New Rowntree Histories

New Rowntree Histories

The rich histories and legacies of the Rowntree family, company, and Trusts extend across nearly two centuries, and cover a huge range of topics and themes. However, many of these have not yet been fully explored.

We held a ‘New Rowntree Histories’ event at Clements Hall as part of the 2022 York Festival of Ideas, which was livestreamed by Pilot Theatre. This event revealed some fascinating, surprising, and thought-provoking stories of Rowntree’s which have not yet been told, using research into understudied areas of the Rowntree archives. The speakers considered what we can learn from their findings as we navigate some of the key social issues facing us today, including land reform, the housing crisis and the political ideas that can inform better futures.

You can watch the event here:


The event was chaired by Gary Brannan, Keeper of Archives and Special Collections, Borthwick Institute for Archives and the talks were by:

Callum Reilly, ‘Reform in the Garden Village of New Earswick’ and Shaun Pitt, ‘Benjamin Seebohm Rowntree and Piotr Kropotkin: A friendship transcending politics?’

Article image credit: 1950s Rowntree’s educational aid © Alamy


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Our work is enabled by grant funding from the Joseph Rowntree Foundation, the Joseph Rowntree Charitable Trust, and the Joseph Rowntree Reform Trust. If you would like to make a financial donation to further support our work, it is easy to pay online (with or without Gift Aid) by clicking the link below. You can get in touch with us about other ways of giving via