The University of Leeds Ladies' Club

Spring 2023



Monthly Newsletter     -    March 2023

Dear Ladies,


Forthcoming Events

Tuesday 4th April 2023 - Informal Coffee Morning from 10.30am onwards

Please note that this month’s coffee morning will be held on the FIRST TUESDAY in April and not on the second Tuesday as is usual.  This is to avoid any possible clash with the Easter weekend.

Therefore, the coffee Morning will be held on Tuesday 4th April from 10.30am onwards.

The coffee morning will be held as normal at the Lawnswood Arms on the Otley Road and we hope as many members as possible will be able to attend.  As this is a drop-in session no payment is required in advance, just pay for what you have on the day.


Sunday 30th April 2023   - Sunday Carvery Lunch and Coronation Celebration 

at 12.30pm for 1pm.


As reported in previous newsletters we have booked our, by now traditional Spring Sunday Carvery lunch 

at the Headingley Golf Club and have combined this lunch with a celebration of the Coronation of King Charles III.

The lunch will consist of 3 courses (with a choice of dishes at each course, to be chosen on the day) plus tea or coffee and will include also a glass of either Prosecco or sparkling Elderflower with which to toast our new Monarch.  With the recent rise in costs across the board your committee has decided that, for this very special occasion, it is appropriate to not charge the full cost of the event and therefore is offering a subsidy from the Club reserves in order to keep costs down as much as possible. 


The subsidised cost of the meal will be £22.50 per person, payable in advance.   A flyer and booking form for this event have been sent out, to be returned to Gillian Roche by Friday 21st April together with your cheque, or if you prefer you can pay by the BACS system through your bank (details are shown on the booking form). Once again, we would encourage you to book early to avoid disappointment.



Thursday 8th June 2023 – Preserve your Memories - Charting the 1960s 


An illustrated talk by Malcolm Johnson on the historical events and popular culture of the 1960s.


This talk will be held at Headingley Golf Club at 2pm.  Further details, with costs and a booking form will be sent out later in April




Report on the visit to the Special Collections on 1st March 2023


The following email from Gill Moore has been forwarded to me by Gillian Roche to whom our thanks are due for organising this very successful event.


Thank you for organising this visit - I wondered if it might be a bit dull - but I was wrong. The Brotherton was always a bit of a closed book to me.
As a student I occasionally ventured into the old Medical School library which had a similar amount of wood - shelves, tables and chairs but I don't think I ever actually took a book out, being inhibited by the initial contact with librarians and all the dos and don'ts.
Amazingly, as I advanced in my career, librarians metamorphosed into humans who wanted to help. And now the Ladies Club is full of retired librarians and they are my friends.
Margaret B, Anne M and I enjoyed a further few minutes at the Special Collections exhibition before we got the bus home.
Thanks again - your efforts are appreciated.
Best wishes, Gill


In the last few days Gillian has received a notice from Rhiannon Lawrence- Francis, the curator of the Special Collections, advertising a special event for this year’s 400th Anniversary of the First Folio of Shakespeare’s work. This is not a ULLC event although we believe that members may be interested to attend and if so PLEASE note that you cannot book through ULLC. Details of how to book are shown below.




As you may know, 2023 marks the 400th anniversary of the publication of the First Folio, the first collected edition of thirty-six plays by William Shakespeare. We have invited Leeds-born Emma Smith, distinguished Professor of Shakespeare Studies at Hertford College Oxford, back to campus to speak about the history of this remarkable book. 

All details about the afternoon and evening events are in the link below, and you can sign up using Eventbrite. Please do pass on to those you feel may be interested in attending. The Brotherton Collection copy of the First Folio will be on display during April, May and June this year in the Treasures of the Brotherton Gallery.

I do hope you can come on 3 May!

Rhiannon Lawrence-Francis, Special Collections Curator, Special Collections and Galleries

University of Leeds Libraries



News of Members.

I spoke to Joy Thody a few days ago and she is settling into her flat in Headingley Hall. We send all our good wishes to her in her new home.


I haven’t heard of any other members who are or have been ill but members will be aware that our good friend and long-standing member, Maureen Ross, passed away on 8th March. 


Her funeral was held on Thursday 30th March at St. Chad’s church in Headingley and more than 20 members of the ULLC attended.  Maureen was a stalwart member of the Club for almost 40 years, she was a committee member for many years, serving as Secretary several times and also as President.  She will be sadly missed by all who knew her.



