Northern Exposure – A research project April 2nd

Towns and cities in the North of England have experienced significant change during the last few decades, in terms of their economy, politics, housing and population. Northern Exposure is a major nationally-funded study which aims to understand how these changes have affected ordinary people’s lives. We are collecting around 200 oral history testimonies from residents who have seen these changes with their own eyes. The project is creating an important new national archive of voices from the North.

If you would be interested in sharing your personal story about your neighbourhood and community, and how your local area has changed during your lifetime, from Mrs Thatcher to COVID,  we would like to talk to you.

This project is based at the School of Sociology and Social Policy at the  University of Leeds and funded by the UK Economic & Social Research Council.


We will be interviewing 50 year old + residents from the following groups, from different neighbourhoods in Northern towns and cities.

  • White British
  • Black British
  • British Asian
  • Polish and Romanian EU Citizens


  • We would like to interview residents who have lived in the area since the 1970’s.
  • They be those who have migrated to the UK or those who are born or bought up in the UK.
  • These conversations will be in-depth focus on the personal oral history of local residents.
  • Each interview will take two hours. They are informal in style.
  • The interview will be recorded and anonymised.

The interview will probably take place over the phone due to the Covid pandemic.

  • The information you will give will be held in the strictest confidence.
  • Participants selected will receive a £50 Love2shop voucher when the interview is complete.
  • There will be a chance to participate in other local discussions and a final event at the University of Leeds .
  • The interviews will create a historical archive that will tell the story of your town as you see it.
  • The archive will be used by future historians and researchers. The archive will contain the approved transcript of the interview but not the audio recording. All sensitive personal information will be carefully removed and

You can find more information on our project website:


We are sociologists based at the University of Leeds:


If you would like to take part in this research, or if you would just like to know more about it, please get in touch with us on either our email addresses above or telephone – 0113 436 0430 and please leave a message with your number.  Many thanks and we look forward to meeting you.

Final version questions – A list of the questions that you will be asked if you take part.