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Bridge House, 23 School Lane, is a stone-built semi-detached house, with the other half being Manor House, formerly Wernath House). Bridge House was in a state of disrepair for a number of years, since at least 1985 (see Peter Wright's History).

The Junior School was built on the site of Miss Mary Pilkington's National School, opened in 1857. The two cottages (Bridge and Manor Houses) were built in 1867 for Miss Pilkington's Training, Laundry and Cooking School, which opened in 1871.

For some time there has been an interest in building more houses adjacent to the Manor Estate on the old Waterways Land, which lies behind the house.  Access to the land has been an issue that, so far, successive developers have not been able to resolve.

Sadly, to add to its woes, Bridge House was further damaged by an accidental fire caused by a stray firework at the end of 1999. 

At the time of writing (2010), the future of this blot on the landscape seems uncertain.  Perhaps it will be restored. Sad that an area can be blighted in this way. The building, if restored, would certainly be an asset to the village.

Until July 2001, there had been no attempt to restore Bridge House; however, work then started to make good the building (to the extent of putting a roof on, at least) to prevent damage to the adjoining residence, Manor House.

Happily, since the above was written, the building has been purchased and is in the process of being restored (2012).

➤ Click on the photographs to enlarge.

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Walton near Wakefield, West Yorkshire.