Writing Leodis

Librarian Mark Kirkby set Garforth Writers’ Group an offbeat creative challenge recently, using photographs from our local photographic archive, Leodis, as inspiration. On arrival, the writers were presented with a set of images showing a variety of places and potential settings, across different time periods. They each selected an image to provide a basis for a…

Traces of Tolkien in Leeds

Please note that Alaric Hall’s talk on J. R. R. Tolkien and the University of Leeds has now been cancelled, “because the University and College Union is on strike this week due to proposed changes in the employment conditions of University of Leeds staff.” You can find details of other forthcoming talks at Leeds Central…

On Some Pre-1841 Sources of Leeds People

Local History Librarian, Antony Ramm, takes a brief look at some useful sources for genealogy in Leeds prior to the publication of the 1841 census.  It is surely no exaggeration to say that the vast majority of people doing family history are well-aware of the Census and everything that can be discovered about their ancestors…

Black History Month: Talk on Chapeltown in the 1980s

As part of the Library Service’s programme of Black History Month events, we are delighted to announce that Tom Woolmore will be speaking at the Central Library on Wednesday October 4, 6-7pm, on “black responses to racism and government policy in Chapeltown during the 1980s.” You can book tickets for what promises to be a…

Walking tours of the back-to-back houses, Harehills

University of York PhD researcher Joanne Harrison has continued her collaboration with Leeds Central Library’s Local and Family History department and the Compton Centre Community Hub, hosting a couple of events as part of the national Heritage Open Days weekend. She reports here on the tours and exhibition, how to get involved in the latest…

Town Hall Terror

Local History Librarian, Helen Skilbeck, recounts a tale from our recent walking tours of Victoria Gardens – the area outside Leeds Central Library that has seen its fair share of history and still bears the shrapnel scars from an explosion 76 years ago… On the night of 15 March 1941, Leeds was under attack from…

Captain Cook and Doctor Priestley: A Library Tale for Our Times

Heritage volunteer Tony Scaife imagines a secret meeting of great minds in 18th century Leeds… Having borrowed a copy of Peter Whitley’s Lord North: The Prime Minister Who Lost America from Leeds Libraries, I became intrigued at the similarities between the 1770s and today. As his many Whig critics claimed, Lord North’s bungling government negligently lost…

Exploring Leeds: Heritage Open Days 2017

As always, we have a wide-range of fascinating events lined-up for this season’s programme of Heritage Open Days. Further details of each can be found below, along with booking information. Tours HERITAGE TOURS OF LEEDS CENTRAL LIBRARY Thursday 7 September, 2.00pm, Friday 8 September, 2.00pm, Saturday 9 September, 11.00am. Join us for an entertaining trip behind the…