A BLUE plaque has been installed at Sowerby Bridge railway station to commemorate Branwell Brontë’s connection with the town and its first railway station.
The Friends of Sowerby Bridge Railway Station commissioned the plaque as part of a wider project by the group to promote the Brontë link and the work was supported with a Calderdale Council grant.
The original railway station was around 500 yards away from the existing one and Brontë was employed there as assistant clerk in charge, after his attempt to join the Royal Academy of Art had failed in 1836.
The appointment was confirmed in board papers of 1840 and after a spell there he was promoted and moved to Luddenden Foot by the Manchester and Leeds Railway. His connection with the railway ended when he was sacked in 1842 over a financial discrepancy.
The plaque has been installed on the exterior wall of the Jubilee Refreshment Rooms, which are part of the original present railway station and close to the newly created Brontë garden, another initiative from the “friends” group, which will be planted with species which featured in Brontë novels.
The group was formed in 2010 with the intention of improving the station and the 50 volunt- eers currently involved work in close partnership with Northern Rail.
They hold regular meetings, with regular Saturday morning work sessions where volunteers tidy up the station and maintain its planted flower tubs.
n For more information contact Christopher Wright on 07850 822590.