Silver 70s exhibition – Leeds City Museum

Silver 70s logoTake a trip back to the 1970s at Leeds City Museum.

The spirit of the 1970s will be firmly revived with the opening of Leeds City Museum’s new exhibition.

Opening on Friday 27 January and running until Sunday 22 April, the new exhibition at the museum off Millennium Square is entitled ‘Silver 70s’ and is a celebration of a highly eventful decade.

The exhibition takes the form of a walk back through time, allowing visitors to travel through a house in 1970s Leeds and experience the sights and sounds of the decade.

Featuring typical colourful and questionable wallpaper and fashions, the exhibition begins with a living room area before passing through a bedroom as well as a kitchen complete with genuine lime green fitted units leading to the garden area.

Among the instantly recognisable items on display are a space hopper and a classic Raleigh Chopper bicycle, along with well-known games such as ‘Connect 4’ and ‘Downfall’, and even ‘The Wombles’ which featured in their very own popular television show.

As part of the exhibition there is also a focus on certain key dates with the decade, including The Queen’s Silver Jubilee in 1977 which is especially timely as later this year the monarch will be celebrating her Diamond Jubilee. Items on display from the Silver Jubilee include a commemorative plate, t-shirt and Union Jack socks. Other key dates which feature include the switch to decimalisation in 1971 and Britain joining the European Union in 1973.

An appeal for 1970s photos from people in Leeds has also yielded a good response, with those being put on display including an image of a young girl drinking from the FA Cup after Leeds United’s famous triumph over Arsenal at Wembley in May 1972.

The music to be heard as visitors walk through the exhibition from the living room to the teenager’s bedroom will also change, with the living room featuring easy listening 1970s favourites such as The Carpenters, the Bee Gees, The New Seekers, Carly Simon and The Commodores. The soundtrack also includes comedian Benny Hill’s single ‘Ernie (The Fastest Milkman In The West)’ which was Christmas number one in 1971.

Moving into the bedroom area the music changes to include names such as Pink Floyd, Led Zeppelin, the Sex Pistols, Queen, T.Rex, Fleetwood Mac, The Clash, David Bowie, Donny Osmond, the Bay City Rollers, ABBA and Blondie.

The exhibition also includes interactive elements, such as the chance to design your own outfit and wallpaper based on 1970s fashion, digging for fruit and veg reflecting the ‘grow your own’ culture which was popular during the decade, and a special washing line for visitors to leave their own memories of the 1970s. There will also be television adverts from the 1970s being shown on screens.

Leeds City Museum curator of exhibitions Helen Langwick said:

“This exhibition has come together really well and we think people will have a lot of fun when they come along and it is sure to trigger a lot of memories of the 1970s.

“The response to the appeal for photos has been great so we’d like to thank everyone who sent them in and look forward to seeing people of all ages come along for this special trip down memory lane.”