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Teachers' Notes

Resource created by Heritage Quay


This resource accompanies the film 'Industry', which can be viewed here.   The full resource can be downloaded as a teacher pack from the resources page.


Curriculum Links

  • KS1 Local History Study: Significant local events, people and places.

Hopkinsons was a Huddersfield firm of great significance and it is likely that many of the children’s parents and grandparents were connected with the firm. The Hopkinsons collection ranges from the technical aspects – valve designs and drawings, to the human - including many copies of the inhouse magazine, Firm Friends, along with a wealth of photographs. Children could focus on the firm’s contribution to the industrial wealth of Huddersfield, or consider the life of Joseph Hopkinson, its founder.


  • KS2 Local History Study: Study of an aspect or theme in British history that extends pupils’ chronological knowledge beyond 1066.

Huddersfield’s industrial success was closely allied to the town’s textile trade, which began with the first market rights granted in 1671 to the Ramsden family. The town offers a model example of the links between textiles, transport, manufacturing, social conditions and education, and reflects the development of the industrial revolution in the north of England.


  • KS3 History: Ideas, political power, industry & Empire: Britain 1745-1901

The Fabrics of India sample books provide an ideal starting point for students considering the expansion of the textile industry during this period.


Other relevant curriculum areas include KS2 art & design/Design technology- using the Fabrics of India and University Textile books or Science/forces/– investigating valves and air/water pressure.


Activity Ideas

Huddersfield Town Trial

  • Take students on a walk through the town and look for evidence of its industrial past and the Ramsden family in street and building names, or spot the Huddersfield coat of arms. Visit the site of the Market Cross, the covered market, the former cloth hall and the indoor market and shopping malls to compare buildings and shopping habits over the past 150 years.
  • Construct a model of the buildings in Lego or use cardboard boxes
  • Take photographs of the buildings from unusual perspectives to create a visual mystery tour and encourage children to look closely at their environment


Investigate the company archives to curate a class exhibition:

  • Track down personnel from the Firm Friends – carry out oral history interviews with former employees (talk to our Participation Officer about this)
  • Research the life of Joseph Hopkinson and sons and create a family tree
  • Consider commissioning a Huddersfield based community theatre company to create an Imaginary Community with students
  • Design and make working valves to control air and liquid
  • What is the firm’s global reach – display on a map (see end pages for firm history)
  • Collect objects with country of origin labels. Plot their links with Britain and compare with Hopkinson’s global reach.
  • Find out what other local products were shown at the Great and London exhibitions. (There was a gallery of bad design!) Write a postcard telling the people back home what you’ve seen or create an exhibition catalogue.


Sample Books

These are ideal for developing critical thinking skills. Encourage students to consider the following:

  • Origin: who made this, when and where?
  • Materials: what is it made from?
  • Process: how was it made? i.e. technology and labour force
  • Purpose: why? To demonstrate wares – what was the audience and why?
  • Meaning: what does it mean? What does it tell us about the reach of the textile industry?
  • Design and print fabrics for a given purpose
  • Create a moodboard or lookbook


Visit the archives

  • Handle items from the collections and:
  • Use them to inspire print designs
  • Artwork or creative writing
  • Curate your own exhibition


Internal Links

Other resources related to this subject area or locality on My Learning include:

Originating in Leeds: Inventors and Inventions

Enterprise, Industry and Benjamin Gott

Education at Heritage Quay

Sport at Heritage Quay

Politics at Heritage Quay

Music at Heritage Quay

The Arts at Heritage Quay