To view this video please enable JavaScript, and consider upgrading to a web browser that supports HTML5 video

Leeds Beckett features

Long form content features of Leeds Beckett research, projects and events

Selling the smokeless city
Exploring advertising images and smoke abatement in Britain 1840-1960 by Dr Stephen Mosley

Selling the smokeless city

Exploring advertising images and smoke abatement in Britain 1840\-1960 by Dr Stephen Mosley

KickerThis is a kicker.

During the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, sulphurous black smoke billowing out from industrial and domestic chimneys, dominated Britain's cityscapes. Coal smoke was responsible for blackening urban architecture, blocking out sunlight,destroying vegetation and, not least of all, damaging peoples health. However,despite the tangible nature of this particular form of air pollution, it was not until 1956 that the public was willing to support the passage of a meaningful Clean Air Act \(now widely considered to be an important milestone in environmental protection\). While urban air pollution has attracted a good deal of scholarly attention, few historians have focused on the strong visual culture that helped to shape understandings of smoke emissions. In his latest study, published in the journal 'History and Technology', Dr Stephen Mosley, a Senior Lecturer in History at Leeds Beckett University, looks at urban\-industrial Britain circa 1840\-1960. It aims to show how images mainly commercial advertising offer an important lens through which contemporary attitudes to air pollution can be examined. "Competing visions were communicated in powerful images that circulated in British society at the time, and they played an active role in shaping and reshaping ideas about smoke and the city," explained Dr Mosley. "The coal smoke that issued from industrial and domestic chimneys had contested meanings for contemporary urbanites. For most it signified the creation of wealth, jobs and wellbeing, while for a minority of critics this form of air pollution symbolised waste, inefficiency and ill\-health. Images from cartoons to photographs, can reveal more vividly the values of past cultures than texts and other historical evidence. My work shows how visual culture can help to create social, technological and environmental change by influencing consumer behaviour."


The reign of darkness

In 1889 an editorial in The Spectator magazine spoke of a reign of darkness in London, adding that its citizens lived in something not far from perpetual twilight. High levels of atmospheric pollution, from both homes and businesses, had also enveloped other cities such as Glasgow, Leeds, Manchester and Sheffield in a permanent smoke haze. Industrialisation and urbanisation in Britain had been based on the use of inexpensive bituminous coal for heat and power. And as its consumption increased,from around 65 million tons in 1853 to over 200 million tons in 1950, the harmful impacts of smoke emissions were difficult for contemporaries to ignore. Rickets was endemic in British cities, and respiratory diseases were the nations biggest killer by the turn of the twentieth century. The tall smokestacks that dominated cityscapes, some over 100 meters in height, were designed to reduce local air pollution and the problems it caused by discharging smoke far up into the atmosphere to be dispersed by the prevailing winds. It was erroneously thought that the earths atmosphere was an inexhaustible sink, a vast sea of air, that could dilute and neutralise the pollutants that industrial chimneys emitted. However, topographical and meteorological conditions often prevented the dispersal of coal smoke away from industrial cities. But, smoke emissions were not generally viewed in a negative light by businessmen and the public. The production of smoke was commonly understood as an unmistakable sign that Britain's industrial towns and cities were flourishing. Smoke meant bright trading conditions, jobs and wealth creation to most city dwellers. Postcards transmitted cultural values and, despite its darkly humorous tone, Beautiful Manchestercelebrated industrial smoke as a symbol of progress and prosperity.


Muck costs money

Anti\-smoke pressure groups were active in many of Britain's major cities since the 1840s. Architects,doctors, engineers, lawyers and others from the professional ranks joined together to establish organisations such as the Manchester Association for the Prevention of Smoke in 1842, the Leeds Smoke Abatement Committee in 1890, and the London\-based Coal Smoke Abatement Society in 1899. National organisations were formed in the early years of the twentieth century, most notably the National Smoke Abatement Society in 1929. Rather than viewing coal smoke as a symbol of wealth\-creation and well\-being, the members of these societies saw it as signifying waste, inefficiency and ill\-health.One of their main aims was to educate industrialists and householders to see smoke differently; to discredit the popular and durable belief that muck equated with money. From the outset, anti\-smoke activists drew attention to the loss that air pollution represented in valuable resources. While the damage that it caused to both human health and the urban environment featured prominently in campaigning articles, pamphlets and other initiatives that challenged popular perceptions of smoke, activists never tired of pointing out that billowing chimneys meant the failure to make profitable use of coal.


Mr Therm, clean air promotion and a fortune up the chimney

Transforming coal into gas, electricity and clean\-burning fuels such as coke held out the promise of making Britain's cities smokeless. After the First World War the gas and electricity industries cooperated closely with clean air campaigners, and both marketed their products as clean, efficient and modern the solution to the smoke problem. Businessmen and householders, however, were usually reluctant to replace tried and tested coal\-burning furnaces and homely fireplaces with costly new technologies, so they needed to be persuaded that it was in their interest to do so. As well as promoting their technologies at smoke abatement exhibitions, where the public could see a wide variety of gas and electrical appliances working effectively and economically, propaganda materials also included films, posters and advertising. A good deal of effort and expertise went into publicity campaigns, with the gas industry creating the popular cartoon character of Mr Therm in 1931 a prime mover in smoke abatement to represent the older utility. The distinguished artist and illustrator Eric Fraser designed the memorable figure for the Gas Light and Coke Company, a forerunner of British Gas, to keep the industry in the public eye and sell cookers, fires and water heaters. With his flame\-like body Mr Therm was instantly recognisable, personifying the gas industry, and he added to the appeal of its press advertising for more than 30 years \(he survived nationalisation in 1948\). Frasers Mr Therm was one of the most successful and long\-lived cartoon images in the history of advertising \(only the Michelin Man, created in 1898,was more successful\). In a hard\-fought battle for customers, the under\-advertised electrical industry never came up with a convincing rival. By the 1950s, it had long been known that the domestic coal fire was a hugely inefficient technology, with as much as 80% of the heat it produced being lost up the chimney along with smoke emissions. Mr Therm not only highlighted this heat loss, but also the valuable by\-products that could be recovered from coal if only it was carbonised in retorts to produce gas and coke \(a smokeless solid fuel\). Turning old ideas about wealth and well\-being on their head, in 1954 a disapproving Mr Therm informed householders that coal smoke meant the loss of a fortune up the chimney. That same year, the Beaver report on air pollution had revealed a huge disparity between death rates from bronchitis in urban and rural areas of Britain, and it also linked excessive coal smoke in towns and cities to lung cancer. Not only that, wise Mr Therm encouraged people to think about what their choice of fuel meant for the wider economy. Coal was still in short supply as Britain emerged from post\-war austerity, and its rationing did not end until June 1958.


The smokeless city

Images were an integral part of the smoke abatement story in urban\-industrial Britain, and their careful interpretation helps to bring it to life more fully and vividly adding another dimension to our understanding of social, technological and environmental change. Commercial advertising by the gas and electricity industries did more than simply sell their products. It also sold the idea of the smokeless city; of how clean,efficient and modern fuel technologies could help to protect the environment and improve the health and wealth of householders and manufacturers alike.Advertising images played an important part in changing the dominant narrative about smoke emissions. This shift in emphasis encouraged a move away from traditional coal\-fired technologies even before the passage of the 1956 Clean Air Act \(especially in businesses and middle class homes\), and saw an intensifying sales battle for new customers between the gas and electricity industries afterwards. It also encouraged readers to see smoke differently, and the key messages to businessmen and the wider public were that smoke was preventable, uneconomic, and a waste of natural resources; and that environmental degradation, ill health and loss of life was unnecessary.


