Workers recreate 120-year-old photo at Middlesbrough heritage site

Workers transforming a Middlesbrough heritage site have recreated a 120-year-old photograph of their counterparts, carrying on a century-old tradition.

The team working on the major redesign of Exchange Square came together for the photo as their counterparts did in 1902 and again in 1987.

Work is currently underway in the historic part of the town, which houses the statue of Ironmaster and founding father of Middlesbrough, Henry Bolckow.

The area has received £2 million in funding through Historic England’s High Street Heritage Action Zone (HSHAZ) scheme.

The £620,000 overhaul work by contractor Meldrum Construction Services and a specialist restorer began in October and is due to be completed this spring. The 2022 workforce was joined by students from Middlesbrough College, who were given work experience and site tours by Meldrum.

Vicky Holbrough, co-director of Navigator North, said, “We were delighted to be able to initiate the documentation of a key moment and the people involved in the development of Exchange Square and that this is part of the ongoing work that we do. celebrate the city and its fantastic heritage through our cultural programming.

The photo will feature in future exhibitions and will form part of the historical archive charting the growth and development of Middlesbrough.

Councilor Stephen Hill, an executive member of the Middlesbrough Council for Culture and Communities, said: ‘It’s amazing to see the predecessors of the workers in 1902 and 1987 – I’m sure they would be proud of the latest work to come. relies on their own skills and know-how. .

“It’s also great to see their 2022 counterparts stepping into the spirit and carrying on the tradition of taking pictures, so that the last workers are now part of the site’s living history.”

Maria Carballeira, from Historic England, added: “Images showing the same pose by Exchange Square workers, past and present, are a brilliant way to bring the area’s history to life and connect with the community. local.

“It’s part of our ambitious cultural programme, with support from the National Lottery Heritage Fund and Arts Council England.”

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