The end of a 300-year mining legacy is captured in this week’s Garth Dawson column.
The former Observer photographer took the first picture at the closure of Huncoat Colliery in February 1968.
Garth says the deeply sad moment marked the end of three centuries of mining in the district.
He said: “I think it would have been one of the last ones around. Hapton had already closed and there was only Scaitcliffe nearby. It was very sad.”
The picture shows the last miners coming up from the 400 foot shaft and they are pictured with some long serving officials.
OUR next picture shows the front of Accrington Grammar School in 1970.
Garth says the school opened as a technical school in 1895 and closed in 2002 after a century of youngsters being taught there.
He added: “How many girls and lads have passed through these doors over the years, the girls leaving to go to the high school in 1939?”
Garth recalls well-known headteachers including Dr Edkins, from 1921 to 1941, Ben Johnson from 1941 to 1967 and popular deputy head and French master Lou ‘Pug’ Portno from 1927 to 1967.
OUR final photo this week shows the Bay Horse building on Church Street, Accrington which is now the site of the Pals Memorial.
Garth says the building collapsed in 1960 while it was occupied by Platts Furniture Shop.
He said: “I think it was just the age of it that made it collapse, no one was hurt.”
Garth added that the building was also the previous home of Miss Harker’s Dancing Academy.
Do you remember the Huncoat Colliery closing for the last time? Did you pass through the gates of Accrington Grammar School?¿Do you remember the collapse of the Bay Horse building or its time as a dance academy? Please bring your letters into our office at Accrington Market Hall or email us at accrington firstname.lastname@example.org . We also want to publish your old pictures. They can be from any era right up to the 1990s. See above contact addresses.
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