There are plenty of old mills in Greater Manchester, some in better condition than others. Plenty have been flattened to make way for supermarkets and housing estates.
Mather Lane Mill is a Grade II listed building that is slowly falling to pieces. Its a fantastic looking building with severe elevations over the canal.
I’ve wanted to try and get a plate of it for a while now and today I thought I’d have a crack. The best viewpoint seems to be from the someones garden in a nearby housing estate (used to be a mill), there was no one home when I knocked and wasn’t cheeky enough to set up without their permission. So I parked my van on some broken double yellows on the lane leading down to Brooklands Mill. Not the quietest of spots with all the big wagons driving past but it’ll do.
Now I had forgotten all about the local scallys drinking their cans of ale along the canal on a morning, starts off pleasant enough but it does keep you on edge. Not that I don’t trust people, its just when your head in the darkbox sorting your plate, anything could be happening to your camera gear so many meters away, and this doesn’t make for a relaxing shoot. You’ve got enough on your plate (pardon the pun) without worrying that your kit is going to go missing or that someones taking a swig out of your collodion, or worse your Potassium Cyanide…..anyways, I’m rambling, I think I might revisit now I’ve seen some other spots where I might get a better view. And there’s also some other mills in the area well worth a shoot especially Butts Mill and Ena Mill.
When one chap with a black eye and a can of Tennants Super starts to ask how much your kit is worth its time to start packing up…..
Two of these are whole plate with a wide angle lens that didn’t quite have enough to cover the plate, but I was that close to the mill/canal I didn’t really have a choice. One is with the 8 inch 1:1 lens.
They’re a bit messy but I’m putting that down to my rushed nervous disposition of the day.
I think I’ll pack my Dallmeyer whole plate lens next time and its interesting to see that the canal/water has gone pitch black.
Exposures are F8 at 2 seconds and F16 at 8 seconds.