Sam Dyson, Audio Clip

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Sam Dyson (SD) was interviewed many times by W.R. Mitchell (WRM). In this segment Sam tells Bill, with the help of his wife Peggy (PD) in the background, the story of how he bought his first farm, Buckley Farm, Stanbury, near Haworth.


WRM: Where was your first farm, around Haworth?

SD: Oh, me first farm were at Buckley Farm, across ’ere at Stanbury.

WRM: How do you spell that?

SD: B-U-C-K-L-E-Y Farm.

WRM: That’s right, and what acreage was that?

SD: Fourteen acre. We bought that to get married. We were living at Brooklands at Cullingworth. Well, I weren’t; Peggy were living at Brooklands at Cullingworth. We weren’t married then, an’ we were thinking about gettin’ married. But it weren’t big enough where we were living. It were a big ’ouse but there weren’t enough acre, there were jus’ three acre. An’ so we couldn’t mek a livin’ there so we decided that we’d sell Brooklands at Cullingworth an’ buy a farm. So we went lookin’ round an’ we went t’auctioneers and one auctioneer said, “Well, what you want to do is to go to Keighley.”

PD: No, Craven.

WRM: Craven?

PD: What they call that paper.

WRM: The Craven Herald?

SD: Alright. Then he said, ‘Go and get a Craven Herald and look in’t Craven Herald.’ So we looked in’t Craven Herald and there were two farms to sell. One were at Black Hill and t’other were at Buckley Farm at Stanbury. So we decided we’d go to Black Hill. So we went to Black Hill and knocked at the door, “Have you a farm to sell?” “Yes.” “Can we have a look round?” We went into t’house and you couldn’t see fireplace for cinders. It were reet high here. She says, “I’m not goin’ ‘ere.” [Laughs] So that were th’end of that farm. So I said, “Alright, we’ll go back an’ look at this ’ere at Buckley”, so we went to Buckley and looked at Buckley. Fourteen acre, fourteen an’ a half, I think. And by God, it were a grand little farm.

WRM: So was it a hillside farm?

SD: Yes, a hill farm, no moor rights just fourteen acre.

WRM: And what height was it above sea level?

SD: Oh, above sea level, it would be a thousand feet above sea level now.

WRM: It didn’t half catch the wind there, did it?

SD: Oh aye, it catched a bit o’ wind. We went to look at it and she says, “Aye, I could live there,” so I said “Alreet.” So anyway, she started packing afore we bought it, ready for... [Laughs] An’ I came up t’day after to see ’im and we’d to go to this Estate Agent at Oakworth. So I went into t’office an’ said how much ’ad it to be, an’ it were... I’ve forgotten how much it were but I bid ’im...

WRM: What was it roughly?

SD: I bid ‘im six ‘undred pounds and he wouldn’t tek it.

WRM: Yeah.

SD: An’ they said, ‘Well, will you go outside?’ So I went outside.

WRM: You didn’t bid him six hundred according to your wife. How much?

PD: Well, it were six hundred and sixty they wanted.

WRM: Six hundred and sixty they wanted, yes?

SD: Well, what did I bid ’im?

PD: An’ I think it were £620 yer bid.

WRM: Oh well, it’s only twenty out. [Laughs]

PD: No, I know that, but it were a lot then.

SD: Well, anyway he said, ‘Well, will you go outside a minute or two?’, so I went outside a minute or two an’ then they called me back in an’ they said, well they couldn’t tek that but that they could tek so much an’ that worra bit less. I said, ‘No, that’s it.’

WRM: What year was this?

PD: 1939.

WRM: 1939, ah yes.

SD: Anyway, there were a bit more talk an’ a bit more talk an’ they said, “Well, will you go outside again?” So I said, ”Aye, I’ll go outside again”. So I went outside again. An’ they called me back in a bit and said they’d tek so much again, an’ I said, “No, I’m sorry, I’ve bid yer all I’m givin’ yer an’ that’s it.” And so they said, “Well, will you go...?” I said, “No, if I go outside again I shan’t come back.” “Well”, he said, “You’d better ’ave it.” So we ’ad it.

WRM: So you bought the farm?

SD: Six hundred and twenty quid, were it?

PD: Aye.

WRM: And what did you get for it, a farmhouse...?

SD: Farmhouse, buildings...

PD: A cottage...

WRM: A cottage?

SD: It were a grand, little farm, it really was. Because fella that belonged it, his fatha were a joiner and his wife’s fatha were a builder so it were up-to-date, everything was spot on.

WRM: What was the land like?

SD: Not bad, not bad at all.

WRM: What sort of land do you get round Haworth and Stanbury?

SD: Well, it was strong like, you know?

WRM: What does that mean, clay?

SD: Aye, a bit heavy; it were a bit heavy, but it wasn’t so bad for being clay.