Life at Quarry Hill Flats during the 1930s

These photos provide a fascinating snapshot of life at UK's largest social housing complex during the first years of them being opened.

Wednesday, 17th February 2021, 7:54 am
Enjoy these photos from Quarry Hill Flats during the 1930s. PICS: Leeds Libraries, www.leodis.net
Enjoy these photos from Quarry Hill Flats during the 1930s. PICS: Leeds Libraries, www.leodis.net

The first phase of the Quarry Hill Flats build was completed in the spring of 1938 prompting a royal visit the following year and huge interest from the public. It would go on to provide housing for more than 3,000 residents in 938 self contained units. They were seen as a modern build at the time which included lifts, electric lighting, and a launderette. The flats were popular, encouraging a sense of community through the highly communal way of living. Yet despite being deemed ahead of their time the flats were demolished in 1978 due to their poor condition. These images are published courtesy of photographic archive Leodis, which is run by Leeds Library & Information Service. They also run heritage blog The Secret Library Leeds, which provides a behind the scenes look at the Central Library and highlights from its special collections, including rare books hidden away in the stacks. READ MORE: 21 of the best Leeds Quarry Hill Flats photos LOVE LEEDS? LOVE NOSTALGIA? Join Leeds Retro on facebook

A model of Quarry Hill Flats, supplied to Leeds Council by Partridge's Models Ltd. London in Julky 1935. Director of Housing R.A.H. Livett and Rev. Charles Jenkinson had visited Europe to seek inspiration for the design of new housing.
March 1938 .Close-up of the Estate Office showing glass bricks being fixed. It was situated on the end of Wright House, facing York Street/Marsh Lane.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

The Leeds City Council Housing Committee outside Quarry Hill Flats in June 1937.
Visitors queuing in New York Road to see Quarry Hill Flats in April 1938. The first stage of the construction of the flats was completed in March. Potential residents wanted to see the new facilities available.
March 1938. The corner of a bedroom. A dressing table has a mirror and vase of daffodils.
The Duke of Kent visits with civic digniitaries in June 1939. Although the first stage of the construction had been completed other parts of the flats were still under construction as seen in the photograph.
On the left is Lupton House, the first occupant of the flats moved into number 34 on March 30, 1938. This was a Mrs Conway with three children. In the centre, with the entrance archway is Kitson House.
Eastgate roundabout with Appleyard petrol filling station in August 1938. The large archway through to Oastler House is under construction.
The archway through to interior of Quarry Hill Flats in May 1939. This was Kitson House.
1939 and a woman stands outside Lupton House hanging out washing on lines which are strung across small, as yet undeveloped garden plots.
1939 and the Holmes family are seated around their dinner table in the living room of their flat in Lupton House. Living rooms were designed to include sitting room and dining room area.
Share your memories of life at Quarry Hill Flats with Andrew Hutchinson via email at: [email protected] or tweet him - @AndyHutchYPN