Harry Yeadon: local loyalties and civil engineering

Harry Yeadon recalls his loyalty to Lancashire and the motorway building programme.

What was behind it all from your point of view?

What, the motorway network? Erm, well first of all as a civil engineer you like to get things done, I think that’s the important thing, do things, achieve things, because I’m a great believer in what I would describe as the creative careers of producing something. My father was an electrical engineer, working – they were producing things, mechanical engineering if you like although he was an electrical. So that’s a big belief of mine to create things. And well I think the – being a Lancastrian, you know, I keep on about that, you know, when you’ve been brought up in a smallish industrial town and you’ve – you’ve seen the decline even in my younger days of mining and textiles, you know, with the mills going and the chimneys smoking and so on, when you realise that that’s going or gone. And you’re saying, well what’s going to happen to this place? You know, and a lot of people of course did move from those areas. I think it’s a – you know, you’re brought up there and you – and of course the place has changed, in all respects. But, I think we brought some life back to them with the – the road programme. Places like Burnley for example, and oh the other textile towns, you know, they’ve got other industries there now. It’s being part of the county. Some of the industrial development that’s taken place, that commercial development would not have been there, the investors would not have put their money in because of lack of communications. And to be fair to the planning officer he always supported me on this, he said that the – there wasn’t much interest in the – in terms of bringing in industrial development until it was realised that, for example, the M65 was going to go ahead. And ven before it was built knowing that we were pushing this and that it would take place they started moving in, getting their sites and developing, and that wouldn’t have happened.

  • Interviewee Harry Yeadon
  • Duration 00:02:53
  • Copyright British Library Board
  • Interviewer Thomas Lean
  • Date of interview 12/19/2012
  • Shelfmark C1379/82

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