Conference will remember Kate

REMEMBERED: An academic conference on Chantry Chapel will be held in memory of historian Kate Taylor, above.
REMEMBERED: An academic conference on Chantry Chapel will be held in memory of historian Kate Taylor, above.
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A conference about the importance of the medieval Chantry Chapel will also remember historian Kate Taylor who died last year.

Miss Taylor led the fundraising for the chapel for many years. She died aged 81 in May 2015. She was awarded an MBE shortly before her death and was made the subject of a Wakefield Star posthumously.

Next month she will be remembered at a conference about the chapel and its bridge at The Hepworth Wakefield.

Wakefield Historical Society president Pam Judkins said: “Kate Taylor was a Wakefield girl who remained committed to her home city and worked tirelessly to improve it. After retiring from a career in teaching, she packed in another lifetime’s worth of researching and publishing about local history and campaigning to preserve what was best about Wakefield.

“For many years she led the fundraising and conservation to Wakefield’s medieval Chantry Chapel. She also researched and wrote about the later history of the Chapel. She ran Wakefield Historical Publications, the publishing arm of Wakefield Historical Society, which by the time of her death had produced 44 books and booklets. The many books she wrote herself included work on Wakefield cinemas and the Theatre Royal. And she spread her enthusiasm for history and the local heritage through teaching for The Open University and lecturing widely.”

Next month’s conference also marks the 660th anniversary of the beginning of worship in the chapel and also the 25th anniversary of the Friends of the Chantry Chapel.

The stone medieval bridge and the Chantry Chapel attached to it are rare survivals of Wakefield’s importance in the Middle Ages. The bridge was built in about 1340 and the chapel was licensed for worship in 1356.

Speakers at the conference will examine the history and architecture of the chapel. They will also examine medieval bridge construction and its challenges.

The October 1 conference is being organised by Wakefield Historical Society together with The Hepworth Wakefield, the Friends of the Chantry Chapel and Wakefield Cathedral.

The cost ranges from £10 to 15. See www.wakefieldhistoricalsociety.org.uk or ring 07971 449463 for a full programme and booking form.