June 2012: Celebrating Settle


For generations Settle has actively celebrated Royal Events with communal gatherings, elaborate triumphal arches, brass-bands, fancy dress parades, sporting events and more besides. Queen Victoria’s Diamond Jubilee in 1897, for example was marked by the planting of a sycamore on the Green in Upper Settle where it still stands to this day, a splendidly mature tree that is now home to a small colony of rooks. The folk of Upper Settle seem to have celebrated royal events with particular enthusiasm, erecting their own ceremonial arches, and gathering together for group photographs to mark the occasion.


For this exhibition we are presenting a visual history of these celebrations through photographs and printed ephemera from Queen Victoria’s Golden Jubilee in 1887 to 1953 and the Coronation of Queen Elizabeth II. Many of these photographs have not been exhibited before and together present a picture of Settle’s committed response to royal events at a time when it was still possible to build elaborate and complex structures directly over the main streets in a way that would be unthinkable today. The more recent photographs may even include some people you might know – see if you can spot some old friends or relatives there!


By a neat coincidence of history, the K6 phone box in which the Gallery on the Green is housed was designed by Sir Giles Gilbert Scott as a commission to commemorate King George VI’s Silver Jubilee in 1935.


The Gallery on the Green is indebted to The Museum of North Craven Life and John Reid for generous access to their collections