For more than 130 years, photographers have been recording life in Edenfield, Turn, Stubbins, Irwell Vale and Ewood Bridge. Like most places in Lancashire, these villages have long histories stretching back to the sixteenth century and beyond. For many years, people hereabouts made a living from hill farming and handloom weaving, until industrialisation in the late eighteenth and nineteenth centuries brought water-powered and steam-driven mills to the neighbourhood. The period photographs in this book allow us to open a window to previous generations, showing long-vanished buildings, changing modes of transport and people at work and play. Accompanying them are up-to-date pictures, which show the area at the start of the twenty-first century and the profound changes that have taken place since our grandparents and great grandparents first ventured out with their cameras to capture village life on film.
John Simpson was born and brought up in Rossendale, where he still lives. He is a graduate of the University of Durham and works in the local studies department of a small town library. He has written a number of books on the history of the area and is archivist for Helmshore Local History Society.