The Independent Food and Drink Academy
New Academy boosts Leeds independent food scene

The Independent Food and Drink Academy

New Academy boosts Leeds independent food scene

KickerThis is a kicker.

The Concept

The Independent Food and Drink Academy \(IFDA\) is a joint venture run by Leeds Beckett University and Leeds City Council \(LCC\), and supported by Leeds Business Improvement District \(LeedsBID\).


Launched in April 2016, the Academy is a unique business service that offers advice, support and training to independent enterprises through a blend of contextualised learning and development opportunities. Hailed the first of its kind in the UK, its objective is to help to professionalise, sustain and grow the independent food and drink sector in the Leeds city region.


The Team

**Guy Lincoln\-** Programme Lead and Senior Lecturer in Events, Tourism and Hospitality, Leeds Beckett.

By bringing together a fantastic network of industry experts and experienced operators, our aim is to share our knowledge and understanding of the food and drink sectors and to support business owners in establishing and growing their businesses to reach their full potential."

**Sofia Rebelo\-** Senior Lecturer in Events, Tourism and Hospitality, Leeds Beckett.

"This is only the beginning. We strongly encourage cities to support their independent food traders and we hope to create a blueprint for similar national schemes."

**Sue Burgess\-** Programme Lead and Head of Markets, Leeds City Council. **Stuart Miller\-** Commercial Programming and Revenue Manager, Leeds City Council. **Andrew Cooper\-** Funder and Chief Executive of LeedsBID.

LeedsBID is investing in innovative projects and initiatives which can help to make a difference, while raising the profile and attraction of the city. The IFDA is playing a key role in ensuring small independent enterprises have all the right ingredients to succeed, and helping to strengthen the city's independent food and drink offer."

**Andrew Critchett\-** Consultant and IFDA Ambassador, Founder of Fish& and NorthernStrEats. To read more about the team go to the [Independent Food and Drink Academy]( website.


The Launch

Held at two of Leeds' most prominent food outlets, Belgrave Music Hall and Trinity Kitchen, the two day launch event was free to attend and attracted more than 100 independent traders.

With the help & support that @IFDAcademy have given & offering, it's making my dreams look more like realities




> The response we got from businesses was fantastic, with many pre\-start and new businesses benefiting from advice and new collaborations with established businesses over the two days."

The first day, which targeted start\-up businesses, included sessions on legal compliance, creating and communicating your brand and financial performance.

We're at the launch of the Independent Food & Drink Academy today - fabulous support for enthusiastic growing businesses @IFDAcademy



The second day, which focused on established operators looking to grow their businesses, included sessions on utilising customer data, strategic planning and a round table discussion with some of Leeds' most successful food operators, including Martin Wolstencroft of Arc Inspirations, Scott Munro of Reds True Barbecue and Matt Dix and Simon Fogal of Leeds Indie Food.

Fab day @IFDAcademy 2day.Very interesting talks & lots of interesting entrepreneurs. More passion in 1 room 2day than in a 50 Shades novel!



> It was great to see the Academy getting off to such an encouraging and promising start.



Holly Bowman, founder of North Star Coffee Roasts and attendee, commented: ****It was fantastic \(though not surprising\) to see so many passionate foodie businesses at the launch of the IFDA.


"It was a great couple of days and I think everyone learnt a lot, whether they were just starting out or had been going for a couple of years. We are really looking forward to future events and think it will be a fantastic resource for the city.



From 100 membership fee per year, Academy members have access to a wide range of significant benefits provided by both Leeds Beckett and Leeds City Council \(LCC\), which include business health checks, educational master classes, funding for growth advice, a single point of contact at LCC, discount city centre trading pitches, a student talent pool and peer\-to\-peer networking events.

> "The benefits to those who join the Independent Food and Drink Academy will be long\-term. The advice and support available through the Academy will be invaluable to many start\-ups or growing businesses, and will help them maximise on the increase in popularity in the food and drink industry in our city.

For more information and members benefits go to the [Independent Food and Drink Academy]( website.


Emily Boothroyd, owner of Vietnamese\-inspired street food business, Bnh m Booth, said: If the opportunity to work with an academy like the IFDA had been offered to me when I was starting out I wouldn't have hesitated to sign up.


When you start a food business you need all the advice you can get. To have someone you can turn to and run ideas past, someone that has been there, done that, has expertise in that particular area, be it accounting or event planning \- is really an invaluable resource."



Website: []( Telephone: 0113 812 5656 Email: Twitter: [@IFDAcademy]( / #IFDAinnovators Instagram: ifdacademy [Register your interest](\-us/)


Behind the scenes at Leeds Beckett graduations
Taking you behind the scenes at our graduation ceremonies held in July 2016.

Behind the scenes at Graduation 2016

Taking you behind the scenes at our graduation ceremonies held in July 2016.

KickerThis is a kicker.

The Outfit

All our graduates wear Leeds Becketts colours, with a different colour hood denoting which award they are receiving.

Caps and gowns can be tricky outfits to wear, so its important everything is in place. Staff from William Northam helped our graduates get it perfect, with a little refinement from friends of course...

A video posted by Leeds Beckett University (@leedsbeckett) on




Ushers were on hand for any last minute tweaks in the auditorium, too. Who says it just has to be the graduate that wears the cap? Plenty of family members got in on the action by trying on the hats.




The Honorary Graduates

Over the week, we awarded 13 honorary doctorates to people from the world of sport, broadcasting, the arts and academia.

The honoraries stop by for a [short video]( before collecting their award. Broadcaster Stephanie Hirst was happy to chat to our interviewers before receiving her Honorary Doctorate of the University for her contribution to public life. Each honorary graduate sits as part of the platform party and as Jason Gillespie shows below applauds the graduates as they collect their degrees.


At 97, President of the Leeds Rhinos and Chairman of the Rugby League Conference, Harry Jepson was our oldest honorary graduate this year. He was [awarded an Honorary Doctorate](\-leeds\-rhinos\-president\-receives\-an\-honorary\-degree/) for his contribution to education and rugby league, and was congratulated on his acceptance speech by Leeds Becketts new Deputy Vice Chancellor, Tracey Lancaster.


The Photos

With such attractive and historic surroundings, our Headingley Campus lends itself well to photos. There's a team of professional photographers covering the entire week, plus plenty of talented amateurs snapping away.

Graduation really is selfie\-central. And when you're in such an Insta\-ready location, its a case of #nofilter.


Getting a shot of your family member or friend crossing the stage can be tricky, but where there's a will, there's a way.


It wasn't just photos we were after. We had a full film crew getting footage of our graduates to use online.



The Ceremony

All ceremonies took place in our tennis centre, which was totally transformed into a huge auditorium to hold our graduates, their guests and the University's dignitaries.