Book Group

Thursday 30th March 2023

The March 2023 meeting of Book Group 2 was held at the home of Jennifer Milligan.  Unfortunately, we were rather reduced in numbers for various reasons but this didn’t stop us having the usual lively and informative discussion.

The book for the month was Miss Benson’s Beetle by Rachel Joyce.  This is described as “an uplifting story of female friendship” but we all felt it was more than that (although there was no suggestion of sex!).  It is set in the 1950s and is a rather unlikely tale of two women, who have nothing in common, travelling together to the South Pacific in search of a beetle, which has never been classified.  The two are polar opposites in character but come to depend on each other and in the end form a real friendship.  


We agreed that this book was easy to read and was very amusing in places, with some memorable “one-liners”.  The descriptions were excellent and there were also several passages of a philosophical nature, particularly when Miss Benson realises that her relationship towards her companion is changing. The ending felt a little abrupt but maybe the writer left the future to our imagination.

Most of us thoroughly enjoyed this book but one member thought it was too long.  Another member said she was sorry to have finished it and would look for other books by this author. 

Our thanks go to Jennifer for hosting the meeting and for the usual delicious tea and cake.




Garden Group


At our meeting in February, the group considered the desirability of a garden pond. Benefits for wildlife were weighed against the problems of maintenance. This took us on to the now global problem of the Water Hyacinth, a pond plant available for purchase in the UK until a few years ago, (I once had some) but now banned as an invasive non-native species. In other parts of the world, it is blocking waterways and laying a dense carpet of growth on lakes. 

At the March meeting, we looked at some Skirret plants, yet to find their place in my garden. Once very popular with the Tudors, and known long before that time, the Skirret was grown for its sweet, edible roots. It fell out of favour as a root crop following the availability of sugar and the potato.  Being related to the carrot, the Skirret inspired our eating of carrot cake as part of the refreshment session. 




And finally!


Lack of space precludes any words of the month this month but I hope to include some next month. 


The next newsletter will be 30th April.  If you have any items for inclusion, please could you let me have them by no later than 28th April. 


My contact details are by email to: 


I hope you have enjoyed reading the newsletter.  Take Care and Keep Safe,






Monthly Newsletter     -    January 2023


Dear Ladies,

Welcome to the January edition of the monthly newsletter.  I hope you are all well despite the bitterly cold weather.  


News of Members

I am pleased to say that I have not heard of any member being taken ill this month, although I do know that several members, or their spouses, have on-going chronic health issues and to them we send our very best wishes.




Forthcoming Events

Plans for the programme to the end of the academic session in June have now been made and details and dates are shown below.  Flyers for each event will be sent out in good time, together with booking forms where necessary. 


Lawnswood Coffee Mornings

The first informal coffee morning of the year was held on Tuesday 10th January and I am indebted to Gillian Roche for the enclosed photograph, where it looks like a good time was had by all! 


lunch golf club

As the Coffee mornings have proved to be a very popular addition to the Club calendar, we have booked for the event to continue each month throughout 2023.  

These informal gatherings will be held on the second Tuesday of each month with the exception of April and December when the event will take place on the first Tuesday (Tuesday 4th April and Tuesday 5th December) to allow for the Easter holidays and for the Christmas lunch.

Therefore the next Coffee Morning will be held on Tuesday 14th February at 10.30am onwards at the Lawnswood Pub/Restaurant, Otley Road, Adel.

As before, we have arranged for a section of the restaurant to be reserved for our exclusive use for as long as we wish to stay.   Coffee/Tea and other drinks are available to purchase at own cost and for those who wish to stay on and have lunch afterwards this also can be purchased, again at own cost. 

For those who do not know the Lawnswood it is a very friendly and welcoming Pub/Restaurant (see Gallery) and we will have sole use of one, private, section of the dining room. There are no steps to this section of the restaurant and it can be accessed through the main doors at either end of the building. There is plenty of free parking with a number of blue badge spaces and for those travelling on public transport, the Numbers 8 and X84 buses stop outside.

As this is a ‘drop-in’ session there is no need to book in advance but I hope as many members as possible will be able to attend.  



