In the 1950s, two coal-fired power stations were built on a site off Twyford Road, between Willington and Findern. The stations were privatised and sold off toNational Power in the early 1990s and eventually closed in the mid 1990s. Although most of the stations were demolished at the turn of the millennium, the five imposing cooling towers continue to dominate the skyline of the local area. The site is earmarked for a large residential development, pending the results of a public inquiry. The construction plans have been met with local opposition, perhaps due to the site’s proximity to the River Trent’s flood plain. In the mid 1990s, a pair of peregrine falcons nested in one of the site’s huge cooling towers. Unlike many bird of prey breeding sites, this was widely publicised because of its impregnable location.
The Kimberley Brewery was established and operated by the brewer Hardys & Hansons, and has a heritage dating from 1832. It was the oldest independent brewery in Nottinghamshire. Having been attracted by the supply of excellent brewing water from the Holly Well, both breweries thrived independently until 1930, when under increasing pressure from larger brewing companies and lack of male successors to the Hardy’s Brewery, the two companies combined. In 2006, The Hardys & Hansons Kimberley Brewery and all of its public houses were sold in a multi-million pound deal to Greene King brewery, who decided to end the brewing tradition in Kimberley in “a cost effective move” and will sell the Kimberley site, moving its distribution centre toEastwood. Brewing will switch to the main Greene King site at Bury St Edmunds.
The Derby Hippodrome is a purpose built theatre opened in 1914 as a 2,300 capacity Variety house. It was converted in 1930 into an 1,800 seat cinema, becoming a theatre once more for only 9 years until 1959. Three years later the theatre was purchased by Mecca Group who converted the theatre into a Bingo Social Club and was later purchased by Walker’s Bingo Group. Walkers Bingo ceased operations rather suddenly and in 2007 sold the theatre to Mr Christopher Anthony, a Property Developer. Local people expressed concern as to the theatre’s future through the pages of the Derby Evening Telegraph and through the winter of late 2007- early 2008 the paper reported numerous incidents of vandalism to the building and pointed to the fact that the vandals could gain entry to the building with apparent ease. Continued deterioration prompted a local businessman to make an offer to purchase the building from Mr Anthony, but the offer was rejected and in February 2008 an arson attack caused damage to the orchestra pit area of the theatre. The following month the Derby Evening Telegraph published shocking photographs of the wrecked interior. The pictures published in the Telegraph edition of Wednesday March 19th showed that the entire dress circle balcony had been removed and all its plaster work destroyed. Elsewhere much of the decorative plaster work around the auditorium had disappeared including large sections of the proscenium arch. Remains of the plaster mouldings on the floor suggested that the damage was the [...]
An excellent explore right next to the canal in the small town of Atherstone. Atherstone has been a centre for hatmaking since Tudor times. In the 17th century when the wearing of felt hats instead of caps became increasingly common, Atherstone became the West Midlands centre for the manufacture low cost hats. Hats from Atherstone were sent all over Britain and further afield, around the world to British colonies. In the aftermath of the Second World War. Despite booms and troughs caused by fashion, the market remained on a downward trend. In the 1970s only three hat factories remained in Atherstone – Denham & Hargrave, Vero & Everitt and Wilson & Stafford. In the 1980s as the market contracted further, Wilson & Stafford bought out the other two firms, but could not continue much longer. The Wilson & Stafford factory survived for another decade and was the last to close in 1999. The building was due for demolition in 2008 in order to build flats, but for one reason or another this work has not yet been carried out.
Made a return visit over the weekend, to see if much has changed in a year. It hasent but we got some nice shots all the same. The last two operational chert mines in Derbyshire were the Pretoria Mine and Holme Bank Mine, both at Bakewell. Pretoria opened in 1902. Access was from adits in a quarry at Bank Top and the steep workings extended beneath the road to connect with the earlier Greenfield shaft. The chert bed lies on a 1 in 3.7 gradient and the mine was subject to flooding in severe winters. Illumination was by mains electricity in addition to carbide lamps carried by the miners. The first report can be found here
Wredon is a large quarry situated on the north-east side of the main peak, and just off the A52 main road from Ashbourne. It is a limestone quarry, owned by Tarmac, i am not sure how long it has been out of use but the paperwork indicates it has been since about 2003.
Kevin Quarry was used to produce almost 40 different products: road materials of dry and coated stone and powders of ground limestone which are used in almost every industry. They are also to be found in face and talcum powder, household cleansers, plastics, etc. The quarry itself has been mothballed since 2003 but the plant is still active. Plenty of unused buildings around the site. Due to the active side we had to do a bit of ducking and diving to avoid being spotted by the workers.