Dudley blast furnaces OP02658
Blast furnace, Russell's Hall, Dudley, West Midlands, 1859. Mr Mills, dilute albumen print. Mr Mills, otherwise unknown as a photographer, recorded the blast furnaces at Russell's Hall, west of Dudley, when the industry was producing a vast number of iron products, including nails, boilers, vices and chains. Coal mining around Dudley had been recorded in the early 13th century and the area was famous for the manufacture of iron nails in the early 16th century. By the late 18th century Dudley was at the centre of England's iron industry, and the region was dubbed the 'Black Country' because of the blackening of the landscape by the coal and iron industries. Russell's Hall itself was pockmarked by clay pits and coal shafts, and significant urban development only took place after the Second World War.
© Historic England Archive
Consett Steel Works FF98_00247
Consett Steel Works, County Durham, 1945-80. Eric de Mare (1910-2002) cellulose acetate negative. Steel-making dominated Consett for 140 years from 1840, and the steelworks, employing 6, 000 workers in the 1960s, loomed over rows of terraced houses. Eric de Mare's elevated view of Consett Steel Works captures their gargantuan scale, echoing the work of pre-war photographers such as Albert Renger-Patzsch in Germany and Charles Sheeler in the United States who emphasised the strong forms of industrial structures. De Mare used colour photography here, recognising that this required a 'different vision' from black-and-white film. The massive tube in the foreground reflects his view that a close shot filling or almost filling the frame 'will usually be more effective and more interesting'.
© Historic England
Brodsworth Main Colliery EPW012843
BRODSWORTH MAIN COLLIERY, Adwick-le-Street, South Yorkshire. Aerial photograph taken in May 1925. The Colliery was opened in 1905 and closed in 1990. The radial housing estate that can be seen at the top of the picture is part of the model village of Woodlands that was originally built for the colliery workers. This picture clearly shows railway sidings and coal trucks as well as a wide variety of pit head structures. Taken from a copy negative. Aerofilms Collection (see Links).
© Historic England