Pictures of Preston
This is the town that was at the centre of the cotton spinning industry for well over a hundred and fifty years. Richard Arkwright, the inventor of the Spinning frame was born here in the year 1732 and the fortunes gained by the great industrialists of the day are solely due to the ingenuity of this one man.
Interestingly, Preston has been represented in Parliament since the 13th-century and is the second oldest borough in England. Before this, in 1179 Henry II granted Preston a Charter giving the right to hold a a regular Merchant Guild (Market) and throughout the centuries this historical fact has been celebrated every twenty years. In Victorian times the building of the railways brought a renewed importance to Preston by the building of a railway junction. The trains that ran from London to the cities of Scotland all stopped here, this caused the building of large hotels where passengers could rest before completing the remainder of their journey.
Today, Preston remains a lively, busy industrial town and the old port area which was once so important to the life of the town has been redeveloped. A modern shopping centre has been built and provides the visitor with a good selection of both high street stores and individual family emporiums. The Harris museum is a handsome classical style building which was built in 1893 through a bequest from a local man, E.R. Harris. It houses a vast number of art treasures including watercolours by 19th-century British Artists, Glass, Porcelain and childhood memorabilia from the 18th-century. There too, are relics from the Bronze Age and from Viking times.
At the northern end of the city is the Fulwood Barracks. A short drive to the east on the road to Blackburn is Hoghton Tower where relics of James Ist visit of 1617 are preserved. The house, rebuilt in 1565 and restored during the late 19th-century, contains 17th-century panelling and many pictures of local interest. The walled garden is an absolute joy and contains a variety of old Roses.
The days when the thought of Preston immediately conjured up images similar to those of a Lowry have long since gone. This is a place of business and commerce that offers comfortable hotels from which to explore the history and culture of the town and where a warm welcome awaits you in the excellent pubs and inns both in the town and surrounding countryside.