With so many people to look after, ushers are crucial, as is the military\-style planning to make sure everything runs smoothly. Queuing isn't as easy at it looks staff ushers make sure graduands are in the right order, so when they cross the stage as their name is announced, its the right person that strides across for their moment of glory. It might be a formal and slightly nerve\-wracking affair, but there's still opportunity for a mini\-celebration with your course\-mates. A key figure at the ceremonies was our Vice Chancellor, Professor Peter Slee. He greets and applauds all the graduates, always with a smile on his face. We make sure we cater for everyone that's taking part in Graduation. We were happy to provide a British Sign Language signer to translate the ceremony for one of our guests. Couldn't attend in person? Doesnt matter, we live stream all ceremonies online and on campus. The vision mixers made sure you saw all the best action.




The Celebrations

Many of our graduates rounded of their day by celebrating in the Graduation Village otherwise known as The Acre.


Academics formed an impromptu guard of honour for graduates as they left one ceremony. Our massive 2016 sign saw people queuing for that unique photo. Colleagues from Dine served food and drink from their huge catering tent. The staff worked hard to make sure everything was just right for a proper celebration. And of course, no graduation ceremony would be complete without a bit of cap throwing.


So so happy to have graduated with these girls. We've been through thick and thin but we've done it! Masaive congrats gals mega proud of us all. It even looks like we caught our hats! Now let's get dddddrrrunnkk!!!!! #beckettgrads #leeds #beckett #graduationcelebration #gals #bestfriends #love

A video posted by Lucy Pearce (@lucyyyypearce) on




After the hardest and best 3 years of my life I've finally graduated with some of my favourite people in the world! #graduation #beckettgrads #sassqueen

A video posted by Safi Ahmed (@safiyahahmed) on




#wemadeit #leedsbeckett #graduation #captoss #celebration #classof2016 @leedsbeckett #beckettgrads

A video posted by Annabel (@annabel__young) on






Celebrating our Honorary Graduates
Each year Leeds Beckett University presents honorary awards to individuals or organisations whose work and achievement reflect the values of our University and who have made a positive impact on our region. This year we were delighted to recognise individuals from across education, the arts, sport, industry and commerce, and public life.

Celebrating our Honorary Graduates

Each year Leeds Beckett University presents honorary awards to individuals or organisations whose work and achievement reflect the values of our University and who have made a positive impact on our region. This year we were delighted to recognise individuals from across education, the arts, sport, industry and commerce, and public life.

KickerThis is a kicker.

Stephanie Hirst \- Honorary Doctorate of the University

On Monday 25 July, radio star and transgender icon, [Stephanie Hirst, received an Honorary Doctorate of the University](\-radio\-star\-and\-transgender\-icon\-stephanie\-hirst\-receives\-honorary\-degree/), in our first graduation ceremony of 2016. Stephanie is an award\-winning radio DJ, TV presenter, broadcaster and an icon of the UK transgender community. With over 14 awards, she is probably best known for fronting the Hirsty's Daily Dose breakfast show on Capital Radio for 11 years, which earned her and fellow presenters the title of Commercial Radio Presenters Of The Year at the CRCA Awards, and a nomination in the breakfast category of the 2005 Sony Awards. However it is not just her broadcasting and radio talent that have put her in the spotlight.

Stephanie was born as Simon in Barnsley in 1975 but, in autumn 2014, she announced her transition to female: her true gender. Throughout her journey, she has been praised for the honesty and integrity she has shown, and as a result, she was included in the Rainbow List 2014 \- an annual celebration of the 101 lesbian, bisexual, gay, and transgender people in the UK who make a real difference.

> Speaking about receiving the award, Stephanie said: I'm deeply humbled to receive this award, I'm speechless really, but hopefully it will show that being true to yourself and being authentic can be recognised. > "The advice I would give to students who would like to pursue a career in broadcast media is to never stop trying. If you get a few knocks, don't let that stop you from working in this wonderful world of show business." > >



Jason Gillespie \- Honorary Doctorate of Sports Science

In the second graduation ceremony of Monday 25 July, [Jason Gillespie](\-aussie\-cricketing\-legend\-gillespie\-receives\-honorary\-degree/), one of Australia's best\-loved cricketers and Yorkshire County Cricket Clubs First team coach, who has been integral to Yorkshires recent County Championship success, was awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Sports Science.

> If I'm perfectly honest, receiving this award is a bit surreal and something I never envisaged. As a professional cricket player and a coach you don't really think of awards, but you focus on the job at hand and what you need to do to be as effective as possible. To be recognised in this way is very humbling."

As a player, Jason was part of a golden era of Australian cricket taking 402 wickets for his country in all forms of international cricket, including 259 in 71 Tests. Dizzy, as he's known to fellow players and fans worldwide, is Australia's sixth highest wicket\-taker in Test cricket. He will also be remembered for the stunning double\-century he scored as a night\-watchman against Bangladesh in his last Test match.

> "My message to the graduating students today is simply to trust yourself, back yourself and enjoy the ride. Its a big wide world out there so embrace it and try and do things that you really love doing.



Jason Davidson \- Honorary Doctorate of Sport

On Tuesday 26 July, we were proud to award [Jason Davidson](\-leeds\-rhinos\-conditioning\-coach\-receives\-honorary\-degree/), Head of Athletic Performance at Super League champions Leeds Rhinos, an Honorary Doctorate of Sport. Sheffield\-born Jason has established himself as one of the leading conditioners in British sport, overseeing the strength and conditioning for Leeds Rugby and the England national rugby league side.

> Receiving this award means a lot to me. I've come down a different route to the academic route. Most of my life has been spent working full\-time so I like to think that I've done my education through the game and learnt from my mistakes and got better from my mistakes so this award means a lot.

In collaboration with Leeds Becketts leading sports scientists, Jason and his colleagues at Leeds Rugby are working to identify talent and support the development of junior rugby players in Yorkshire.

> "My advice to students is to get out there now in the real world and use everything that you have been taught. Pick your sport, enjoy your sport, because if you are not enjoying it there is no point in doing it.



Peter Smith \- Honorary Doctorate of Sport

Also on Tuesday 26 July, we were honoured to award [Peter Smith MBE](\-\-mbe\-who\-shaped\-leeds\-sporting\-landscape\-receives\-honorary\-degree/), former Manager of the Leeds Sports Development Team at Leeds City Council \(LCC\) and the operational lead behind many of the city's great sporting events, an Honorary Doctorate of Sport.

> It really is something very special to me. I suppose, like everybody, you want to do your best at work, and its really appreciated when that effort is recognised by receiving an honorary award.

Originally from Derby, Peter relocated to Leeds in 1971 to attend Leeds Becketts predecessor institution, the Carnegie School of Physical Education.

Graduating in 1975 with a BEd \(Hons\) in Physical Education, Peter spent several years working as a PE Teacher in Leeds and the Middle East before joining LCC. In this role Peter was responsible for organising several stand\-out city events, including the Tour de France Grand Depart, which laid the foundations for The Tour de Yorkshire cycle race. Now in its second year, the event is fast becoming one of the biggest cycle races in the UK, attracting some of the worlds elite cycle teams.

> "When you organise big events that you want the public to come to you're never sure if anybody will turn out. So to suddenly see thousands of people line the street in Headingley for the Olympic Torch Relay, and the same for the Tour de France, that's the moment when you suddenly go wow, its worked.



Martin Lewis \- Honorary Doctorate of Arts

We were also delighted to welcome [Martin Lewis OBE](\-martin\-lewis\-awarded\-honorary\-doctorate/), campaigner, newspaper columnist and founder of, on Tuesday 26 July who was awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Arts. An award\-winning TV and radio presenter, Martin is a financial journalist, campaigner and charity founder who is passionate about financial education.

