THE LEEDS PHILOSOPHICAL AND LITERARY SOCIETY
193RD ANNUAL REPORT FOR 2012-2013
The Council presents its report and financial statements for the year ended 30 September 2013. The financial statements comply with current statutory requirements and with the requirements of the Society’s memorandum and articles.
The Society is a company limited by guarantee governed by its memorandum and articles of association. Membership is open to anyone on payment of an annual subscription of £18 which is due on 1 October each year. Only those members who have paid or have been elected to Honorary Membership are entitled to vote at the AGM. In the event of the Society being wound up, every person who is a member, or who has been a member within one year, is liable to contribute to the debts and liabilities of the Society a sum not exceeding £10.
STRUCTURE, GOVERNANCE AND MANAGEMENT
The members of the Council are considered to be both directors for Companies Act purposes and trustees for Charities Act purposes. One third of the members of Council retire by rotation at each Annual General Meeting (normally held in December), when appointments or reappointments are made. The Council has powers to co-opt to its membership. Membership of the Council takes into account the need to have members with expertise to cover the variety of activities of the Society. All members of the Society are notified prior to the AGM of the names of the Council members who are due to retire and are invited to submit nominations. The AGM held on 5th December 2012 approved the re-election of Ms Douglas, Dr Evennett, Professor Richardson and Professor Taylor and the election of Mr J R Evans.
The Officers of the Society are elected by and from the members of Council at the first meeting of Council following the Annual General Meeting; at the Council meeting on 10th January 2013, Professor North was re-elected as President, Dr Lydon as Secretary, Mr Evans as Treasurer and Professor Hill as Vice-President, with a view to her election as President after the next AGM.
Council met on six occasions during 2012-2013. Parts of its business were delegated to the following committees: Grants, Events, Publications and Museums, chaired respectively by Dr Hatton, Mrs Wainwright, Mr Hirschmann and Professor North. Following the resignation of Mrs Wainwright, Professor Bushby was appointed as Chairman of the Events Committee. These committees are required to act in accordance with the Society’s Aims and Policies, and their recommendations are put to the Council for its approval.
Mr Norman Madill has continued as Assistant Secretary, managing the Society’s links with its members, the sale of its publications (in association with Jeremy Mills Publishing Ltd), and other necessary administrative matters.
THE SOCIETY’S AIMS AND ACTIVITIES
The Society aims to promote the advancement of science, literature and the arts in the city of Leeds and its immediate area. In furtherance of this aim, which Council believes to be of benefit to the public in this area, the Council’s policy has been to disburse its income as follows by:
· providing a programme of free public lectures relevant to the Society’s aims
· supporting the work of the City of Leeds Museums & Galleries
· supporting other activities in Leeds of a scientific, literary or artistic nature
· providing grants for purposes of research, publication, or artistic performance
· awarding prizes
In making grants to promote the advancement of the Society’s aims, the Council places particular emphasis on (but does not limit its grants to) the support of activities which directly benefit the citizens of Leeds or assist those engaged in academic and scholarly activities relating to Leeds and its immediate area. It does not normally give grants in general support of students on taught courses. The value of grants is normally in the range £100 to £2,000, although this limit may be exceeded in special circumstances. The Council is keen to support new endeavours by the award of ‘pump-priming’ grants.
The Society’s archives
The Society’s archives are held in the Special Collections section of the Brotherton Library and during the year conservation work has been carried out on the more important documents in the collection, which has now been supplemented by the working papers of Murray Mitchell on the Building Stone Heritage of Leeds book published by the Society.
As we have no library of our own we have now given the Leeds Library copies of a number of books that we had received because of the financial support we had given towards their publication.
ACHIEVEMENTS AND PERFORMANCE
During the 2012-2013 session, the Society continued its recent successes in fulfilling its aims as listed above, including a programme of artistic and scientific events for members and non-members as detailed below. During the year the Society lost 16 members through resignation or death and welcomed 12 new members, so that at the end of September 2013 the total number stood at 185.
The regular monthly events covered a wide range of topics as usual and were always well supported both by Society members, guests and members of the public. The Egyptian Pharaohs exhibition in the arena of the City Museum resulted in the Annual Science Fair, normally held in the Spring, being postponed until the Autumn, resulting in two Fairs being held in 2012/2013.
The following events took place:
· Professor Jane Francis Captain Scott’s Triumph – the Glossopteris Fossil
· 2012 Annual Science Fair in the Leeds City Museum
· Professor Robin Perutz Solar Energy
· Mike Hoyland Pre-Bonfire-Night Spectacular
· The Priestley Lecture: Michael Harvey, National Media Museum, Bradford The first moving colour pictures
· Patrick Eyres Dan Dare and L Ashwell Wood
· Annual General Meeting and Dinner, with after-dinner speaker, Nima Poovaya-Smith: Diamond Chronicles – India and the West
· Malcolm Lobley Haiti – heraldry, history and a touch of voodoo
· Professor John Bradley Through the cooking glass – flavours and aromas
· An evening with Mark Hearld
· 2013 Annual Science Fair in the Leeds City Museum
· Michael Ridsdale The Fountains Abbey Estate
· Professor Peter Main Sound
· Professor Tony North & Dr Arwen Pearson The Bragg Centenary
· Summer visit to Lyme Park and the Cooperative Museum in Rochdale
· Natural History-Themed Road Show at the Discovery Centre, organised with the Leeds City Museum
In addition, the Society was represented at several events, organised by the University of Leeds, concerned with the centenary of W H and W L Bragg’s discovery of the principles of X-ray crystallography. These included the unveiling of a plaque at the house Whin Brow, near Scarborough, where the Braggs first heard of experiments describing the diffraction of X-rays by crystals. The cost of the plaque was met partly by the Society – see Grants section below.
