Leeds in The Builder

This week we hear from Library Officer Kiera Falgate on images of historic Leeds in the Central Library’s collection of The Builder, an architectural journal that begin in the mid-19th-century… The Art Library on the first floor in Leeds Central Library holds the complete collection of The Builder from volume 1 in 1843 to the final volume…

The Magic of Books from the Golden Age of Illustration

This week we hear from illustrator Teresa Flavin on some magically-illustrated books from her childhood… When I was about nine years old, my family visited a used bookshop where I discovered a fairy story with graceful line illustrations. The book was cheap enough to buy with my pocket money and though it was somewhat battered…

The Hallowe’en Special

This week Librarian Sally Hughes talks ghost-busting and all things spooky… With Hallowe’en upon us it’s the perfect time to point you in the direction of our most ghoulish collections here at Central Library. The first place to be is right here at our The Supernatural  research guide. You can find all these books on our online…

A Partial History of Leeds Central Library

This last Wednesday, to mark National Libraries Week, four of our Local and Family History team, plus one intrepid volunteer, delivered a talk offering a brief history of Leeds Central Library, primarily derived from material found in several volumes of news-cuttings covering public libraries in Leeds. So, this week on the Secret Library we offer…

A Library at War: Leeds Central Library during WW2

Ahead of next week’s Lunchtime Talk, which will see our team of Librarians from the Local and Family History department offering a brief history of Leeds Central Library, we hear from regular guest author Mike Harwood, who tells the story of this building during the tumult of World War 2… ‘Tuesday, 31 October 1939: “Felt energetic…

Curating the Stacks: Research Guides

Librarian Antony Ramm takes a look at the secret library at the centre of the Central Library, and highlights some useful resources for getting the most out of the books held there… Many visitors to our Central Library remark on the grandeur and elegance of the building itself, as well as the quality and quantity…

The Magic of Harry Potter is coming to Leeds Central Library

Collections Manager, Rhian Isaac, talks about the upcoming Harry Potter: A History of Magic exhibition and programme of events in anticipation of the launch in December. It is 20 years since Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone was published and we are extremely excited to be bringing the traditions of folklore and magic at the…

Dances, Death Rites and Dedications: The Art of Dying

by Adam Barham, Art Library, Leeds Central Library Throughout history, death has inspired artists to create stirring and thought-provoking work. As death affects us all and invokes a whole range of emotions, there are myriad examples of death-inspired art. These include explorations of the nature of death, depictions of deaths and funerals, as well as…