Wednesday, 1 September 2010

Jerusalem

This is another view that I see as I walk to work. It's the chimney of Victoria Mills, once a textile mill, recently converted into apartments. It's half a mile along the Aire valley from Salts Mill and was built about 20 years later, in the 1870s, by Henry Mason. It wasn't nearly as big as Salts Mill but in its heyday it was still one of the 'big four' significant mills in Bradford in terms of manufacturing worsted cloth. It does, however, retain one feature that Salts has lost - the ornate top of the chimney stack.

I love the juxtaposition of the old industrial buildings against the soft green backdrop of Baildon Moor - so typical of West Yorkshire as a whole, where the mills nestle in the valley bottoms and the fields and moors soar over them.... immortalised of course in William Blake's famous poem, now the epic anthem "Jerusalem".

And did those feet in ancient time walk upon England's mountains green? And was the holy Lamb of God on England's pleasant pastures seen? And did the Countenance Divine shine forth upon our clouded hills? And was Jerusalem builded here, among these dark Satanic Mills?


(This quotation once memorably won a newspaper competition - "Questions to which the answer is NO"!)

10 comments:

  1. You're talented to make a wonderful post from simle things..Your everyday landscape is becoming something highly poetic, by your eyes on it and the quote you choose!

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  2. Isn't it amazing how, over time, we can learn to embrace industrial architecture in our landscapes? I'm not so sure that our present day buildings will have such a strong statement to make in years to come.

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  3. Oh I love that newspaper competition 'Questions to which the answer is NO'. It seems the right one won ;-) You live in a gorgeous place. The contrast industry/nature is always interesting.
    (I've discovered how you can follow me, it's in my answer to your comment ;-)) I've joined your club of stalkers. Or at least I hope I did ;-)

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  4. Wonderfully written and nice picture.

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  5. Flanders and Swann used to always comment on how odd it was that England didn't have a national song other than Jerusalem which is a bit of a contradiction in terms.

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  6. I love the way that the mill towns and the moors go hand in hand. It gives West Yorkshire (and parts of Lancashire) such character. I agree with Martin H, present day buildings will never make such a strong statement.

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  7. So happy our GFC problems got fixed! Yay! :) Proudly I am now following you, at last.
    Look forward to reading your posts.

    Nice to meet you!

    Hope you had a nice day!

    Betty :))

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  8. Lovely place you have.
    I look forward to seeing more.
    Lisa

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  9. I love William Blake! And as I recall, there was a legend that Jesus visited England at some point during those 'lost' years.

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