Charting the rise of ‘great, historic city’

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AUTHORS of a new book charting the development of Hull hope it will help change perceptions of the city.

The Building of a Port City , written by husband and wife historians David and Susan Neave, traces Hull’s development through its buildings, from its medieval origins to its emergence and ongoing significance as a major port.

Mr Neave said: “It is emphasising what we think are the things people should look at when they come to Hull. It’s a great, historic city of Yorkshire and many of the other cities are new compared to Hull.

“The other thing we wanted to show is how important it being a port has been. It’s a way of showing the true picture of Hull for those from outside, or who have a biased opinion of Hull.

“There’s a tendency to think of Northern cities as Victorian industrial places that have decayed.

“We also want to give local residents a sense of place and identity and a feeling of pride in their city. We do get fed up with the way the city is seen as something else.”

The book, which is illustrated by photographs, many taken by the Neaves, traces the city’s journey from a medieval walled town to its Georgian mercantile wealth, the coming of the railway in the Victorian era and Edwardian shops and pubs through to the widespread damage suffered during the Blitz.

The book, which costs just £3, has been published in a joint project between the city council and English Heritage.

Trevor Mitchell, English Heritage planning and conservation director for Yorkshire, said: “Hull is a fascinating city with a rich history that plays a big part in the story of Europe.

“The docks, the waterfront and the Old Town stand out to residents and visitors alike as places that deserve our care; their history is the story of all of Hull’s citizens, past and present, and should be a shared source of pride and delight.”