> Its a huge honour to come here and get an honorary doctorate I'm especially excited that its in the field of education, which is a campaigning field I've been working on very heavily for the last five years. > "My big battle was to get financial education on the big curriculum, so to come here and see some acknowledgement of that, I hope, is another flag waving to the idea that every pupil in this country will finally get a decent bit of financial knowledge before they leave school. > >

Martin launched Money Saving Expert in 2003 for 100 and remained its full\-time Editor\-in\-Chief for 13 years until earlier this month when he became Executive Chairman. It is now the UK's biggest money site, with more than 15 million monthly users and 11 million signed up to receive the Martins Money Tips email.



Richard Demarco CBE \- Honorary Doctorate of Arts

On Wednesday 27 July, [Professor Richard Demarco CBE](\-richard\-demarco\-cbe\-receives\-honorary\-degree/), British artist and patron of European visual and performing arts, was awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Arts. The first Leeds Beckett honorary ever to be congratulated by the Scottish Parliament, Richard was commended by Miles Briggs, Member of the Scottish Parliament for Lothian, on his outstanding and inspirational commitment to the arts sector in Edinburgh, the UK and across Europe.

In 1963, Richard co\-founded the Traverse Theatre in Edinburgh before establishing the Richard Demarco Gallery three years later. In the early 1990s, Richard transformed the Gallery into the Demarco European Art Foundation to emphasise the educational nature of his work as Kingston University Professor of European Cultural Studies in the 1990s. The Demarco Archive, as it is now known, has become a unique academic resource for scholars all over the world studying European arts, curatorship, developments in cultural policy, and the history of the Edinburgh Festival.

> I am really committed to the idea of the cultural heritage that we all have of Europe. We possess this it is our birth right. We also possess the energy that comes from creativity. My job has been to create the idea that the perfect university is the university of all the arts. You cannot have a university unless it has identified with every single language of the arts; so I'm so happy to be here on this day when so many people will be graduating in the field of the arts.

As an artist, Richard is represented in over 2,500 art collections, both public and private, including the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art and The Victoria and Albert Museum.


Professor Paul Rogers \- Honorary Doctorate of Laws

Our University was delighted to welcome Global Security Consultant to Oxford Research Group and Professor of Peace Studies, [Paul Rogers](\-paul\-rogers\-awarded\-honorary\-doctorate/), on Wednesday 27 July, awarding him an Honorary Doctorate of Laws.

> Getting an award from this university is an honour, particularly as it has such a good reputation for peace studies. I think it is going to be an incredibly important area to work in: over the next 20\-30 years we, as a world community, need to make a transition to creating a more stable and sustainable planet. Anyone who is contributing to that will be doing an incredibly important job.

Paul has worked in the field of international security, arms control and political violence for more than 30 years. He lectures at universities and defence colleges around the world and has written and edited 26 books, including _Global Security and the War on Terror: Elite Power and the Illusion of Control_. He is currently involved in a new pilot project for the Network for Social Change on Remote Control \- the use of armed drones, special forces, privatised military companies and other forces to maintain control, raising issues of ethical behaviour, accountability, precedent\-setting and risk of proliferation.


Nick Hardwick \- Honorary Doctorate of Laws

Wednesday 27 July also saw [Nick Hardwick CBE](\-former\-chief\-inspector\-of\-prisons\-receives\-honorary\-degree/), the former Her Majesty's Chief Inspector of Prisons, receive an Honorary Doctorate of Laws from our University. Nick held the role of HM Chief Inspector of Prisons from 2010 until January this year, taking responsibility for providing independent scrutiny of detention in England and Wales through carrying out announced and unannounced inspections of detention facilities, including prisons, young offenders institutions, police cells and immigration detention.

> Its a real honour to get this award, particularly as it comes through my links with Leeds Beckett and the work they're doing with prisons. The advice I would give graduating students today is don't be afraid of making mistakes. People who never make mistakes never make anything so I hope that they will try difficult things and not be put off if they don't always get it right.

Since retiring from his role as HM Chief Inspector of Prisons, Nick is now Professor of Criminal Justice at Royal Holloway, University of London, and Chair of the Parole Board, an independent body carrying out risk assessments on prisoners to determine whether they can be safely released into the community.

As well as his official appointments, Nick is actively involved in many worthy organisations concerned with young people, offenders and refugees, including being Chair of the New Horizon Youth Centre, a day centre which works with young people who are vulnerable, homeless or at risk, helping them to create positive futures. He is also a trustee of Prisoners Abroad, a human rights organisation which cares for the welfare of all British citizens held in foreign prisons.


Harry Jepson \- Honorary Doctorate of Education

At 97 years old, [Harry Jepson OBE](\-leeds\-rhinos\-president\-receives\-an\-honorary\-degree/), the President of Leeds Rhinos and Chairman of the Rugby League Conference, became Leeds Beckett's oldest honorary graduate when he was awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Education on Tuesday 26 July.

> Receiving this award is out of this world as far as I'm concerned. Its something that I never even contemplated and I couldn't believe it, but I'm delighted to be here!

Former teacher and deputy headteacher, Harry, first developed a love of rugby league began when he was seconded to the famous league\-playing Bewerley Street School and was taken under the wing of the headmaster there, Edgar Meeks, who was also the Hunslet Chairman. He became involved in looking after the under 11s, then the under 13s and eventually the senior side at the school, whilst also becoming Secretary of the Hunslet Schools Rugby League Association and involved in County Rugby League at that level.

Post\-retirement, Harry joined Leeds in the early 70s as Chairman Jack Myerscoughs right\-hand man. He became Leeds's Football Director in the mid\-1980s, using his extensive knowledge and contacts worldwide to help rebuild the side. Now President of Leeds Rhinos and a noted ambassador for the club and the sport, he is also Chairman of the Rugby League Conference, the competition which has spread the game throughout England, Scotland and Wales in the summer, the sides in the Premier Divisions contesting the Harry Jepson Trophy.

> Work hard, listen to advice from people who have experience and be prepared to develop your own instincts. One of the things you have to do if you play rugby is to play off the cuff and that's true in life sometimes too.



Colin Glass \- Honorary Doctorate of Business Administration

[Colin Glass](\-colin\-glass\-awarded\-honorary\-doctorate/), a well\-known businessman in the city region,who has spent many years nurturing fledgling businesses, was welcomed by our University on Thursday 28 July as he received his Honorary Doctorate of Business Administration.

> I'm very proud to be awarded this honorary doctorate, especially as its from my home town university with whom I have a very good relationship. I'm humbled to think after a fairly long career that I've been honoured in this way.

As a chartered accountant, he was a founding partner of his practice Winburn Glass Norfolk \(WGN\) in 1975, but his passion lies in supporting the growth of small\-and\-medium\-sized enterprises \(SMEs\). In many cases he has been appointed as a non\-executive director to the boards of the companies he assists, taking a small equity stake where he believes he can add value.

> Always engage with people. Engage with your colleagues, engage with people in business try to get a mentor, someone who's been there and done it, who's maybe built a business and got the tee shirt.



**Lou McGrath \- Honorary Doctorate of Laws**

On the last day of graduation week, we were honoured to welcome the founding member of the International Campaign to Ban Landmines and Nobel Peace Prize medallist, [Lou McGrath OBE](\-lou\-mcgrath/), to receive his Honorary Doctorate of Laws.

