There is a jaguar prowling in one of the display cases at Heritage Quay. Although only 15cm long, with its taut muscles and mouth open in a roar it demands attention. Made by one-time Poet Laureate Ted Hughes (1930-1998) it is clearly the result of close observation of the natural world, and important as the only known surviving example of sculpture by the poet.
This is only one of many objects now on display as part of Heritage Quay’s latest exhibition,
‘Mark and Ted: Exploring the Mark Hinchliffe Ted Hughes Collection’.
Bringing together pens and paper samples, books and badger bristles, photographs and feathers, the exhibition celebrates one of Heritage Quay’s most important recent acquisitions. The collection was formed by Mark Hinchliffe, a poet and friend of Ted Hughes.
The exhibition includes first edition, fine press and limited edition published works, many of which have been signed by Hughes. There are photographs of Hughes and his family, some previously unrecorded, and correspondence between Hughes and Hinchliffe. Not limited to paper objects, there are tools relating to the family-run Morrigu Press, sherry from Hughes’ time as Laureate, and even one of Hughes’ Mont Blanc pens.
As well as offering unique material relating to the life of one of the twentieth century’s major poets, the exhibition also shows us something of how Hinchliffe engaged with Hughes’ work. Through his annotations, or the newspaper clippings, plant and animal matter, postcards, letters and programmes tucked into the books, we see a dedicated reader in action.
Exhibition open Mon-Fri 8am-8pm; Sat 9am-5pm; Sun 10am-4pm. Exhibition closes October 2022.
We are delighted to announce that a unique collection of rare and valuable items relating to the former poet laureate Ted Hughes has been acquired by the University of Huddersfield and is now available at Heritage Quay.
Dr Steve Ely, Director of the Ted Hughes Network at the University comments: “We are delighted to have acquired Mark Hinchliffe’s outstanding collection. It comprises over 170 items, including signed first editions of dozens of Hughes’ trade, limited-edition and fine-press publications; original letters written by Hughes and his first wife, the poet Sylvia Plath; signed and annotated books from Hughes’s personal collection; and, some absolutely unique items: a very fine ceramic jaguar sculpted by Hughes in 1967, the only intact example anywhere in the world of Hughes’s work in the plastic arts.
“There is an album containing hundreds of photographs, including some previously unknown photographs of both Hughes and Plath; a holograph manuscript of the radio play ‘Orpheus & Eurydice’ with some significant differences to the broadcast and published versions, and, a bespoke edition of the Gehenna Press’ limited edition Howls & Whispers, comprising the original fine-book, 8 original watercolours by Leonard Baskin – two of which are pictured here – and a unique copper-plate, engraved portrait of Sylvia Plath.”
“Mark was a significant figure in the international Ted Hughes scholarly and collecting communities, a friend and correspondent of Ted and other members of the Hughes family, a member of the Ted Hughes Society, a founding member and chair of the Elmet Trust, a key figure in the development of the Ted Hughes Poetry Festival in the Upper Calder Valley, a scholar and a published poet – a significant figure in his own right.
“He was a great supporter of the work of the Ted Hughes Network at the University, and it is fitting that his collection should be retained in his hometown.”
Julie Hinchliffe comments: “I am absolutely delighted that the University of Huddersfield has acquired Mark’s extensive Ted Hughes collection. It was his wish that the collection should remain intact and be available for academics, students and the public to enjoy as much as he did. I know that he would be very pleased with its new home.”
The Collection will be housed in the University’s archive, Heritage Quay. Dr Rebecca Bowd, University Archivist comments: “We are thrilled to be able to preserve Mark Hinchliffe’s fantastic collection at Heritage Quay where for the first time it will be freely accessible to the public. The Ted Hughes Archive at Heritage Quay already holds three other Ted Hughes-related deposits: the Donald Crossley Papers, the Christopher Reid Papers and a comprehensive collection of Hughes’ fine and small press work.
“The purchase of this collection cements Heritage Quay’s reputation as a must-visit archive for Ted Hughes scholars world-wide and we can’t wait to welcome researchers to explore the collection here at the University of Huddersfield.
Heritage Quay will also work with the Ted Hughes Network to arrange public-facing events to engage people with the collection—a symposium, talks, poetry readings, exhibitions, creative writing workshops and events for young people are planned. The first of these, an exhibition featuring highlights from the collection will take place at Heritage Quay from late June to mid-September.”
Dr Simon Thurley CBE, Chair, National Heritage Memorial Fund comments: “The National Heritage Memorial Fund are delighted to support the University of Huddersfield with £33,775 to enable the purchase of the final five works from Mark Hinchcliffe’s private collection. The works that we have supported are considered unique and will now be shared widely by the university’s Ted Hughes Network & Heritage Quay, including through children’s workshops and creative writing activities.”
The Arts Council England/V&A Purchase Grant Fund, which has contributed £35,000, adds that “‘we are delighted to be able to support the acquisition of the Hinchcliffe Archive by the University of Huddersfield. Not only is it an important collection of material which explores the life and work of Ted Hughes, but the collection is fascinating in how it reflects the relationship between Hughes and Hinchcliffe; it has much research potential for students and academics alike, both national and international.”
Heritage Minister Nigel Huddleston said: “It is fitting that this extensive Ted Hughes collection has been acquired by the University of Huddersfield in the poet’s home county. I am delighted that UK Government funding through the National Heritage Memorial Fund has enabled it to happen. These brilliant works will now be available to academics, students and members of the public where they will provide endless inspiration and enjoyment for years to come.”
