Hawes Market House MYD36572 (c) YDNPA, 2023
A bequest of £1500 was left to Hawes by Robert William Atkinson so that the town could build a covered market hall. This generous bequest was in litigation in 1893 and as a result the amount was considerably reduced. In the end the parish council had to make up the shortfall. By 1898 a list of trustees had been drawn up. Atkinson had specified that there should also be a reading room, a library, a coffee and refreshment room and housing for a caretaker.
The intention was that farmers and local stall holders could sell goods like butter, eggs and poultry undercover and local people could buy in the comfort of the covered hall. Stall holders were charged a set toll. As it turned out, most of these goods went direct to local shop keepers and people seemed to prefer the outdoor stalls. The hall has since been used for dances, public meetings and film shows. The building still retains its library and today regular sales and auctions are held in the hall.
Alderson, James (1980) Under Wetherfell. The Story of Hawes Parish & People. Gayle: Brian Alderson
Partrick, C (2004) ‘Reading Rooms and Literary Institutes of the Yorkshire Dales’ White, R F & Wilson, P R (eds) (2004) Archaeology and Historic Landscapes of the Yorkshire Dales. Yorkshire Archaeological Society Occasional Paper No 2 pp203-212