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Twenty years of 'The Barwicker'

from The Barwicker No. 80

This is Edition No. 80 of 'The Barwicker', the journal of Barwick-in-Elmet Historical Society. It has been published each quarter since March 1986, making it twenty years old. I well remember being appointed editor and holding our first editorial meeting with the other members, Bart Hammond and Hugh Hawkins. Little did we think that we were starting something that would continue for so long. I am very proud and honoured to have edited every one of the editions published so far.

We were fortunate in the old days to be able to draw on Bart's superb artistic skill to produce some unique illustrated articles. Hugh typed out the first editions and has taken a personal responsibility ever since to ensure that the appearance of our publications has been of a high standard. We decided that the price per edition should be 50p, at which it has remained ever since.

After Bart's death in January 1989, Tony Cox and Harold Smith were appointed to the editorial committee, and Martin Tarpey in more recent years. Each has contributed significantly to the success of the journal. In particular, Tony has written several articles on Scholes, Harold on the parish records and Martin has begun a series on 'Local Stalwarts'.

We have had the help of no fewer than 70 people who have contributed articles, etc., to make the journal so varied in it scope. These include local people and those living elsewhere but with an interest in Barwick and its history. We thank them all for their contributions. With 80 editions published so far we have been able to record the history of the district from the pre-Christian Iron Age, with its impressive earthworks, to recent times. A huge amount of material has been included. In addition to the society's and individual collections, all the editions have been forwarded to the British Library where they will be held in perpetuity. There can be few parishes that have such an extensive knowledge of their history as we have of ours.

Two significant changes have occurred in recent years. Harold Smith has introduced our web-site enabling thousands of people throughout the globe to read extracts from our publications and news of the Historical Society. In this way we have made many useful contacts. The other change is the opening of our resource centre where an increasing amount of written and illustrated material is being indexed and stored. This is making an increasing contribution to our publishing. We thank Cathryn Howard and her helpers for this invaluable work.

We see no reason why 'The Barwicker', with the help of all its friends, should not continue for many years in the future.


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