City’s museums and galleries welcome back visitors

Museum-lovers in Leeds can rediscover millions of years of history now council-run venues across the city have officially reopened. Leeds Museums and Galleries sites closed earlier this year as part of a city-wide effort to control the spread of Covid-19. Over the past few months, the team has continued to engage tens of thousands…

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Object of the week- Ivy Benson ceramic

At a time when war raged across Europe, Ivy Benson was calling her own tune. The pioneering musician and band leader, who was born in Holbeck, became something of a celebrity when war gave her a chance to break into the world of big bands. In fact her All Girls Orchestra became the BBC’s…

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Object of the week- Fancy dress photo album

Anyone looking for the perfect Halloween outfit could take som inspiration from this incredible collection of costumes worn by children in Leeds more than 125 years ago. Back then, the Lord Mayor of Leeds Mr and Mrs Alf Cooke threw an extravagant fancy dress ball to celebrate their silver wedding anniversary. The exclusive guest list…

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Object of the week- Lord Mayor’s penny

Ninety years ago, the Lord Mayor of Leeds and his wife became the first people to walk through doors of Abbey House Museum in Kirkstall. Paying a penny each to enter, Hugh Lupton, who held the office in 1927, and the Lady Mayoress were the guest of honour at the museum’s official opening. The…

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Object of the week- vintage spinning wheel

Conjuring images of a faraway, fairy tale kingdom, this vintage spinning wheel was actually made in Ireland more than 125 years ago. Crafted out of oak and mahogany, the wheel was designed by James McCreery and Son in around 1891 and donated to Leeds Museums and Galleries by Mrs K. Turberville in 1967. Originally,…

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Object of the week- Fancy dress photo album

More than 125 years ago, the Lord Mayor of Leeds Mr and Mrs Alf Cooke threw an extravagant fancy dress ball to celebrate their silver wedding anniversary. The exclusive guest list included 190 local children, who all arrived at the party dressing up in an incredible variety of storybook themed costumes. Today, a fabulous…

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Object of the week- Spider-Man comic signed by Stan Lee

One of Marvel Comics icon Stan Lee’s most successful creations, costumed crime-fighter Spider-Man is also one of the world’s most recognisable super heroes. In 1992, 30 years after Peter Parker’s alter ego slung his first web, Marvel released a special anniversary edition of The Spectacular Spider-Man, featuring eye-catching holographic cover art. An edition of…

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Object of the Week- Scary Spice doll

She was one fifth of the iconic British pop combo that stormed the charts worldwide and sparked the unstoppable Girl Power phenomenon. Now a doll of Leeds’s very own Scary Spice Mel B is on display as part of an exhibition looking back at people’s favourite memories of growing up in Leeds. Originally formed in…

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Object of the week- Leeds United ticket

It was a thrilling era when Elland Road became synonymous with a unique brand of exciting, swashbuckling football. Now visitors to Abbey House Museum can relive some of Leeds United’s 90s glory days at an exhibition dedicated to growing up in Leeds. The museum’s Decades of Youth exhibition features objects and memories spanning more…

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Murder in the Museum – A 1930s Mystery at Abbey House Museum

Murder in the Museum is one of the best-loved penny slot machines at Abbey House Museum in Kirkstall. Made by Leeds sisters Alice and Eveline Dennison in 1934, it shows a 30s murder mystery worthy of Agatha Christie! This film, made by Target Productions at Temple Newsam House, re-imagines the story behind the slot…

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Museum’s 1930s murder mystery machine is brought back to life

It’s a mechanised murder mystery machine which has captivated generations of Leeds museum-goers. So when Abbey House Museum’s quirky 1930s penny slot machine finally gave up the ghost, it would have been a crime to let the historic attraction simply gather dust. Luckily, after the machine broke down recently, experts at the Kirkstall attraction searched…

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