Next to the Lock up, the buildings named St. Leonard’s Hospital are not the first to occupy the site. They were built by Canon John Sharp in 1888 to replace the original almshouse building, which was demolished circa 1887. Canon John Sharp, the Vicar of Horbury raised money locally in memory of Queen Victoria’s Jubilee in 1888 to demolish the old building and instead built four one-bedroom houses, with another dwelling behind for the Parish Nurse, who it was intended could look after the old folk and probably help cook their food.In a letter to the Parish magazine, Canon Sharp wrote:
“We have had some difficulty in deciding what should be the name of our new almshouses. After much discussion it has been decided to call them St. Leonard’s Hospital, for in times past such buildings were commonly called hospitals, and in so much as the old Norman Church of Horbury, which stood upon the site of the present more recent one, was dedicated to St. Leonard.”
The foundation stone for the new building was laid by the Rev. Sharp on the 5th May 1888. Another stone high in the side wall is inscribed:
“This hospital has been created to the glory of God for the relief of the poor of Horbury and in the memory of the Jubilee of our gracious Queen Victoria and was dedicated by William Walshaw, the first Bishop of Wakefield. October 6th 1888.” Hospital in this case means charity.