Welcome to the Brierley Village Web site

Pronounced as "bry"-"early"

Introducing the work of Brierley and its people in photographs (Baipip)

Brierley is a small village near Barnsley in South Yorkshire England

This web site is kindly hosted by me-too. net and is intended for your enjoyment. However if you find any article offensive please email and it will be removed at once

Please email your comments on this web site and any requests to Gary (see email link below)

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Email your history questions about Brierley and the surrounding area to

Richard Watson a local historian and co author of "Brereley a history of Brierley" 


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Question from Tina Schofield from Pulloxhill Bedford, February 2006  


Hi Richard, I’ve just found your web site about Brierley it’s very interesting. My grandmother was born in Brierley in 1898, she was Gladys Needham, she left in 191?. She was in service with a vicar (Rev Forbes?) who moved and she went with them to Bugthorpe. I remember visiting her sister Maud Vaux b 1894, when I was a small child. She lived in a little cottage just along from the Co-op, New Row? I can remember visiting her as a small girl. The houses were pulled down and she moved to a new old person bungalow round the corner it was on a hill overlooking??? . I’ve found a picture of the cottages on your web site.

My father has supplied me with information about his Aunts and Uncles there were 10 in all.

George b1887 / Ethel b1880 d 1910 / May b 1890 d 1897/Maud b 1894 d 1986 married Edgar Vaux daughter Dorothy still lives somewhere in the area/ Gladys b 1898 d 1986 my Gran/ William b1901/ Gerald b 1902 d 1903/ Jessie b 1902  d 1903/Florence b 1908

Then there was Harry but I can’t find anything about him he was older. I’ve tried the census but without luck. I was wondering if you had access to other local records that might throw so light on him. If you do I would be very grateful if you would have a look for him. Not a lot to go on really. I think that Harry’s daughter was Florence May Needham (you have 2 photos of her wedding on your web site)

I was going to send you some pictures that I scanned but the files are too big. I have postcards of Brierley Church interior & Exterior. I seem to have pictures of 2 different churches on with a tower and another with a spire. The Institute outside and then interior of large hall. I understand from my father that his grandfather William Needham had a joiner’s workshop, which was pulled down, and the Institute was built on that site. At that time William then went to work as a joiner at the colliery. The picture is of very ornate gothic building with a bell and look vaguely religious and then another one of Holgate Cottages? where William lived after his wife died.  These last 2 photos might be connected.

If you are interested in the photos I should be able to compress them. Please let me know.

Look forward to hearing from you

Tina Schofield


Reply from Richard

Dear Tina

Thank you for your enquiry. I knew Maud Vaux quite well she was a friend of my wife’s family.

Yes the Cottages near the Post Office were called New Row but they are on the 1854  6” Ordnance Survey map of  Brierley. They were new at one time, there is a New Road in Woolley built in 1820 as a by pass for Woolley Hall the home of  the Wentworth family. Maud Vaux moved from New Row to live on Grange Road overlooking Cudworth, Shafton, and much more. There is a very open view from that part of Brierley. Dorothy Foster her daughter lives at Shafton but she is not well now.

I have found George, Ethel, Maud, Gladys, and a baby called William on the 1901 census together with William Needham and his wife Ann. On the 1881 census I have George Needham aged 50 born in Finningley working as an agricultural labourer in Brierley.

He is listed as born in Rossington on the 1901 census. Finningley and Rossington parishes share a common boundary. His wife Hannah aged 44  was born in Felkirk parish as was his son William a joiner aged 22. William. F. Curtis aged 4 and born in Pontefract was at the same address. They lived on Church Street opposite the Church and School, next to Godfrey Cordeux who is mentioned in my online booklet Brereley a History of Brierley.

Harry was not on the 1901 census for Brierley he may not have been born, or he may have been away from home the night of the census. Have you tried the General Register Office index’s, they have all births in Great Britain recorded from 1837 and are available in quite a few reference libraries on microfiche. I know they are available in Barnsley, Sheffield, and Leeds libraries. Once you know the year you can apply to Barnsley registrar at the Town Hall for a birth certificate.

There is no Rev. Forbes or similar name listed as Vicar of Felkirk with Brierley, or for Brierley Methodist Church do you know which village he lived in?

I have forwarded your email to Gary of Brierley Village web site as he deals with photos, my speciality is pre 1900 research.

My local history web site ‘Brierley Yorkshire England is at http://www.brierley59.freeserve.co.uk/

Update March 2006

Here is a sequel to the Tina Schofield email. I found the Harry she was looking for was George Harry born 1887. He was already on her list of names but not recognised


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Richard introduction

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Questions and Answers 

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