Penistone Church - Views from the top

Here are some very privileged views from the top of the church tower from the year 2,000 and by special permission. Please note that access to the top of the tower is better suited to a mountain climber than Joe Public and is only very rarely allowed. Other parts of the tower are more easily accessed, by means of the very tight spiral staircase.

This first picture looks towards Watermeadows Park, Water Hall (obscured by trees) and Viewlands on Barnsley Road. This view will not have altered much over the years but the distant landscape is set to change by the addition of another large-scale housing development, off the narrow Wellhouse Lane, as it eats further into one of our more visible green spaces.

Wellhouse Lane

When this page was previously edited in 2010, it bore the comment:
'Compare these pictures from 2,000 with the old 1958 pictures. Not much has changed near to the church but there are plans for a roundabout near to the British Legion and a large supermarket somewhere behind the Rose and Crown, towards the Showground.'
Well, by the time of the later edit in 2021, all of that had happened, and more.

  church roof viaduct Robinson's News NW
SW West

We can see the church roof from above, Penistone Viaduct, then the corner building at the top of Church Street which used to be Robinson's News at the time of this picture. It would later become an antiques shop but is now 'The Vault' bar. On the bottom row, the former Rose and Crown at the top of Shrewsbury Road takes prime position, now a lawyer's practise. The next picture is dominated by the bus shelter and Clark's Chemist, with the Old Crown behind. You can also see the Bowling Club top-left. The green field is the Showground and the Tesco food store had not yet been built on the portion nearest to us.

The last picture is dominated by St Mary's Street and has seen some radical changes over the years. This was before the Natwest and HSBC Banks abandoned Penistone and 'Penistone 1' was built, along with the 'Square-about' one-way traffic system which now runs anti-clockwise around the block. Another new feature is St Mary's Street roundabout near the bridge. The railway arches look just the same as ever.

The Camera
The pictures were all taken using a new 'Kodak DC280 Zoom' digital camera, which was something of a novelty at the time. The zoom lens was 3:1 ratio; it took four rechargeable AA cells and it saved to a Compact Flash (CF) card. As a 2 Megapixel camera, it was not high resolution by modern standards (1760 x 1168) but it was a fair effort for the technology of its day and the pictures were always clean and natural. It was slow in operation and always took a few seconds to start up, or longer proportional to the capacity of the CF card. It was a fun camera to use, if a bit limited by modern standards.

Night-time pictures using flash would often suffer from defocussed 'orbs' due to the reflection of light from dust particles close to the camera. You will have seen the same thing in many a 'haunted house' programme on tv. As usual, the pictures here were shrunk down because of the limited server space on this website but they look even smaller now on a modern computer or TV screen. They looked big at the time.

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