1st March - Visit to The Special Collections at the Brotherton Library

See also a work from the collection in the December Newsletter below this one.

special collection Brotherton

The University of Leeds Ladies’ Club

invites all members and guests to visit the 

University of Leeds Special Collections of the Brotherton Library 

on Wednesday 1 March at 1pm 

The focus of the visit will be on two major benefactors: Lord Brotherton, who began collecting a century ago and donated his extensive collection of rare books and manuscripts to the Library which bears his name, and John Bedford, an art and antique dealer who specialised in furniture history and amassed a unique collection of books, manuscripts and ephemera, which was gifted to the Library in 2019.          

The visit will include a talk by Rhiannon Lawrence-Francis, Books and Rare Maps Manager, and the opportunity to view some of the collections and the Brotherton Research Centre, newly developed thanks to the generosity of John Bedford’s estate.

The talk will take place in the Sheppard Room, part of the Treasures of the Brotherton Gallery in the Parkinson Building. 

(There is now a lift at the side of the Parkinson Steps for ease of access.)  


The cost is £6.00 per person which includes coffee/tea and biscuits 

and is payable in advance. 


Bookings should be made with the Club Secretary, Mrs Gillian Roche, on the separate booking form attached to your email message of Wednesday 1st. January . 

Guests are welcome but, as the Sheppard Room only seats forty, early booking is recommended to avoid disappointment. 




Members should note that there is no parking on campus but that the University is well served by buses eg: 1, 6, 8, 27, 28 etc 

Guests are invited to attend.


29th March - Visit to Marks and Spencer Museum at 1pm.




The University of Leeds Ladies’ Club

invites all members and guests to visit the 

The Marks in Time Exhibition - ‘Dressed in Time’ 

on Wednesday 29th March at 1pm 

at the M & S Company Archive, The Michael Marks Building, 

Western Campus, The University of Leeds.  LS2 9LP         


The exhibition celebrates the role that M & S has played in people’s lives since 1884 and features unique artefacts, historic garments, films and photographs from the archives.  

Our visit will consist of a talk on the history of M & S in the comfortable surroundings of the Seminar room where we will be served refreshments during the talk.  

We will then be free to tour the exhibition at leisure. 

The Archive is situated in the Michael Marks Building which is on the Western Campus of the University, just behind the Business School (formerly the Leeds Grammar School). 

The entrance is on the corner of Clarendon Road and Woodsley Road.

There is no general parking on site but there are two Blue Badge spaces next to the entrance. 

The building has level access throughout and is fully wheelchair accessible.

The Maximum Group size for a visit is 50 and guests are invited. 


Bookings should be made with the Club Secretary, Mrs Gillian Roche, 

on the separate booking form attached to your email.. 

There is no charge for this event however, for catering purposes, 

attendance must be booked by no later than Wednesday 22nd March. 

M&S museum

30th April - Spring Lunch and Coronation Celebration

at Headingley Golf Club. Guests are invited.



8th June - Talk by Malcolm Johnson - “Preserve Your Memories - Charting the 1960’s”

at Headingley Golf Club. Guests are invited.



28th June - Annual General Meeting at Headingley Golf Club.

Members only



13th December - Christmas Lunch at Headingley Golf Club.

Guests are invited.


News of Groups

Book Group

Christine Roy has sent me the following report of the January meeting of Book Group 2, which was held on Thursday 26th January 2023

Our first book of the year was The Lincoln Highway by Amor Towles and it fell to me to introduce it.  A real pleasure.  I made it clear at the outset that this was more likely to be a eulogy than a critique.  

This is a long book and I concentrated my remarks on the characters of Emmett, Duchess, Woolly and Billy in the main. As a historical novel it is set in the USA at a culturally and politically significant time, 1955.  Through the characters the important themes of racial equality and feminism are explored all through the means of a road trip which, ironically, only focuses on a small section of the eastern end of the Lincoln Highway and is undertaken largely by train. I loved the way each character is given an individual voice and the different moral compasses of Emmett and Duchess are delineated.  

Fortunately, not everyone agreed with my undiluted enthusiasm about the book or else there would have been no discussion.  Most people had liked the book although a few had found it heavy going.  Most agreed that the individual voices of each character were convincing but even I had to agree that perhaps there were just a few too many characters given detailed background stories.  Perhaps we should crowd fund a course for American editors to learn how to cut down a novel! 

Thanks to Tina for hosting us.  As usual the post book discussion was amusing and interesting, even though largely about a series of (minor!) mishaps.


