Friday, December 29, 2006

Rust-red rivers and iron ore

Saltburn photographer, Bob Mitchell, has captured the glory and decline of Cleveland's industrial heritage in a series of dramatic photographs. Scouring the East Cleveland hillsides for abandoned ironstone mines the 26 year old photographer found the crumbling remains of some of the 83 mines - including Brotton's Lumpsey Mine - which between them produced 360 tons of iron ore in their lifetime. Bob, who grew up in Brotton, said his work stood as a tribute to the men who toiled to dig iron ore by hand from the Cleveland Hills, from the mid nineteenth century until the last mine closed at North Skelton in 1964.
Little now remains of the industry other than a few buildings and the rust-red rivers which hint at the story behind the ironstone mines which once powered the nation's industrial might.
Bob's 'Iron and Steel' exhibition will be on show in Preston Hall Museum until January 27th

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