Around Mirfield in the 1990s
This collection of photographs was taken around the early 1990s. Click any image for a larger picture.
The first picture shown above is the library forecourt looking out onto the main Huddersfield Road through the centre of Mirfield and the shops as they were when photographed in 1993.
Also pictured above and taken in the same year are two photos of Station Road. The one on the right is looking from the station bridge, up over Bull Bridge and the canal to the Black Bull Hotel. On the left of this picture is the gatehouse for Bass Maltings and the wall cut down from the old Crowther's malt kiln showing the walled up windows through which the smell of malting barley was spread on the wind to all parts of Mirfield. All this has now gone and is replaced by the Lidl supermarket and car park. The photo in the centre is the view down Station Road towards the station.
The Baptist Chapel, pictured on the left in early 1993, is no longer standing having become unsafe necessitating demolition later in that same year. The foundation stone for the first chapel on this site was laid in 1828 and the chapel opened on 21st May 1830. The Sunday School, which has now become the chapel, was added in 1855. By 1870 it had become apparent that the chapel was too small for their needs so a new one was built and opened on 11th April 1873 which was Good Friday.
Wellhouse Moravian Church, pictured left, was built in 1891 to replace an earlier Sunday School. It was purchased by the Evangelical church in 1986. Pictured right is the present church viewed from Wellhouse Lane in 2001.
Central Garage is depicted with the fleet of new staff vehicles in 1978. The photo on the left shows the garage and forecourt as it was then with the fleet of cars ranged across the front of it. The picture on the right is taken from the garage forecourt looking out onto the shopping centre.
On the left is C. J. Bloomers around 1993. This building started life
as the Town Hall. When I was very young it was the Town Hall Cinema and then The Glen Cinema before
it became the Glen Ballroom in the fifties in time to see the birth of rock and roll. After this it
became the Pentagon Nightclub and then a whole series of nightclubs including the Top Hat and Panache.
It has now returned to respectability as the home of the Mirfield branch of the Salvation Army.
The Bridge Hotel at Lower Hopton, shown on the right, was a favourite haunt for us in our teenage years. In the front room at the right of the building was a Wurlitzer Juke Box with all the rock and roll records and a marvellous system for selecting them that was a joy to behold. It was all gleaming chrome and bright lights with an arm that would pluck a record from a rotating stack of 45s and lay it on the turntable for playing. The hotel was long ago converted into flats but the memories are still there.
Britannia Mill, on the corner of Lowlands Road and Station Road, was operated by the Coloured Cotton Spinning Company. In the 1950s they had several immigrant girls on the workforce who had come here because there was no work for them at home. The girls lived in a hostel at Hopton Grange, Upper Hopton until such time as they found something more permanent for themselves. Most of the girls found husbands here in due course and became part of the community. After the closure of the spinning company the building was taken by Fletcher's Filtration who carried out their business here for many years. The main part of the building has now been demolished and is pictured right as demolition was under way.
On the left is the lock at Newgate, looking towards the Mirfield Boat Yard which is pictured on the right. Both scenes are from 1993 but have changed very little since then. The canopy leading to the dry dock has become just a skeleton frame.
On the left is a view of the canal from Bull Bridge showing the covered passageway linking the two parts of the Bass Maltings site which has now passed into history. On the right is what looks like a family photo and indeed that's what it is; Debra and Janette sitting on a bench on the Library forecourt around 1965. But just a minute; what's that building in the background? That my friends was Mirfield Ex-Servicemen's Club known colloquially as the Soldiers and Sailors. It was replaced by Dyson's Greengrocers and has since been home to various other shops. The main thing I remember about the club is the smell of stale beer that wafted out and assailed your nostrils when you walked past. The sign proclaims Whitaker's Ales and Stout and sports the slogan "Cock of the North" along with the brewery's cockerel logo.
The picture on the right shows the last remains of our railway station just before it was demolished and replaced by the hooped perspex contraption that we have today. The canopy roof (shown left in 1961) that had spanned the building and island platform on its supporting stone walls had long since been removed.
A navigable part of the river Calder looking upstream from Newgate. There has been talk about constructing a new foot bridge over the river but at the moment it doesn't seem likely that it will come to anything. The pillars of the old toll bridge are visible in the middle of the river. Pictured on the right is the section of the towpath that climbed up and led onto the bridge.
Pictured on the left is the house on Bull Bridge, Station Road while on the right is the Lock Cottage at Newgate Bridge.
On the left is the hooped contraption that replaced our old station and which has since been replaced by something even more minimal, as shown on the right.