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Kirkstall Road, no. 91, William Paul Ltd


Kirkstall Road, no. 91, William Paul Ltd
Description:
5th May 1945. Exterior view of William Paul Ltd, 'Oak Tannery', at number 91 Kirkstall Road. A group of people are looking out of one of the top storey windows. On the ground floor, the front end of a lorry can be seen parked inside a loading bay. The tannery was built in 1876 by Firth and Kendal of Idle for William Paul. 20,000 hides were processed each year, producing leather for shoe, harness and industrial use. The tannery was in operation until 1968. Most of the buildings were then demolished except for this office block. A carving of a bull's head is visible over the archway on the left. The two storey building to the left of William Paul Ltd. is part of another well-known tannery, the Joppa Tannery, established here (87 Kirkstall Road) by Richard Nickols in the 1820s. The arched entrance to the Joppa Tannery is just off camera, left. The photograph was taken from the opposite side of Kirkstall Road where streets of back-to-back terraced houses have been demolished. In the foreground, left, is the junction with Jermyn street.

User Comments:

Name:
Andrew Clay

Comment:
This was my maternal grandfathers family business. My grandfather was Peter Paul. He married Margaret Hudson of Robert Hudson Ltd (engineers). The Pauls lived at Bramhope Hall for a while.

Email:
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Name:
Doug Adams

Comment:
My (late) Father-in-Law, Jack Selby Edmands, worked at Paul's during the 1930's and again briefly after the war.

Email:
douglas.adams@btopenworld.com

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Name:
Iris Fairclough (nee Sharp)

Comment:
My uncle George Pearson worked here during World War 2 he also served in the Home Guard

Email:
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Name:
MARIE WILSON

Comment:
My Father Ludwick Marycki was the resident caretaker at the Tannery from 1958 until it closed.We lived in the flat above the offices on the second floor.I can still recall the smell of untreated leather arriving in large lorries and being weighed on the weigh bridge next to the time office. I have many fond memories of this old firm.

Date:
13-Jan-2010

Email:
mawchurwell@fsmail.net

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Name:
Ron Davies

Comment:
My best friend, Melvyn(Matt)Dillon, was also a resident caretaker here. In the early 1960s he moved into a fully modernised house in Washington Street,this was attached to the factory. He shared the duties with Ludwick Marycki on an alternate week basis. During the day he worked in the Clerk of Works office. Another friend of mine, Dennis Sketcher, also worked there in the tannery seperating suede from the hides. One of the Paul family was a customer of ours when I worked at County Wireless, he lived in Bramhope.

Date:
19-Jan-2010

Email:
rondavies66@googlemail.com

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Name:
Ron Davies

Comment:
A correction to my last comment. Dennis Sketcher actually worked on what I believe was called a staking machine. This was a very skilled job and it was the method employed to soften the hides. The machine had two large arms which had a grabbing action, it was the operatives job to work the hides in a controlled way between these arms. When the tannery closed it became the premises of William Irwin Builders, they moved there from Burley Road/Westfield Road. Later to move to Woodbottom Mill in Calverley. Whilst they were still in Kirkstall Road, I worked for them for about six months as a general labourer after being made redundant in the 1970s.

Date:
25-Jan-2010

Email:
rondavies66@googlemail.com

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Name:
William Paul

Comment:
I joined the family business in 1956, when my father, William Paul together with his brother Peter, Derrick and Neal were directors. I worked at the firm, with a break for National Service, until its closure in 1968. I was a Director of the business from 1964. I remember Ludwick (Lou) and his daughter very well, as I did Dennis Sketcher. When I was 'learning the ropes' Dennis spent some time with me teaching me how to operate the staking machine. I would love to hear from any former employees. Email below.

Date:
09-Jun-2010

Email:
BillPaul@rugbymail.org.uk

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Name:
William Paul

Comment:
The picture looks as if was taken shortly after the houses along Kirkstall Road were demolished. I still have early memories of houses along this road opposite the tannery, all served by the No.4 tram from City Square. After the houses were demolished, the land remained derelict for some time until a bowling alley and skating rink were erected on the site which later became the site of Yorkshire Television.

Date:
11-Aug-2010

Email:
BillPaul@rugbymail.org.uk

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Name:
Alan Laverick

Comment:
I remember working as an apprentice for J Robson & Son Structural Engineers, on Cherry Row. And erecting a Fire Escape on the Wm Paul Building. That would have been around the mid 1950s

Date:
28-Aug-2011

Email:
alver1938@talktalk.net

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Name:
janet mitchell

Comment:
my great grandfather was a tanner and carrier for oak tannery, his address was actually shown as oak tannery in the late 1880's his name was george clough

Date:
14-Nov-2012

Email:
Not displayed

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Name:
John Bean

Comment:
I lived in this area from the 50's to 60's as a child. I knew many of the factories along this side of the road. Until recently whilst looking up some Tithe map info I discovered that around the 1830's almost all of the business's along here were Tanneries. With just Fairburns begining to break the chain and they were on the Wellington Street junction. I would guess there were around some 10-12 different tanneries along the river. I always wondered why my dad never fished the river at all, only the canal.

Date:
14-Mar-2013

Email:
beanj@btinternet.com

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Name:
John Bean

Comment:
What I should have stated was, that the number of Tanneries and Dye works were in the region of 10-12.

Date:
14-Mar-2013

Email:
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Name:
Karen Padgett

Comment:
My husbands Grandfather Albert Padgett worked here.

Date:
26-Apr-2017

Email:
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