The Ark Display team who installed the boards.

Parkinson’s Park had the first Guiseley heritage interpretation boards put up today (23rd August 2018), the culmination of a Queen’s Diamond Jubilee heritage project sponsored by the Heritage Lottery Fund and run by Jennifer Kirkby and Barbara Winfield of FOPP.

For  the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee FOPP received support from the Heritage Lottery Fund’s ‘Great British Story’ Programme to research and bring to life the rich historical, geological and ecological events that have shaped the Park from glacial ice sheets to Crompton Parkinson.  The idea of the project was to tell ‘every mans history’, and to help bring a sense of community back to an area that many people felt had lost some of its sense of place .   We wanted to help inspire a revival in community through heritage.

Geology and Ecology Board

For the research we ran a range of projects including a geophysics survey by the people who used to do it for Time Team, metal detecting by a local group, and hours of palaeography as we dug out old deeds and manor court and parish records to piece together the past.  Historic England helped us look at LiDAR maps,  West Yorkshire Geology Trust’s David Leather helped explain the geomorphological events,  and local ecological experts including Wharfedale Naturalists and Brooks Ecological have helped explain the Park’s ecology and habitats.  We even found a stone wall during the boards installation that we had no idea about.

Over the years the research results have been promoted through film by David Myers, photography by people such as Darren Sanderson, and built into landscape and character reports to help spread the word about our area’s assets.   We’ve done talks for school children, walks for Heritage Open Days and Tales Told, and the work has found its way into Leeds City Council information leaflets and the West Yorkshire’s Historic Landscape Assessment.   So, we are more than  delighted that we can now add interpretation boards  to this list – as well as a  Story Trail leaflet and a children’s I-Spy booklet.  We are told these are the first heritage interpretation boards in Guiseley.

There are three boards:

  • The Great British Story – by the top copse. Combined with a FOPP notice board.  This is situation where it can be seen from the variety of paths that cross the Park, and close to where events are held.
  • The Geology and Ecology of the Park – by the bench at the top of the Park.  So it can be read as people look over the expanse of the Park and beyond across the Guiseley Gap to Wharfedale and Airedale.
  • The Bog Garden – (funded by Green Leeds and the Northern Horticultural Society)

The boards have involved the expertise of a number of people and have been done to the same standard as those found in the tourist areas of London.  We’d like to thank every one  for their input –

  • Story Board Design by David Griffiths
  • Story Trail Leaflet Design by Lucy Phillips
  • Geology and Ecology and Bog Garden Design by Lynne Gorner
  • Advice, Production and Installation by Ark Display of Leeds

If you would like a copy of the Story Trail leaflet,  they will be available at our events or find them at all the following places.  The children’s I-Spy Leaflets are available at places marked in red.
Guiseley Library,
Yeadon Library
Rawdon Library
Menston Library
Guiseley Theatre
Brambles Bakehouse
Town Gate Cafe
Harry Ramsdens (aka Wetherby Whaler)

Swincar Nursery – ask for one at the counter
Morrisons Guiseley – if you ask at the information point

Co-Op White Cross
St Oswald’s Church

Jennifer Kirkby,  Barbara Winfield,  Joanna Brooks.




About Jennifer Inskip Kirkby

Director and Vice Chair of Friends of Parkinson's Park CIC, Chair of Aireborough Neighbourhood Forum and Facilitator of Inskip One-Name Study. Has a degree in Local History (University of Cambridge), and Economics (University of Leeds). Now retired after a career as a Business Analyst and Advisor.
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