Rare volume of maps return back to Barnsley

Barnsley Archives and Local Studies have successfully purchased a volume of fifteen rare hand drawn Barnsley maps dating back to 1800, from a London auction.

The maps are based on the Barnsley Enclosure map of 1779 and include details of changes to the town in the years following.

Recognisable street names like Westgate, Market Hill and Cheapside are featured, as well as a few which have long since disappeared such as Tumble Lane and Back Lane Road. The maps also feature individual buildings, landmarks and footpaths.

The purchase of the maps is particularly poignant as Barnsley Town Centre is currently undergoing a major transformation and the unique documents capture the heart of the town as it was in bygone years.

Each map measuring 370 x 225mm was originally drawn by local linen manufacturer and landowner Francis Kendray (1774-1840), after whom Kendray Hospital and subsequently the Kendray estate were named. His grand residence was situated between May Day Green and Eldon Street, not far from where the Lightbox and Barnsley Market are situated today. The Kendray family donated vast sums to the town back in the 19th century.

The fascinating maps are being fully digitised and will be made available to researchers online.

The purchase was made possible thanks to contributions from the Yorkshire Archaeological and Historical Society, the Friends of Barnsley Archives, the Barnsley Museums and Heritage Trust, and Barnsley Metropolitan Borough Council.

Cllr Tim Cheetham, Cabinet Spokesperson for Place (Regeneration and Culture) said:

We are delighted that such significant documents relating to the town have returned once again. Dating back 200 years they give an important insight into the town as it was centuries ago. We are extremely proud of our local archives service who protect and preserve documents such as this for researchers and for future generations.

Barnsley Archives will re reopening its doors on Monday 14 September by appointment only.