Yorkshire Archaeological Society News


Sad news

The Society received the sad news last week that our long standing member and volunteer Dorothy Payne died on 27th October at the age of 88, after a long illness. Dorothy started helping the Society as a volunteer back in the 1960s. Initially interested mainly in archaeology, she did a tremendous amount to encourage interest in the Society. She was Lectures Secretary for many years, participated actively in the mounting of exhibitions and campaigns, such as the Wakefield Court Rolls appeal, and was the person who, as a result of her interest in the history of Claremont, tracked down and secured the diaries of Dr John Heaton, its Victorian owner, which she subsequently donated to the Society. She was a person of boundless enthusiasm and energy, and she was sadly missed when she was no longer able to come to Claremont. The YAS owes her a great debt of gratitude.

Dorothy will be cremated at Rawdon Crematorium on Wednesday the 12th of November at 10:20 am.



Yorkshire Archaeological Journal Volume 86 2014

A reminder that the 2014 volume of the Yorkshire Archaeological Journal is available for purchase from Maney Publishing. For a list of contents please see the Journal section of the website.

One of the many articles of interest in the 2014 volume, particularly for those who attended the successful exhibition held at the Folly in Settle last year as part of the Society’s 150th anniversary celebrations, is by Professor Richard Hoyle on the Shambles in Settle Marketplace. This is one of Settle’s most familiar and iconic buildings of which there has long been a mystery about its construction. Professor Hoyle’s research has identified why the Shambles has the particular form it has, the dates when it was erected and has also identified the builder. Until the end of December 2014 there is an opportunity to have free direct access to the full article by clicking on the following this link


Explore Dr Heaton's Leeds online

The Heaton Map Project is a collaboration between the Centre for Culture and Arts at Leeds Beckett University, the Yorkshire Archaeological Society and the Humanities Research Institute at the University of Sheffield.

It takes an innovative approach to exploring and communicating the urban heritage of Leeds, using the journals of nineteenth-century physician Dr John Deakin Heaton to map his public activities across the city.  This map is be available as an app and website for mobile phones and PCs. You can discover more at www.heatonmap.mobi



Changes to archive access

From 1 October 2014 the Archives will be closed. It is planned that they will become accessible once again in a new location after Easter 2015.
Please keep checking the website for further details or telephone 0113 245 7910 after 1 April 2015.

Until 31 December 2014 the Library will be open as follows

TUESDAY 10.00-17.30

WEDNESDAY 10.00-17.30

THURSDAY 10.00-17.30

SATURDAY 9.30-17.00

Opening hours for the Library are subject to change from 1 January 2015.




Outcome of the Extraordinary General Meeting of the Yorkshire Archaeological Society held on Saturday 12th July 2014

As previously notified, an Extraordinary General Meeting (EGM) of the Society was held on 12th July 2014. The meeting took place at the St Georges Centre, in Great George Street, Leeds, as the number of members attending was too great to accommodate at Claremont. 98 members attended the EGM; 38 members gave their apologies.

The President (Mrs Sylvia Thomas) welcomed members and expressed her gratitude for the interest shown, which was a reflection of the importance of the matters for discussion. In introductory remarks, she and the Honorary Treasurer (Dr Brian Barber) explained the rationale for the proposal by the Society’s Management Board to transfer the Society’s Archive and Library collections on long-term loan to the University Library at the University of Leeds, and the importance of doing this to ensure the future of the Society.

There was an extended and wide-ranging discussion of the Management Board’s proposal and the issues it raised. Comments and queries were made by many of the members present, with responses being provided by the President or the Honorary Treasurer. Issues touched on included:

the future ownership of the Society’s materials – this would remain with the Society;

the fact that members would have access to all the books and collections of the University Library – it was also noted that the Society’s books and other materials would not be disposed of in the future without the Society’s consent;

the fact that there were inevitably some points of detail that had yet to be finalised, such as the question of access to material by section-only members;

the Management Board’s plans to acquire through purchase or rent suitable new premises to support the Society’s activities, and that members’ suggestions as to the parameters for such premises were sought;

the possibilities of fund-raising, but also the difficulties previously encountered in this regard, and the problem of raising substantial funds in a restricted timescale;

the concern of some members as to the amount of information it had been possible to make available, which they felt inhibited their ability to judge the proposal;

the possibilities for a strong continuing role for volunteers working on the Society’s materials.

In the concluding part of the meeting members were asked to vote to indicate whether they felt able to support the Board’s recovery plan, which involved:

the transfer on loan under the terms of an appropriate partnership agreement of the Society’s Library and Historical Document Collections to the Brotherton Library of the University of Leeds, and the sale of Claremont and the acquisition either through purchase or rent of suitable premises to support the full range of the Society’s activities in the future.

