Yorkshire Times
A Voice of the North
3:36 PM 26th June 2021

Yorkshire Artist Reveals Historical Tales Of Local People

Bradford-born, learning disabled artist Daniel Foulds presents Hidden History – a project bringing to life true stories of historical characters from local Yorkshire areas. Taking place outdoors at three arts and heritage venues in Bradford, Elsecar and Halifax, three different theatre performances will be showcased in July 2021.

The Hidden History live-theatre project combines Daniel’s passion for history and theatre and aims to engage audiences on a journey of discovery and to change perceptions of the places where they live.

The outdoor plays are performed as walkabout shows to audiences of 12-15 people, moving around the venues and using their historical backgrounds, taking place at various times over the first three weekends in July.

Launching on 3 July is the play, Bradford - A Hidden History at Bolling Hall Museum, one of Bradford’s oldest buildings. Travel through time to see the stories of three forgotten heroes of Bradford brought to life - a servant determined to change the fate of Bradford by summoning a ghost; an apothecary angry at the rejection of his remedy for a dying patient, and a young woman who must stand up for what she knows to be right.

Elsecar Heritage Centre is the venue of choice for the play Edgar – A Hidden Life, set in the conservation village of Elsecar, located within the former ironworks and colliery workshops of the Earl Fitzwilliam. On 10 and 11 July, Edgar’s story will be unearthed. After half a century in silence, hidden away in an asylum, Edgar Bower wanted to return to his beloved home in Wentworth village. Edgar is a play about secrets and shame, poverty and prejudice - but most of all it is a play about the sustaining power of love.

The final play titled Deeds Not Words is at The Piece Hall, the former 18th-century cloth hall in Halifax. A play about Halifax-born Laura Annie Willson, who was twice imprisoned in 1907 for her actions in support of women’s suffrage. During her campaigning, she encountered violent assaults and threats, but she was never deterred and declared, ‘If they could sentence me for thinking I’d have been sentenced for life.’ Deeds Not Words tells the story of the suffragette years of this truly remarkable woman; mill girl, agitator, engineer, innovator, house-builder – and MBE.

Daniel has written the three scripts with playwright Mary Cooper and will direct the Bradford show with support from director Madeleine O'Reilly - who is directing the two shows at Elsecar and Halifax.

Daniel Foulds, artist, said:-
“I am very excited that Hidden History is finally happening at three unique Yorkshire venues. I cannot wait to see how people react to the plays and I hope to demonstrate that history is interesting and relevant.

"I love writing. The printed page has always been a great inspiration for me throughout my life ever since I was able to lift a pen. Originally, I was told that because of my disability I would never be able to write very well, which made me even more determined to succeed. Through hard work and practice, I started to write little, short stories and progressed my writing to poetry, then to long feature-length novels and now scriptwriting.”

Details of key people:-
Written by Daniel Foulds
Co-Writer - Mary Cooper
Directed by Madeleine O'Reilly
Designed by Emma Williams
Performers - Sophie Clay, Michael Forrest, Alan Clay, Levi Payne, Lisa Howard.

The Hidden History project is supported by Mind the Gap - England's leading learning disability performance and live arts organisation and has been postponed twice due to the coronavirus pandemic.

For more info and to book tickets, visit: