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Shepley Spring Festival - COMPETITION RESULTS


We have a winner!  We received almost two hundred entries, from as far away as Australia, for our competition to name the special Ossett Brewery beer for the Festival.  The standard was very high and it was a difficult decision to make.  Eventually, though, the choice was made and our winner is:


From Lee Southern

For those unfamiliar with the term, a higgler is a generic term for a pedlar, but a SHEPLEY HIGGLER was more specific and a big part of the village’s history.  He was one of a large number (45 at one time in a village of around 800 souls) of itinerant tailors based in the village in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries.

The Shepley Higglers travelled the country carrying samples of fine woollen cloth from the local mills, measuring the gentlemen in their homes or offices, before returning to Shepley to cut the cloth.

Once back in Shepley, the teams of young ladies they employed in the workshops behind their houses would sew and press the suits before sending them out to their clients.

The Shepley Higglers normally sold their suits on easy terms – a fine woollen suit was an expensive item -and the interest they charged made them rich men. Indeed, in 1896 the Master Tailor & Cutters’ Gazette, in an article praising the skills of the Shepley Higglers, referred to Shepley as “the richest village in England”.  Many of the big Victorian houses standing in the village today bear witness to that wealth.

So, come the Festival weekend, make sure that you find your way to the beer tent and raise a glass to that intrepid band of entrepreneurs who put Shepley well and truly on the map.

So high was the standard of entries that the judges decided to award a second prize.  This goes to 19 years-old Nicholas Ward from Shepley, with his suggestion of ROCKY ROAD.  Nicholas was brought up in the village  and his entry “comes from the inspiration of the landscape and infrastructure in Shepley. As a keen Mountain Biker I enjoy the challenging paths through woods and the long open roads by the Windmills at Millhouse Green. Every road has a story to tell, and every path has a memory to hold. Therefore, this should be appreciated with the name”.  Rocky roads, indeed.

Nicholas wins a pair of tickets to all the Festival events on the Friday, whilst overall winner Lee wins two tickets to the whole weekend – more than 60 hours of music – plus a special Ossett Brewery hoodie and an original SHEPLEY HIGGLER pump clip.

Congratulations to our two winners and many thanks to everyone who took part.

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