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Events being held by the Friends of Clarke Hall  

This web page has been donated by the editors of Live Listings and organised by Janice Scanlon  for all events concerning the Hall. Janice is working tirelessly for the charity, and asks that you call  01924 302700 for  any further information.

Our programme of events for 2010 is further down the page

Happy Belated New Year and a big thank you to all our friends who have supported us in one way or another throughout 2009. Without your help we could not continue to help out at Open Days or raise funds to support the educational work at the Hall.

Many people are interested in their local heritage, but just how many people have  ever visited - or even heard of - Clarke Hall?  It is a 17 century gentleman farmer's house built of local brick and  is located on Aberford Road, Wakefield, West Yorkshire WF1 4AL (opposite Pinderfields Hospital).
After 300 years as a farmhouse Clarke Hall is now an educational museum.  During term time schoolchildren visit in costume and are involved in 17th century activities around the Hall, preparing and eating their lunch in the Hall Kitchen.
On special 'Open Days' the Hall is open to the public and this is a real chance to visit somewhere that is generally not open to visitors. On these days, the Friends dress in 17th century costume, show visitors how to do simple crafts and talk about the history of the house and the furnishings.  In the Hall Kitchen we prepare and serve food for the servants and sometimes serve refreshments to visitors. The next Open Day is Sunday 28 March, 10am - 4pm, admission ?3.50/?2 concessions, children free, so why not come along and discover this beautiful house. We look forward to seeing you!

Programme of Events at Clarke Hall
February to July 2010

Sunday 28 March 10am ? 4pm Easter Open Day at Clarke Hall
See the house brought to life with the Friends of Clarke Hall in costume.
?3.50/?2 concession.  Children FREE.

There will be demonstrations and a chance to be involved in the following:-
Calligraphy, Textile Crafts, Chess & Board Games
Also Mistress Janet will be baking and her wonderful homemade cakes will be for sale in the Hall Kitchen and Parlour.
Special Membership Offer on the Open day, 28 March 2010
We are keen to recruit new members and if anyone joins at the Open day on the 28 March 2010 they will get five months free; renewal not due  until September 2011.

Saturday 15 May 7 - 9pm Clarke Hall Museums at Night
Watch this space for more news
Saturday and Sunday 26th and 27th June  Shakespeare Festival
Yew Tree Youth Theatre
Watch this space for more news
Sunday 18 July 10am ? 4pm Famous Liquorice Festival at Pontefract Castle
Come and see the Friends of Clarke Hall at Pontefract Castle. A real fun day for all the family.

More to come so keep watching!

Not only do the Friends support and raise funds for Clarke Hall but from time to time we like to socialise and do something do something completely different. 
Whilst many people join the Friends simply because they appreciate the Hall and gardens, others join because of opportunity to get involved  'hands on'. Friends work closely with the dedicated staff at Clarke Hall and provide assistance both inside and outside the Hall.

The diversity of tasks ensures there is something for everyone - from stewarding in the Hall, gardening, organising an activity, helping with refreshments.

The Friends of Clarke Hall is a charitable trust that was founded in 1978 to allow interested people to become more deeply involved with the Hall, to support its educational work and extend its wider use to the public. The Friends support the hall by raising funds to provide equipment and artefacts for the Hall and by attending open days. At these events volunteer Friends in costume demonstrate life and crafts of the household. Some of the jobs we do include cooking, butter making, spinning, needlecraft, music, stewarding the rooms, helping in the caf? and making seasonal items such as Christmas wreaths and pomanders. The Garden Gang help to maintain the garden doing jobs such as weeding, planting the borders and cutting lavender. Volunteers to work in the garden on occasional weekends (not open days) are particularly welcome.

We are keen to recruit new Friends, particularly those who would like to attend open days. We can train people in living history skills and new members can borrow costumes. More experienced re-enactors with living history or crafts skills are equally welcome. We try to provide a range of activities that will appeal to different interests although we do not do any battle re-enactments as the focus is on life in the Hall.

On joining the trust you will be sent background information and a membership card. The cost of new membership is ?8 per adult, and the cost of renewal of membership every year from 1st September to 31st August will be ?6.50 per adult. Member?s children under 18 are included in the adult?s membership and may attend events when accompanied by a member.

Members receive three newsletters a year, and updates on occasions, with details of Friends and other events at Clarke Hall. Our Annual General Meeting is in September and includes a social evening. On production of your membership card you are granted free admission to two History Open Days per year.


Please make cheques payable to ?Friends of Clarke Hall?
Form and payment should be sent to:
Membership Secretary 
Clarke Hall 
Aberford Road 
WF1 4AL 
Tel 01924 302702 Fax 01924 302701

The Gardens
The design of the gardens is based on the instructions published in William Lawson's 'English Housewife's Garden' of 1679 and is very formal. It is divided by paths and hedges and has a moat. The summer house is supported by two of the columns removed from Wakefield Market Cross in 1866. There is also a mount, maze, knot and herb garden. My favourite area is the herb garden which has a good representative collection of herbs used for lotions and potions, dyeing, medicines, cooking and for hanging in the kitchen. In the summer we cut, dry and bag the lavender from the gardens and sell this to help boost our funds.
However, Clarke hall does not have a paid full time gardener. The gardener over the last twenty plus years has been one very dedicated lady who is a 'Friend' and from time to time she has been supported by other members. We really would like more help and if anyone has some spare time, it would be very, very welcome. It is a good way to make new friends, keep fit and enjoy the tranquility of the gardens.  Come and go as you please, no time constraints!