Pontefract Blue Plaque Guide - Reconnecting Pontefract with its local history.

The Pontefract Civic Society (PCS) is a registered charity that promotes and supports the well-being of Pontefract. They defend the town’s rich, long history and are influential in improving the quality of the town. Check them out at their website.

I was asked to create a new Blue Plaque Guide that would be distributed to various places in town. In them, you can find a bit about the town’s history through the castle and the liquorice industry. The Blue Plaques are awarded to historic buildings and places in the town, and have a little bit about the history of the place.

The front of the blue plaque guide, with a title page and some history of Pontefract.

On the other side, there is a map of Pontefract Town Centre and all the historic buildings that were given a Blue Plaque at the time of me making it.

A map of Pontefract Town Centre, with the locations of the Blue Plaque Buildings.

This was a first, for me. I’d never made a map before, nor had I been involved with something like the Civic Society before. First of all, I created the history side. I was given the content and creative freedom (within brand guidelines) to make the front page and make the text readable. It was a bit of a struggle, balancing text sizes, but it worked out overall.

The hard part was the map. I used Illustrator to do so, but it was like I was fighting with the software at first. After a lot of trying and leaving for a while, I ended up discovering the curvature tool was nearly perfect for what I needed, making the process time-consuming but not horrible. I used the pen tool for the buildings and filled in colours etc.

I’m happy with the finished thing. It was an accomplishment for me, and if the people of Pontefract (and visitors) can learn something from it, then I’m doubly happy.

You can grab a copy in the Pontefract Town Hall.

Here's a pretty bad photo of me with the Chairman of the Pontefract Civic Society, Paul Cartwright. You can read the article they wrote about it here.

Me and the Chairman, Paul Cartwright, with the printed Blue Plaque Guieds beneath a Blue Plaque of Peter and Fred Asquith.

Only I would wear jeans and a jumper in blazing spring heat.