Acrylic Fridge Magnet of Dobroyd Castle Todmorden Yorkshire, United Kingdom.
This is an acrylic fridge magnet souvenir of Dobroyd Castle Todmorden Yorkshire, United Kingdom. Dobroyd Castle is an important historic building above the town of Todmorden, West Yorkshire, England. It was built for John Fielden, local mill owner and the son of Honest John Fielden the Social Reformer and MP. The castle has 66 rooms and is Grade II listed. In the mid 19th century Todmorden was a booming, successful cotton town. Rich industrialist, John Fielden (Junior) fell in love with local worker, Ruth Stansfield and asked her to be his wife. It is often said that her reply was that she would marry him if he built her a castle. Whether or not that was said, the couple married in 1857 and in due course a castle was built. Fielden commissioned prestigious architect, John Gibson to design and build the Castle between 1866 and 1869 at a cost of GBP71,589.
An Unwanted Castle
John and Ruth Fielden lived in the Castle but the couple became progressively distant and estranged, a Swiss chalet was built in the valley bottom for Ruth and it is said that she became an alcoholic. Ruth died in 1877 (aged 50), just 8 years after the castle's completion. John died in the castle in 1893 (aged 77). After his death, the Castle stayed in the Fielden family but was used infrequently and was eventually sold for GBP10,000. The Home Office used the castle between 1942 and 1979 as a place for 15 to 18 year old males to learn manual skills such as building or carpentry alongside the rest of their curriculum. After a 3 month closure in 1979 the castle reopened as the privately run Castle School. Following the school's closure in 1989 the castle lay empty for a period of 6 years. The Castle was acquired by Buddhists of the New Kadampa Tradition in 1995. They bought the castle for GBP320,000 and the building became the Losang Dragpa Centre, named after a famous teacher of Tibetan Buddhism. In 2007 it was announced that the Buddhists were leaving the Castle with repair work required to renovate it costing GBP200,000. Robinwood Activity Centre Ltd. acquired the castle and grounds for GBP2.2 million in 2008 and by March 2009 had transformed the Castle into an activity centre.