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Talk at South Leeds Archaeology
Wednesday 24 April, 7.30pm,
Rothwell Community Hub

Stuart Wrathmell will talk about the recently published report on the excavations at the Kirkstall Abbey Guest House complex. This talk will highlight some of the main conclusions from the recent analysis of the excavation archive, which contains the most extensive suite of artefacts from any guest house in Britain.

This is an important part of the history of one of our closest monastic foundations and should prove very informative as an archaeological record.

South Leeds Archaeology

Defending coalfields and communities (1984-93)
27 April 1-4pm Wakefield Labour Club (The Red Shed)

Thirty five years after the Miners' Strike, speakers Flis Callow and Caroline Poland (Sheffield Women Against Pit Closures), Nicholas Jones and Granville Williams offer new perspectives on events and issues that still resonate today.

Further info: Wakefield Socialist History Group:

New Website for Wrenthorpe

If you are interested in Wrenthorpe history a blog started in September 2018 provides transcriptions of articles and some images from the British Newspaper Archive related to Wrenthorpe, with added comments to give some background. The site is searchable.

Wrenthorpe in the News

Events at Chantry Chapel

The Beaufort Family, Talk by Nathen Amin
Friday April 26th 7pm - 9pm

The Friends of Wakefield Chantry Chapel are delighted to welcome Amazon's best-selling author, Nathen Amin, to talk about his latest book. Nathen is an author and researcher from Carmarthenshire, West Wales, who focuses on the 15th Century and the reign of Henry VII. The Beaufort Family gives a fascinating insight into how an illegitimate line came to challenge for and win the throne of England. Not only is Nathen a superb historical story teller, he is an accomplished public speaker, having presented at BBC History Extra and numerous literary festivals.

He will also give his own take on the Wars of Roses, including the 1460 Battle of Wakefield.

Ticket price is £6. Tickets are available in person, online and by phone from the Theatre Royal Wakefield, Drury Lane, Wakefield, West Yorkshire WF1 2TE
Box Office Enquiries 01924 211 311
All orders will be subject to a fee of £1.75

More information about the speaker can be found on his website:

The Private Life of Henry VII, Leeds Waits
Sunday June 23rd 2.30pm - 4.30pm

The Leeds Waits will tell with words and music, the story of Henry VII's search for a new wife following the death of Elizabeth.

Accompanied with musical instruments and costumes from the medieval period.

More information about the Leeds Waits can be found on their website -

Ticket price is £5. Tickets are available in person, online and by phone from the Theatre Royal Wakefield, Drury Lane, Wakefield, West Yorkshire WF1 2TE
Box Office Enquiries 01924 211 311
All orders will be subject to a fee of £1.75

More information:

Historic England HERITAGE AT RISK in the Wakefield District 2018

Historic England (previously part of English Heritage) published the most recent Buildings at Risk registers at the end of 2018. There is some improvement in the results for Wakefield District. In the new Register for 2018 there are 12 places listed as at risk, as against 14 listed in 2017 and 16 six years ago in 2012. Some of the 7 buildings/churches listed have solutions agreed: Pontefract Castle is reaching the end of a programme of improvements; at Wakefield Court House works have begun to make it watertight (but it will still need to be refurbished inside and a future use found); at the underground Hermitage in Pontefract
threatened by flooding, a solution has been identified but not agreed; a solution has been agreed for repair to the Malt House at Blacker Hall Farm. However, Heath's 17th century Water Tower, the ruinous parts of All Saints, Pontefract and St John, Darrington remain on the Register with no way forward in sight.

Sadly, there is no improvement at all in the condition of scheduled ancient monuments on the Register in the Wakefield District. All five (Earthwork west of Ferrybridge threatened by ploughing; the site of Newland Preceptory threatened by tree growth; coal and ironstone workings on Sharlston Common threatened by vehicle erosion; site of post-medieval tannery at Felkirk threatened by vandalism; the prehistoric settlement known as South Kirkby Camp threatened by plant growth) have been on the Register since at least 2012. None have any plans to secure their future.





















Musical Event: A Day in the Life
3rd, 5th, 11th and 25th May

Award-winning composer, Kevin Malone has created 'A Day in the Life' which celebrates current and historic textile industry and communities in West Yorkshire. There are three new works performed by the Orchestra of Opera North and solo violinist Andy Long.

More information: A Day in the Life

Difficult Women
28 & 29 June, 7pm
Mechanics' Theatre, Wood Street, Wakefield

If you missed the Forgotten Women of Wakefield's thought provoking play about the achievements of past Wakefield women as shown to a modern MP and his wife striving for equality between themselves, then you have another chance.

Booking: Tickets, £15 or £13 conc. Dream Time Creative

WarGen Oral History Project


WarGen was founded by broadcaster and historian, Dan Snow, and author and broadcaster, James Holland.

They are creating a crowd-sourced online repository of oral-history from the people who lived through World War 2. Theyare looking for individuals willing to join their volunteer team as interviewers and to go out into local communities and record these important stories of a fast disappearing generation.

That amazing generation who lived and fought through the Second World War is slipping away, their numbers dwindling daily. All too soon, there will be none left at all and World War II, like those conflicts before it, will fall out of living memory. It is of vital importance that we capture as many memories while we still have the chance.

More information: WarGen

Festival of Archaeology 2019

13 - 28 July 2019

CBA's Festival of Archaeology website for 2019 is a showcase for archaeology events from around the UK, and has information for event organisers. Some events before the date of the Festival have already been added.

Festival of Archaeology

Events at the West Yorkshire History Centre April 2019

Thursday 4 April Recipes through the years 1.30-3.30pm, booking required, cost £12
Saturday 13 April Death and remembrance in West Yorks exhibition opening 10am-3pm, drop in, free
Tues 16 and Thurs 18 April Easter Holiday Family Activities 10.30am-3pm, drop in, free


Local and Family History network, 2019

Wakefield Group, 4th Monday of the month, 1.30pm - 3.00pm, Wakefield One Library

22 April: No meeting
20 May: Overcoming Brickwalls and Top Tips in Family History
24 June Investigating the History of a Wiltshire Village
22 July: Researching Domestic Servants
26 August: No meeting

Ossett & Horbury Group, 2nd Friday of the month,
11am - 12.30pm, Horbury Library

12 April: Researching Domestic Servants
10 May: Visit to the National Coal Mining Museum Library

50 Years of Lotherton

2019 sees Lotherton Hall celebrate 50 years as a museum and they're marking the occasion with three joint exhibitions. End of an Era looks at the family who donated the estate to the city, while Fifty Years in the Making dives into the Hall's incredible collection to show how its changed over the last half-century. The final one is Fashion Forward, an exhibition that showcases the work of emerging Yorkshire designers as part of their extensive couture collections.

50 Years of Lotherton comes to Lotherton Hall from Friday 1st March to 20th October 2019.