Book pictures Colne past and present

MEMORIES Just three of the images in the new book

MEMORIES Just three of the images in the new book

MEMORIES Just three of the images in the new book

First published in Literature Lancashire Telegraph: Photograph of the Author by , Features writer

BONNIE Colne upon the hill, named on records dating back to Roman times, is the feature of a new book, which traces its ever-changing face.

Colne Through Time takes readers on a time-travelling journey from the market town of yesteryear, to the present day.

Authors are Geoff Crambie and Colin Bean, both Second World War babies, who have witnessed, during their combined 140 years in Colne, its changed landscape.

Colne’s antiquity goes back to AD 79, when its name was first recorded during the campaign of the Roman general Agricola.

It received its markets and fairs charter in 1120, and 200 years later a fulling mill was producing woollen goods.

Wind the clock forward to 1810 and the cotton industry was in full operation, resulting in 53 cotton mills being established during the Victorian era.

Over the decades, however, Geoff and Colin have seen all its mills, ancient halls, important buildings and historic streets disappear but, in a series of 180, ‘then’ and ‘now’ photographs they show how the town once looked, and how it appears today.

Our first photo dates from the 1950s and shows three young lads fishing for sticklebacks to take home in a jam jar, at the bottom of Smithy Lane, better known to all Colners as Shirt Neck Harry, after the Victorian eccentric Harry Rycroft.

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Then there are the men of Colne Cricket Club, who made history on the Horsfield in the summer of 1959 by winning the league championship and the Worsley Cup.

The double winners are, back row, from left: Gordon Pickles (inset), Jimmy Wild, Ray Baron, Malcolm Blackhurst, Brian Hurlstone, Geoff Hall, Geoff Schofield, Billy Greenhaugh and Peter Hargreaves.

On the front are Terry Reeves, professional Stanley Jayasinghe, Frank Taylor, Tyril Gauder, and Bob Little.

In our third image, it’s coronation year, 1953, and the people of Duke Street celebrate with a street party.

On it you might spot, Pat and Jimmy Powley, Ann and Sylvia Dixon, Nora Mabbutt, with sons Ray and Ken, alongside Joan Thornton with sons John and David.

Also smiling for the camera is Clara Whittaker, Colne’s first lady mayor in 1966.

n Colne Through Time, by Geoff Crambie and Colin Bean, is published by Amberley and costs £14.99.

The two authors will be doing a book signing at Colne Bookshop, in Church Street, on Saturday, December 3.

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