Inside the Friends Meeting House at High Flatts


I shot this during a visit to the former Quaker hamlet at High Flatts, between Huddersfield and Denby Dale, as part of the Heritage Open Days weekend. High Flatts is a delightful collection of honey-stoned cottages and houses set in the rolling Yorkshire hills: until a generation ago it was exclusively Quaker, but now it’s an affluent, secular and mixed community.

Although several generations ago there were Quakers in my family, I’d never been inside a Friends Meeting House, and the Heritage Open Day allowed a glimpse inside this still-functioning place of worship. Several friendly folk were onhand to explain the history and beliefs of the Society of Friends. I was curious to see whether Quaker beliefs would be mirrored in the aesthetics of the building, like other isolated religious groups such as the Moravians and Shakers. The styling is measured and balanced; the exterior is well-proportioned and Georgian in character. I liked the simple and harmonious interior, with its focus inwards: more for meetings of minds, rather than sermons.

Click below for a fullscreen 360° view of the scene in Flash, or for more info in Google Earth.

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