FORGOTTEN CORNERS

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Re: FORGOTTEN CORNERS

Post by Stanley » 02 Feb 2017, 06:51

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This building in Skipton Road is now the branch surgery of Stanley Vets from Colne but in 1984 was Stanworth's Pot and leather shop. If I remember rightly before that it was the Misses Ormerod who kept a wonderful stock of old-fashioned pots at very reasonable prices. There used to be a blacksmith's forge in the yard behind the row.
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Re: FORGOTTEN CORNERS

Post by Stanley » 03 Feb 2017, 04:22

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This section of the 1853 map shows the building above is one of the oldest in the area. I had forgotten that originally the road was known as Dam Head Lane. You can always learn something from old maps.....
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Re: FORGOTTEN CORNERS

Post by Stanley » 04 Feb 2017, 05:17

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I'm doing the history of Bancroft Shed in 'Steam Engines' and I was reminded this morning that when a mill was built it was almost always opened by christening the engine. This pic is of the christening of the engine at Bancroft Shed in 1920, the last one in Barlick. The lady starting the engine is aunty Liza Nutter who was standing in for Mary Jane who was poorly on the day. Johnny Pickles was there and told Newton that when she opened the steam valve nothing happened which caused great consternation. The foreman fitter who had installed the engine was in the Dog having a pint so they sent for him. He came over, replaced the HP Corliss valve he had removed and hidden and when taxed by his boss for doing it he told him that no way was he going to let them start it while he wasn't there!
Liza tried again and off the engine went, ticky tock and everyone calmed down.

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This was what he took out......
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Re: FORGOTTEN CORNERS

Post by Stanley » 05 Feb 2017, 05:15

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Very few people would recognise what this is today. It's the 8 day clockwork mechanism that controlled the gas lamps that used to light our streets. They had a pilot light that was always lit and the clock could be adjusted each time it was wound up (once a week) to ensure that the light turned on and off at nightfall and dawn. The system worked well and a special man with a short ladder was kept employed right up to the time in the late 1950s when the lamps were replaced with electric ones. Today the lights are controlled by light sensitive cells which automatically adjust according to current light levels.
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Re: FORGOTTEN CORNERS

Post by Stanley » 06 Feb 2017, 05:40

In medieval times the maintenance of roads was a local responsibility. The main roads, designated 'The King's Highway' were more directly in the charge of the local Manorial Court and minor roads were the responsibility of the local landowners bordering the road. The court records are full of fines imposed for road maintenance. This included the building and maintenance of bridges. As late as 1815 the Vestry (the local authority) sold the village green and applied the money to culverting Gillian's Beck in Walmsgate. By the time the Local Boards and subsequent District Council had taken control, roads were their responsibility.
One of the main elements in road maintenance was the 'length men'. A man was given charge of a piece of road and was responsible for maintaining the surface, ditches and hedges. An advantage of this was that decent jobs were available for relatively unskilled labourers who had the dignity of a regular job and could support their families.
Today with the onset of technology we have lost these socially valuable jobs as maintenance of roads becomes centralised. We see the same 'progress' in industry. There is a case for reinstating jobs like this as a social good, it would cost less than paying inadequate benefits and restore some dignity to those unskilled workers who have been left behind by technology. Fat chance! It is a genuine Forgotten Corner.
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Re: FORGOTTEN CORNERS

Post by Tizer » 06 Feb 2017, 10:30

Some of the roads here are now in a terrible state and you have to dodge the potholes which increases the chances of traffic accidents. Whenever we have heavy rain there are large pools of water at the sides of the main roads and we have to dodge those too. In some places you get streams running across the road. Nobody cuts gullies in the narrow grass verges to allow the water to run off into the deep ditches alongside. Repairs to roads are done as quick, small patches and the edges soon begin to crack open and break up.

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Re: FORGOTTEN CORNERS

Post by Stanley » 07 Feb 2017, 04:13

I think that is a common picture Tiz. Like all the other 'money-saving' wheezes dreamt up in the name of Austerity, skimping on maintenance simply builds up a bigger bill for the future. These people don't understand real life. Having people with experience of Real Life in politics is a Forgotten Corner. Look at ministers like Ledsom and Grayling and be afraid!
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Re: FORGOTTEN CORNERS

Post by David Whipp » 07 Feb 2017, 08:49

The jury is still out for me on the local 'Transport Asset Management Plan' (TAMP) - which is what highway authorities have to have to get government funding.

In a nutshell, this requires more less costly treatments being used to repair roads, rather than full resurfacing. The idea is that this 'stops the rot' and allows the highway authority to catch up with a backlog of repairs over something like a 20 year timescale.

The technique involves 'permanently patching' defects and following this up by surface dressing the whole carriageway. It won't last as long as full resurfacing, but it's a fraction of the cost and allows a lot more road to be surfaced for the same money.

Locally, such treatments have been used on main roads Bleara Road, Earby and Skipton Road, Barlick in 2015, together with residential roads on Monkroyd (again, 2015). Last year, Manchester Road, Bracewell Lane and Rainhall Road/Long Ing were also treated. This year, Earby Road, Salterforth/Salterforth Road, Earby are being surfaced in this way.

