Let's travel back in time. It was the mid 1960s and I was earning a little extra money whilst still at school by working in the local petrol station in Northowram. This was before the days of self-service, so my job was to go out and fill the cars up with petrol. Occasionally I would fill up petrol cans with petrol. And then, one night, someone turned up with an old fashioned petrol lighter and demanded it filling up with petrol! It was, of course, my brother and he managed top capture the event for posterity.
Monday, January 17, 2022
Saturday, January 15, 2022
Friday, January 14, 2022
Thursday, January 13, 2022
The bridge which spanned the River Calder at the village of Copley, near Halifax, formed a solid memory from my youth. Often I would run over its' hefty stone spans on school cross country runs, whilst at other times I would stroll the route, pausing to watch the river flow by on its' way from moors to sea. That was sixty years ago, and at some stage I must have paused to take this photograph. The village houses, built by Edward Ackroyd in 1849, are still visible, and at that time the mill will have still been standing.
Sadly the bridge wasn't quite as solid as my memories of it - it was washed away by the 2015 Boxing Day floods. A new steel footbridge now stands in its place and new houses stand where the mill once stood.
Tuesday, January 11, 2022
Saturday, January 08, 2022
Thursday, January 06, 2022
It is the day that all cultivators of family trees have been waiting for, the day of the great reveal, the day some of the questions get answered. Yes, it is the release of the 1921 census records, and genealogy addicts have been rushing online to find out exactly what their grandfathers or great-grandfathers - or for those so young that they should have better things to do - great-great grandfathers, were doing on the 19th June 1921. Getting access to the records is not cheap, so you still need two be selective in which particular gene pool you go fishing, but I could not resist getting the record for my grandfather, Enoch Burnett, which included information about my father and his brothers and sisters. There weren't too many surprises; my father was still at school and his brothers and sisters were all working in the mills around Great Horton in Bradford. My grandmother looked after the home in Arctic Parade, but my grandfather, Enoch, was the main surprise. From previous census records I had been used to him as a window cleaner and a fairground labourer, but here he is in 1921 working as a motor driver's mate. That piece of information alone was worth the cost of accessing the record.
Wednesday, January 05, 2022
Memories tend not to be photographic: time smooths the edges, blurs the focus and calms the emotions.
I must have taken the original black and white photograph of Southgate in Halifax around 1967. The new version - with a little help from Photoshop - is from last night.
Tuesday, January 04, 2022
A watchful eye is being kept by the Ministry of Health on the progress of influenza, which prevails to a serious extent in many parts of the country. We hear of the visitation of the old enemy, "Flu" to many Halifax families, but so far, no serious epidemic threatens us. All necessary precautions, however, should be taken. Influenza is dangerous mostly because of what may follow it. At the first feeling of illness victims should leave work, go home, and go to bed; keep warm and send for the doctor. Every person suffering from the disease is a danger to others. The golden rule is to keep fit and avoid infection as much as possible"
Saturday, January 01, 2022
What better way to start the new year than with a puzzle? I acquired this old picture postcard of Brighouse recently, and set about trying to identify where the original photograph must have been taken from. Some prominent landmarks such as the river and canal are hidden from the view, whilst others - such as Sugden's Flour Mill - had yet to be built. I often find that the best way to identify such viewpoints is to use Google Earth and then play around with the angles and perspectives until you get the beginnings of a match. So if you line up the houses in the foreground (Gooder Lane), the glimpse of the railway line, the somewhat prominent building, centre-left in the photograph (the current Cliffe Hall Club on Cliffe Road) and the views of the Central Methodist Church, Brighouse Sixth Form College, and St Martins, in the distance; you finish up in Victoria Street. Here is the approximate current Google Earth view of the same scene.
This is an old picture postcard of Halifax Town Hall from my collection. It is the detail that is fascinating: Salmon & Glucksters tob...
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The Lad is back. He had been skiing in France and got stuck for a time when the ports of Calais and Dover were closed by the snow and cold....