> Receiving this award means a great deal to me. Its fantastic to get recognised for the work that I've achieved."

Lou is also CEO of Find a Better Way, a charity founded by football legend Sir Bobby Charlton, which provides funding to universities undertaking research into better detection systems for landmine clearance, prosthetics, regenerative medicine and better amputation techniques.

> I suppose the best advice I can give someone is to use the skills and the education that you have to better yourself, but also to be grateful to those who helped you get there. Use your skills in a way to help your fellow man and woman and think about the people who will come after you on this earth.



Liv Garfield \- Honorary Doctorate of Business Administration

The rainy weather didn't dampen our spirits as we welcomed business woman and Chief Executive of Severn Trent Water, [Liv Garfield](\-liv\-garfield\-receives\-honorary\-degree/), to Headingley Campus on Thursday afternoon for our last graduation ceremony of the week. At Severn Trent, Liv, who was born and bred in Harrogate, has responsibility for one of the three largest water utilities in the UK, as well as 2,000 colleagues based in its international water services business.

> I'm truly honoured to receive such an award from Leeds Beckett University. I'm Yorkshire\-born\-and\-bred so to receive such an honour from your home location is twice as special as it possibly could be from anywhere else.

Liv joined Severn Trent Water as Chief Executive in April 2014. In addition to her current role at the helm of Severn Trent Water, she is a member of the Prime Ministers Business Advisory Council, where she provides high\-level advice to senior ministers on critical business and economic issues facing the UK.

> My tips for any future graduate are: to think big, to be massively enthusiastic about everything you do, and to literally aim for the stars. If you work hard, you'll be amazed what you can achieve. To be successful today in business, you've got to believe in yourself and you've got to be yourself: that is it.



**Martyn Moxon \- Honorary Doctorate of Sport**

Thursday's 5pm ceremony was a double celebration as [we honoured](\-championship\-winning\-yorkshire\-coach\-receives\-leeds\-beckett\-honorary\-award/) Yorkshires Director of Cricket, Martyn Moxon. Martyn, who has been instrumental in Yorkshire County Cricket Clubs recent County Championship success, was awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Sport.

> Receiving this award is a real highlight of my career: following a great tradition of individuals before me is a fantastic feeling and I'm very proud. The best advice I can give for graduating students' careers is don't have any regrets! We often say to our players, lets not be saying at the end of the season, if only. For any young person, be full of desire and do everything you can to make a success of, whatever you choose to pursue.

In a playing career for Yorkshire spanning 17 seasons, Martyn, an opening batsman, scored 21,161 first class runs, with a high score of 274 not out, and is one of only 15 men to have scored more than 18,000 first\-class runs for Yorkshire. His haul of 41 Yorkshire centuries in first\-class cricket is bettered only by Geoffrey Boycott, post\-the Second World War, earning him a place amongst Yorkshires great players.

After finishing his distinguished playing career, Martyn was appointed Director of Professional Cricket at Yorkshire in 1997, before being appointed Head Coach at Durham in 2001. He returned to Yorkshire in 2007 as Director of Cricket and, in 2012, instigated the clubs coaching restructure ahead of the county championship season, which saw Jason Gillespie and Paul Farbrace arrive at Headingley Carnegie as first and second team coaches respectively. Martyn played a significant role in Yorkshires LV= County Championship back\-to\-back title success in 2014 and 2015, leading them to a first County Championship title for 13 years in 2014 and the county's first consecutive titles since 1968 in 2015.


Leeds Beckett athletes at Rio 2016
Focusing on Leeds Beckett graduates who are competing at this year's Olympic Games in Rio.

Leeds Beckett athletes at Rio 2016

KickerThis is a kicker.

Among the world\-class athletes at the Olympic Games in Rio this year will be a number that have honed their skills as students at Leeds Beckett and we will be keeping a close eye on their progress. Here are the men and women from our university to keep an eye out for when the Games of the 31st Olympiad begins


Tom Bosworth \- BSc \(Hons\) Sports Performance

Tom Bosworth says it will be an honour to represent Leeds Beckett University as well as Team GB after realising his dream of reaching the Olympics. British record\-holding Race Walker Tom, who graduated in 2013 after studying BSc \(Hons\) Sports Performance, reached Rio after winning the British Olympic 20km Race Walk Trials at Woodhouse Moor in June.

That came four years after suffering the heartbreak of missing out on a place at London 2012 by just 19 seconds. Tom, who still trains on campus under the tutelage of national coach Andi Drake, says he was better for that experience and he is now relishing the prospect of competing on athletics biggest stage. He said: I probably wont \(realise what I've achieved\) until I get on the plane and that is when the real emotions will come to the fore and I will think: Oh my word, this has been one crazy season. I have finally achieved what every athlete wants to achieve and qualified for the Olympic Games. Four years ago, missing out on London was agonising. Everything was going so well. I was a very different athlete then. I had a lot of time to take off my personal best over 20km to reach the qualifying time for London. There was a challenge to get to that level. Coming into this season I already knew I was at that level. I got a number of qualifying times for Rio already. So the pressure was off in that way but I also had to tick the boxes: Qualify top two at the trial and stay fit and healthy. This time I made sure there was no chance I wasn't going to make that qualifying time.


Tom has enjoyed a breakthrough year ahead of the Games, smashing the 28\-year\-old British record over 20km at the IAAF Race Walking Challenge in Dudince, Slovakia. The 26\-year\-old says he is now looking to outperform his 24th\-placed finish at the World Championships in Beijing last year. The British 20km record was the most important to me because that's the international distance and completed my set a little bit. That really put my name out there and showed I can be competitive up at the front now, he said. That's what I want to go and do in Rio: be as close to the front as possible. I was 24th in Beijing at the World Championships last year and wasn't happy with that so that is the lowest minimum possible and hopefully Ill be a lot, lot higher than that. As for the role Leeds Beckett has played along the way, Tom is unequivocal that he wouldn't have been in the position he is without the help and support of staff and coaches. He added: I enjoyed being a student and that enabled me to train full\-time as well. That's what is brilliant about this university, how willing to support their athletes they are and how accessible the courses are for someone like me who's travelling all the time and committed to my training but also has the passion to study at the same time. Leeds Beckett is my home still. I have been here seven years now even though I'm not a student anymore. Its that family vibe. I've got the same coaching set\-up and training partners as when I was a student. Everything from psychology to nutrition is the same and has been throughout this journey which means this season has come together so well because we are well\-practised in what we do. Representing Team GB will be the greatest honour but also I wouldn't be here without Leeds Beckett so its an absolute honour to fly that flag as well and I cant wait until I step out onto that racecourse and become an Olympian.


Sarah Barrow \- BSc \(Hons\) Sport & Exercise Science

Leeds Beckett graduate Sarah Barrow says studying and training in Leeds has played a massive part in her Olympic journey after defying the odds to reach a second Games. Sarah, 27, will compete in the 10m platform in Rio after winning gold at the British Diving Championships at the start of June. That comes four years after a fifth\-placed finish in the 10m synchronised event alongside Tonia Couch at London 2012. Securing an appearance at consecutive Olympics has been far from straightforward, though. Sarah was diagnosed with an Osteoid Osteoma a non\-cancerous tumour in March 2014, after suffering with pain in her shins from September 2013. Following two operations to remove the tumour, pain persisted and it was discovered she had tibial stress fractures in each shin. Between July 2015 and February this year, Sarah was taken out of the synchronised team, reinstated, and then taken out again. She says the disappointment left her seriously considering her future in the sport. BSc \(Hons\) Sport & Exercise Science graduate Sarah said:I was completely devastated. I had to work out whether I wanted to continue in diving.

