The 3rd Halifax (Luddenden Foot) Boy’s Brigade 110 years old this year!
Formed in 1903 the company record is contained in two log books. The names and service of every boy through the years have been recorded. The first being James Gibson of Willow Bank. Next to be enrolled at the historic first meeting were Rufus Iredale...Arnold Halstead...John Selwyn Whitley..... The company diary shows that on the first drill night of August 19th 1903 a total of 42 boys from Luddenden Foot Congregational and United Methodist Churches assembled.
The Captain, C W Moses and his lieutenants Eli Butterworth (later a long serving U.D. councillor and Justice of the Peace) Joe Barker and Thomas H. Corlett, had formed the company after a visit to Stannery Church where they had a company.
Though associated with the two Free Churches, the Company in 1905 was opened to all the boys of the Luddenden Foot district, and in the same year, through affiliation with the new Halifax Battalion was designated the “3rd” Halifax.
Not all entries are as dramatic, such as on November 2nd 1911 it was recorded:- “Today we have been called upon to part with 17 of our lads who are Catholic,..... a branch of the Roman Catholic BB is being formed in connection with their own church, and they have been instructed to join. We are sorry to lose them. We still have a company of 60 boys”.
A month later an entry read that “Owing to increased numbers, we are meeting in half Company’s, but it is not satisfactory”.
The Junior Section of the 3rd began in 1963 making this year our Golden Jubilee year.
Over the last 110 years it’s been estimated that about 1300 boys have called themselves members of the 3rd Halifax (Luddenden Foot) Boy’s Brigade.
In the words of Ronnie Baines, a former Captain, “They came and they went, some of course for shorti’sh periods, but short or long, for part of their lives they experienced something which they always remembered..............and remembered more fondly the older they get”.
3rd Halifax (Luddenden Foot) Boy’s Brigade Company 1909