Steel City Readers: Reading for Pleasure in Sheffield 1925-1955 – a crowdfunding mission

Dear Reading 1900-1950 followers and contributors,

This blog has now been running for a decade – since Erica Brown posted the first book review in July 2012. I will in July be posting a blog about what we are doing to celebrate a decade of reading and reviewing.

However, our sister organisation Reading Sheffield is also marking ten years of activity. The intention was always that Reading 1900-1950 would focus on the novels people read in the first half of the twentieth century, while Reading Sheffield would focus on recording the memories of readers who grew up in Sheffield between 1925 and 1955 and research what they read, where they found their books, their use of Sheffield’s libraries, and the impact of reading on their lives.

From this original oral history project followed nearly ten years of digesting and following up the leads it provided. This work has now been written up as a book by the founding chair of Reading Sheffield, Dr Mary Grover, and will be published under the title: Steel City Readers: Reading for Pleasure in Sheffield 1925-1955, by Liverpool University Press, in both paperback and e-book formats. We are aiming through crowdfunding to raise £12,500, to buy an ‘open access licence’ which will make the e-book available for free to anyone who wants it anywhere, to provide a copy of the book for each of the original interviewees, and to publicise the book widely. We know this is a considerable challenge, but the book is an important one, which deserves a wide readership. It is a lasting tribute to the interviewees, to ordinary readers, and to the history of reading and libraries in Sheffield.

We do appreciate that everyone’s circumstances are different, and that making a donation may not be possible. If you are in a position to donate, please know that we are very grateful. We know that some of you have already donated, and we thank you very much. We have set up a Just Giving Page – here is the link to it: https://www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/readingsheffield .

Do get in touch if you have any questions.

  • Best wishes, Chris (current editor of the Reading 1900-1950 blog)

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