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Altruism and Alpacas.

A Visit to Shipley and Saltaire.

sunny

We have just returned from an Easter visit to the UK. Our visit began on the 24th of March when we flew into Manchester Airport, then took a train across the Pennines to Leeds, where we took another train to Shipley. Shipley is on the outskirts of the city of Bradford.

We stayed for one night in the Ibis Hotel, Shipley which is located right on the edge of the Leeds & Liverpool Canal. We had booked and paid for an early check-in at this hotel. Our original intention had been for Peter to go to a football match in Leeds and me to look around Shipley, but his football match was cancelled due to call-ups and both of us were exhausted from the flight, so we decided to set the alarm and have a little snooze. Sadly, we put the alarm straight off when it rang to wake us up and went back to sleep until dinner time !!!!! Oh dear, not a good start.

Our Hotel.

Our Hotel.

For dinner we went to a pub next to the hotel. It was called The Noble Comb, which I thought was a weird name until I discovered it was a reference to the woollen industry and the combs used in the carding process. This was quite a nice pub though very busy with lots of kids running around. Peter ate fish and chips which were good though on the cool side. I had roast beef wrapped in a Yorkshire pudding tortilla. This I did not like. Flat Yorkshire puddings do not taste right and the beef cooked inside a wrapping has the wrong texture. Still the beer was good.

The Noble Comb.

The Noble Comb.

Peter in The Noble Comb.

Peter in The Noble Comb.

Next day we got up bright and early and set out to see as much of Shipley as we could before we had to check out at midday. We decided to walk along the Leeds & Liverpool Canal to Saltaire. The Leeds & Liverpool Canal is the longest canal in the UK. It stretches for 127 miles between the cities of Leeds and Liverpool. It was completed in 1816 and took 46 years to build. Obviously, we only walked a very short stretch of it. It was a perfect day though and the industrial buildings lining the canal were beautifully reflected in the still canal water.

The Leeds and Liverpool Canal.

The Leeds and Liverpool Canal.

The Leeds and Liverpool Canal.

The Leeds and Liverpool Canal.

The Leeds and Liverpool Canal.

The Leeds and Liverpool Canal.

Approaching the mills.

Approaching the mills.

Saltaire is a village dating from 1851. It was built by the altruistic and social-minded industrialist Sir Titus Salt. The village is called Saltaire after Sir Titus Salt and the River Aire on which the village stands. Originally Sr Titus Salt had five woollen mills in the centre of Bradford, but he wanted to improve the lives of his workforce and protect them from the polluted Bradford air and frequent cholera outbreaks in the city. Saltaire was designed by two local architects: Francis Lockwood and Richard Mawson. It included mills, houses for the workers, a church, a hospital, a library. a park, a school and even a concert hall. The workers houses were of much better quality than the slums the workers had lived in in Bradford. They had wash-houses and bath houses with tap-water. Sir Titus was a methodist and very against drink and gambling. There is now a pub in Saltaire called Don't Tell Titus.

Sir Titus died in 1876 and is buried in a mausoleum next to the Congregational church. There is a statue of him in Roberts Park in Saltaire and near it there are statues of two alpacas. Sir Titus owed a lot of his industrial success to using alpaca wool which produced a lighter, silk-like woollen material. Roberts Park is called after Sir James Roberts who came to own Saltaire, after the death of Titus Salt's son. The village of Saltaire is still largely intact and was designated a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in December 2001.

The Mills.

The Mills.

Ice-cream barge on the canal.

Ice-cream barge on the canal.

Saltaire Church.

Saltaire Church.

The River Aire.

The River Aire.

One of the mills.

One of the mills.

Alpacas in Roberts Park.

Alpacas in Roberts Park.

Sir Titus Salt.

Sir Titus Salt.

Saltaire Cricket Ground.

Saltaire Cricket Ground.

Easter Parade, Saltaire, Congregational Church.

Easter Parade, Saltaire, Congregational Church.

The Salt Building.

The Salt Building.

Victoria Hall.

Victoria Hall.

Lion Statue.

Lion Statue.

Workers' houses.

Workers' houses.

Posted by irenevt 21:41 Archived in United Kingdom Tagged mills bradford saltaire shipley Comments (5)

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