Illustrated youth hostel profiles

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Goldrill House, the original youth hostel in Patterdale, Cumbria (courtesy YHA Archive).

In England and Wales, 1150 youth hostels have been open at one time or another since 1930. That’s a lot, and YHA’s honorary archivist, John Martin, has been researching and writing illustrated profiles of them for several years now.

To date he’s written 114 profiles, covering more than 200 hostels. Each profile is between one and 18 pages long. Two or more hostels within the same locality or town have been  included in some profiles.

John’s written profiles of about half the hostels in YHA’s current network. Others cover recently closed, long-since deceased or almost completely forgotten YHA premises. The profiles use photographs and many other unusual illustrations, often from John’s personal collection gathered over nearly 60 years.

For a flavour of these profiles, you can read John’s full profile of Patterdale youth hostel, a special hostel in one of Lakeland’s loveliest valleys by clicking the following link Y950001-Patterdale YHs Profile 2017-05-23 [p] copy.

John doesn’t claim that the profiles are authoritative. “They are written as a snapshot in time and new information is being found almost daily,” John says. When there’s sufficient new information he’ll revise and produce a new version.

Until John began this work, no one had produced a systematic series of hostel histories, apart from articles in old YHA magazines. He began writing the profiles to address a need within the YHA Archive at the Cadbury Research Library, University of Birmingham, and in the organisation generally. It follows very similar work John undertook for the youth hostels of Scotland and Ireland.

Currently, the profiles are only available to view digitally at the Cadbury Research Library but over time, John may make some available on this site.

John aims to complete profiles for all the current network within the next two or three years. Other former hostels will be added too.

He welcomes amendments, personal recollections and additions to the current profiles.

Profiles remain the copyright of John Martin, who can be contacted through this site for special permissions. If you wish to contact John please leave a comment or use the contact form.

John has produced an online (ever-evolving) guide to every YHA hostel in England and Wales ever – 1150 in total. You can find it by Googling its catalogue number ‘Y900003’ or you can find the guide by clicking this link.

The Cadbury Research Library catalogue has the following profiles as at June 2017:

