Sheffield Independent – Friday 07 June 1929
Lord Halifax 90.
His Recipe for Good Health
Exercise and Glass of Beer.
Photos from Wikpedia
Viscount Halifax, of Hickleton Hall, near Doncaster, is 90 years of age to-day.
He left Hickleton Hall on Wednesday morning, and will remain in London to spend his birthday with his daughter, Mrs. G. R. Lane- Fox, wife of Colonel Lane-Fox. Tomorrow he will journey to Devon, where will spend a fortnight, before returning to Hickleton Hall.
But Lord Halifax, if he is 90 in years, is young in heart and still active in body. For he has the secret of happiness and good health.
It has ever been his practice to move intimatey among the people who live around the village of Hickleton, and last year, opening a bazaar in aid of the new Goldthorpe Parish Hall, he gave his secret of happiness.
“One cannot help living as long as I have,” he said then, “and 1 shall be 90 next year, without knowing two things. The first is that what is important to every man, woman and child is not that they should be good-looking or rich, but that they should be good men and women, and their characters should be such that everybody respects them. That is one essential. And if we be good men and women we have to be good Christians. There is no other secret happiness in this world than to love God and our neighbours as love ourselves.”
Secret Of Good Health.
His secret of good health is to take exercise and drink a glass of homebrewed beer every day. The exercise is taken in the Hickleton Hall grounds, set in the perfect surroundings of the village, a wonderful relic a bygone age. Although within a mile or two of large and important collieries, the world passes the rural spot by and leaves it untouched.
The highway to Barnsley passes through the village, and motorists see and wonder at the rural beauty of the place, near the swarming industrial populations. The thatched cottages, the village green, the simple agricultural folk plodding home in the dusk after a day’s toil in the scented fields—these are things among which he lives his sylvan retreat.
All the village folk are his tenants – he is the owner of 10,000 acres—and he knows the folk by name, and will often pause to give pennies to the children and chat with a plough boy.
In this rural paradise the aged peer walks every morning accompanied by his fox terrier, Gyp. The two are inseparable and no public function takes place which Lord Halifax attends which does not see the small dog seated close by his beloved master
The grounds of the Hall are extensive, and contain wonderful flower beds among which peacocks strut proudly. Two years ago a herd of deer were transferred from the estates at High Melton to Hickleton and travellers along the highway to-day may see the graceful animals grazing peacefully in the park.
A year or “two ago Lord Halifax had occasion to go by carriage to Doncaster. He took a fancy to walk along the greenhedged lanes on the way home and dismissed the carriage. The perturbed coach driver galloped to the Hall to report the matter, and a disturbed household turned out to meet the peer. Meanwhile Lord Halifax had tramped many miles, and despite his determination to finish the journey on foot, found the task becoming beyond him. He was resting the wayside when along came one his tenants in a farmer’s cart, and recognising the peer, proffered help.
Rode On The Cart.
Lord Halifax thereupon mounted the cart, and completed the journey to the village chatting amicably with the farmer. The glass of beer which Lord Halifax taxes every day is brewed at Hickleton, and is an institution of generations. It is stronger than present day whisky. Every harvest time some of the beer is brewed secret family recipe, and is stored in 130 gallon casks in the cellars of the Hall for eight years before it is tapped.
Lord Halifax has many memories of the district before the industrial era and the growth of the townships around. loves to discourse on these, and remembers nearby Goldthorpe when it was composed of a few scattered houses and the church. Despite his great age, he attends regularly when in residence, the small but beautifully appointed Parish Church at Hickleton, set in the grounds of Hickleton Hall, and was present this year at the funeral of the late Canon Kingsley, for many vears Vicar of the Parish.
In 1926 Lord Halifax, then in indifferent health, had to abandon an intention visiting his son, the Viceroy of India. In his advancing years his eyesight had been a cause grave anxiety, and he had several operations, which were successful in saving his sight, but necessitated the use of strong glasses.
King Edward’s friend.
Lord Halifax was born when the young Queen Victoria had been on the throne only two years. The son of Sir Charles Lindley, who was a personal friend of Mr. Gladstone, he was educated at Eton, where he became a great friend the late King Edward. The friendship was destined to life-long, and to-day the village cross Hickleton is a personal memorial to the love that existed between the two.
At Oxford, Lord Halifax came under the influence of Dr. Pusey. The whole of his life is connected with the Oxford movement, and it is said that no more remarkable and able layman was produced than the one who, at the age of 29, was the president of the English Church Union.
His ambitious visions lay in the union of the Church of England with the Church of Rome, and despite storms of criticism, especially on the talks, he has worked unceasingly to this end. Only a few months ago Lord Halifax was received by the Pope.
In the House of Lords his activities were directed chiefly to Church matters. He is the patron of the living of Hickleton, Goldthorpe, and Bolton-on-Dearne Parish Churches, and has a great influence in the religious education of the people among whom he lives in South Yorkshire.
The beautiful church at Goldthorpe, built in the style of the Italian Renaissance, furished with wonderful gifts, brought him from Italy, is his gift, and stands unique in church architecture in this country.