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All aboard the memory train!

Wellington Place calls out for Leeds Central Station memories and memorabilia for mini museum.

Did you, or someone you know work at Leeds Central Station? Were you a regular commuter? We want to hear from you!

Wellington Place is calling for people to share their cherished memories of Leeds Central Station and any related memorabilia to be displayed in a new mini museum soon to be opening at Wellington Place.

Located on the ground floor of Wellington Place’s Grade II listed wagon lifting hoist – one of the last remaining parts of the original station – the museum will celebrate Leeds’s rich industrial history and focus on different themes throughout the year. The first will highlight the core role that the tower played for Leeds’s original railway station and will include an exhibition capturing people’s memories of the working station.

The exhibition will include special artefacts spanning the station’s more than a century long history including rarely seen photography.

MEPC, the asset managers and developers behind Wellington Place, is encouraging people to get in touch and share their stories and experiences from visiting the station, as well as any souvenirs they’ve gathered over the years such as old photographs and train tickets. People can get in touch by emailing sophie@wellington-place.com.

Scheduled to open its doors in early 2024 the museum will be free to access by the public during the day.

Dating back to 1850, the lifting tower was one of a pair which stood either side of the river and canal viaduct. Using steam power and large chains, its role was to hoist wagons from the higher level passenger line down to the Great Northern Goods yard at the original Leeds Central railway station.

Leeds Central station closed in 1967, and the entire complex was demolished apart from the one lifting tower. The lifting tower was made a Grade II listed building and received a Leeds Civic Trust blue plaque in July 2011, making it a specific historical point of interest in Leeds city centre.

Along with the construction of the mini museum, the Grade II listed lifting tower is also undergoing a range of repair and restoration work. This includes repairing and repointing the existing building fabric; making the structure water tight; restoration of the staircase to the upper floor; a green roof; new landscaping; new windows and doors, and the introduction of internal and external lighting.

Dominique Murray, marketing manager and head of customer experience at MEPC, the developer and asset manager behind Wellington Place, said: “The direct link to Leeds’s history has always been a proud part of the identity of Wellington Place, with the Grade II lifting tower being a symbol of Wellington Place and a great example of the city’s industrial past.

“We wanted to celebrate and preserve this rich heritage, and what better way than creating a museum that will act as a time capsule for residents who hold fond memories of the station, as well as an educational tool for younger generations, creating an interesting and informative attraction for both people based at Wellington Place and the wider community.

“We’d like to encourage people to share any memories or memorabilia they have from the station, regardless of how big or small they think it might be. All contributions to this project will be greatly appreciated and will play an active role in keeping the memories of Leeds alive.”