presumed he had committed suicide.
He was buried at Cross Stone.
couple of later landlords were John Arthur Blackburn in 1908 and
John Minnis in 1922. Whilst Mr. Blackburn was the licensee, Lumbutts
Fair was held at the Dog and Partridge, a custom begun in 1838 when
a fair was held to celebrate the annual rush bearing. Rush bearing
is when fresh new rushes are placed on the floor of the church for
the coming winter. It heralds the start of the new church year and
is usually accompanied by much jollity and a holiday atmosphere.
Some mealy mouthed people tried to ban it in many places in the
late 19th century on account of it degenerating into a drunken and
lecherous event. It has seen a revival in recent years in many villages
in the area.
as we come to the present day, the name has changed to being the
Top Brink but the tradition of serving good food for the hungry
traveller still survives.
pleasant spot in summer and still managing to retain some of the
atmosphere of its past life whilst making progress into the 21st.