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Proprietorial Pride Plus

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There is a three-part novel’s worth of expressions and body language going on in this old photograph from my Lost And Found collection. For him, there is a kind of proprietorial pride about what is most likely a new motor car. For her it is far more complex; but that proprietorial pride is reflected in her expression but with added layers of complexity.

Ten From The Pub 2 : Ring Them Bells

Ring O Bells Inn, Halifax
RING O’BELLS INN, HALIFAX (1960s)

Other than a coat or two of whitewash and the addition of some in-your-face signage, little seems to have changed as far as the external appearance of the Ring O’Bells between when I took this photograph forty or fifty years ago and today. Dating back to God-knows-when (an appropriate expression as the pub used to be called “The Sign Of The Church”), the pub still nestles in the shadow of the Parish Church (Minster) for protection or for custom – or more likely for both.

Ring 'O Bells, Halifax

A Blackpool Treat

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This tiny studio portrait was taken at Buckley’s Studio at Regents Square, Blackpool on the 28th August 1916. It is highly likely that this is a young lass from one of the northern towns visiting Blackpool for a Bank Holiday treat. A day out at Blackpool and a holiday portrait to save all your life – what better treat could anyone want?

Abe, The Set Piece-Taker

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This photograph was taken on the occasion of the retirement of Abraham Moore, which – according to the date stamped on the back of the print – was in January 1947. Abraham was the father of my uncle, Harry Moore, and it would appear that he was 73 years old when he retired. All I can assume is that Abraham was happy to continue working after the normal retirement age during the course of the war.

 

The question arises, of course: what was he retiring from? The only information I have is from the various census returns which are all thirty years before this retirement photograph was taken, but throughout his life he seems to have worked as a “piece taker-in”. He lived in Bradford and therefore this job title must have been connected to cloth pieces in the textile industry, but I have not been able to discover exactly what the job entailed. Every time I do a Google search for the term, I finish up with endless lists of the best set piece takers in football. And somehow, I just can’t envisage Abraham as some kind of Wayne Rooney of the 1920s.

Ten From The Pub 1 : A Beer-Stained Citadel

A new mini-series of photographs old and new with that most glorious institution, the public house, as its theme.

Beehive and Cross Keys, Halifax
THE BEEHIVE AND CROSS KEYS, KING CROSS STREET, HALIFAX
What better way to start this visual pub crawl than with the first pub I ever bought a pint of beer in. I was moderately under-age and immoderately nervous. I put on my most adult voice and asked for a pint of beer and gave the barman one shilling and sixpence. “When did th’ last buy a pint, lad?“, he asked. “It’s one and seven now
Beehive and Cross Keys, Halifax

The current building dates from 1933 and took the place of two pubs – the Beehive and the Cross Keys – that were demolished in order to widen the road. It’s a building of style and solidity – a beer-stained citadel of good cheer.

Ten From Halifax 10 : Counting Chimneys

View Over Halifax
VIEW OVER HALIFAX FROM GODLEY BRIDGE (1966)
Old geography school textbooks would often feature a picture of Halifax from the early twentieth century and the challenge was to count the mill chimneys. By the middle of the century – I took this photograph in 1966 – there were less chimneys to count but you had a better chance of seeing them. Now the challenge would be to find a mill chimney.

Faces In The Snake Pit

The Snake Pit

The Snake Pit : Scan of Third Party Print

Looking at this old photograph – which is one of my lost and found collection of unknown and unwanted old photographs – I was initially fascinated by the obvious narrative. It is clearly a demonstration of the venom being removed from poisonous snakes in either Africa or India, and it would appear too date from the 1930s. Soon, however, my attention was captured, not by the snakes or their brave handlers, but by the watching crowd. Every photograph, no matter how old, or how forgotten, has an endless series of other photographs within it.

The Snake Pit IEdit)

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