SLIDESHOW: Photo exhibition sheds light on four decades of life in Leeds

SCHOOL PE lessons probably don't evoke happy memories for everyone. But this snap of a class of energetic pupils from a Leeds school is sure to raise a few nostalgic smiles.

The photo is more than 60 years old, and features schoolchildren in the playground at Ellerby Lane Primary School in East Leeds.

The snap was taken sometime in the 1940s as the youngsters rehearsed for a 'PT' routine for the upcoming Children's Day at Roundhay Park.

It is one of hundreds of beautifully captured moments which will feature in a photo exhibition in East Leeds at the end of the month.

Full of playground memories and snapshots of local football, cricket and rugby teams amid varying degrees of glory, the exhibition travels through four decades of life in East Leeds, promising an emotional, nostalgic journey.

As well as hundreds of school and sporting moments, there are happy snaps of the old market district boys' club on Brussels Street and even, for anyone who remembers, Harry Farnill's horse-drawn greengrocery deliveries.

Organisers of the exhibition, to be held at Crossgates Shopping Centre, are now keen to hear from even more people to share their photo albums.

The photos will eventually be compiled into a book.

The exhibition was the brainchild of Graham Hawkridge and some of his friends, after a series of packed school reunions triggered a barrage of nostalgia.

It also follows a successful inaugural photo exhibition last year.

Mr Hawkridge said: "Our last exhibition created a tremendous response despite the lack of publicity.

"Many tales were derived and many memories came flooding back.

"The photos brought people together who had not seen each other for 40 or 50 years so there was a lot of emotional feeling.

"People were going away and coming back with the rest of their family to see the exhibition.

"We even had youngsters who were recognising their parents, grandparents and family members."

For the new exhibition, Mr Hawkridge particularly wants to hear from people who grew up in the Richmond Hill, Cross Green and East End Park areas of Leeds.

He said more than 300 pictures have already been submitted for this year's display, including schooltime snapshots from Mount St Mary's, Richmond Hill, Ellerby Lane, St Hilda's, Victoria and All Saints schools.

The photo exhibition will be held at the Crossgates Shopping Centre on Friday and Saturday, January 30 and 31, from 9am to 5pm.

Call Graham Hawkridge on 0113 2821556 or Pam Wright on 0113 2938432 for more details or to submit photos. All originals will be returned.

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