I came across this wonderful document today while looking through my father's books. Moorhead Mills, Booths' Mill, was the last of the seven mills in the industrial village of Gildersome outside Leeds to close. As I recall, it specialised in billiard table cloth and army uniforms and eventually succumbed in the late 198os (I think 1989).
The mill - quite a sizeable one as you can tell from these aerial photos - was demolished and sold for building. It was on the Gildersome Lane end of the village not far from Matty Barker hill.
The first two of these aerial photos are undated. The third is from 1928 - and it shows the house were I grew up. Hilly Croft on Gildersome Lane was built as a mill owners' house - though my parents bought it in 1960 when, as I recall, the previous owners went bankrupt.
My father's family had a worsted mill on Gelderd Road at the other end of the village. This which closed earlier, probably in the 1970s - and like all the seven Gildersome woollen mills, has also been demolished. But towards the end of his working life, and quite by chance, my father (Arthur Whitehead) had a go at turning round Moorhead Mills and giving it a new lease of life. To his disappointment, though not his surprise, he failed.
He was in charge as the mill closed - and I guess that's how he came to have this certificate. It's quite small, the size of a paperback book, but such an evocative reminder of the mills.
The 'tanks for attack' campaign, by the way, was one of several wartime savings scheme intended to boost the war effort. I wonder how much money you had to raise to count as 'specially meritorious service'?
I am posting below a couple of photos of Moorhead Mills at about the time it closed . These are included with the permission of Chuck Soderlund who runs a truly excellent website on the history of Gildersome. He in turn got these images from the mill historian Peter Munthe Webster.
Andrew Whitehead's blog
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