Grants and Prizes
During the year the following grants and prizes were awarded by the Society:
· Brendan McPartlan, £500 to support poets attending ‘Wicked Words Showcase’ events at Severn Arts Centre in Chapel Allerton.
· Michael Meadowcroft, £750 to support the acquisition of microfilms of the papers of Mary Gawthorpe (1881-1973), Leeds suffragette.
· John Roles on behalf of Leeds Museums and Galleries, £500 towards the purchase of a John Atkinson Grimshaw watercolour, View of Leeds from Woodhouse Ridge.
· Professor Derek Scott, £200 towards the permissions charges for illustrations in a forthcoming book, Music and the Idea of the North.
· Kerry Harker, £750 to commission an essay and photography on the former Tetley Headquarters Building which has been leased by Project Space Leeds from Spring 2013.
· Dr James Stark on behalf of the young, professional, Leeds-based choir – Ecclesia, £400 to support a schools’ educational event: Gabriel Faure – Requiem at St Aidan’s Church, Roundhay.
· Dr Claire Jones, £1000 to enhance the ‘virtual home’ of the Museum of the History of Science, Technology and Medicine at the University of Leeds.
· Veronica Lovell, $350 plus charges to enable a hard copy and CDs of Humphry Repton’s Armley House Red Book to be archived locally in Leeds City Library.
· Dr Jessica Malay, £1000 towards the production costs of an edition of Anne Clifford’s Great Books of Record.
· Dr Stephen Muir, £1096 towards the accommodation costs of invited speakers attending the international conference Richard Wagner’s Impact on His World and Ours, to be held in Leeds, 30 May – 2 June 2013.
· Nigel Walsh on behalf of Leeds Art Gallery, £450 towards the acquisition of a portfolio of nine mono prints, Perse (Ancienne) Dressee (2009) by the artist Karen Babayan.
· Pascal Ansell, £300 towards the publication of a student-led journal Roundhouse at the University of Leeds.
· Prof Richard Andrews, £750 towards the purchase of a baroque viola for the Leeds Baroque Orchestra.
· Dr Christopher Hammond, £200 towards a Bragg plaque at ‘Whin Brow’, Cloughton, Nr Scarborough.
· Kathleen Evans, £750 to support the Education Programme associated with the fifth Leeds Lieder+ Festival.
· Hazel Costello, £250 towards the cost of staging the Science Fair at the 2013 Otley Science Festival.
· Richard Tinker, £300 towards the printing of fund-raising leaflets associated with the restoration of the Emily Ford Paintings in All Souls’ Church Blackman Lane, Leeds.
· Guy Wilson, £225 to provide prizes for the 2013 Leeds Peace Poetry Competition.
· William Rose, £750 to support research into the history of alternative film and video production in connection with the celebration of the centenary of the Hyde Park Picture House in 2014.
· Dr Arwen Pearson, £750 towards the commissioning of a new work by Cheryl Frances-Hoad for the Clothworkers Consort based around the Braggs’ work on X-ray crystallography in Leeds.
· Jane Anthony, £750 towards the production costs of Opera Appetizers to be performed by Young Opera Venture on tour.
· Irfan Shah, £1500 to support research costs associated with the production of ‘The First Film’ by Guerilla Films Limited.
· Sandra Carlon, £200 to support a performance of contemporary classical music by the Ligeti Quartet at the White Cloth Gallery, Leeds.
· Prof Greg Radick, £1369.20 to fund Mark Steadman securing and developing the collections of the University of Leeds Zoological Museum.
· Arthur Chadwick Prize: Paul White, BSc in Medical Biochemistry.
· Modern Languages Prize: Lawrence Newberry-Payton, BA in French and Japanese.
The second edition of Walks Round Redbrick by the late Maurice Beresford, revised by Christopher Hammond, was published in 2013 as a joint publication with the Thoresby Society and the University of Leeds.
The Leeds City Museum
As before, we have continued to enjoy a good relationship with the staff of the Museums, to whom we are most grateful for their collaboration. It has been helpful that Mr John Roles, the Head of Leeds Museums and Galleries, has attended a number of Council meetings. Council meetings have continued to be held in the Museum. The Museum’s arena again provided a splendid theatre for our ‘pre-bonfire night spectacular’. The Museums Committee, comprising representatives from the Council and the Leeds Museums Service, has met twice in the course of the year and provides a valuable meeting place to discuss collaboration in the planning of events and the best use of grants for supporting the museum.