Get involved: send your pictures, video, news and views by texting CHNEWS to 80360, or email
Hilda remembers the Great Flood of 1932 in Barnoldswick for exhibition
5:39pm Thursday 5th September 2013 in News
Barnoldswick History Society staged an exhibition of photographs and artefacts from the cotton industry at the town’s Bancroft Mill.
And there was a section devoted to the Great Flood of 1932 with photographs taken during and after it.
The deluge demolished a wall on Colne Road and caused extensive flooding, with workers at Clough Mill and Bancroft Mill being transported to safety on the backs of lorries.
A significant contribution to the display was made by local resident Hilda Elsworth, who worked as a weaver at Bancroft for 44 years.
Now 90, she had hand-written an account of her experiences on that day when she was a nine-year-old schoolgirl.
Hilda said: “I can remember being in school when the sky went very dark but at 4pm we were all let out to go home.
“The teachers should have seen that we weren’t able to get home, but they did not and it was 7.30pm when I finally arrived home.
“On my way up by the main gates of Letcliffe Park I met two ladies who asked me where I was going, and having told them, they said that I couldn’t get down there.
“By this time I must have been getting quite upset because I could see the roof of my home.
“The ladies were very kind and said that they would take me down to Clough Mill and they would see that I got through to the bottom of Wapping (now called Westgate).
“When we got to the Greyhound Inn, I remembered that I had an aunt who lived at Cobden Street so I said that I would go there.
“There were no telephones in those days so they were not able to let my parents know where I was.
“Well, I went there and had my tea and at 7pm, who should come walking up the back yard but my dad.
“What a relief for him and myself. My mother would also be relieved later when she saw us.
“It was lucky that no-one lost their life that day, as it was July and had been such a nice day, no-one would have expected it to happen.”