This photograph from my archive shows Halifax, a town in West Yorkshire, England. It’s a pleasant place to visit with an attractive town centre, interesting museums and the unique ‘Piece Hall’. Much of the architecture is distinctly Victorian, its buildings reflecting the wealth created from the town’s industrial past. This photograph shows the reality of that wealth creating machine. It was probably taken around 1900, so even the oldest inhabitants will not remember this level of industrialisation. For every chimney there’s a team of stokers shovelling coal into a boiler, to provide steam, to power machines manned by thousands of men and women, working in what today would be illegal conditions ….. long hours, dirt and grime, dangerous machinery and no job security. My booklet on the area includes historical photos and text from an early guide book to enable us to visit Victorian Halifax and the Calder Valley.
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