My question mark is how long will these surfaces last? If they break up in a few short years, the method may be less cost effective than the full surfacing that these methods replaced. As I say, the jury's still out...

One things for sure though. Under the previous system the inadequate level of funding meant that, despite resurfacing, the backlog of repairs was getting bigger every year.

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Re: FORGOTTEN CORNERS

Post by Stanley » 08 Feb 2017, 05:21

And I see no reason to expect any overall improvement as long as traffic increases and spending on proper maintenance falls. There is a minimum level of expenditure and permanent repair and we are below that now. This means that further deterioration over the long term is inevitable. Look at the way we still live off the backs of the Victorians and their improvements. This sort of planning and investment in the infrastructure is a forgotten corner.
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Re: FORGOTTEN CORNERS

Post by Tizer » 08 Feb 2017, 09:07

At least your roads probably don't suffer one of the problems that affects ours - subsidence on the peat levels. Some of the roads here are like roller coaster rides...worse really, because they can change almost day by day. We drive over parts of trunk roads that now have big dips in them and you wonder when they'll swallow you up!

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Re: FORGOTTEN CORNERS

Post by Stanley » 09 Feb 2017, 04:54

Tiz is right. We are close to the rock here in the foothills of the Pennines. This is why one of our major exports used to be limestone and very durable stone setts and building materials. A forgotten corner is the Craven Fault which runs close to the town and meant that on the NE side we had limestone and on the SW side very high quality gritstone. We were never short of materials for making good firm roads and until the advent of the railways and efficient motor transport all the building in the town was done using local stone and sand lime mortar which was readily available. The extensive dry stone walls were also a product of this abundance. If you look at any wall or building made before 1900 you will find a small depression uphill from the site. These were small 'delphs' or excavations to get to the rock which was always moved downhill.
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Re: FORGOTTEN CORNERS

Post by Stanley » 10 Feb 2017, 05:25

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The old vicarage, now the Masonic Hall, is a familiar sight. One thing I discovered in my research was that when Billycock was building his 'New Mill' later called Wellhouse in the 1850s the contractors did the usual thing in those days and exploited whatever local resources existed for building materials. There was a sand bed on roughly what is now the site of the gas works and the recycling centre and it was used to supply sand for the new mill building. Shortly after this extraction started the Vicar complained bitterly because the private well at the Vicarage dried up and he was without water. Remember that at that time the town wells were the only source of water, no mains water supply. After the mill was finished and the ground settled down the well started running again.
We are so used to mains water these days that a circumstance like this is definitely a forgotten corner!
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Re: FORGOTTEN CORNERS

Post by Tizer » 10 Feb 2017, 10:19

Where we live in the Levels the raised areas are blue lias limestone but there are pockets of sand and these have been exploited over the centuries for building. In Cornwall the sand for Harvey's foundry came from sand beds a mile away at St Erth and from St Agnes further up the coast. These sand beds are `raised beaches' from the Pliocene era when sea level was much higher, Penwith was an island and St Erth was at the end of the mainland. LINK

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Re: FORGOTTEN CORNERS

Post by Stanley » 11 Feb 2017, 05:00

Mention of sand reminds me of the two brothers in Salterforth (One was the 'running man' who had curvature of the spine and the other walked an enormous dog) who sold their farm in Cheshire and retired there. The story was that apart from health problems they got an offer they couldn't refuse for their farm because it had a bed of workable silver sand which is very rare. I don't know whether this was true or not, they weren't very sociable, but it's always intrigued me. How rare is silver sand?
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Re: FORGOTTEN CORNERS

Post by Stanley » 12 Feb 2017, 05:52

One of the most surprising things you find when you look at the rapid expansion of Barlick from 1885 until 1914 is the fact that it was almost wholly financed by local capital and this included mains water, sewage and road improvements. The thing that made this possible was the success of the room and power system where sheds were built and run for tenants whose sole responsibility was weaving cloth. The shed company took care of everything else connected with the running of the mill. The profits generate by this system financed the later mill building and stayed in the town. Contrast that with the situation today where most of the wealth generated in the town is exported immediately to large national companies. The local council was well financed by the town rates and the end result was a well run, thriving town. I have always advocated a local levy on profits made in the town by external companies as the way to finance local government. Unfortunately the opposite is true now, local councils are deliberately starved of income while being made responsible for more and more functions. Go figure.....
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Re: FORGOTTEN CORNERS

Post by Tizer » 12 Feb 2017, 11:29

Most sand is composed of quartz particles and coated with, or containing, iron oxides giving it the yellow, red or brown colour (ferruginous sand). Silver sand is also quartz particles but without the iron oxide and hence white or silver. It's less common and higher purity and therefore more valuable.

