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Festival to Celebrate 150 Years of Dringhouses Library


10:46am 9th July 2014

Dringhouses Library on Tadcaster Road is over 150 years old. First a Victorian school, the building became a library during World War Two in 1942.

Throughout July, the library will be commemorating the building’s role in the life of the people of Dringhouses for the last century and a half. Although it was built in 1852, the school and its teachers were legally required in 1863 to keep a daily log of pupils and teaching and so 150 years of records began then.

Some 80 years later in 1942, Colonel George Wilkinson left the building to the council, with the instructions: ‘The premises to be used as a public library or for such other public purpose for the benefit of the citizens of York, in particular the inhabitants of Dringhouses.’

The building, its history and current use will be celebrated as a place of community and learning through theatre, music, lectures, author talks and more.

The festival begins on Thursday 10 July with a play specially-commissioned by the library from Ellen Stevens, a recent theatre graduate of the University of York. In it, local actors and pupils from the current Dringhouses Primary School play the parts of their nineteenth-century counterparts in a piece of community theatre not to be missed!

Other festival events include a chamber music concert by group Bellissime of popular Victorian music, a local history group talk about the library, a talk by Big City Read author Tom Harper and lots more. The Dringhouses 150 Celebration Party on 9 August from 2-3:30pm draws events to a close, before the next 150 years begin!

This festival supports York Explore Libraries and Archives’ vision of enabling people to live fuller, more connected and engaged lives by celebrating the history, future and community of Dringhouses Library.

Fiona Williams, Chief Executive of Explore York Libraries and Archives, said: “Dringhouses Library is one of our most popular libraries and it is exciting to be celebrating how the building has been at the heart of its community for so long. Here’s to the next 150 years!”

For more information and to book places on the events please visit www.yortime.org.uk or call Dringhouses Library on 01904 552674 or visit www.exploreyork.org.uk for the festival timetable.

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