On Friday December 7th Keighley Local Studies Library was very pleased to formally receive copies of the book ‘From Calcutta to Keighley’ presented by the author, Charlie Bhowmick MBE.
Charlie is a well known character in Keighley. He was born in Calcutta and in 1954 at the age of 17 he followed his older brother to Keighley, where he was given a job at George Hattersley’s engineering business, now Mantra House. He served an apprenticeship with the company and studied mechanical and electrical engineering and later building construction at Keighley Technical College. Charlie went on to study planning and became a town planner with Bradord Council until his retirement in 1994.
Over the years, Charlie has been involved with many local initiatives and organisations including
- Airedale Hospital Radio
- The annual Temple Street Edwardian Fair
- Community Personality of the Year
- Keighley Community Cricket
- Governor of Parkwood School
- Temple Street Methodist Church and overseas movements Community Harmony Award, Bradford Council Marathon running for Keighley Disabled
In 2005 Charlie received the MBE for his work with the Keighley Inter-Faith Group.
Here is an extract from the book:
‘I discovered Keighley Library in 1955, a year after I arrived in Keighley. I met Mr Dewhirst in the Reference Library section on the first floor. He gave me a warm welcome and showed me a desk in the Reference Library where I could undertake my studies. This was very welcome given the cold conditions in my lodging house in Beechcliffe.
I found all the various books I needed for my course at the library and soon became a regular visitor, so much so, I got to know the staff there very well – Ian and also Molly Boulton (Ian Dewhirst’s deputy). I enjoyed the facilities of Keighley Public Library (and its warm temperatures) for about 6 years until I got married and moved into a warm flat on Devonshire Street.’
The book is a great read and reflects Charlie’s irrepressible character with proceeds going to Yorkshire Cancer Research.