Then & Now (Part Two) - The Changing Face of Langley Mill and Aldercar

Then & Now (Part Two) - The Changing Face of Langley Mill and Aldercar

Published by the Heanor and District Local History Society, 38 pages. Large A4 size paperback (N6848X1)

Heanor is a town in the Amber Valley district of Derbyshire, and lies around 8 miles north-east of Derby, and this book provides a fascinating then and now pictorial history of the Langley Mill and Aldercar areas, showing how places have changed over the decades....

From the rear side cover: The aim of this book is to take a number of local photographs from the past, and then attempt to stand in exactly the same position as the original photographer (not always possible!) to see the view today.

From the introduction: This time we take a look at the large, former industrial village of Langley Mill, located in the Erewash Valley, one mile east of Heanor. The book follows the same format as the first, where older views are accompanied by present-day ones. However, even these may not be the current view by the time the book is published, and certainly not in a few years' time, for, as explained in the previous book, "everything changes, nothing stands still".

The village of Langley Mill grew as a result of the changes brought about by the Industrial Revolution. Britain had moved from a rural population to an urban one, as people moved to new industrial areas, which offered a plentiful supply of work. Langley Mill grew because of its location; it lay in a gentle river valley which afforded an easy route, firstly for canals, and then railways. These new modes of transport enabled local coal to be moved easily to more distant markets. This led to new industries springing up to take advantage of these new lines of communication, which provided an easy means of moving in raw materials and sending out the finished products.

Langley Mill became one of the most industrialised villages in the country, offering work, not only to its own inhabitants, but to many from outside. It has been estimated that at one time there was work for around four thousand people locally, whereas the village's working population was around fifteen hundred. These large employers included G.R. Turner's (engineering), Pickersgill and Frost (fireplaces), the pottery, Aristoc (stockings), Hallam's (timber construction), the flour mill, the gas works, the headquarters of the Langley Mill and Aldercar Co-operative Society, plus the transport industry with extensive railway sidings, and the main garage and offices of the Midland General Omnibus Company. Today, apart from the last one, all these industries have gone, and Langley Mill has struggled to find a new identity. But there are now many signs of a revival in its fortunes, the appearance of the area is constantly improving, with new retail and food outlets, but, unfortunately, no new large scale employment.

Of course, any book on Langley Mill must include Aldercar too. Aldercar has a lengthy history of its own (Aldercar Hall dated back to the seventeenth century), and while the two locations are always spoken of as if they were one, it is now a separate ecclesiastical parish...

Condition of the booklet is generally excellent. The cover is clean and tidy, the spine is intact, and all pages are clean, intact, unblemished and tightly bound. Their is a small price sticker on the rear side cover