Widnes is a town with a long industrial heritage. It is located on the northern bank of the River Mersey where the estuary narrows to form the Runcorn Gap. Prior to the Industrial Revolution Widnes consisted of a small number of separate settlements on land which was mainly marsh or moorland. In 1847 the first chemical factory was established and the town rapidly became a major centre of the chemical industry. The town grew rapidly as housing and social provision was made for the factory workers. Soon the villages of Farnworth, Appleton, Ditton and Upton were subsumed within the developing town of Widnes. The substances produced included soap, borax, soda ash, salt cake and bleaching powder. Other industries developed including iron and copper works. The town became heavily polluted with smoke and the by-products of the chemical processes and in 1888 was described as 'the dirtiest, ugliest and most depressing town in England'. By the early decades of the twentieth century the health of the residents of the town was improving. In the 1920s and 1930s there was further diversification of the chemical industry and the products it manufactured. Slums were replaced by better homes and after the Second World War the process of slums clearance continued. In 1961 the Silver Jubilee Bridge replaced the outdated Transporter Bridge and in recent years many of the old heavy chemical factories have closed to be replaced by more modern factories. Much of the land previously polluted by the old dirty chemical processes has been reclaimed, and there have been improvements in the cleanliness and environment of the town. In a fascinating series of contemporary photographs and illustrations, Widnes At Work explores the life of this Cheshire town and its people, from rapid growth during the Industrial Revolution, through two world wars, postwar decline and into the technologically advanced world of today.
Product code: BKVNS
Publisher: Amberley Publishing
Dimensions: 16.8cm x 23.3cm
Publish date: 15/11/2017
Help our customers make the best choices by telling everyone what you think about this product.
There are currently no customer reviews for this product. Why not be the first?