Rare survivor from opening of Colne’s Hartley Hospital

RARE: Lapel badge for Colne's late Hartley Hospital. (S)
RARE: Lapel badge for Colne's late Hartley Hospital. (S)
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It is a rare, local slice of history from almost 90 years ago, a superb survivor from the historic opening of Bonnie Colne’s seminal and stately Hartley Hospital.

Yes, this lapel badge from my “Old Colne Collection” and photographed by my great friend Colin Bean, is one of the only two I’ve seen, the other belonging to the late “Mr Colne”, Ebbie Folley, who was most proud to be a part of the Hartley Hospital’s illustrious opening on Saturday, June 21st, 1924.

Both Sir William (born 8 Damside, Colne) and Lady Martha (born 2 Halstead Fold, Colne) were so very proud to be born and bred Colners and whose magnificent gifts to their native town has ensured their names live on in the 21st Century.

I’m most proud to have also in my archive one of Sir William’s note-papers.

This is headed by the words “From Sir William Pickles Hartley, J.P. Freeman of Colne and London.”

Both William and Martha were deeply religious and gave one-tenth of all their famous Hartley’s Jam income to the Primitive Methodist Church. Also, the company was the first in the world to introduce profit-sharing for their employees.

The renowned Hartley Hospital was to close after 62 glorious years in 1986 (all my three operations in 1947, 1979 and 1982 took place there) and is today a prestigious housing development. Fortunately, the ornate, unique stone frontage from the 1920s has been preserved by “Mr Barnfield”, the genial Tim Webber.