Meet The Guides



All our guides have been and are still involved in not just preserving the history, but making history in Saltaire.

Saltaire Tour Guides

We fully support the UNESCO world heritage site and contribute to projects, like the restoration of the Prussian blue and white street signs.

We make a regular monthly contribution to the preservation and restoration of the Saltaire United Reformed Church.  Our contributions have recently been used towards the restoration of the mausoleum where Sir Titus Salt is interred and the cleaning of the statues .

We also provide resources for the education market, for example education packs for primary schools.

All our guides are  individuals and have their unique style, opinions and character.  They interact with each other, just like in real life.  That’s what makes our tours so special.


Mrs Dooley 100 Maria Glot

is Ellin Dooley, a common mill worker

Saltaire Tour Guide Maria GlotMaria  actually lives in Saltaire and has worked in the tourist industry for many years and is famous for being appointed Bradford District’s first Tourism Officer in 1980. She was instrumental in training the first Blue Badge Guides in Yorkshire.  Not only is she a long term resident of Saltaire and an enthusiastic local historian, she is a member of Saltaire History Direct the fabulous Saltaire WI, the Saltaire Traders and supports the Saltaire Village Society, Saltaire Festival and Saltaire Inspired Her collection of fascinating facts and anecdotes bring Saltaire history to life. Her guided walks, talks and after dinner speeches are legendary and refreshingly different.

Maria’s costumed character, Mrs Ellin Dooley, is as common as muck, lives in an ordinary worker’s house on Amelia Street with her husband Henry, 12 children and another on the way.



Sally Clegg is Caroline HillSally Clegg

is Mrs Caroline Hill, wife of Colonel Thomas Henry Hill, Head of Security

A former journalist, Sally gave up work to raise her two sons and used her spare time to learn foreign languages. She now speaks French, German, Spanish and Italian as well as a little Greek and Catalan. She then trained as a guide at Harewood House, Leeds, hoping to use her language skills, before joining Salts Walks in the spring of 2009. Sally is also secretary to Bradford Circle for Foreign Languages, a group that coincidentally meets in Eldon Place, a building once owned by Sir Titus Salt.

Mrs CaroSally Cleggline Hill is the wife of Saltaire’s security chief, Colonel Thomas Henry Hill. They live in the second biggest house in the village at 47 Titus Street. A mother of four children, she nevertheless leads a very lonely existence as her husband spends much of his time in the watchtower above their home, looking out for anyone who breaks the strict rules of Saltaire. She longs for her former life in India, where she was born and brought up.

 Matron Turner in church 100Sheila Lansdell

is Matron Sarah Turner, the first matron of Sir Titus Salt’s hospital

Sheila Lansdell

Sheila is an actor and singer; a member of West Riding Opera and the Glen Singers. She appeared in ‘After the War is Over’ in 2012, playing a First World War nursing sister for Saltaire UNESCO World Heritage Site and most recently she played Sister Milton in ‘Not About Heroes’.

She is currently guiding for Salts Walks, playing the character of Matron Sarah Turner, a trained ‘Nightingale Nurse’. The first matron to be appointed at Salt’s Hospital, her mantra in life is ‘to purge, or not to purge?’ Sheila’s specialism is 19th Century medicine.

 Saltaire tour guide Pollie ToothillJoanne Crowther

is Mrs Pollie Toothill wife of Sylvestor Toothill

Joanne Crother (AKA Lucienne de Ville) is a singer specialising in French Chansons, jazz and swing. She sings under the name of Lucienne de Ville in restaurants, private parties and corporate events. In 2015 she was flown out to perform at a private birthday party on the banks of the river Limmat in Zurich Switzerland. She also works in schools promoting science and engineering via a range of exciting and fun hands on projects, some of which have recieved national and international regognition, her team J & J Projects also works with the British Council in Parisand had delivered projects at schools in over 10 regions of France.

Pollie Toothill, born plain old Mary Ackroyd in Bradford Moor changed her name and married Sylvester, who turns out to be quite a rum character…(!)  Joanne has  unearthed some interesting information about Silvester,  which had Pollie known about, in hindsight, she might not have married him..! Yet he does have one advantage… his father Edward, is the Curator at The Saltaire Institute, now known as The Victoria Hall, where they live in the Curator’s basement apartment with her in-laws.  Legend has it, that Pollie was a bit of a chanteuse and that she used to entertain the villagers during performances at The Institute…

Sylvester featured in the local press on numerous occasions and it seems he led Pollie a merry dance living in different locations and several scrapes with the law…!

Jenny DalbySaltaire Tour Guide Jenny Dalby

 is  Martha Brown servant to the famous Bronte sisters for over 23 years.

Jenny started out at Wilson’s School of Speech and Drama in Shipley at the age of 13, having found her passion she then went onto study a Btec in Performing Arts and Drama at Halifax School of Integrated Arts. Having joined the Priestley Centre in Bradford at age 18 she performed in many productions there and with the Hebden Bridge Little Theatre where she scooped Best Supporting Actress Award in 2011 for her role as Linda in ‘Ladies’ Day’. She then played the lead role Jo in ‘Jo’s War’ with ACT where they toured around the UK. Then to mark 500 years since the great fire of London she performed extracts from Samual Pepy’s diary with six live doves at Spinks in Bloomsbury.