Members voted by a show of hands. The results were as follows:

FOR the motion – 72

AGAINST the motion – 13


The motion was therefore carried.

The Society’s Officers and the Management Board will now proceed to work further in collaboration with Leeds University Library to put into effect the proposals endorsed by the EGM. A further report will be made to members at the Society’s Annual General Meeting, which will be held later in the year.

If any members have further queries at this stage, please contact the Honorary General Secretary, David Buck, preferably via email at yas.secretary@gmail.com.



The International Medieval Congress in association with the YAS presented: Celts, Saxons, and Vikings: The 'Great War' of 937 and the Battle of Brunanburh by Michael Wood


IMC lecture 9/7/14














From the left : Axel Müller - Director International Medieval Congress & Chairman of the YAS Medieval Section, Sylvia Thomas - President of the YAS and Michael Wood

More to follow




Forthcoming excursions: York and Bradford in September and October 2014

Details are now confirmed of the next two YAS excursions.

Friday 26 September: Medieval stained glass in four York churches. A study day with Alan Petford.

Thursday 30 October 2014: Bradford's Heritage: A tour of Bradford Cathedral and the Bradford Club.

Please see the Field Trips page http://yas.org.uk/content/trips.html for more details and how to book.




Report of excursion to Wressle Castle

You can read about our latest YAS excusion to Wressle Castle on Sat 7 June 2014 on our 2014 Highlights page. We hope this might inspire you to join a future excursion. Please check the http://www.yas.org.uk/content/trips.html for the latest details of forthcoming excursions.



Historic Bradford. A series of talks looking into the deeper history of Old Bradford by Janet Senior, June-Aug 2014

Wed 4 June: The Bradford Boar

Wed 2 July: Reverend Jonathan Glyde – the man who inspired Titus Salt?

Wed 6 August: A history of Bradford through its buildings c1200 to c1900

Wed 3 Sept: Bronte Influences

All talks are at Glyde House, Glydegate, Little Horton, Bradford. BD5 0BQ. 3-4.30pm and 7-8.30pm.

£5 per person including cake and coffee

For more information call 01274 271 111 or see Glyde House website




Medieval Yorkshire contributors

The Medieval Section is aiming to produce the first issue in a new series of its journal 'Medieval Yorkshire' by December 2014. Authors who may have material which they can offer for publication are invited to get in touch with the Section as soon as possible. Further details can be found on the Medieval Section blog.



New YAS enewsletter

Members who have signed up to receive electronic mailings should have received a copy of our new electronic newsletter before Easter. This was our first newsletter so if you were expecting to receive it and didn't please get in touch and we will make sure you get a copy of the next issue. The newsletter mailing list currently includes YAS members, affiliated societies and institutional members who have provided us with email addresses. We would like to make our newsletter available to all Section only members too, so if you would like to received the enewsletter please send your email address to yas.secretary@gmail.com

The editors welcome suggestion and content from members for future newsletters, so if you would like to contribute please get in touch with Vanessa and Andrea on yas.enewsletter@gmail.com




Announcing the latest publication from the YAS

Twakefield court rolls 16he latest publication in the Wakefield Court Rolls Series is now available. This volume of more than 300 pages is an edition of the manorial court roll for the year 1812-13. The editor is Dr John A Hargreaves, well-known as the historian of Halifax. John has provided the text with a remarkably full battery of notes - over thirty pages of them - which greatly amplify our knowledge of the hundreds of individuals who pass through the pages of this court roll of two hundred years ago.

The range of characters is remarkable: from the duke of Leeds and the Earl of Strafford to the myriad of small businessmen who made up the backbone of the West Riding economy. These busy and independently-minded manufacturers and traders were individual in their religion as well, and an number of entries testify to the strength of chapel-going in the Riding.

The manor of Wakefield covered a huge area - around 130 square miles - in the heart of the West Riding. Remarkably, its records are also exceptional. They survive, to a large extent complete, for over 650 years from 1274 to 1925, when manorial courts ceased to be held. Recognising their great importance, three years go, the UK Commission of UNESCO enrolled the records of the manor on its National Register of the Memory of the World.

For seventy years the records have been in the safekeeping of the YAS. The Society has a section dedicated to the publication of the rolls. The early volumes are now newly republished by Cambridge University Press. Many of the sixteen volumes published since 1977 are still available for purchase from the YAS on-line shop.

You can buy a copy of the new volume for 20 (plus p & p) or subscribe to the series for 9 a year (13 for overseas subscribers). Full details can be found on the website. Buy Now

Another volume will be published later this year. More information about it soon!




Journal articles

For details of how to submit articles for consideration for the YAJ, please contact the YAS Secretary by email or post.