Libraries Week 2021

National Libraries Week 2021 runs 4-10 October 2021 and Leeds Libraries are putting on a host of events – both online and in person – to celebrate our buildings and collections.

We are, once again, running our Speed Date a Library Treasure event but this time we’re moving online. You’ll still see a selection of treasures from Leeds Libraries and from other heritage organisations across the city. You’ll still spend three minutes with each item and have a chance to ask questions and even vote for your favourite. Expect to see some special collections, some old favourites and some weird and wonderful items. The event will run 7-8.30pm on Tuesday 5th October and tickets need to be booked in advance.

Disclaimer: This is not a ‘proper’ speed dating event, no romantic entanglements will be made, this is library and heritage staff introducing you to your next great library treasure love. There has, ahem, been some confusion in the past!

Image courtesy of British Library.

If you’ve ever wondered how to decipher old handwriting then this next event is for you. Taking place on Friday 8th October, this palaeography workshop from our friends at West Yorkshire Archives, explores the quirks of seventeenth and eighteenth century handwriting and teaches the skills to read historic documents.

Aimed at beginners with little or no experience this fun workshop uses documents from the archives to explore old handwriting. We will discuss the changes in literacy and education, and the impact that had on the records people left behind. You will learn the basics of how to read and transcribe documents through numerous stunning examples and hands on practice. This workshop runs 1.15 – 3.30pm on Friday 8th October and takes place in the Sanderson Room on the third floor of Leeds Central Library. Again tickets must be booked in advance.

Examples of palaeography

On Tuesday 5th October join us for this live and interactive version of our popular Family History workshop, for a friendly introduction to key concepts and resources for complete beginners, all delivered online. Find out what BMD means, how to access the Ancestry website and why census records are invaluable for family historians. This session runs 1-2.30pm on Tuesday 5th October and takes place online. Booking is essential and a workshop link will be emailed out on the day of the session.

Finally, we are running two more of our popular Heritage Tours of Leeds Central Library on 6th and 8th of October at 11am. This guided tour of our Grade II* listed Victorian masterpiece will explore the secrets behind the scenes of one of the city’s most amazing public buildings. Places are limited so be quick!

Interior of the Local and Family History Library. Undated.

All our Libraries Week 2021 events can be booked through Ticketsource or by telephoning 0113 378 6982. If these events have whet your appetite then look out for more in person events later in the month.

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