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Working for peace

Image courtesy HINI In the offices of the youth hostels association of Northern Ireland (HINI), they hold an album of photos, in old brown fabric. The album is full of pictures taken in a post-war world out of which people climbed, away from the horrors of total war, holocaust and nuclear armageddon. The people in... Continue Reading →

Holland House – London

The miracle has been achieved “A hostel where each night will gather nearly 200 young people from all parts of the world who are exploring Britain, or on their way abroad to explore some other country…” The Youth Hosteller of June 1959 crowed with pleasure at the opening of a new youth hostel in London,... Continue Reading →

New Catchpool archive

A hand-list of the papers of Jack Catchpool at Lancaster University library is now available. Egerton St John Pettifor Catchpool was a Quaker, aid worker and first secretary of the Youth Hostels Association. His papers, deposited at Lancaster University library, have not previously been listed. The hand-list can be downloaded at the end of this... Continue Reading →

Boxes, bombs and treasure

Just when I thought I had finished, three boxes came along and knocked all my plans down like skittles. I've been writing about Jack Catchpool, first secretary of the Youth Hostels Association, and his life of adventure and travel, for two and a half years. A complete first draft was done. I had a bit... Continue Reading →

A celebration

I've searched for a photo of the YHA celebrations at Ashridge Park in Hertfordshire, that marked YHA's 21st birthday in 1950, for a long time. And, when I least expected it, one turned up... The photo shows Jack Catchpool, YHA's first national secretary and the equivalent of today's chief executive, seated on the left of... Continue Reading →

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