Charles Dickens: Yorkshire Inspiration

by Steven Athorn As a long time fan of the works of Charles Dickens, it was surprising to learn he had a real connection to Yorkshire. Indeed, some of Dickens most memorable characters and settings found their inspiration in God’s own county. These pages follow Dickens on his mission to Yorkshire schools whilst researching Nicholas…

Charlotte Brontë

by Millie Pearson Born in 1816, Charlotte Brontë was an English novelist and poet writing in the Victorian period. Charlotte and her two sisters Anne and Emily Brontë went on to produce novels that are now considered classic pieces of English literature.[1] Brontë’s writings successfully gave voice and authority to females in a profoundly patriarchal…

Florence Nightingale: Did she really want fame?

by Katie Smithson   Florence Nightingale was born into a wealthy family on 12 May 1820. Although having received one of the best educations possible, Florence has been said to have been a typical “frustrated Victorian daughter.”[1] In 1837 Florence believed she had received a calling from God to continue his work. It was not…

Statue of Akroyd

Colonel Edward Akroyd: ‘A man of my town’

by Megan Booth     Colonel Edward Akroyd, a man of industry, politics and a keen philanthropist was born on 28 November 1810 in Ovenden, Halifax.[1] Akroyd was one of the ten children of Jonathon and Sarah Akroyd.[2] In 1839 Edward and his brother Henry inherited their families thriving textile firm. ‘James Akroyd and Son’…

Joseph Locke

By Olivia Fleetwood From small beginnings… Born in the small town of Attercliffe, Sheffield in August 1805, Joseph Locke became one of the most prestigious civil engineers of the Victorian era. From humble beginnings his hard work and determination saw him achieve much success from his early work on the Liverpool and Manchester Railway, to…

A Humbled Hero: Sir Titus Salt, Entrepreneur and Philanthropist.

By Nicholas Emmett   ‘Quid non, Deo Juvante’ – With God nothing is impossible – Sir Titus Salt, an entrepreneur, philanthropist and politician. A devoutly religious man born on 20 September 1803 to Daniel Salt and Grace Smithies.[1] A man whom despite great successes and wealth, devoted his life to improvement of a working -class…

Victorian Elland

By Marie Ellis Elland in West Yorkshire was once a thriving town because of the textile industry. Decline in industry means Elland is smaller than it once was, and as a result historians ignore the history of Elland. However, I believe small towns are relevant to the history of Britain, and especially relevant to the…

Millicent Garrett Fawcett 1847-1929

By Lisa O’Connor Millicent Garrett Fawcett, born 11 June 11 1847, can be seen as the mother of women’s suffrage, yet is often forgotten in history and left to hang on the coattails of militant suffragettes Emmeline and Christabel Pankhurst. Born into a wealthy family as one of ten children, daughter of successful merchant Newsome…

The Deaf Institute – A history beneath the noise

By Josh Noble The former Adult ‘Deaf and Dumb’ Institute is a Grade II listed Victorian building situated in the heart of Greater Manchester just off the bustling Oxford Road towards Grosvenor Street. Designed by architect John Lowe the building was completed in 1877 at a cost of £6000 and subsequently opened in June 1878…