Secret Bradford – Amberley Publishing

secret bradford alternative cvr sm.jpgfront cover academy feb 12 2010 image 7 sm.jpgsecret bradford amberley.jpgpage 7 academy feb 12 2010 image 4 sm.jpgdeath of bradfords industry sm.jpgpenningtons december 29 2010 image 2 sm.jpgRear cover william ackroyd and son thornton road image 8 sm.jpgreel 11 sm.jpgalhambra from the odeon jan 14 2011 sm.jpgAttention_To_Detail_1_sm.jpgcity park from odeon roof jan 14 2011 image 2 sm.jpgdalton mills feb 2013 10 sm.jpgdalton mills feb 2013 22.jpgdalton mills feb 2013 29.jpgdalton mills feb 2013 32.jpgdalton mills fire  jan 1 2010 image 8 sm.jpgdalton mills workshop 2 sm.jpgA_forgotten_Industry_sm.jpgdalton mills workshop.jpgDead_Centre_sm.jpgemm_field_villas_window_box_sm.jpgglen royal projector room 1 sm.jpgh hey exterior  december 20 2010 me hanging on the ladder sm.jpghorse_shoe_sm.jpgillingworth mills 9 sm.jpgjohn crabtree and sons wigan jan 6 2011 image 3 sm.jpgme illingworth mills 1 sm.jpgmecca one last dance 1 aug 6 2010 sm.jpgodeon  bingo jan 110 2011 image 11 sm.jpgodeon jan 9 2011 odeon 1 image 2 sm.jpgodeon jan 9 2011 odeon 1 image 3 sm.jpgodeon jan 9 2011 odeon 2 projector image 3 sm.jpgpost_to_post_sm.jpgQueensbury_Tunnel_sm.jpgreflections_border_sm.jpgshipley glen dogems  april 2011 dodgems sm.jpgst pauls denholme 112 sm.jpgst_catherines_glory_sm.jpgstockton wools wigan st bradford december 29 2010 image 3 sm.jpgterraced_sm.jpgthack 1 sm.jpgwapping school sm.jpg

With finally reaching double figures, this book being my tenth publication with Amberley Publishing, it seems fitting that I focus on the very city I was born in.  As a child, one of my favourite pastimes was exploring old buildings; in particular the old Baird Television works near Artic Parade off of Great Horton Road.  The building was full of oscilloscopes and various electrical equipment on what seemed like hundreds of work benches stretching as far as the eye could see.  How I wish I had taken pictures now.  Interestingly, Artic Parade I was to learn later was the very road my Grandmother as a young girl would walk down in all weathers in her clogs on the cobbles to her place of work at Cannon Mills.   Bradford as we know is famous for its worsted cloth industry which is reflected in this book by the various mills included.  In addition I have tried to balance the contents with other locations such as cinemas, churches and even a mortuary chapel.  When choosing the title it was difficult to choose between hidden or secret Bradford.  In the end I decided to go with secret Bradford in the sense many of the locations will be new to the reader whilst others have been photographed from angles previously unseen.  The reality is this book is full of ghosts.  Many of the images were taken in the previous four years, and of buildings that are no longer there or have been altered. Certainly as time passes, and given the fragile nature of change the majority of the locations will disappear.  The reader will note the common theme that runs through the pages.  Bradford is incredibly unlucky with regards to instantaneous fires destroying the workplaces, and leisure facilities of our fathers and grandfathers.  Fire as we know when unchecked takes no prisoners; hence many of the places affected were demolished immediately after rendering grade II listing of no value.  My intention with this book was to create a lasting record of locations important at a  time when industry and manufacturing was king.  Just like I research locations from Victorian and Edwardian photographs now, I would like to think my work here will be a point of reference in another century from now. Although potentially depressing to see our heritage being swallowed up by fire and demolition, there is without a doubt a beacon of light beginning to illuminate Bradford again.  After years of stagnating, great things are beginning to happen, and with that comes major investment.  In 2014, Bradford represents a multicultural society on the up. If you thought Bradford was over, then think again.

Mark Davis August 2014