Author: Tom Daldry

Eden Project North C Grimshaw Architects

Morecambe, from seaside resort to Eden Project

Morecambe is a coastal town on the Irish Sea. It comprised the hamlets of Poulton, Bare and Torrisholme until 1889. Passage of the necessary legislation officially named the area Morecambe. Formed in 1894, the Urban District Council freed the town from governance by the Borough of Lancaster (until 1974, when Lancaster again took charge). But various parties […]

Skipton C Tim Green

Skipton, Yorkshire

Skipton originally made most of its money trading sheep and wool. Recorded in the Domesday Book, it is a market town. The Market operates in a unique way. King John granted consent to ‘The Lord of the Honour’ of Skipton Castle. It enabled him to hold a fair on the High Street. Consent holds true today. It is […]


Barnsley, in South Yorkshire, has a proud mining heritage. Monks, who first erected a chapel and then established a market, built the original foundations of the town. Barnsley was also important for linen weaving and has a long history of glass making, but is most well known for its coalmines. Today, the Elsecar Heritage Centre, […]


Barnoldswick in Lancashire is at the highest point of the Leeds and Liverpool Canal. The market town dates back to pre-Roman times, was prominent in the Industrial Revolution and Rolls Royce developed the jet engine there in the Second World War. The steam engine at Bancroft Mill still works and is part of the Stream […]

Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire

A busy traditional market town, and the county town of Buckinghamshire, Aylesbury has significant buildings dating back to the Middle Ages, particularly around its large central market square with an imposing clock tower, built in 1876. These days it’s a popular choice for commuters to London, and is a significant transport hub, though its bus […]

Braintree, Essex, a silk centre

Braintree’s role in silk manufacture was rather significant. The Courtauld family was famous in the silk industry. George Courtauld established a silk throwing business in 1799 near Braintree, moving into the town in 1818. In 1825, the family began making crêpe (crimped silk gauze). This made the company famous. The Courtaulds used their enormous wealth […]

Hebden Bridge, West Yorkshire: a thriving pocket of culture

Hebden Bridge developed into an industrial town in the nineteenth century – as did many of Manchester’s surrounding towns.  At one point, it was known as ‘Trouser Town’. But its distinctive landscape, with hills and streams, made it ideal for water-powered weaving mills. Built in 1897, the Town Hall is a Grade II Listed Building. It has acted […]

Stockport Town Hall
Stockport Town Hall

Stockport, home of silk, hats and heritage!

Stockport has been a centre for the hatting industry from the 17th century, and it later became a centre for silk production. Stockport was a prototype textile town. Stockport’s first mill opened in 1732 – the first water-powered textile mill in England’s North West. Working conditions were often difficult, because of the boom and bust […]

Haverhill Arts Centre, housed in the Town Hall building bequeathed by local Georgian weaver Daniel Gurteen


A small 18th century market town, Haverhill was originally settled in Roman times, but burned down during the 17th century and mostly rebuilt 100 years later. As a result, it’s an intriguing mish-mash of styles, most of them pleasing, but with some early elements like 11th century stonework occurring next to things a lot younger, but sometimes older. […]