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The Lock House

Canal Postcards: NarrowBoat, Spring 2020

Trevor Ellis looks at how historic postcards document the changing face of a much photographed part of the Huddersfield Narrow Canal

Vanished lock houses are sadly far from unusual on the canal system. It seems to have been British Waterways policy in the 1950s and ’60s to divest itself of any old buildings by demolishing them, particularly the more remote examples. One such building formerly stood alongside Lock 10W on the Huddersfield Narrow Canal. The site is roughly a mile along the waterway from Stalybridge, and a similar distance from Mossley, and probably at least half that distance from the nearer village of Millbrook, all of which seems to have made it a popular destination for Sunday afternoon walks, and thus a frequent subject for postcards. In fact, the Lock House may well be one of the most ‘postcarded’ places on the canal system. Of around 160 pre-restoration postcard views of the Huddersfield Narrow Canal I know of, there are no fewer than 27 depicting the Lock House. These are variously captioned as ‘Mossley’, ‘Millbrook’, ‘Staley’ or ‘Sta…

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