Promoting heritage, history and future growth

Yorkshire and Humber Regional Civic Society of the Year 2015
Finalist Goole and Howdenshire Business Excellence Awards 2019

Goole Civic Society is a Charitable Incorporated Organisation dedicated to preserving the unique character of the inland port town of Goole in the East Riding of Yorkshire - making it a better place to live, work and relax in.

The port town of Goole was established in 1826 by the Aire and Calder Navigation Company, which built the docks for the export of coal, transported along the canal network by strings of barges known as Tom Puddings. While it is less than 200 years old, the town has a rich architectural and industrial heritage from its Victorian heyday.

The Society welcomes anyone who is interested in sharing our purposes to become a member. Please contact us or come along to one of our meetings at 7.15pm on the last Wednesday of the month at the West Park Cafe, West Park, Goole.

  • The pictures at the top of the page are from Goole Civic Society's 2020 calendar. They were taken by members of the public who entered our photographic competition. Thanks to Marv Osborne, Krishna Mukherji, Rachael Dunn, Lee Cocker, Brian Brady, Anne Howard Webb, David Robinson and Sally Johnston.

Souvenir Salt and Pepper Pots launch


Goole Civic Society has announced the launch of its souvenir Salt and Pepper Pot
sets, commissioned to mark Goole’s 200 th Anniversary.
Members of the society will be at Vintage in the Park in West Park on Sunday with
display models of the set and will begin taking orders for delivery
in the next couple of months.

The Salt and Pepper Pots will be stamped Goole 1826-2026 and the first 200 to be
created will be individually numbered, making them collectors’ items.
They are being handmade by Deborah Frith, a South Yorkshire ceramicist and
former figurine designer for Royal Doulton. She contacted the Civic Society to offer
her services after the widespread publicity surrounding
the debate over which pot was which.

The launch coincides with the start of the countdown to Goole’s Bicentenary and all
proceeds will go towards organising events to make 2026 a year to remember. The
sets are priced at £25 with free delivery within Goole
(£4.50 p&p for delivery elsewhere).

The Civic Society has stuck with the Salt and Pepper Pot theme for its 2025
calendar. The society ran a competition, inviting local photographers and artists to
submit images for inclusion. The competition winners are: Brian Brady, David
Robinson, Brian Bond, Rob Donnelly, Jackie Halliday and Tanya Bentley.
The calendars will go on sale at the end of the month and will be available from the
Civic Society or Goole Library. They are priced at £6 (plus £2.50 p&p outside Goole).



Goole Civic Society’s sixth Blue Plaque

Goole Civic Society has unveiled its sixth Blue Plaque, to commemorate Sir Bertram Fox-Hayes, a master mariner and Commodore of the White Star Line, Captain of the SS Olympic, sister ship to the Titanic.

The blue plaque was unveiled by Paul Eeles who sponsored the plaque with his wife June and David Billany who with his wife Kelly own the house were the plaque is sited in Heber Terrace Old Goole.
Sir Bertram lived in the house as a child from 1870 to 1880

Also present was Linda Helliwell, who owned the house previously with her husband Andrew.

Civic Society trustee Stephen Walker, carried out the research into Sir Bertram Fox-Hays and organised Sunday 16th June event, along with Rachel Walker.
Afterwards tea and Kathryn Walker’s wonderful cakes were on offer at the Old Goole Social Club to celebrate the occasion.

Sir Bertram was born in Birkenhead in 1867 and moved with his family to Goole when he was four years old.
He lived in Goole from 1870-1880, during which time he was educated and started his career as a clerk with the Goole Steam Shipping Company. 

In 1880 he went to sea, the start of a distinguished career that saw him sailing around the world and achieving the rank of Commander for the White Star Line.

He was captain of the SS Olympic, a troop carrier in the first world war and his brave service was marked with a knighthood in 1919. Interestingly he also served on the Board of Inquiry for the Olympics’ sister ship, the Titanic.

The event was well supported helping Goole Civic Societies vision to celebrate the unique heritage of Goole and build on it to create a better future for everyone. Blue Plaques are just one of the many ways we do thi


Civic Society members with Paul Eeles Mr & Mrs Billany and Mrs Helliwell


Goole Civic Society trustee Stephen Walker, Giving a presentation at
Old Goole Social Club about Sir Bertram Fox-Hayes


                           Goole chair takes helm at regional civic association

The Chair of Goole Civic Society has taken over the helm of an association representing more than 40 civic societies across the region.


Margaret Hicks-Clarke handing a certificate of thanks to the retiring Chair of YHACS, Kevin Trickett MBE

Margaret Hicks-Clarke was elected Chair of the Yorkshire and Humber Association of Civic Societies (YHACS) at its annual general meeting in Harrogate last weekend.
She said: “It’s a great honour both for me personally and for Goole, one of the newest and smallest societies in the region. It shows we are well and truly on the map.”

YHACS has 43 member societies serving cities and towns right across Yorkshire and the Humber, including Leeds, Hull, York, Sheffield, Doncaster, Wakefield, Beverley, Howden, Selby, Halifax, Richmond, Skipton, Scarborough and Whitby. It also has links with the Yorkshire Society and Action for Yorkshire Transport.

The member societies are independent, grass roots groups of people united by a desire to help make their towns and cities better places to live, work and spend time in. They aim to engage people with their heritage and encourage the promotion of good and sustainable development and urban renaissance.

They are involved a range of activities – walks and talks, heritage and social events, blue plaques, design awards, monitoring conservation areas, commenting on planning issues and providing an independent and non-political voice on boards promoting urban regeneration.

Mrs Hicks-Clarke said: “All our places have distinct character and heritage. We believe this should be celebrated and built on to create thriving places fit for the 21st century and a better quality of life for the people who live in them.”

Goole had another reason to celebrate at the annual general meeting. The society took third place in the Regional Civic Society of the Year Award for its blue plaque event and film screening to commemorate the Goole-born 1920s-30s film star Dorothy Bartlam. More than 80 people attended the screening at Junction, which was supported by a Do It For East Yorkshire community grant.



Goole Civic Society trustee Stephen Walker, right, receiving the prize for third place in the Regional Civic Society of the Year Award
from award sponsor Peter Spawforth.

Mrs Hicks-Clarke added: “We welcome anyone to come and join us in Goole. We are currently working on a new blue plaque and plans to celebrate Goole’s 200th anniversary in 2026. We also have a seat on the Goole Town Deal Board, advising on heritage.”

Goole Civic Society meets at 7.15pm on the last Wednesday of the month at the West Park café in Goole and welcomes new members. Contact or visit its website Discover more about other local and regional civic societies by visiting


We meet @ West Park Cafe, Goole, on the last Wednesday of the month, 7:15pm. All welcome. No meeting August.


Contact information

07841 802030

Registered Charity Number: 1181280

Chair: Margaret Hicks-Clarke
East Yorkshire
DN14 5AD