Leeds nostalgia: Steeplejack killed in 130ft chimney collapse in Mirfield

Dateline: August 1971: A steeplejack was killed and seven people injured after a 130ft tall chimney collapsed at Hopton Mills, Mirfield on August 18.

Witnesses said the building cut “like a knife through butter” as it sliced through the factor roofs.

Seven people were dug out of tons of rubble, including a youth aged 17.

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The steeplejack was Larry Elland, 26, of Waterloo Road, Huddersfield, who was married with one child.

The mill was said to be in a “sylvan setting in the middle of a large woodland”, although it was not clear why or how the chimney had collapsed.

It even demolished part of some residential houses and a ‘carding shed’. Carding is a process widely used in the textile trade and came after ‘teasing’. It untangled fibres and made them parallel.