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Re: FORGOTTEN CORNERS

Post by Stanley » 13 Feb 2017, 04:54

I seem to remember that Cheshire sand was a lot softer than many sands and was very popular with builders for making mortar and compo. Not a Barlick memory but I remember also that on Eigg there was a bay at the north end called Singing Sands. If you got the right conditions the sand squeaked as you walked on it..... God knows what that has to do with anything!
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Re: FORGOTTEN CORNERS

Post by Tizer » 13 Feb 2017, 11:14

I remember the beautiful white coral beaches on Skye and near Mallaig, just like the Caribbean, proof that we really do have coral reefs in the Gulf Stream off the west Scottish coast. We still have little cowrie shells from there.

Talking of the Gulf Stream, have you ever heard of the `Lossie Hole'? In his book, pilot Eric Brown relates stories about his time as station commander at Lossiemouth airfield. It was often used to receive aircraft diverted from other airfields and airports or aircraft that were in trouble. As well as having an extremely long runway it also has unusual weather conditions and is almost always free of cloud. This cloudless sky is the result of the warm air of the Gulf Stream coming around the north of Scotland and then being deflected upwards by the cold air from the Moray Firth. The rising warm air creates a very large cloudless area of sky and apparently all the pilots knew about this and called it the Lossie Hole. Lossiemouth was also the airfield of choice for the V-bombers if they couldn't return to their own base.

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Re: FORGOTTEN CORNERS

Post by Stanley » 14 Feb 2017, 04:34

That applied as well to Prestwick Airport on the West Coast. When the first 747s were brought in BA did the pilot training at Prestwick because of it's good reputation for being cloud and fog free.
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Re: FORGOTTEN CORNERS

Post by Stanley » 15 Feb 2017, 05:30

Here's a bit from me memoirs.....
"Not all incidents with the police were that serious. I remember the first time I ever saw a Boeing 747. It was at Prestwick airport early in 1970 and British Airways had one there fully loaded up to transatlantic weight, that’s almost 400 tons. They were training pilots in take-off and landing and as I drove along the road in Richard Drinkall’s cattle wagon I saw this thing taxiing up to the end of the runway near the road. I stopped to watch it take off and a police car pulled in immediately and told me I couldn’t park there. I told him that this plane weighed 400 tons and obviously couldn’t fly so could we just watch it please? The bobby was as interested as I was and we watched this enormous plane waddle to the end of the runway about 100 yards from us and sit there. I can still see the tyres squidging over on the rims as it turned on to the runway. We were right behind it so when the engines opened up it didn’t seem to move, it just got smaller. Suddenly it seemed to shoot straight into the air. We agreed it was a bloody miracle and went on our way. Little did I know that within eight years I’d be on one making my first flight! After that I was hooked."
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Re: FORGOTTEN CORNERS

Post by Stanley » 16 Feb 2017, 05:08

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This building at Townhead has an interesting history. At one time it was a Baptist Chapel but what always intrigued me even more is that I was told that in the days before mains water it had a public well in it and the locals were allowed to access it freely. I've often wondered how that worked......
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Re: FORGOTTEN CORNERS

Post by Stanley » 17 Feb 2017, 05:48

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The directors of the Calf Hall Shed Company in 1948 outside Butts Mill. It's hard to realise today how important these men were at that time. They controlled four mills. Calf Hall, Butts, Wellhouse and Viaduct Shed at Colne. We are lucky in that we know a lot about these men because we have the shed company minute books and the evidence of Harold Duxbury (fourth from the left on this picture). They were not a charitable institution but hard headed business men out to make a profit but in the course of doing that they enabled many good jobs in the town, including Silentnight as well as Carlson's and of course the tenants of their mills who made so much money in the Room and Power system that they were able to finance the later mill building up to 1914. At one time they were regarded as 'The Forty Thieves' and there is no doubt that they did cooperate very closely in the running of the town but on the whole they did a good job and indirectly enabled the profit which financed the late 19th century modernisation and expansion of the town. Harold Duxbury ran Briggs and Duxbury's for many years and was universally regarded as absolutely honest. He and his wife were leading lights in the Salvation Army as well and quietly did a lot of valuable charitable work.
Contrast this with the present ethos in business and it makes you wonder where we went wrong!
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Re: FORGOTTEN CORNERS

Post by Stanley » 18 Feb 2017, 05:04

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The directors of the CHSC in 1895. They were in at the beginning of the great Barlick revival!
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Re: FORGOTTEN CORNERS

Post by Stanley » 19 Feb 2017, 06:28

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Here's the legend on the back of the 1895 pic. Some good Barlick names there! By the way, the pic was done ten years after the formation of the CHSC at the architect's home, Crowtrees, Barrowford.
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Re: FORGOTTEN CORNERS

Post by Stanley » 20 Feb 2017, 05:21

One thing that has always fascinated me is that in the rapid expansion of building in Barlick from 1885 to 1914 the local Board, and later the Urban District Council, made such a good job of laying out the streets and making them a sufficient size to allow clear traffic when they couldn't possibly have envisaged modern parking and car ownership. I don't know enough about what advice was available to them or who they brought in at the planning stage. It's undeniable that they did a good job and the layout is still serving us well. At the same time they installed mains water and sewage. We owe them a debt of gratitude!

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1908.
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