Garden Group

Heather Harrison has sent me the following reports of both the December and the January Garden Group meetings. 

December 2022.  Garden Group celebrated the approaching end of the calendar year with a buffet lunch at the December meeting. This event replaced the usual festive gathering at the home of Janet and Barry Herbert, and sadly Janet was unable to join us.  Those attending came burdened with a delicious range of goodies, all of which were much enjoyed.  This was a well-supported and happy occasion, during which horticultural relevance seemed limited to the sprigs of real holly cake decorations.

January 2023.  Breaking with tradition the New Year quiz was replaced with a consideration of the effects of foxes in urban gardens.  We looked at a slide show of still photographs and short videos taken in my garden in recent months.  On balance it was agreed that foxes are beneficial in their consumption of rodents and fallen fruit, but video evidence showed their less desirable marking of my Brussels Sprout plants.  This caused more amusement than the increasing number of large gaps in a hedge, made by the current fox population as a means of avoiding the minimal effort of jumping over a perfectly convenient gate. Tradition was ultimately upheld by the tea and cake ceremony.


Cottage Road Cinema.


I have received the latest flyer from the Cottage Road Cinema which features a number of new films in early February. 


Amongst them are two showings of ‘Tar’, on both 1st and 2nd February plus ‘Empire of Light’ and ‘A Man called Otto’ – incredibly all on the same day (Thursday 2nd February).


They have also introduced two new programmes ‘Back at the Cottage’ and ‘Classics at the Cottage’ when they will show classic films from the forties onwards. I will pass on any further information as and when I receive it from the cinema.

Details of all these showings are on the cinema website at


As I am only able to include the information I have received from members, if you have any other news or any items for inclusion please let me know.  


I will be sending out each month’s issue on the last day of the month with the next issue due on 28th February.  If you have any items for inclusion, please could you let me have them by no later than 26th February.


 I hope you have enjoyed reading the newsletter and send all my good wishes to you and your families,





Dear Ladies,

Welcome to the December edition of the monthly newsletter, the last of 2022.  We hope that you all had an enjoyable Christmas and that you are keeping well and Covid free.   I start this newsletter with news of forthcoming events and some dates for your diary.


Forthcoming Events


‘Drop-In’ Coffee Mornings

Following on from the popularity of the ‘Drop-In’ Coffee Mornings in 2022 we have arranged to continue the occasions throughout 2023, on the second Tuesday of each month, unless otherwise advised, with the first such meeting being on Tuesday 10th January 2023 at 10.30am at the Lawnswood Arms, Otley Road, Adel


As before, a section of the restaurant will be reserved for our exclusive use. Coffee/Tea and other drinks are available to purchase at own cost and for those who wish to stay on and have lunch afterwards this also can be purchased, again at own cost. There are no steps to this section of the restaurant and it can be accessed through the main doors at either end of the building. There is plenty of free parking with a number of blue badge spaces and for those travelling on public transport, the Numbers 8 and X84 buses stop outside.

As this is a ‘drop-in’ session there is no need to book in advance but I hope as many members as possible will be able to attend as this will be our first get-together of the year.  If you would like more details please don’t hesitate to get in touch, my contact details are at the end of the newsletter.


Visit to the Special Collections of the Brotherton Library on Wednesday 1st March at 2pm

brotherton collection

We have been invited to view the Special Collections at the Brotherton Library at 2pm on Wednesday 1 March.   


It has been proposed that we have a talk in the Sheppard Room , which is next to the Treasures of the Brotherton Gallery, followed by a tour of the Gallery itself and the new Research Centre. Normally the Research Centre is open for teaching and priority is given to student bookings so we are privileged to be allowed to visit it – a very special one-off!  We hope that as many members as possible will be able to attend.




A number of other events and meetings are in the planning stage and further details will be sent out as dates and timings are finalised.  Watch this space!


News of Groups


Book Group II met on 22nd December at the home of their convenor, Christine Roy.


A lively discussion ensued on the merits or otherwise of the book of the month, The Midnight Library by Matt Haig.  Some members had enjoyed the book and had found it a very unusual and interesting concept whereas others couldn't get into it at all. The overall view, after much deliberation, was that the book was like Marmite, you either loved it or….


