Some ‘reel’ interesting pictures of historic Fylde textile mill at work

A view of the looms, at Progress Mill, in October 1953

A view of the looms, at Progress Mill, in October 1953

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These wonderful pictures show a piece of Kirkham’s rich past as a mill town.

They feature Progress Mill, built in 1915.

The looms in action, at Progress Mill, in 1953

The looms in action, at Progress Mill, in 1953

Kirkham at one time had 11 mills, and Progress, a textile mill, was the last to be erected.

Cotton was once a thriving industry in Kirkham.

Progress Mill was built by Henry Turner – a mill-worker and the son of a poverty-stricken Freckleton family, with businessman Thomas Whittle.

The business was so successful it withstood the problems of the 30s slump, to employ 500 people running 1,000 looms in the deafening din of the weaving shed.

Chimney demolition, in July 1972

Chimney demolition, in July 1972

During the Second World War, the mill was used to make parachute fabric.

But in the end, the decline of the Lancashire textile trade caught up with Whittle and Turner, and Progress Mill fell silent in 1972.

The London Gazette reported in April 1973 that Whittle and Turner was being voluntarily wound up after an extraordinary general meeting.

The mill was converted into industrial units.

Progress Mill Industrial Park, pictured in 1992

Progress Mill Industrial Park, pictured in 1992

It became Progress Industrial Park.

The top picture on this page was taken in October 1953 and shows a view of the looms at Progress Mill.

The looms can be seen in action, also in 1953.

The chimney was demolished in July 1972, as another of these archive photographs shows.

And in its more modern guise, Progress Mill Industrial Park can be seen in a picture taken in 1992.