The Gissing Trust was founded in 1978 by Wakefield Civic Society, Wakefield Historical Society, international scholars and others, linked by The Gissing Journal, to further the establishment of the Gissing Centre, the preservation of properties associated with George Gissing, the acquisition care and display of objects connected with George Gissing and the literary history of Wakefield, and the pursuit of research relating to George Gissing and the literary history of Wakefield.
The Trust publishes The Gissing Journal, a quarterly publication devoted to the life and work of George Gissing.
Group visits, and talks on a variety of topics relating to the literary history of Wakefield, can be arranged by contacting the Hon. Secretary, Dr. Philip Edward Judkins, PhD, MA (Cantab), MSc., 18 St. John's Square, Wakefield WF1 2RA. Tel: 0797 144 9451.
Donations to assist in the maintenance of the Centre and to further the work of the Trust will be gratefully received.
The Gissing Centre has been established with assistance from The National Westminster Bank.
VISIT THE GISSING CENTRE
THIS TABLET WAS ERECTED TO COMMEMORATE THE BIRTHPLACE OF
GEORGE GISSING (1857-1903)
NOVELIST AND MAN OF LETTERS
THE GISSING CENTRE
OPEN EVERY SATURDAY
MAY - SEPTEMBER
2:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.
OR BY APPOINTMENT
with the Hon. Secretary Dr. Philip Edward Judkins.
The Centre can be opened at other times if arrangements are made with the Hon. Secretary.
Thompson's Yard, Westgate, Wakefield, West Yorkshire WF1 2TP.
Wakefield childhood home of novelist GEORGE GISSING
Family Memorabilia and Exhibition Material about George Gissing and a model of the family home.
Videos giving an insight into his life and his Wakefield Novel "A Life's Morning".
Books by and about George Gissing.
Open Saturdays May to September
2.00 pm - 4.00 pm
Gissing's novels are a protest against the form of self-torture that goes by the name of respectability. Gissing was a bookish, over-civilised man, in love with classical antiquity, who found himself trapped in a cold, smoky, Protestant country where it was impossible to be comfortable without a thick padding of money between yourself and the outer world. Behind his rage and querulousness there lay a perception that the horrors of life in late-Victorian England were largely unnecessary. The grime, the stupidity, the ugliness, the sex-starvation, the furtive debauchery, the vulgarity, the bad manners, the censoriousness - these things were unnecessary, since the puritanism of which they were a relic no longer upheld the structure of society. (George Orwell, George Gissing)
He seems to me above all a case of saturation, and it is mainly his saturation that makes him interesting - I mean especially in the sense of making him singular. The interest would be greater were his art more complete; but we must take what we can get, and Mr Gissing has a way of his own. The great thing is that his saturation is with elements that, presented to us in comtemporary English fiction, affect us as a product of extraordianry oddity and rarity: he reeks with the savour, he is bowed beneath the fruits, of contact with the lower, with the lowest middle-class, and that is sufficient to make him an authority - the authority in fact - on a region vast and unexplored. (Henry James, Harper's Weekly, 31 Julu 1897)
The photo of no 60 Westgate - the fast food shop next to the Thompsons Yard coaching tunnel is no 62, the small National Westminster branch next door is no 60 and the main Nat' West behind the tree is no's 58/56. Courtesy of Mr. Josh Johnson, Wakefield Karate College, Thompson's Yard.
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