George Watkinson [1814-1903]

George Watkinson was the son of George Watkinson.

Born in Northowram [29th October 1814].

He was a woolstapler [1842] / a wool stapler & farmer employing 7 men [1851] / a wool stapler & farmer of 10 acres of land [1861] / a wool merchant and farm owner [1871] / a wool merchant [1881] / living on own means [1891] / Chairman of the Brighouse Brick, Tile & Stone Company Limited  [1895] / a member of Halifax Town Council / Chairman of the Halifax Brick & Tile Company / a colliery proprietor [1902].

About 1870, he formed a partnership with his sons, George Watkinson & Sons.

He made a substantial amount of money in wool and coal.

In 1874, he withdrew from the day-to-day management of the woolstapling business, leaving this to his son George.

On 14th April 1841, he married Jane Hebblethwaite [1811-1890] at Mirfield.

Jane was the daughter of Samuel Hebblethwaite of Mirfield


  1. Mary Jane [b 1842] who died in her first year
  2. Mary Jane [1843-21st July 1851]
  3. George
  4. John
  5. Samuel
  6. Emma Jane
  7. Frederick [1852-15th March 1853]
  8. Fanny [1853-1931] who married John Taylor Ramsden

The children were buried at Lister Lane Cemetery [Plot 145].

The family lived at Lister Lane, Halifax [1841]; Lower Brear, Hipperholme [1851, 1861]; Woodfield, Hipperholme which he had built around 1860 [1901].

On 20th January 1861, he and a domestic servant were seriously injured in a gas explosion at Lower Brear. His face and hands were scorched shockingly and

it is more than probable that if he had not had his hat on he would have been fatally injured

He also owned Middleton Tower, Kings Lynn, Norfolk – which his daughter, Fanny, and her husband acquired in 1904.

In 1856, Ann Walker sold the Northgate Hotel to George and a Mr T Parker. He sold the property in 1876.

In 1874, George retired from managing the wool stapling business, turned the woolstapling operation over to his eldest son, George, and made his second son John managing director of the firm's coal mines in Wales, but kept involved by serving as Chairman of the company.

In the 1890s, he was one of the subscribers who gave £1,000 for the construction of the new Royal Halifax Infirmary.

Jane died at Hipperholme and was buried at Coley Church. [21st February 1890].

George died at Woodfield, Hipperholme.

He was buried at Coley Church [2nd June 1903]. The funeral ceremony was performed by his grandson Canon George Watkinson.

Probate records show that he left effects valued at £125,141 16/7d

© Malcolm Bull 2022
Revised 12:37 / 11th July 2022 / 5973

Page Ref: X7

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