The Adam & Eve Garden Today

Local history librarian, Ross Horsley, revisits the site of the former Adam and Eve Garden on Woodhouse Moor. A couple of weeks ago at the Secret Library, we looked back to the early decades of the twentieth century, when a miniature Garden of Eden – home to its own Adam, Eve and Tree of Knowledge…

Adam & Eve in the Garden of Leeds

Local historian, Bill McKinnon, remembers a pair of local celebrities who resided in the Hyde Park area for forty years… The garden that has formed the setting for the Victoria Memorial on Woodhouse Moor since 1937 used to be known as the the Adam and Eve Garden. It was named after statues of a young…

William Darby and the Ghosts of the Past

by Antony Ramm, Local and Family History, Leeds Central Library The following article was edited for publication as part of last Friday’s collaboration with the Norfolk Heritage Centre. This is the unedited version and forms Part III of a loose trilogy on (some) meanings in the study of local history. Part I is here; Part…

William Darby in Norwich and Leeds: Life and Death

This week on the Secret Library we welcome Orla Kennelly from the Norfolk Heritage Centre. Orla kindly agreed to write a section for our blog focusing on the circus manager and performer, William Darby – aka Pablo Fanque. Darby was born in Norwich, but is buried in Leeds; Orla’s section looks at Darby’s early years, while our part concentrates…

Hot Fun in the Summertime

Walk through Woodhouse Moor on any summer’s day and you are sure to see throngs of young revellers. But, we wondered, how did our ancestors enjoy the Moor during warm weather? We took a look in the Leeds Mercury, via the 19th-century British Newspapers  website (free to all library members) to find out. Our most…

Easter Scenes from Years Gone By

It was a wet and slightly chilly start to the bank holiday weekend this year in Leeds, but a look through our photography website, Leodis (www.leodis.net), shows that this isn’t unusual for the city at Easter time. Here’s a photo from Easter weekend two years ago, when the Trinity Leeds shopping centre first opened its…

1920s Eclipse Fever

“Leeds never really went to bed last night. The last ordinary trams had scarcely stopped running at midnight, when a special series of ‘eclipse’ cars began the journey to City Square to meet the convenience of the thousands going to the shadow-belt by rail and charabanc.” This was the news that greeted the city from…

Celebrating 150 Years of Rugby in Leeds, 1864-2014

From 1st April to 20th April in our newly refurbished Arts Space on the 1st floor we have an exhibition celebrating the history of Rugby in Leeds. Panels for each decade display information and photographs depicting the sport in Leeds. The 1860s started it off with an advert in the Leeds Mercury for “persons to…