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The People Powered Press

Print · Self-Initiated · Typography

Built by JKN OilTools in Batley, the People Powered Press was originally created for These Northern Types and is thought to be the largest letterpress printing press in the world.

We now run the press on a not-for-profit basis, to amplify local voices and words worth spreading. We work with community groups through writing and printing workshops, to create prints that are then displayed in the heart of the groups’ communities – outdoors and in.

To express an interest in working with The People Powered Press, please contact us using the details here.

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A Guinness World Record!

On 15 April 2019, with the help of some friends, Split and JKN OilTools set a new Guinness World Record! The People Powered Press was recognised by Guinness World Records as the world’s largest letterpress printing press, with a print area of 1.363 metres squared.

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Graft

The typeface for the press was designed by Split. Named Graft in honour of the team at JKN OilTools, the type is cut from solid steel at 60em (720pt), and is accompanied by a set of giant feature numerals that come in at 3480pt.

The font has been expanded to four weights for digital release. Featuring an extensive character set, Graft is available to download from our shop.

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Selected Works

Featuring our giant numerals, the first series of prints from the People Powered Press was We Are The Makers of the World, written by Helen Shay and Bee Smith for These Northern Types.

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Led by poet Peter Spafford and in collaboration with East Leeds FM, a group of young writers from East Leeds created a series of phrases around the theme of ‘being heard’.

The participants visited us in the studio over two weeks to print their posters on the People Powered Press. The posters were then displayed in East Leeds, and in two locations in the heart of the city. Articulate Your Silence was created as a four-part piece, fading from almost nothing to solid silver.

With thanks to Pop Art Media Group.

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A series of limited edition prints created for the launch of Graft as a digital typeface, the prints are available for sale over on our shop here. All proceeds go to help fund the People Powered Press and its work.