Jubilee Festivities at Conisborough

June 1887

Mexborough and Swinton Times June 24, 1887

Jubilee Festivities at Conisborough

The festivities at this ancient Saxon Royal Burgh were not a whit behind those of any place in the immediate neighbourhood.

The committee, which had been organised by the School Board, consists of the following ladies and gentlemen:

Rowland Hills, Esq (chairman), Mrs Hills, C Kilner Esq and Mrs Kilner, Major E A Johnson and Mrs Johnson, Godfrey Walker, Esq, George T Nicholson Esq and Mrs Nicholson, Mrs Simpson, Mrs Little, the Rev JG Wood and Mrs Wood, Mrs J Appleyard, Mrs T Booth and Mrs Booth, J Blyth Esq, Mr J Gillott, Mr RH Sharp and Mr F Ogley with Mr G Harrison as secretary.

The celebration events with a hot dinner to the aged and widows on Monday at six in the evening, when about 150 partook of the most substantial repast, and the beaming countenances and oft repeated plaudits of the partakers spoke volumes as to the culinary abilities of the caterers. When ample justice had been done to the good thing is provided, the chairman put the usual loyal and patriotically toast, which were received with the utmost enthusiasm, the ladies, chairman and committee also receiving a thorough ovation. Toasting over, some repaired to the adjoining room and were entertained with songs pianoforte solos, duets etc.

In the boy’s playground the Conisborough Brass Band played for dancing, and many who had long supposed their dancing days over, tripped the light fantastic to; whilst in the dining room, those who preferred the quiet pipe, chat, and an occasional song of the olden time, enjoyed themselves to their hearts content. The singing of the national anthem brought a most enjoyable evening to a close.

On Tuesday, all the children of the parish between four and 14 years of age, numbering about 600, assembled at the Board schools at half past 1 o’clock, and being formed into procession marched through the principal street to the Castle Yard, headed by the Mexborough Plant Band, where suitable addresses were given by the Rev J G Wood (vicar) and the Rev A Stoves, the resident Wesleyan minister, children singing the national anthem and other special hymns.

At 4 o’clock the procession returned to the schools, and the children partook of a good substantial tea, consisting of ham sandwiches, sausage rolls, plum cake and other sweetmeats.

At 6.30 the procession was again formed, and proceeded to the church gates, near to which an oak tree (the gift of Mr Little) was planted by Mrs Wood.

When the procession arrived at the Castle Yard a purple beech was planted by Mrs Johnson into open space between the Spring Dale and the Castle Yard, the national Anthem been sung at the planting of both trees. The band then played for dancing in one part of the castle Yard, while the children’s sports were conducted in another, until approaching night cast its shadows around.

At 10 o’clock precisely the fireworks commence, under the management of W.G.Little Esq, every display be most enthusiastically received by the delighted onlookers; and it may safely be said that the youngest will never forget the scene of enchantment which was produced by lighting up the ruins with coloured fires. The commencement of the display of fireworks was the signal for a huge bonfire and six tar barrels lighted on the recreation grounds about half a mile away.

At the conclusion hearty cheers were given to Mr Little, to Mr Snipe for conducting the singing, and to Mr Harrison for the services which he had throughout rendered as secretary.

On Wednesday evening the recreation ground was again an animated scene, the Burcoft Artillery came up a continual cannonade until dusk, when another large bonfire was lighted.

On Thursday evening the jubilation was again renewed by holding sports in the Castle Yard.