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1925 University fundraising film

 October 13, 2015 | Simon Jenkins


A newly-discovered film gives a fascinating insight into University fundraising from almost a century ago.

Recently discovered in the vaults of the Yorkshire Film Archive, this film was made in 1925 to promote the University of Leeds’ first major fundraising campaign.  It is believed to have been shown at local cinemas in breaks between the main feature films, and appeals to cinemagoers’ civic pride to support their local University.

The film shows the relatively basic facilities of a University which was only 21 years old, and shows some of the older buildings constructed for previous institutions – Leeds Medical College and Leeds College of Science – which came together to form the new University.

Some buildings remain familiar, such as the Great Hall, Baines Wing and Clothworkers Buildings, while some of the terraced houses shown remain part of the University, almost 100 years on.

The campaign was a huge success and led to the building of the magnificent Brotherton Library which remains a key feature of the University landscape and the student experience to this day.

Shared with the kind permission of the Yorkshire Film Archive.