Keighley - West Riding

Drill Hall, Lawkholme lane

D, E 6 Duke of Wellington’s West Riding Regiment
6th Territorial Force Battalion Duke of Wellington’s (West Riding Regiment)

‘The drill hall and armoury of the D and E companies of the 6th Territorial Force Battalion Duke of Wellington’s (West Riding Regiment) is in Lawkholme Lane.’ (Kelly, 1912) Kelly also records the Head Quarters at 62 Dalton Lane.

On February 5th, 1897, the Keighley Herald reported:
The officers of the Keighley detachment of the 3rd Volunteer Battalion Duke of Wellington’s (West Riding) Regiment have for some time past considered the necessity of making the present additions to the Drill Hall on account of the importance attached to the physical training of recruits, which can now be properly attended to without interfering with whatever may be going on in the large hall.
‘The new gymnasium (which measures 49ft. by 36ft.) will also make a very nice ball-room, and the floor is being laid with this object in view. Being attached to, and having communication with the large hall, it can be utilised for overflow meetings. It will also make an excellent supper-room, and is, in fact, just the sort of a building that has been greatly needed in connection with the Drill Hall for years past, both from a military and social point of view.
‘The billiard-room, which is 26ft. by 22ft., will be fitted up with a new billiard table and all other things necessary for the comfort and enjoyment of the members. Attached to the billiard-room is a kitchen, with ovens and boilers, so that tea, coffee, and other refreshments may be prepared on the premises.
‘Built over the billiard-room is the new band-room (26ft. by 22ft.) This will be of great service to the regimental band, as hitherto they have had no proper place for practice or for storing their music and instruments. The basement under the two premises is divided in two portions, one for storage and the other for heating apparatus and fuel.
‘The whole has been designed by Messrs Judson & Moore, who have superintended the building by local contractors, whose names appeared a short time ago. When the new premises are completed and fitted up according to the plans, the Keighley Volunteers will have reason to be proud of one of the finest headquarters to be found in England, both as regards dimension and comfort, and it is confidently hoped that with the improved accommodation and increased advantages many young men of the town will become members of the corps.’

The drill hall is used by Cadets. The adjoining street, Drill street, which appears to be of the same period, is an indication of the development of a street plan with the drill hall as an integral part of the community.

Thank you to Betty Longbottom for her photograph, and Norman Lamb for the Keighley Herald report. Uncredited photographs by Gwyneth Roberts.

The website of Timothy Taylor’s Brewery claims that the Volunteer Inn, Lawkholme lane, was very popular with the Volunteers from the drill hall across the road. Apparently it retains a ‘distinctive military theme’.
Keighley - General view

Keighley - Main Building

Keighley - General view of entrance area

Keighley - Main Entrance

Keighley - Entrance with Hall behind

Keighley - Decorative feature in stonework

Keighley - Adjacent Road sign
Adjacent street sign

Keighley - Entrance with Hall behind
Entrance with Hall behind. Courtesy Norman Lamb

View of Drill Hall in 1897
View of Drill Hall in 1897 - enlarge
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The Drill Hall Project - Charting a neglected legacy