This is Elland in the 1970s. The harsh straight lines of lampposts and mill chimneys stand out in sharp contrast from the curve of Upper Edge in the background. One of the mills is now long-gone, the other has been converted into apartments. The lampposts are still there – and so is the hill.
Tag Archives: Elland
When you go to Paris, you take a photograph of the Eiffel Tower, in New York it’s the Statue of Liberty …. and when you visit Elland it has to be the Calder Valley from Hullen Edge. I must have taken this photograph in the late 1970s: the bypass looks as though it is still a fresh scar on the landscape. It’s winter, it’s wet, and the river was just as incapable of knowing its place, as it is these days.
One of my photographs from half a century ago taken, I think, from the appropriately named Gas Works Lane, in Elland. Many of the buildings, along with the gasometer, have now gone and the aroma of the maltings is just a distant memory.
Elland Power Station used to sit on the floor of the Calder Valley like a mucky residue, creating black shapes against a grey sky. It’s been replaced now by a bright business park; all very clean and the slightest bit boring.
In the days of black and white,
In total love I fell, and
We’d walk the streets all day and night,
By the cocoa sheds of Elland.
(With sincere apologies to John Betjeman)
It was a glorious Spring day today and we were tempted outside. Wanting to respect the Government advice on social distancing and the avoidance of parks and beauty spots, we decided to attempt the ascent of Mount Blackley by taking the old footpath from South Lane in Elland to the top of the hill in Blackley. It was a long and arduous climb – and an even longer descent – but we managed to avoid the crowds without any difficulty. If we were attempting to avoid beauty spots, we failed miserably: the scenery was spectacular.
Today’s scan features a strip of negatives that come from a film from the 1980s. Three photographs from the strip feature Elland. Two of them show some half-demolished buildings with the tower of St Mary’s Church in the background. The buildings, which look a little worse for wear, must face onto Westgate, and they may include the back of the old Rose And Crown Inn. The inn – which dates from 1725 and is a Grade II listed building – is still standing, although as a boarded-up empty building rather than as a living pub.
The third shot was taken a little further along Southgate, I think, and features the door to one of those old cafes where the entrance always seemed to be around the corner.
In some ways the centre of Elland has changed little since this photograph was taken 100 years ago, whilst in other ways it has changed so very much. The Saville Arms is still open, and still dispensing beer, but the bank opposite has stopped dispensing cash and many of the shops stand empty. The clock has gone and so have the cobbles, but the scene is still instantly recognisable.
The card was posted in Lincolnshire and it contains a somewhat uncertain, and rather formal, message :-
Dear Sister, We are coming either Saturday next or Monday next but not sure which, A Ingall.
Hopefully Mrs Ingall managed to get to see her sister in Sutton-On-Sea. Hopefully the people of Elland will get to see commerce thriving again in these buildings in due course.
South Lane climbs out of Elland up towards the top of Blackley, but loses interest in the task and peters out amongst some soulless brick factories. Back in the 1970s, when I took this photo, you could still look down on the power station and Gannex Mill. These days industrial units and new housing developments fill up some of the spaces.