This was a fascinating talk as part of the recent programme theme, The Ever-changing Valley (May-Aug 17).
The planning of this theme, and its event programme and exhibition, was led by Andrew McTominey, a PhD student at Leeds Beckett University whose thesis examines the impact of the Washburn Valley reservoirs.
In the talk and slideshow, Andrew examined the patterns of ownership in the Valley from the mid-19th to mid-20th C, including the impact of the Fawkes family and their relationship with the Leeds Corporation. He also described how Leeds Corporation transformed the landscape with the introduction of the reservoirs, and how it utilised the land that it owned by using unemployed labour to afforest areas of the Valley, especially around the reservoirs. Questions followed, then homemade refreshments for an appreciative audience.