Yorkshire Chess History



William Critchley and William Sallitt Critchley











Made in Yorkshire



Sheffield Sub-Site


William Critchley


William Sallitt Critchley


1826, Bradford



1855/56, Bradford


15/11/1826, Bradford





1906, Wharfedale



22/10/1900, Glasgow





Ilkley Cemetery


Non-Chess Life


The parents of William Critchley were James Critchley and Margaret Critchley (born 1792/93) who had at least the following two children:


William Critchley

born 1826, Bradford

baptised 15/11/1826, Bradford

Mary Critchley

born 1826/27


The 1841 census found the family of four living in Darby Street, Bradford, presumably in a public house, as father James was a publican.


In time William became a stuff merchant, which was his stated occupation when listed in the 1851 census as a one of four lodgers in the household of the widowed Letitia Sallitt, at 35 Hanover Square, Bradford.  The landlady’s name gets variously spelt, but “Sallitt” is the commonest form; William Sallitt Critchley signed the marriage register at his wedding with that spelling.


In 1852, William married his landlady’s daughter Sarah Elizabeth Sallitt (born 1823/24, Nottingham).  The couple had at least the following five children, all born in Bradford:


Henry Taylor Critchley

born 1853

William Sallitt Critchley

born 1855/56

Frank Barber Critchley

born Jun/Jul 1860

Edward Critchley

born 1863

James Sydney Critchley

born 1865/66


William Sallitt Critchley was seemingly born in late 1855 or in the first 19 days of January 1856.


The 1861 census found parents and first three children living at 115 Whetley Lane (misspelt “Wetley” by the enumerator), Manningham, Bradford.  Father William was a stuff merchant, while Henry and William Sallitt were scholars.  There were two servants.


White’s 1861 Bradford directory listed William Critchley & Co., commission agents, trading at 16 Booth Street, Bradford, with the Critchley residence at 115 Whetley Lane.


Third son, Frank Barber Critchley, died in 1866, at the age of 5.


The 1871 census found parents and four remaining children living at 14 Blenheim Road, Manningham, Bradford.  Father William was still a stuff merchant, Henry was a merchant’s clerk (perhaps working for his father), and William Sallitt and Edward were scholars.  There were still two servant.


At some time from 1871 to 1881 (around 1877 per an obituary), the Critchley family moved to Ilkley.  William Sallitt Critchley, however, had more adventurous plans, and soon went to New Zealand to be a farmer.


The 1881 census found parents William and Sarah, sons Henry, Edward and James, and two servants living, at 2 Yew Bank, Ilkley.  William Sallitt Critchley was away in New Zealand at this time.


Kelly’s 1881 Bradford Directory listed the business premises of William Critchley & Co., stuff manufacturers and merchants, now at 31 Booth Street, Bradford.


Around 1881 or 1882, William Sallitt Critchley returned from New Zealand, rejoining his parents and siblings in Ilkley.


On 19/01/1886, 30-year-old Ilkley manufacturer William Sallitt Critchley, son of stuff merchant William Critchley, married 21-year-old Emily Calvert of 39 Smithfield Square, daughter of Michael Calvert, traveller, at St. Martin’s, Bradford.  The couple had at least the following two children:


Philip Henry Critchley

born 1886/87, Ilkley

Emily Calvert Critchley

born 15/09/1888

baptised 28/10/1888, St. Margaret’s, Ilkley


There was a Lucy Critchley whose death at birth in Wharfdale were registered in the third quarter of 1886 may have been this couple’s first child, thpugh there was at least one other Critchley family (including Arthur Critchley) in Ilkley at the time.


At some stage Edward and James set up in business together as architects.  The 1887 PO directory for Bradford listed William Critchley & Co., merchants, trading still at 31 Booth Street, and listed J. & E. Critchley, architects and surveyors, trading at 27 Kirkgate, Bradford – all parties with their home at Ilkley.


The 1887 Poll Book covering Ilkley listed brothers Henry Taylor Critchley, William Sallitt Critchley and Edward Critchley all living at 14 Yew Bank, Ilkley.


The birth of Emily Calvert Critchley on 15/09/1888 was soon followed, on 23/09/1888, by the mother’s death.  Emily Critchley was buried in Ilkley Cemetery on 26/09/1888.


The family’s address in Emily Calvert Critchey’s baptism register entry, made on 28/10/1888, was 8 Tivoli Place, Ilkley.


The 1889 Poll Book covering Ilkley listed Sallitt Critchley (without the “William”) as living in Tivoli Place, Ilkley.  This suggests William Sallitt Critchley was known as “Sallitt” to distinguish him from his father.


The 1891 census found the two parents, their four sons, and William Sallitt Critchley’s 4-year-old son Philip, living at Yew Bank Terrace, Ilkley; this was. probably the property known also as 13 and or 14 Yew Bank.  Father William, Henry and William Sallitt Critchley were stuff merchants, while Edward was an architect and James was a mechanical engineer.


The 1895 Poll Book covering Ilkley, through to that of 1901 (although he was by then dead), listed Willam Sallitt Critchley (now with the “William”) living at 13 Yew Bank, with the qualifying property being 13 & 14 Yew Bank.


The 1901 census found parents William and Sarah living with sons Henry and Edward, orphaned grandchildren Philip and Emily, and 3 servants.




William Sallitt Critchley predeceased his father, dying from acute pneumonia on 22/10/1900, at Drummond’s Hotel, Glassford Street, Glasgow.  He was stated to have been resident at the time still at “13 Yew Bank Terrace”, Ilkley; his presence in Glasgow was due to his being away on business.  Edward Critchley, architect, was his executor.  An obituary appeared in the Leeds Mercury of 26/10/1900.


The father, William Critchley, senior, died in 1906, in the Wharfedale area, presumably in Ilkley.




“Wm. Critchley, sen.” Played for Manningham Liberals, as for instance, in the 1874 Manningham Liberal v Shipley match.


“W. Critchley” played for Ilkley in the 1882 Ilkley v Leeds match, in the 1882 Rawdon v Ilkley match, and in the 1882 Ilkley v Rawdon match.


Both “W. Critchley” and “W. S. Critchley” played for Ilkley in the 1883 Leeds v Ilkley match, the 1884 Ilkley-Dewsbury match, the 1884 Manningham v Ilkley match.


“W Critchley” played for Bradford in the 1887 Woodhouse Cup.


“W. S. Critchley” and also “S. Critchley” played for Ilkley in the 1894 Ilkley v Burley match.  The identity of “S. Critchley” is unclear, unless it meant “W. Critchey”.





Copyright © 2015 Stephen John Mann

Census information is copyright of The National Archive, see UK Census Information

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