Hull & Me: Ann Jepson

In this blog series, we talk to people about their connections to Hull and what the city means to them. In this post we’re chatting to Ann Jepson, one of our wonderful oral history interviewees and a real champion of our project. We chat about moving to the area, trying new things, Hull’s chattiness, and being from Yorkshire.

A photo from Random Acts of Kindness. We were given buckets full of flowers to give away to the residents of Orchard Park – imaging, knocking on a door and just giving who ever answers a lovely bunch of tulips or red roses. Is there any wonder I love my unpaid job?

Thanks for chatting to us! First things first – tell us a bit more about you.

I was born in Sheffield, which was then in the West Riding, but after the changes that occurred in 1974, Sheffield’s address became South Yorkshire. My husband, who went to the same school as me, joined the army, so we moved around quite a bit and at one time lived in Harrogate, North Yorkshire. Our home now is near Beverley, in the East Riding of Yorkshire, so although I’m not Hull born and bred, I’m certainly Yorkshire through and through. We love our holidays and travelling round the world. Having visited over 100 countries during our married life, we have the most wonderful memories, but Yorkshire is always home.

Great. What’s your relationship to Hull?

I first started being interested in Hull in 2011 when we did the ‘Heritage Open Days’. Before that I’d only gone shopping, visited the museums etc in Hull. I’ve been doing the ‘HOD’s’ events ever since and absolutely love them. For anyone who does not know, they take place in Sept and all sorts of interesting places are opened up for you to look round, some you need to book. Go on the website in August to find out what’s available this year.

Then in 2017 I volunteered to help with the City of Culture, continued the following years as we became Absolutely Cultured and am still busy in my blue uniform now, we are Hull and East Yorkshire (HEY) volunteers. Through this I have visited so many different parts of Hull, had THE most fantastic experiences whilst having a wonderful time. The website we book in for our shifts just informs me that I’ve done 100 hrs this year and over 1000 altogether since I started – I have to say that there are many volunteers who have contributed more time than me!

Photos courtesy of Ann Jepson and Charlotte Tomlinson.

Can you tell us about a place in the city that’s special or memorable to you?

A very difficult one to answer as there are so many wonders.  I love the old town and one of my favourite places to volunteer is Humber St Gallery. The staff and visitors are very friendly. I have never considered myself as a ‘contemporary art’ person, but when you are at an exhibition for several hours, the work grows on you, and I now appreciate almost all the exhibitions.

What’s one thing we absolutely need to include in a history of Hull?

The Blitz.

Finally, what’s your favourite thing about the city?

I love that I can start up a conversation with anybody and very rarely meet someone not willing to chat!

Thanks so much for talking to us Ann, and being such a huge advocate for our project!

Find out more about the Heritage Open Days here.




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