Team GB diving Team. Rio Ready #strong



I made my way up to Leeds again and worked with physios Alison Rose and Lucy Gledhill. I stayed with Rebecca Gallantree \(City of Leeds diver\) who is one of my best friends in diving. That was quite nice to have friends around me and work really hard. The line\-up they had at the European Championships in May kind of looked like the team they would be taking to Rio. Watching it was quite sad really. Plymouth\-born Sarah and her team from home devised a six\-week plan for the Diving Championships in Sheffield, ahead of which she was told by the performance director she would need to get the required qualifying points in both rounds and win. She duly delivered \- securing gold in the final with a score of 347.90 after winning the earlier prelim with 320.80.

> On my third dive the one that's make or break really if I hit it I knew I could do my last two really well and I hit it. As soon as I saw the scores I kind of smiled. You know that's it. I felt like I had done it. The fourth dive ended up going really well. I just kind of got out of the pool and looked at my parents and a lot of friends came from Plymouth as well. The cheering was so loud.



Sarahs performance and never\-say\-die attitude means she will take her place in Rio as part of the 11\-strong diving squad, which was revealed in June. Unlike in London where she competed in the synchronised event, in Rio she will take her place in the individual 10m platform. She added: The individual is a completely different competition. I am proud I have done it myself its different to synchro. When you get up there, its all about you and its enjoyable in a different way. In the synchro you are in the top eight but in the individual you have to go through 36 people and get into the top 18 for the semi\-finals. My set target is to get into the final. Once you are in the final, anything can happen. I found that out in the European Championship in 2013 when I reached the final. There was no pressure on me and I ended up fourth. I feel I want to put that experience into the Olympic Games. As for the influence of Leeds Beckett and Leeds, Sarah says she is grateful for the role it has played from her student days to now.

> "I loved university, I had a scholarship which I was grateful for. It was so helpful and everyone was so supportive and I graduated with a 2:1. > "This time going up to Leeds I wouldn't have qualified and wouldn't be going to the Olympics. Its because of them that I'm kind of here. > >



Yona Knight\-Wisdom \- BSc \(Hons\) Sport and Exercise Science

Yona Knight\-Wisdom, who will compete for Jamaica in the mens three metre springboard in Rio, has also graduated after studying for a BSc \(Hons\) Sport and Exercise Science degree at Leeds Beckett. Yona, 21, took up the sport after being inspired watching the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens and first represented Jamaica in 2012. He competed in the World Aquatics Championships in Barcelona the following year, and at the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, before winning a silver medal at the Diving World Cup in Rio in February this year, confirming his Olympic selection. Yona, who was born in Leeds to a Jamaican father and Barbadian mother, is a sports scholar at Leeds Beckett and was able to complete his studies alongside his commitments as an elite athlete. He said: I've really enjoyed my time studying at Leeds Beckett and have appreciated the support I've received which has allowed me to combine my studies with my sporting commitments. Im delighted to graduate in the same year as I compete in the Olympic Games and couldn't be more proud. Unfortunately I'm not able to attend my graduation ceremony as Ill be on a training camp as I prepare for one of the biggest events of my life, but I wish all the other graduating students at Leeds Beckett the best of luck in whatever career path they choose to follow. Dr Laurie Patterson, Senior Lecturer in Sport and Exercise Psychology at Leeds Beckett, added: Yona has been a fantastic student and was a pleasure to teach at every level of the course, including during my supervision of his dissertation this year. He was always enthusiastic about learning and engaged with every activity wholeheartedly. As an athlete, Yona has come on leaps and bounds over the time that he has been diving, which is a testament to his hard work and dedication. The fact that he is the first male diver to represent Jamaica at an Olympic Games is a great achievement and Im sure he will act as an outstanding role model for future generations who will be inspired by his involvement in the Games this summer. I think his success within and beyond sport is down to his willingness to fully commit himself to being the best he can be and his desire to make the most of every opportunity. I have been truly impressed by Yonas ability to balance high\-performance sport and university during his time at Leeds Beckett; but especially this past year where he managed to achieve a first\-class mark in his dissertation despite being away at various training camps or competitions throughout the process. We are incredibly proud of him and wish him every success at Rio \- we will be watching every dive!


Emily Scarratt \- BSc \(Hons\) Sport and Exercise Science

Leeds Beckett graduate Emily Scarratt has been named Team GB womens rugby sevens captain for the Rio Olympics. Emily, BSc \(Hons\) Sport and Exercise Science, will lead a squad of 12 players as the sport makes its Olympic debut alongside golf. Team GB will face Canada, hosts Brazil, and Japan at the pool stage. Other nations involved include Australia, United States, Fiji, Colombia, New Zealand, France, Spain and Kenya. Emily will be looking to add to personal success in recent seasons which has included finishing top points scorer at the 2014 Rugby World Cup as England claimed a first global crown in 20 years. Emily, who was awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Sport Science by our University's School of Sport last year, said: To wear the GB shirt and compete in the Olympics is a childhood dream that we are now, as a team, turning into reality.

As a squad, we are looking forward to being among the first athletes to play rugby sevens on the world's biggest sporting stage. I am immensely proud to be representing Great Britain and introducing women's rugby to new audiences. Team GB Head Coach \(Women\), Simon Middleton, added: "This is a hugely exciting moment for women's rugby with sevens making its debut at the Olympic Games and we believe we have selected the best possible group of players to achieve success in Rio. The World Series this season proved how competitive the women's rugby sevens circuit is and we're very much looking forward to competing against the very best as a Team GB squad. The strength and depth of the wider training squad has not made the final selection easy. The players have been together since October and have trained so hard and really pushed the standards up of this group. I would like to thank the players who didn't make the final squad for their fantastic contribution and putting us in the best possible place to play in Rio.


Laura Weightman \- BSc \(Hons\) Sport & Exercise Science

Leeds Beckett athlete Laura Weightman says she is hoping to make a second successive Olympic final after building on her London 2012 experience. Laura, BSc \(Hons\) Sport and Exercise Science 2013, was just 21\-years\-old when she featured in the 1,500m final at her home Games going onto finish 11th. Now she has qualified for Rio after finishing in the top two at the British Championships in Birmingham in June. After a silver medal at the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow in 2014, she has set her sights on mixing it with the worlds very top middle\-distance runners again. Laura said: It feels really exciting. I think, growing up and starting athletics, the dream is to go to the Olympic Games. To achieve that in London but to now be going to my second Olympic Games is really exciting and I cant quite believe I've achieved that I will be going to my second Games. In 2012 I was a 21\-year\-old, I was fresh on the scene and never been to a championships before so I think now to be going to my second Olympic Games I have gained such a wealth of experience since then. I have been to a lot more championships Commonwealth, European and Worlds I feel so much better equipped and a better and stronger athlete for it so I really think Ill be going to Rio with a lot of experience and can hopefully use that to perform. Laura still trains at Leeds Beckett with our University's coach Andy Henderson and she says living in the city has continued to play a role in her success.

