Jenny Zobel, York Race Equality Network

Throughout her life, Jenny Zobel (1946 – 2018) never failed to connect with her ancestors. In her own words “I wanted the portrait of my parents that hangs on the wall of my flat to act as a magic portal to transport me to the world of my ancestors.”  Jenny was born in 1946 on […]

Edna Annie Crichton, York’s first woman Lord Mayor

E A Crichton

Edna Annie Crichton (1876 – 1970) was a remarkable woman. At the age of 25 she came to live in York, which was to be her home for nearly 70 years. Edna stood for election to York City Council in 1919. A Quaker, she sat as an Independent Councillor and for 15 years was the […]

Nellie Buckley, Brownie and Girl Guides Leader

Nellie Buckley (1914 – 2008) was born in 1914 in Southlands, York and died age 94 on 18 April 2008.  She was baptised at Southlands Methodist Church and her funeral was held there.  Her involvement in the Church gave her the opportunity to volunteer for the Guiding movement, a commitment which she pursued throughout her […]

Magdalena Chavez, York’s first vegan restaurant

Magdelena (1953 – ) ran El Piano, a vegan and gluten free restaurant in Grape Lane, York. As a coeliac, I knew that it was safe for me to eat everything on the menu and I ate there many times. In addition, she organised several events for the local Coeliac UK group including cookery demonstrations […]

Lynn Moffat, Breast Nurse Practitioner

Lynn was born and bred in York and on leaving school in 1977 worked as a cadet nurse at the old private hospital, The Purey Cust Nursing Home. Cadet nurses worked alongside trained nurses, making beds, giving out meals and drinks, and assisting with care. Working with nurses, she fell in love with nursing.  On qualifying in 1981, at The York […]

Sally Hutchinson, Chief Officer, Age UK, York

Sally grew up in London and describes herself as the daughter of a strong woman.  She started work at the GLC – in sewers (actually an administrative role in the Public Health Department) and she subsequently moved into a post training people to work in the sewers. And it was a training post with Lambeth Council that was her route into Social Care, where she found her niche.  […]

Ivy Wightman, Lord Mayor and Viking Congress Host

Ivy Wightman (1910 – 1982) was Lord Mayor of York from May 1961 – May 1962 and the second woman to be Lord Mayor after Edna Annie Crichton.  Her appointments diary for May – December 1961 is in the archives of York Explore and reveals her packed itinerary of engagements.  Included among these are sittings for the […]

Delma Tomlin, Musician and Merchant Adventurer

Delma Tomlin is the Director of the National Centre for Early Music (NCEM) on Walmgate, York. A musician (singer), she came to York in 1984 to be the Administrator of York Festival, and then became the secretary of the Festival Trust which ran the Early Music Festival. She has made a significant difference to the musical […]

Sheila Dronfield, Doctor and Magistrate

Sheila Dronfield (1912 – 1996) made a big contribution to public life in York as a doctor, and as a magistrate – she chaired the bench until she retired at the age of seventy.  She was also active in her local church serving as a church warden and as a member of New Ainsty rural deanery.  An […]

Mary York, Chemistry Teacher and Guide Leader

Mary York (1931 – 2010) was born in Maltby, South Yorkshire where she began her guiding life by joining the Brownies. She studied at Leeds University and while there was an active participant in the university Scout and Guide unit.   She became a Sea Ranger, before becoming a Guide leader in 1954 while she was […]