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Note 1

The First Gateholders


The allocation of 50 Gates was as follows: 

James and Charles Brown (6) - John Burnett () - Dorothy Wilks and Ann Bainbridge (2) - The heirs of John Coates (4) - Joseph Critchley (1) - John Dearlove(1) - John and Mary Hickson (1) - John Dobson (2) - John Dove () - Thomas Grimstone (1) - William Gaunt () - Thomas Headley () - Sarah Harper (2) - Anthony Holiday () - The Devisees of the late Sir J. Ingilby (12) - John Lewis (1) - William Lupton () - John Pennington (1) - William and George Parker () - Thomas Russell (3) - John Sargent (1) - Joseph Thackwray () - Francis Taylor (2) - William Williamson (1) - John Watson (1) - Thomas Wilkes (1)

It is possible to identify some of the recipients as having holdings of some kind in the vicinity of the 200 acres. Along the eastern boundary of the Stray, John Critchley, Thomas Russell, William Lupton, John Dearlove, John Hickman, Thomas Wilks, and John Watson had allotments or enclosures. John Coates had held an allotment in the area of what is now St. Aidan's School. Joseph Thackwray, of the Crown Hotel, seems to have been the one occupier in Low Harrogate to have received any part of a Straygate and that only a half which was to remain, increased to one gate, in the family for very many years. The Ingilby holding was in the area of what is now central Harrogate. Thomas Headley had land in the area of York Place and Sarah Harper was an occupier in the vicinity of Regent Parade. It looks as though the other recipients were people with land or property holdings a little further afield.

Few of these original gateholders retained their gates for many years. We shall see that the Brown family retained their gates for more than 60 years until at a critical time they disposed of 3. John Dearlove, butcher, passed his gates, which had become two, to his son John Dearlove who became the proprietor of the Queen Hotel and a progressive leader at a time when such men were wanted. The Grimstones, Thackwrays, Williamsons, Watsons and the Luptons were still in possession of their gates as late as 1845. Records of gate ownership after 1845 are not available but it is clear that over a period of 115 years the Straygates changed hands and that their value rose.

It is significant that almost without exception, the Straygate owners throughout a long period in which the town stood in need of a reformed local government set themselves apart from the rest of the townspeople. This remained true as and when Straygates changed hands. In the event, very few Straygate holders (and most of them had but recently acquired their gates) were to emerge as leaders of reform. As a body, they were, throughout, decidedly unprogressive.


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Copyright 2004, Harrogate Historical Society