Maurice Dobson- a story of bravery, acceptance and love

A free talk as part of the National Festival of LGBT History.


Start Date: 11th February 2017, 10:30
End Date: 11th February 2017, 11:00

Event Info

York LGBT History Month are the Yorkshire hosts of the National LGBT History Festival in February 2017. As part a range of free events taking place across the month our Community Officer, Stephen Miller, will be presenting about the Dearne Valley’s own Maurice Dobson.

Maurice Dobson
Maurice Dobson

Maurice Dobson was born in Wombwell in 1912 and worked as miner before joining the army and serving in WW2.

After the war Maurice moved back to Darfield with his partner Fred Halliday and they lived as an openly gay couple from the early 1950s until Fred died in 1988. Together they ran a small grocers shop, an integral part of the local community. When Maurice died he left his shop and collections to the people of Darfield to create a museum in his name.

Maurice Dobson Museum
Maurice Dobson Museum, Darfield

The presentation will include a short documentary film of people sharing their memories of Maurice followed by an exploration of how a small ex-mining village in South Yorkshire has told the story for over 15 years. Maurice was never universally accepted by the community and the current interest in him has led to questions about his legacy.

The story is still relatively unknown and raises many questions, how was Maurice able to avoid criminal proceedings? What does it tell us about coal-mining communities’ tolerance of difference? How should the story be told locally and nationally?

This talk is the first of a day of free talks on LGBT history at the York Explore Library and Archives.

  • 10:30am- Maurice Dobson: a story of bravery, acceptance and love
  • 11:00am- Criminal Prosecution of Inter-Male Sex, 1850-1970 by Jeff Evans
  • 12:00pm- True Colours: Trailblazing transgender service in the military by Caroline Paige
  • 12:30pm- Kop Outs: you’ll never walk alone by Paul Amann
  • 2:00pm- The Battle for Decriminalisation of (Male) Homosexuality in (West) Germany, 1945-69 by Rainer Schulze
  • 2:30pm- The Gay Liberation Front: How we invented direct action by Juno Jones
  • 3:30pm- The Other Consenting Adults: or, what were Lesbians doing in 1967? by Jane Traies
  • 4:00pm- Gwen Farrar and Norah Blaney: ‘our love is a thing apart’ by Alison Child

Find out more about the full month of events at


York Explore Library and Archives Library Square Museum Street York YO1 7DS

View map


This event is provided by:

Map of Maurice Dobson- a story of bravery, acceptance and love