A photographer is aiming to use his images of the ‘new’ Salford to change how people see the city.
Antony Mills, who wants to tackle negative perceptions through his art, has spent years researching Salford’s history, alongside documenting what modern Salford is really like.
He said: “Some people still think Salford is full of slum dwellings, grotty pubs, cotton mills and polluted rivers.
“I remember a few years ago I took a friend who lives down South now to Salford Quays / Media City for the first time and he couldn’t believe the transformation,” said Antony.
With these modern photographs of Salford, Antony hopes the perception of Salford can change.
“I was unhappy with the way modern Salford was being portrayed and described compared to ‘the good old days Salford’,” says Antony.
“To me it looked grey, grim, grimy and grotty in all the black and white photographs so I embarked on a mission to take photographs of now.
“I have carried on taking the photographs – I have thousands of them now – and I’m hoping that in 50, 60, 70 years time these will be looked at fondly by the youngsters of today who will be in their old age.”
Whilst wanting to photograph modern Salford, however, Antony also has a keen interest in researching and documenting its history.
“I’ve learnt a lot about old and new Salford and it’s a fascinating place. In fact, I discovered my ancestors on my mother’s side lived in the area for quite a while back in the early 1900s,” said Antony.
“I’m still learning now about the place. Just when I think I’ve exhausted all avenues for new information, something else comes along.
“Search Samuel Hill Derby, for instance. He murdered more people in 1888 than Jack the Ripper but nobody’s ever heard of him! He’s buried in Weaste Cemetery along with all his victims.”
When asked about what made Salford special, Antony said; “I think what makes Salford’s history special, to me anyway , is that it’s always looked forward rather than backward – despite the reminiscing about the good old days from the old ‘uns .
“You can’t live in the past and you can’t stay still. Look to the future and beyond. Move forward and keep moving. Salford is a city of many firsts and I hope that it continues to be so.”