In 1963, a young Blackburnian and keen photographer by the name of John Eddleston, had bought himself a new camera which he was going to take with him on a forthcoming trip to Europe. He decided to familiarise himself with his purchase by traipsing around the town (mainly the centre) taking shots of a Blackburn that would soon disappear in the planned, phased redevelopment. He took hundreds of photos and has left us with a very important archive of that period of Blackburn's history.
In the late 1990's, most of John's photos were published in two small books, which were sold locally and the proceeds used to buy equipment for The Stroke Rehabilitation Ward at Queens Park Hospital (Royal Blackburn as it is now). Quite a few people were instrumental in the publication of these books, Peter Street, Ray Hull, Simon Allen, the printer John Brown and no doubt others too. My personal thanks to them all.
If you get an opportunity to buy either of the two books ''1963 - Blackburn - A Proud Town'' you wont regret doing so. They were only stocked locally, as far as I know and were a limited run, but they still come up on eBay and other internet sites from time to time.
Here I have tried to cobble together, as a short slide show, just a few of John Eddleston's photos. I was born in 1958 just off the top end of Regent Street, very close to Larkhill and lived there until the summer of 1967, so the first 9.5 years of my life were spent within spitting distance of many of these scenes.
Growing up, as a young teenager and also as an adult, whenever I heard John Lennon's lyric to the accompanying song, these are the streets that often appeared in my minds eye.
Please click on the link below to view the video (YouTube)
Thursday, 7 October 2010
'' There are places I'll remember all my life ''
Posted by Blackburnlad at Thursday, October 07, 2010
Labels: JOHN EDDLESTON, MISCELLANEOUS
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Thanks so much for posting this! I already had 1963 Blackburn - A Proud Town, and so as I was looking at the video, was a bit perplexed to see some photos that weren't in my book, but then I re-read the post and saw that there were two books with the same name! Well, I've just been on eBay and bought the other book - thanks! (I already had the one with the Thwaites Arcade cover). My only query with the book I have is, apart from it having some amazing photos, that the reproduction quality is a little pixelated - has anyone else noticed this? Having been taken from slides, I'm sure the originals would be very crisp and sharp, but maybe the printers weren't the best?ReplyDelete
Happy to hear you enjoyed it Lorcan. I think I tried to cram too many photos into the short duration of the song. That's why some of the images seem to flash by.ReplyDelete
Good to see you managed to get hold of the other book. I usually refer to them as the blue one and the red one. The blue one seems to be the harder of the two to find these days.
I think they were put together on a shoestring budget, which might explain the quality of the photos. They still look OK to my 52 year old eyes though;-)
Having just re-read my first comment, it sounds a bit harsh! Both books are unbelievable, and really are an invaluable record of the time - just before the redevelopment of the town centre ( atown centre I must admit I never knew). They're fantastic photos and it's great to have such a concentration taken in the town centre and just beyond. I really can't overstate how great these books are - apologies to John Brown printers for my slight and thanks to the for putting them out there!ReplyDelete
I agree Lorcan, the books are an invaluable record and as the decades march on, I'm sure they'll be appreciated even more.ReplyDelete
Were all of John Eddleston's photographs put into these two books? Many of the photo's in the books appear on Blackburn Now and Then courtesy of John Brown/Roy Tomlinson, but there are others (see link below) credited to John Brown/Roy Tomlinson that appear to be from the same period (and so make me think the source may be the same), but are not included in the books. If so, is there any room for a 3rd installation of Blackburn A Proud Town(to help raise more funds for Queens Park)?ReplyDelete
This photo here http://www.blackburnnowandthen.co.uk/higher-church-street/ doesn't appear
Not sure if you meant to send a different link Lorcan, but the photo that appeared when I clicked this link was one of King William Street and that one appears in the book with the BLUE cover. It's the very first photo.ReplyDelete
As far as I'm aware, all the photos are in the two books (the blue & the red), but there may have been a handful that didn't get into either book. I only have the blue book. (My brother has both)
The BN&T adminsitrator was given a box of slides by John Brown, so he credited them all to him. As you have both books, you will know that the photos were all taken by John Eddleston (J. Brown was the publisher of the books). The credits to Roy Tomlinson on BN&T, refer to the NOW (Present times) photos only. Roy is a mate of mine and he definitely didn't take any of the early 1960's photos. Some of the NOW photos are credited to me and other people. There were a few of us contributing at the time.
...i think i might need an eye test! feel free to delete my dozy comment left earlier!! i left it on my lunch break and that particular photo didn't register in my mind at all - maybe it was the juxtaposition of the "now" photo that made it stand out as something I'd not seen before...oh dear....ReplyDelete
No problem Lorcan. I'm sure you're right. I think I've seen some in the books that aren't on BN&T and vice versa. It always puzzled me why the John Eddleston 'Brookhouse Lane' photo was in colour, while all his others are black & white.ReplyDelete
does anyone know were i can c a photo of the late june anne devaney,the blackburn murder 1948?ReplyDelete
Loved the photos and the youtube movies,I'm 62 and moved to the USA in 78 from Blackburn and whilst surfing online on new years eve I find this treasure trove of nostalgia !!!!! Awesome job lads and please keep up the good work.ReplyDelete
Thanks Eric. Glad you enjoyed it / them. Best regards and a Happy New Year to you. ColinReplyDelete