After the discussion, Christine then served us a buffet lunch at which where we were treated to a veritable feast of festive goodies.   Our thanks to Christine for the delicious lunch and also for convening the group all year.  She works tirelessly for the group, organising the meetings, purchasing the books on our behalf and generally keeping us all up to date with what is happening within the group.  It is very much appreciated by all involved.



The Cottage Road Cinema Group


The Cottage Road Cinema has advised me that the next ‘Senior Screening will be on Thursday 5th January at 2pm.


The featured film is I Wanna Dance with Somebody which is an upcoming feature about the late musical icon, Whitney Houston. Naomi Ackie stars as Whitney Houston in the musical biopic, which is based on the epic life and music of the iconic singer. Directed by Kasi Lemmons and written by Academy Award Nominee Anthony McCarten, the film will take audiences on an emotional, energetic journey through Houston's career and music.


The management advise also that the next screening in their ‘Cinema Classics’ series will be on Wednesday 15th February at 8pm when they will show Casablanca starring Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman. Further details and tickets for this and all the screenings are available online at




Gillian Roche has asked me to let you know that Ann Lightman, who gave us the interesting talk on Lawnswood Cemetery in November has sent details of her 2023 programme of walks around the cemetery.  They don’t start until 19th March but you may like to make a note in your diary.


Walks around Lawnswood Cemetery, Leeds LS16 6AH.  Spring 2023 programme

Ann Lightman is offering the following walks, all at 2.00 p.m. on Sundays and no charge made! Expect each to last about two hours –tailored to suit group or individual needs.  The meeting point varies according to the walk. 

March 19: “Introduction to Lawnswood Cemetery 

Meeting point, the car park opposite the main entrance on A660, Leeds – Otley road. 

The walk covers the history, the buildings and the listed monuments in the Victorian cemetery. The route varies depending on what spring flowers are at their best.  Reserve date 26 March 

April 16: NEW this year: “Early years of the Leeds Museum”. 

Meeting point – in front of the chapels. 

The walk covers the memorials, in the Victorian and the 1910 extension, of eminent people who were either curators or Presidents of the Leeds Philosophical and Literary Society, owners of the museum in the early years. Some interesting and different monuments visited.   Reserve date: 7 May


May 21: (Introduced last year) “Innovation and Trailblazers” 

Meeting Point: Friends Noticeboard just inside the main entrance. 

The walk takes us up to the Columbarium, the Victorian cemetery and the 1910 extension. A varied walk!   Reserve date: 28 May 


The reserve dates will come into operation should the first date be cancelled due to weather conditions (especially wind & heavy rain) or other unavoidable reason (eg.illness, road closures etc) 


Ann also does walks Arts in Leeds” & “Links to Leeds University” in addition to those above and talks “Behind the Chapels and Women of Lawnswood for private groups – please contact her to discuss your requirements.     To book any (or all) of these free tours, please contact Ann on or 0113 216 0630.    




Gillian tells me also that there is to be an afternoon concert at the School of Music in memory of Justin Grossman, one of the founder members of the Friends of University Art and Music who died earlier this year, which some of our members may be interested in attending. It is to be given by a dynamic young quartet, Quatuor Agate.  

A musical treat - The School of Music of the University will be presenting an afternoon concert on Sunday 29 January by the dynamic young quartet Quatuor Agate. 


The concert is in memory of Justin Grossman, former Life Fellow of the University, who was a founder member of the Friends of University Art and Music, which is supporting the event. The programme includes works by Boccherini, Bartok and Brahms. Details and how to book tickets can be found on the website


Quatuor Agate : University of Leeds International Concert Series


Tickets (cards only) can also be bought in person from the School of Music or over the telephone (0113 343 2583) from 10am to 3pm Monday-Friday during term time. (The University is closed from 23 December - 2 January).



And finally - 

Words of the month – with a (very) tenuous connection to the time of year!

Refulgent Shining brightly

Posset A drink made of hot milk with Ale, Wine or the like

Herf A gathering where people enjoy hand-rolled cigars

Pellucid Transparent or clear




So, as we come to the end of 2022, I hope you have enjoyed reading this and all the other newsletters through the year.  As you know I can only include news and other items that are sent into me for publication so please do keep sending in anything you think may be of interest to other members.

The next newsletter will be sent out on 31st January 2023. Please let me have any items for inclusion by 28th January 2023.

All that remains is for me to wish you all a very Happy and Healthy New Year.