CRIME.PHOTO.NOVEL: The Power of the Book Exhibition
Fri 1 April – Sat 30 April
Heritage Quay is honoured to be hosting a temporary exhibition “Crime.Photo.Novel: The Power of the Book by Katrina Whitehead.
Murder mysteries have always been considered to have a wide appeal, but where did it all start? This exhibition displays seminal books which help us to understand how crime novels first became popular from the exploration of creative non-fiction from authors Edgar Allan Poe and Truman Capote, to a selection of fiction and non-fiction crime novels which use photography.
An online event exploring the ideas behind the exhibiton is taking place on Tuesday 26 April
Presentation and Q&A with Katrina Whitehead, Lecturer in Photography and Creative Writing, Dr Helen Gavin, Subject Lead in Psychology and Dr Merrick Burrow, Head of English & Creative Writing
My name is Tasnim and my Kickstart placement took place at the University of Huddersfield.
I worked for 6 months in Heritage Quay which is the University’s archive service that sits in the Computing and Library Services department.
The Kickstart scheme was put in place by the government to help non-working people get into permanent work. This applies to people that have been out of work for a while and find it difficult to get back in or have come out of education, much like myself. I graduated in 2019 and found it difficult to find work as I had no work experience, I had only ever been in education. The Kickstart scheme’s aim is to build up and enhance one’s skills and work experience. Towards the end of the placement you will have all the tools you need to look and apply for jobs. I have come towards the end of my placement and have successfully secured a permanent job: I can say with confidence that the Kickstart scheme works.
I didn’t really know what an archive was when I first applied for the job. The best way to explain this is to tell you the difference between an archive and a library: a library’s contents can easily be replaced and they can hold several of the same item but the contents of an archive are unique and one of a kind.
My job title was ‘Collections Assistant’ and I worked alongside the Archive Assistants. It was a very small team of staff when I started so I was very busy with lots of tasks to do. Usually when anyone starts a new job its normal to get nervous but surprisingly this time I did not: I felt extremely comfortable. To begin with, I would shadow the Archive Assistants and watch how they went about completing tasks then I would put it into practice myself. My main duty was customer service as I greeted members of the public who booked an appointment to look at archive material in the public Research Room. I supervised them to make sure they were abiding by the Research Room rules such as no eating or drinking and only writing with pencils. I took on other tasks such as repackaging items in the Society for the Promotion of New Music (SPNM) archive. I took out items from their old packaging and put them in new packaging which was made from special materials that would protect the paper archive materials kept inside. I also undertook training for a digital customer enquiry system which gave me the experience of conversing with customers online.
My favourite part about working in Heritage Quay was exploring and learning about the collections. Some collections piqued my interest such as The Wesley Historical Society (WHS) and the John Lancaster Christadelphians Library (CHL) because reading about different religions such as Methodist and Christadelphian is one of my favourite hobbies. Exploring these archives made me wonder what intriguing one-of-a-kind material other archives in other institutions may possess.
This role at Heritage Quay enabled me to develop my communication skills with staff and the public as well as my teamworking and administration skills which assisted me in getting my new role. It has enhanced my confidence in the workplace and I look forward to starting my new job very soon!
Heritage Quay has an exciting new job opportunity: Public Engagement Assistant.
This brand new role will help us share our amazing collections with staff, students and the general public in person and online.Working with the Public Engagement Officer we need someone to create events, workshops and exhibitions for students and the public, as well as being the first point of contact for customers using our award-winning spaces. The job is 30 hours a week until the end of 2024.
We are delighted to announce our research room is now open on Mondays and Tuesdays 09.30- 17.00 for pre-booked appointments. We are also able to offer online appointments on Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays from 10-11am and 3-4pm.
Here you can find information about some of the collections that are rarely seen in our Research Room that are just waiting for someone to fall in love with them.
These special collections can be big or small, they just haven’t been used as much as we know they deserve.
So if you’re looking for new sources or fresh perspectives, this is the place…
Robert Blatchford Collection
Robert Blatchford was a key part of the Victorian and Edwardian socialist movement in. Despite the influence of his social network, and his newspaper The Clarion, his name is not as well known as many others. Whilst his friends and co-campaigners for social justice and suffrage rightly feature in histories of the period, we think that Robert’s place is important too as an ally and organiser to ignore.
Blatchford’s story is intertwined with the birth of the socialist movement, and his thoughts and life experiences can help us unpick the ideas and concepts of the broader Labour movement, of which he was not a devoted member. As the modern Labour Party tussles with what kind of party it wants to be, and how it expresses national pride and interational cooperation at the same time, there is much to glean from Robert Blatchford’s experiences and writings.
This small collection is only 3 boxes, but they are full of handwritten and published copies of his poems, articles and other writings. It also includes a large amount of correspondence written by Blatchford to his daughters, his personal accounts, records of his war service, newspaper cuttings and scrapbooks of his career.
We are delighted to announce our research room is now open on Tuesdays 10.00 – 16.00 for pre-booked appointments only. We are also able to offer online appointments on Mondays. Appointments must be booked at least one week in advance via our online booking form. For further information please email firstname.lastname@example.org
Unfortunately public events in Heritage Quay will not re-commence until 2022. This includes tours, school group visits, public meetings, external conferences, and facility hires.
We look forward to welcoming you back to research in Heritage Quay.