Gypsies and Travellers in their own words

Order your copies now to avoid disappointment

Limited first edition print run available


A4 Portrait 210mm x 297mm

270 pages on 135 gsm gloss art paper

Printed in Full Colour throughout

Containing over 350 photographs

Section sewn durable binding

Gloss Laminated Hardbacked Cover

About The Book

In their own words, Gypsies and Travellers provide fascinating insights into their lives, from early in this century to the present day.

These stories are personal histories and viewpoints reflecting the radical changes the Gypsy and Traveller communities have experienced. They tell how Gypsies and Travellers have lived and coped (and continue to do so) in extremely difficult circumstances.

Whilst providing an insight into everyday life, the stories tell of both personal and cultural survival. They relate individuals' hopes and fears for the future, for themselves personally and for the Gypsy and Traveller way of life in general.

They show some of the lighter aspects of life, highlighting Gypsies' and Travellers' resourcefulness and ingenuity.

The collection both reflects and celebrates the diversity Gypsies and Travellers bring to English society and shows the communities' declaration of pride in their culture.

Their stories provide an important written record, at a particular point in time. This contemporary record is important for younger generations of Gypsies and Travellers (and for those outside the communities) as a means of preserving a way of life which has lasted for many hundreds of years, and which will continue to adapt and survive.

How The Book Could Be Used

We hope that Gypsies, Travellers and the settled community will use this book to promote and enhance the cultural identity and self-determination of all Travelling communities.

That it will be used to promote Gypsies' and Travellers' positive self-understanding as ethnic groups and to improve the knowledge and appreciation of different cultures.

That this book will go a little way in improving the settled communities' understanding of Gypsy and Traveller culture thus creating opportunities for greater empathy to exist between the communities.

Some of the photographs included within the text are described in Romanes or Cant. We hope that the use of these languages will encourage interest in them and enable Gypsies and Travellers to enjoy this book and contribute in helping non-Gypsies and Travellers to understand the richness of their language, if they so wish.

Romanes and Cant are ancient languages with different roots. Most Gypsies and Traveilers will have a fair knowledge of one or both languages. English syntax is mostly used with Romanes or Cant words.

Romanes is a Sanskrit language and is thought to have its roots in Northern India, from where it is believed Gypsies originated over a thousand years ago.

Cant, also known as Gammon or Shelta, is hundreds of years old and originated in Ireland. Shakespeare refers to this language in a speech of Prince Hal when he boasts of -

' being able to drink with any Tynker in his own language' Henry IV Act 2 Scene 4

We hope that you will want to learn more yourself...

For further information about the book, or to place an order, contact :

The Leeds Travellers Education Service

West Park Centre

Spen Lane


LS16 5BE

Telephone: 01 13 274 8050



Single Copies : price 15.00 plus post & packing of 5.00 total cost 20.00 for a single copy.

Multiple Copies Discounts : 2 or more copies 14.00 plus carriage at cost.


Cheque With Order : This would be appreciated for single copy orders. Please make cheques (including post and packaging) payable to 'Leeds City Council'

Official Orders : For multiple copies please send an official order and we will invoice you. Carriage will be charged at cost.


Leeds City Council Department of Education launched this book during a memorable celebration at the Leeds Civic Hall on Friday 26th May 2000. The first edition is now available. This is limited to only 3000 copies. The book is selling fast. Order now to avoid disappointment.

Gypsies and Travellersin their own words



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Please return this form to :

The Leeds Travellers Education Service

West Park Centre

Spen Lane

Leeds LS165BE

Telephone : 01 13 274 8050

Facsimile : 01 13 275 0445