Y950001-Acomb YH Profile rev2016-09-05.pdf
Y950001-Alfriston YH Profile rev2015-10-01.pdf
Y950001-Alnwick YH Profile 2016-11-13.pdf [*NEW]
Y950001-Ampleforth & Helmsley YHs Profile 2015-11-03.pdf
Y950001-Barnston in Wirral YH Profile 2015-01-01.pdf
Y950001-Bennetston Hall YH Profile 2013-11-19.pdf
Y950001-Birmingham YHs Profile 2013-11-19.pdf
Y950001-Bishops Stortford YH Profile 2015-01-01.pdf
Y950001-Black Sail YH Profile rev2015-10-01.pdf
Y950001-Blaxhall YH Profile rev2016-07-11.pdf
Y950001-Boggle Hole & Robin Hood’s Bay YHs Profile rev2015-01-01.pdf
Y950001-Borrowdale YHs Profile rev2015-10-01.pdf
Y950001-Borth YH Profile rev2015-01-01.pdf
Y950001-Bournemouth & Organford YHs Profile 2015-01-01.pdf
Y950001-Broughton Astley YH Profile 2016-09-01.pdf
Y950001-Buntingford area YHs Profile 2013-11-19.pdf
Y950001-Cae Dafydd & Bryn Gwynant YHs Profile rev2015-10-01.pdf
Y950001-Cambridge YHs Profile rev2015-10-01.pdf
Y950001-Canterbury YHs Profile rev2015-10-01.pdf
Y950001-Charing YHs Profile 2015-01-01.pdf
Y950001-Cockermouth YH Profile 2016-06-25.pdf
Y950001-Dacre Banks YH Profile 2013-11-19.pdf
Y950001-Derwent Hall YH Profile 2013-11-19.pdf
Y950001-Eastbourne YHs Profile rev2015-12-22.pdf
Y950001-Eastwell YH Profile rev2015-12-22.pdf
Y950001-Eskdale YHs Profile 2017-05-29 [p].pdf [*NEW]
Y950001-Farndale YH Profile 2013-11-19.pdf
Y950001-Fort Newhaven YH Profile 2013-11-19.pdf
Y950001-Fulshaw YH Profile 2013-11-19.pdf
Y950001-Gisburn YH Profile 2015-01-01.pdf
Y950001-Godshill & Fordingbridge YHs Profile 2015-01-01.pdf
Y950001-Greenmoor YH Profile 2013-11-19.pdf
Y950001-Gwydyr Ucha, Oaklands & Betws-y-Coed YHs Profile rev2015-10-01.pdf
Y950001-Harlow YH Profile rev2015-12-22.pdf
Y950001-Haworth YHs Profile 2016-07-02.pdf
Y950001-Heath Charnock & Edgworth YHs Profile rev2015-12-22.pdf
Y950001-Heol Senni YH Profile 2015-10-01.pdf
Y950001-Holmbury YH Profile 2015-07-01.pdf
Y950001-Holmfirth YH Profile rev2016-01-26.pdf
Y950001-Honister YHs Profile 2016-07-12.pdf
Y950001-Horton in Ribblesdale YH Profile 2015-11-14.pdf
Y950001-Idwal YH Profile rev2015-10-01.pdf
Y950001-Jordans YH Profile rev2017-01-01.pdf
Y950001-King’s Lynn YHs Profile 2015-01-01.pdf
Y950001-Kings YH Profile rev2015-12-22.pdf
Y950001-Kirbymoorside YH Profile 2015-01-01.pdf
Y950001-Knaplock YH Profile 2015-01-01.pdf
Y950001-Langdon Beck YHs Profile rev2017-01-01.pdf
Y950001-Lastingham YH Profile 2013-11-19.pdf
Y950001-Leatherhead & Tanners Hatch YHs Profile 2016-08-28.pdf
Y950001-Lee Valley YH Profile rev2015-10-01.pdf
Y950001-Lewes YH Profile rev2015-12-23.pdf
Y950001-Littlehampton YH Profile rev2015-10-01.pdf
Y950001-Litton Cheney YH Profile rev2015-12-23.pdf
Y950001-Liverpool YHs Profile rev2015-07-01.pdf
Y950001-Lizard Peninsula YHs Profile rev2016-08-24.pdf
Y950001-Llanberis YHs Profile rev2015-10-01.pdf
Y950001-Llanilar YH Profile 2015-07-01.pdf
Y950001-Llwyndafydd YH Profile 2015-09-15.pdf
Y950001-London Central YH Profile rev2015-10-01.pdf
Y950001-London Earl’s Court YH Profile rev2016-04-12.pdf
Y950001-London Highgate YH Profile 2013-11-19.pdf
Y950001-London Holland House YH Profile rev2016-01-29.pdf
Y950001-London Oxford Street YH Profile rev2015-08-07.pdf
Y950001-London Temporary Seasonal & Short-Term YHs Profile rev2017-01-01.pdf
Y950001-London Thameside / Rotherhithe YH Profile rev2016-04-12.pdf
Y950001-Lostwithiel, Golant & Eden YHs Profile rev2015-06-23.pdf
Y950001-Lulworth YH Profile rev2015-09-25.pdf
Y950001-Lyonshall & Staunton YHs Profile 2015-10-21.pdf
Y950001-Malham YH Profile rev2016-01-26.pdf
Y950001-Marlborough YHs Profile rev2015-10-01.pdf
Y950001-Marrick & Grinton YHs Profile 2017-05-26 [p].pdf [*NEW]
Y950001-Nazeing YH Profile 2013-11-19.pdf
Y950001-Newport Pembs YHs Profile 2015-09-13.pdf
Y950001-Oxford YHs Profile 2016-04-16.pdf
Y950001-Patterdale YHs Profile 2017-05-23 [p].pdf [*NEW]
Y950001-Pen y Pass YH Profile rev2015-09-25.pdf
Y950001-Penzance & Land’s End area YHs Profile rev2015-12-23.pdf
Y950001-Poppit Sands YH Profile rev2015-10-01.pdf
Y950001-Port Eynon YH Profile 2016-04-15.pdf
Y950001-Portland YH Profile 2015-11-05.pdf
Y950001-Puckeridge YH Profile 2013-11-19.pdf
Y950001-Pwll Deri YH Profile 2015-10-24.pdf
Y950001-Rhyd Ddu & Snowdon Ranger YHs Profile rev2015-10-01.pdf
Y950001-Ro Wen YH Profile rev2015-10-01.pdf
Y950001-Rock Hall YH Profile 2016-10-16.pdf [*NEW]
Y950001-Rosedale YHs Profile rev2015-09-25.pdf
Y950001-Rushall YH Profile 2015-09-22.pdf
Y950001-Saffron Walden YHs Profile rev2015-12-23.pdf
Y950001-Salisbury YHs Profile rev2015-09-30.pdf
Y950001-Scarborough YHs Profile 2015-12-07.pdf
Y950001-Sheringham YHs Profile rev2016-09-01.pdf
Y950001-South Downs YH Profile rev2015-10-01.pdf
Y950001-Steyning YH Profile rev2015-10-01.pdf
Y950001-Stow-on-the-Wold YH Profile rev2015-09-30.pdf
Y950001-Stratford YHs Profile rev2015-09-25.pdf
Y950001-Sutton Veny YHs Profile 2015-06-22.pdf
Y950001-Swanage YHs Profile rev2015-10-01.pdf
Y950001-Taliesin YH Profile 2015-07-19.pdf
Y950001-Telscombe YH Profile rev2015-11-16.pdf
Y950001-Trefin YH Profile 2015-09-15.pdf
Y950001-Truleigh Hill YH Profile 2015-09-23.pdf
Y950001-Tuxford YH Profile 2015-09-27.pdf
Y950001-Van YH Profile 2015-12-31.pdf
Y950001-Wadesmill YH Profile rev2015-12-31.pdf
Y950001-Walsingham & Wells YHs Profile rev2015-12-31.pdf
Y950001-Wasdale YHs Profile rev2015-10-01.pdf
Y950001-Whitby YHs Profile rev2016-10-26.pdf
Y950001-Whitemeadows YH Profile 2013-11-19.pdf
Y950001-Windermere YH Profile 2017-05-20 [p].pdf [*NEW]
Y950001-Wooler & Fenwick YHs Profile 2016-10-26.pdf [*NEW]
Y950001-Wymeswold YH Profile 2015-01-01.pdf
Y950001-York YHs Profile rev2015-10-01.pdf
Y950001-Yoxall YH Profile 2013-11-19.pdf

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