Leeds U3A The University of the Third Age

The canal gardens, Roundhay

General meetings

General meetings are held on alternate Tuesdays at Moor Allerton Sports and Social Centre, Leeds LS17 6EL (opposite the fire station on Stonegate Road).
Meetings start at 2 p.m., doors open from 1.30.

Summer 2022

26 April

CSI Forensics: Fascinating insight into this little-known world

Gill Donnelly

10 May

The Plague Doctor (laughter is the best medicine)

David Bell

24 May

Writing and Publishing a Debut Novel set in Leeds

Nick Dahlgreen

7 June


Sue Seegar

21 June

Wildlife of the Pennine Hills

Doug Kennedy

5 July

Quiz; Book and Jigsaw exchanges

19 July

Annual Educational Coach Trip: Beamish

Margret Quinton

2 August

Drop in social: tea and chat

23 August

Drop in social: tea and chat

Autumn programme starts on 6 September.

Meeting on 12 October 2021

We were treated to a talk by Hans van Lemmen about the Burmantofts Pottery works. The fascinating talk was presented along with many interesting and beautiful slides, two of which we show you here.


photoThe Burmantofts pottery has a long and interesting history. The names of Wilcock (early bricks and sanitary pipes) and Holroyd are key – James Holroyd had control of the company in the late 1800s and early 1900s. The company flourished at this time and even had its own showroom in London. Under James Holroyd the company moved from rather straightforward pottery products such as “sanitary” pipes (aka in modern parlance sewage pipes) to more architectural, decorated pieces.

Although in 1889 the company was amalgamated within the Leeds Fireclay Company Ltd, it retained its own character and pieces are recognisably from the Burmantofts “stable”. The London Fireclay Company was a significant employer in the North of England at one stage employing 2000 workers of whom 450 were at Burmantofts. This was before their peak production period, and it is likely that there were more than this at some stage.

The products were significantly widened (and became more popular) with the introduction of faience – glazed ceramic. The range included brown salt-glazed chimneys, jardinieres, vases (some very ornate) and – most wonderfully in my opinion – architectural tiles. In the architectural tiles we must include a finish called Marmo (an imitator of marble – whitish finish). Many of the tiles form (formed in some cases) the facades of important buildings within Leeds and beyond – even as far as Ghent (Belgium). Leeds members may have seen these beautiful tiles in interiors such as the entrance in the Great Hall at Leeds University and within some of the older parts of the LGI. A very notable building which features tiling within and without is The Garden Gate pub at Hunslet.

Hans also brought in small pieces for us to look at and was available for questions after the main session. A wonderful afternoon,
Thank you, Hans

Piece submitted by Jo Turner (Committee member)

Meeting on 4 February 2020

Captain Robin McArthur and Sergeant Randy Quow from the Royal Military Academy at Sandhurst came to speak at our meeting in February. They gave a brilliant presentation illustrated with photographs and videos showing The Army at work. Very relevant to U3A members as our grandchildren will be approaching an age where they might consider a career in the Army.

All aspects of army life were covered ranging from initial training at Sandhurst to the fighting soldiers on duty. Some of the specialist careers were quite surprising. To support the general fighting force were telecommunications officers, doctors, psychiatrists and nurses together with an array of logistics staff. Very professional. Very informative and entertaining.