Had I not come here, I wouldn't have met some of the key people here at Leeds Beckett who have been really influential on my career, she said. My physio Alison Rose is just around the corner. The coaching set\-up here at Leeds Beckett is also important with Andy Henderson and more recently I have been working with Dane Mitchell on the strength and conditioning side. Both of them, alongside my home coach Steve Cram, have really put together a good team, a good place for me to train and live and progress through my career. I don't think I would have made it to London and the Rio Olympics had I not moved to Leeds. Leeds Beckett have got a number of athletes going to the Games. I think its really good we are representing over in Rio and hopefully we can put some strong performances on and bring some string performances back to Leeds. While Laura thinks her appearance in the final at London will take some topping, she is looking forward to a first trip to Brazil where she says anything can happen. She added: I don't think there will be any greater moment in my career than being stood on the starting line of a home Olympic Games in that final. It was an incredible experience. I feel very lucky to have experienced that. I think Rio is going to be a different experience but I'm really excited. London was a home Games so everything that came with that you expected. Going to Rio I don't really know what to expect. I've never been to Brazil, I've never experienced anything out there so I think its going to be really interesting to see how they put on the Games and what the experience as a whole is going to be like out there. I have been going well in my early\-season form so I'm looking forward to the Games and I do think a realistic aim would be to make that Olympic final and I think build up what I achieved in London and put in a good performance. 1,500m racing is so tactical: anything can happen on the day and I think if I'm in the best shape I can be Ill put in a strong performance.


Alistair Brownlee \- MSc Finance 2013

Alistair Brownlee will be looking to defend the Olympic Triathlon crown he won thrillingly in front of his home crowd at London 2012. Alongside brother Jonny, who was third on the podium four years ago, Alistair still trains on the Leeds Beckett University campus where he graduated in 2013. Both work under the watchful eye of Leeds Beckett Head Triathlon Coach, Jack Maitland. Alistair geared up for Rio by winning the ITU World Triathlon Series race held in Leeds back in June.

Javier Gomez, the reigning world champion who took the silver medal in between the Brownlees at London 2012, finished back in fourth. Alistair will be hoping for a similar result in Rio on August 18. Speaking after that victory in Leeds and looking ahead to the Olympics, coach Maitland said: Obviously that's been a major focus for a long time now and is one of those events where there is an emphasis on preparation for it specifically. I wouldn't read too much into this race. Rio will be a different race, time and field. All we can say is those guys are in good shape and form at the moment. Hopefully they can carry on to be in the shape and form they need to be.


Our other Olympians

**Brendan Boyce, 29 \- 50km Race Walk, Ireland** BSc \(Hons\) Sports Performance graduate Brendan, of Letterkenny Athletic Club, has been selected after previously competing at the 2013 World Championships in Moscow and London Olympics. He finished 29th in 2012 and 25th in Moscow and is coached by current 50km Race Walk World Champion, Rob Heffernan. **Alex Wright, 25 \- 50km Race Walk, Ireland** Leeds Beckett alumnus Alex, of Leevale Athletic Club, has been selected alongside Brendan having finished 31st at the 2013 World Championships. **Quentin Rew, 31 \- 20km Race Walk and 50km Race Walk, New Zealand** Leeds Beckett graduate Quentin was 27th in the 50km race at the last Olympic Games and is back in Rio after finishing a highly\-creditable 10th at the Beijing 2015 World Championships in the 50km race and 17th in the 20km event. **Alastair Brogdon, 28 Mens Hockey, Team GB** Alastair, BA \(Hons\) Marketing 2010, has more than 100 caps for England and helped Great Britain to fourth in the recent Hockey Champions Trophy. He was included in the 16\-strong squad when it was revealed at the end of June. **Sam Quek, 27 Womens Hockey, Team GB** Sam, BSc \(Hons\) Sport and Exercise Science 2010, recently made her 100th international appearance for Great Britain against the Netherlands and realised her Olympic dream after being included in the women's squad when it was unveiled. Team GB won bronze in 2012 and will be hoping for similar success this time around. **Qais Ashfaq, 23 \- Boxing, Team GB** Qais secured his place in Rio at the Olympic qualifier in Samsun, Turkey, in April and has set his sights on gold in the Bantamweight division in Rio. He studied Sports Performance at our University. **Lauren Smith, 24 \- Badminton doubles, Team GB** Lauren, who studied Sports Coaching at our University, will partner Heather Olver in the women's doubles. The duo are among eight badminton players selected by the British Olympic Association \(BOA\).


Research Excellence

Leeds Beckett is home to some of the country's leading sport scientists and coaching experts. Recently published research revealed that National Curriculum Physical Education lessons are failing to deliver enough health enhancing physical activity, whilst Leeds Beckett obesity experts have explored the link between food environment and childhood obesity. Biomechanics at Leeds Beckett are currently investigating the mechanics of barefoot running, meanwhile further research has looked at the pack behaviour of long distance runners, the psychological factors in sports injury rehabilitation and clean athletes experiences of doping.


Deconstructing Yorkshire
The Leeds Beckett University Media and Place research cluster

**Deconstructing Yorkshire**

The Leeds Beckett University Media and Place research cluster

KickerThis is a kicker.

**_As one of the founder members of the [Media and Place research cluster](, Dr Lynne Hibberd works closely with colleagues Dr Zo Tew\-Thompson, Dr Lisa Taylor and Dr Casey Orr to explore how media, culture and environment co\-exist and help us to understand daily living practices. Since launching the MA Media at the global Media and Place conference at our University in 2014, Lynne and the team have been out there gathering the thoughts of the Yorkshire public on everything from rhubarb to Leeds city centre and Last of the Summer Wine. Carrie Braithwaite met up with the team to find out more._** Media and place are two ideas that go hand in hand, explains Lynne: It is thinking about the way the media never exists in a vacuum. It is aligned to where we are and how we are in that environment. For example if I come into Leeds I always bring my phone and would feel lost without it. If I'm walking the dogs I take my phone with me but I'm happy if I haven't got a signal and don't feel like I have to be accessible. I watch a lot of TV at home but I wouldn't on a train, even though I can, because I relate it to a specific place. I am interested in how media operates in different environments and how different places impact on the kind of media used. Lynne is [currently investigating](\-it\-really\-grim\-up\-north/) the relationship between Holmfirth in West Yorkshire and legendary television drama series, Last of the Summer Wine, which was filmed in the town. Lynne says: I live in Holmfirth and it is around me all the time. When I moved here people would say oh that's where Last of the Summer Wine was filmed. I had heard of it but never watched it yet, because of the daily references, after a while I started to say it as well and it began taking on a meaning. It shows how media, such as a TV programme, can frame our experiences even when it isn't there.


Lynnes task is to find out how Last of the Summer Wine helps us to navigate Holmfirth through a tourist route. People come to Holmfirth for various reasons and they might cross the route or have some awareness, but how is their perception of the town changed by the series? With landmarks such as Sids Chip Shop and the Wrinkled Stocking Tea Room, how has this big mediated production which no longer exists shifted our sense of place and changed the way a town looks? At the moment Lynne is talking to residents and will soon move on to talking to tourists. She says: Most are quite dismissive even though they often have never seen the programme. There is a sense of slight embarrassment through the stereotype of the three old men. People are both disavowing it whilst continuing to claim it as a marker of their town. Earlier this year, the Media and Place team organised an event to celebrate Zos new book, Urban Constellations, which looks at how British cities in the North and Midlands built flagship cultural projects around the millennium, such as The Deep in Hull, and how these iconic pieces of architecture attempted to regenerate the city and transform the way that people consume culture.


Leading the event, Zo got people thinking about how we are encouraged to navigate places, museums but also city centres, according to certain routes. Lynne explains: We took a tourist map of Leeds, which puts everything into certain zones such as shopping, museums, etc, and asked a member of the group called Stephanie to draw a big S through the map. This was the route that we then took through the city, disrupting the traditional flow through the city and commenting on the chance encounters that we made such as sculptures, art, and even building sites. We saw the familiar in a different way.


The exploration culminated in a session at the pub, creating gift shop style snow globes to represent the evenings experience, using upturned jam jars, Lego, and pipe cleaners, which celebrated the overlooked aspects of the city encountered on the walk. Walking and talking, whilst fully taking in the surroundings of a place and experiencing all that it has to offer in terms of senses, memories and ideas, is central to all of the research taking place within the cluster. Another event taking place this year has been [You are here: Leaving the city](, a 15\-mile night\-time walk which started at Broadcasting Place and finished at 2.30am.


Casey explains: It was the hottest night of 2015 and a group of 20 walked together out of Leeds to Arnscliffe Crag. We experienced the night as darkness advanced and also receded and sought an understanding of the relationship of city to countryside and how walking through space and time can enhance the affinity between internal and external landscapes.


Saturday Girl

One of Casey's projects is [Saturday Girl](\-lecturer\-launches\-new\-photos\-at\-liverpool\-exhibition/). Beginning in Leeds, Casey expanded her series of photographic portraits to Liverpool this year. She explains: [Saturday Girl](\-girl.php) is a series of portraits of young women teenagers specifically as seen through their hairstyles. It is an exploration of hair and its cultural meaning for young women, and how we experience and use the power inherent in becoming visible as women. Saturday Girl was conceived after seeing so many young women in Leeds with big hair; hair teased and back\-combed, styled and extended with hairpieces and wigs. I wondered what it meant, what it said about undercurrents in culture, the unspoken signs that tell of our values and tribe identities and how these things burst forth \(whether we intend them to or not\) in self\-expression.

Saturday Girl Liverpool, Caseys book, was hot off the press in time for the Look 15 International Photography Festival in Liverpool in May 2015.


Shedding light on our rhubarb stories

The teams latest collaborative project is all about the Yorkshire hero: the rhubarb. Starting at the [Wakefield Festival of Food, Drink and Rhubarb](\-search\-of\-rhubarb\-stories/) in February 2015, the team hit the streets gathering the publics stories about rhubarb to look at how it is central to Yorkshire identity and distinctiveness. Lynne says: The Rhubarb Triangle, spanning Leeds, Wakefield and Rothwell, is known throughout the world, bringing people looking for work and exporting rhubarb out around the globe. Casey Orr is documenting this through some stunning photography to create a visual narrative, and Zo and I are exploring the cultural specificity of Yorkshire rhubarb by inviting people to talk about their relationship to it. In March, the team took part in a [visit to a rhubarb shed](\-secret\-world\-of\-the\-rhubarb\-triangle/), getting a tour of Oldroyds Farm in Wakefield and meeting with rhubarb enthusiasts who were also on [the tour](\-yorkshire/). Following this, the team have developed a workshop which involves using Lego to recreate the tour experience and getting people to make meaning through creative processes. Zoe explains: The idea is that we take a very sensory experience such as being in a rhubarb shed, which is very cold and dark, and we show it in a different way. It is about stepping outside of the purely visual and understanding the tactile and embodied ways people make attachments to place. There is also the task of asking people to recreate an experience using limited resources which focuses people's attention on how they inhabit places quite differently than if we ask them directly. By asking them to make something which represents their attachment to a place we engage with their sensory experience and creativity. We are planning on developing this idea as a research activity with participants, who are mainly retired, so it is fun to get them working with Lego which is cross\-generational.


At RHS Harlow Carrs Wildlife Weekend in Harrogate in April the team even had a Rhu\-booth: a portable confession space created by some of our design students where people can reveal their rhubarb secrets! I had to ask Lynne if she has any rhubarb stories herself: I did manage to kill a rhubarb once. I dug it up to move it but then the weather turned. Its still lurking in my garden like a neglected pet! Having just been on the rhubarb tour at Oldroyds Farm in Wakefield I'm hopeful that I might be able to revive it. If you have any rhubarb stories you would like to share with Lynne, please email them to [](


Yorkshire Sculpture Park

Meanwhile, Dr Lisa Taylor has been developing a project based at the Yorkshire Sculpture Park, where she has been running walk and talk tours. Through the tours of the park, she has been tracking the way that people engage with the sculptures and landscapes. Lisa explains: I notice that people want to touch and feel the sculptures; they want to walk through them and, with pieces such as Barbara Hepworth's Family of Man, they physically view the landscape through the sculpture itself. One of my main findings has been that people bring to their engagement with the Sculpture Park their own biographies, memories and specialisms. _Image: Barbara Hepworth, Square with Two Circles, 1963. Courtesy of YSP and copyright Jonty Wilde._

"Walking through the parkland at YSP triggered memories for people of walks with friends and loved ones. Others brought their interests to how they respond to art; so for one woman the sculptures evoked associations with her favourite writers and poets."


Verdant Creativities

Another study by Zo, Verdant Creativities, explores three kinds of urban gardening and the transformation of cities through growing. This includes examining guerrilla gardening and exploring every\-day practices of greening West Yorkshire through creative acts of protest. Zo is also conducting walk and talk tours through peoples allotments. They walk me around their plot and this is a very sensory engagement. As well as seeing what people grow and finding out about their methods, you can smell, taste and touch. They discuss their past: as gardeners, their relationship to the city, their childhoods, where they learnt to grow and why they decided to have an allotment, Zo explains.

Zo is also looking at the use of abandoned spaces and community gardens and thinking about how people transform and cultivate places. One such area is Bedford Fields in Woodhouse \(the beautiful location for our video and photo shoot\), a plot of land owned by the Council which anyone is free to use for gardening and growing food. This idea of protest is common throughout the Media and Place research cluster, Lisa explains, highlighting the notion of claiming land rights for common people. Another way that this is promoted is through links with [Commoners Choir](, led by Chumbawamba singer Boff. Working with the Media and Place team, several [walking and singing events](\-magna\-carta/) have already taken place across Yorkshire, including one on Ikley Moor in June to mark the 800th anniversary of the Magna Carta. Lisa explains: The songs are fun and relate to everyday life and we take them out into the landscape to sing them. The singing and walking events aim to get us all thinking about land rights and access to common ground, whilst walking in northern spaces. During our first event, I felt really moved and choked up when singing the songs all together, outside in the sun. It was a wonderful experience.


Above all else, the researchers are keen to bring together communities through their work, reaching out to people and making an impact on their lives. Lisa adds: Our research is interested in public engagement, with ideas about attachment to place, and all of our activities centre around getting people involved in creativity to celebrate and think about the idea of place. For more information about the Media and Place research cluster and to get involved in their activities, please visit [](


Back to Top Button