New display opens at the South Elmsall Library museum hub

Wakefield Council has opened its latest display at the South Elmsall Library museum hub, in partnership with a leading Yorkshire artist.

Faces of South Elmsall is an exciting new installation by photographic artist, Jonathan Straight, to celebrate some of the people and stories that make South Elmsall and the surrounding towns and villages unique.

Visitors to the hub display will enjoy three fascinating stories, each featuring a stunning new photographic portrait of a local resident. The black and white photographs are produced using the high-quality Lambda print process, which creates images by exposing light-sensitive silver photo paper to lasers. It combines modern technology with traditional development techniques to produce a sharp, beautifully balanced print.

Michael Graham smiling
Cllr Michael Graham

The portraits are displayed alongside the resident’s treasured objects, and exclusive film clips. Visitors can get a glimpse into the private museum in a back garden in Kinsley, find out how vintage carousels came to a nearby industrial estate, and hear about the time dolphins swam at the South Elmsall baths.

Cllr Michael Graham, Cabinet Member for Culture, Leisure and Sport at Wakefield Council, said: “We are proud and delighted to partner with Jonathan Straight and to display these wonderful portraits of some of our remarkable residents. The Faces of South Elmsall project has captured the variety of local life and is a fitting celebration of the area. I’m thrilled that the project archive will be preserved in the museum collection for generations to come and I hope that many people will enjoy the installation at the museum hub.”

The project also has its own website where people can watch the full videos, enjoy Jonathan Straight’s black and white street photography and candid portraits, and explore even more stories from all walks of local life. People are also encouraged to get in touch via the website and share their own story of living, working or visiting the South Elmsall area.

All the photographs, videos and stories captured as part of this project will be added to the Wakefield Museums and Castles collection, creating a record of life in South Elmsall for future generations.

Faces of South Elmsall is open now and runs throughout 2022. Opening hours and visitor information can be found at and