In 2017 Jenny  moved into Mary St with her family and started to take a great interest in the history of Saltaire. Jenny although originally from Yorkshire spent 5 years in London where she worked for Kew Gardens and trained at Capel Manor College in Garden Design/Maintenance. In summer 2018 she was involved in Saltaire Inspired’s  annual Open Gardens project. It was then she heard about Martha Brown faithful servant to the Brontes coming to live in Saltaire for 9 years with her sister Ann Binns on Victoria Road. She had a light bulb moment and thought it would be wonderful to bring her character back to life, and so marry the history of Haworth and Saltaire in an interesting way.

Her costumed character,  Martha Brown the Brontes live in servant for 23 years from age 11. In 1868 she moved to 16/17 Victoria Road Saltaire a tailors shop run by her brother in law Benjamin Binns. She helps her sister Ann out with her 9 children, and often intriques an audience when she relating stories about the Brontes.









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 Posted by at 4:23 pm

  16 Responses to “Meet The Guides”

  1. I really really enjoyed the walk around Saltaire with Maria. She is so full of information and is a outstanding entertainer. GPs should prescribe Salts Walks for anyone suffering from the blues. The only disappointment was no souvenir pairs of Mrs Dooley’s bloomers to be had!

    • Dear Bill,
      Please forgive the lateness of my reply to you, my computer crashed and I have only just got it working properly now. Thank you very much for your kind comments. When replicas of Mrs Dooleys favourite bloomers are made you will be the first to get a pair !

      Again grateful thanks for your most welcome comments. and once agin thank you for coming on a Salts walk.
      Best wishes

  2. Hello!
    I’m a teacher at Westgate Primary School in Otley making enquiries about your walking tours for our Y5 and Y6 classes this coming Autumn. I can be contacted at the school on 01943 462349. I look forward to hearing from you!


    • Dear Daniel,
      Thank you for your enquiry , it will be a total pleassure to look after your groups in September, I look forward to you getting back with dates.

      Best wishes

  3. What a wonderful way to learn about this unique town! This tour made the 3 hour drive to Saltaire worthwhile. Maria and her tour guide were so very knowledgeable about the city’s history and they have such a love for the town that it really made all the tour goers appreciate it. The acting skills, combined with the sense of humor made the tour a pleasure for my entire family.

  4. had a great time being shown around, wondered if mrs dooley was a real person, if so would like to get more info fir a school project

    • Dear Jane,
      Thank you for your comment, yes Mrs Dooley was a real person a victorian who lived in Saltaire. For more information we can arrange a time for you to interview her.
      She is very busy as she has 12 children and one on the way, but she loves talking about herself.

  5. My U3a visited Saltaire on 15th September and really enjoyed the day. The highlight was the guided visit which brought the town to life.Maria is an excellent guide and actress. Definitely keen to return next year.

  6. I had the pleasure of meeting Mrs Ellen Dooley on a tour I led for HF Holidays. My guests loved your personalised character bookmarks and your interactive talk, really bringing the village and its residents to life. Mrs Dooley was also very persuasive in getting my character, as Chief Cashier, to part with money. Worth every farthing. Thank you.

  7. Can I enquire re a booking for myself and my husband for Tuesday 16th October 2018 ? Times and costs also please.
    Many thanks
    Susan Lawson

    • Dear Susan,
      Thank you for your enquiry, There are not guided walks on Tuesday 16th October. There is one on Wednesday 17th October at 1.00pm starting at the Saltaire United Reformed Church. The cost of the walk is £5.00 per person and you pay on the day. We also have a guided walk on Wednesday 18th October at 1.30pm,again staring at the Saltaire United Reformed Church. I hope one of those dates will suit you, let me know.
      Best wishes
      Maria Salts Walks and Talks

  8. Thank you Maria, aka Mrs Dooley for a brilliant informative and humorous talk for Holmfirth U3A, it was immensely enjoyable. Should you ever tire of Saltaire (unlikely I know) please, please consider putting on a presenters course for would be speakers.
    Thank you.

    • Dear Janet,
      Thanks a million for your most welcome feedback.I am looking forward to coming back to Holmfirth to talk about what happened to Saltaire after Sir Titus Salt 1876 to 2018
      Warmest wishes to all

    • Thank you Maria for a wonderfully entertaining and informative walk yesterday. Fabulous day out. You are a tonic for the soul. 😀

  9. Hello Maria

    I was at Lightcliffe History Society meeting last night – I enjoyed your talk and presentation – the audience were on the edge of their seats…well done

    Something you may be already aware of – I was doing some brass band research a few years ago and was talking to a retired Black Dyke Band player and he reminded me that it was in Victoria Hall where the band recorded one of the few 45 rpm records the band has ever recorded c1968 . a side) Thingumbybob b) Yellow Submarine – .Paul McCartney was up from London to be at the recording having written them both. He stayed at The Midland Hotel and was at Victoria Hall part of the time. I have both recordings and have played Thingumbybob on my brass band radio show. It was a catchy tune for a childrens TV show.

    Best Wishes


    • Dear Chris,
      thank you for your lovely Comments about my talk. I do remember Paul McCartney and the Black Dyke Mills Band at Victoria Hall…what a fantastic event for Saltaire and the area. Warmest wishes for a wonderful Christmas Maria

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