MURALS in Keighley and Silsden feature in a new book.

They are among wall and community murals at over 50 locations across the Bradford district spotlighted in the publication by arts supporter Colin Neville, from Silsden.

As well as colour illustrations of the artwork, he includes social and historical information about the creation of the pieces – by 40 mainly-local artists.

Bradford District Murals is one of a series of six books written by Mr Neville – curator of the Not Just Hockney website – featuring artists past and present, from across the area.

"Wall murals are one of the oldest art forms – dating back at least 40,000 years," he says.

"There seems to be a basic need for humans to leave their marks on walls and elsewhere to show they have been there, and to say something about themselves or the world around them.

"If done well, mural art can help make us think, brighten a dull place and showcase the talents of the artist or artists involved. It also makes art accessible by taking it off a pedestal and into everyday places."

Mr Neville said that whilst wall murals were traditionally painted directly onto walls, his book also highlighted those created with mosaics and nails as well as pieces painted onto paper, canvas, board or metal – and then secured onto walls, hoardings or other frameworks.

"The murals illustrated include those that have stood the test of time as well as pieces that served their temporary purpose to brighten our lives," he adds.

"The oldest wall murals in the district are at Keighley, inside the library. In 1929, the Keighley-based sculptor and painter Alex Smith painted murals depicting scenes from the books Westward Ho! and Robinson Crusoe for the children’s library – and in 1948, scenes from The Rubaryat of Omar Khayyam for the first-floor reference section.

"In recent years, the now successful Bradford district bid to be City of Culture 2025 has become the catalyst for the funding of wall mural and other street art projects sponsored by local groups, such as Keighley Creative."

Mr Neville intends continuing to record new mural art, with a view to writing a second edition of the book – also including land and street art and public sculpture – for 2025.

* Bradford District Murals costs £9 and can be ordered via All profits support community-managed Silsden Town Hall.