Saturday, 18 June 2011

Bradford Central Library

This is Bradford Central Library, officially opened by Princess Alexandria (cousin of the Queen) in 1967 and at the time was the largest library in England (in terms of number of books). The building has a distinct 1960's look to it and is starting to show its age, it hasn't changed much since I borrowed my first book there in , I think, 1970. My school was about ten minutes walk from the library and I spent probably three or four lunchtimes each week just browsing and sometimes borrowing books, books on anything really, astronomy, tape recorders, repairing motorcycle engines, microphones, or my favourite subject, Science Fiction.

1 comment:

  1. How sad the Central Library looks these days. In many ways an allegory of Bradford. The upper levels are closed off; the old reading room is closed and and used as a repository of junk. I recently had cause to travel there; the first time in decades. There's still the commemorative opening plaque near the ground floor lifts. I’d forgotten about Alderman Horace Hird who made Bradford a national laughing stock in 1962 when he instructed Cartwright Hall staff to remove some nudes from an Arts Council touring exhibition of works by Euan Uglow. The Arts Council threatened to withdraw the exhibition and to boycott Bradford. Someone had been to the park with his family, it rained, he took them into the gallery, saw the nudes, complained to Hird (Chairman of the Libraries, Art Gallery and Museum Committee), and the rest is history. For days it was big news. Ultimately, the pithiest letter in the T&A was from someone who wrote “What a pity it rained”.