I photograph dying buildings and Quarry Hill was terminal by the time I got to it. Times change and I know there was no point in keeping Quarry Hill Flats. But what it stood for might have been worth keeping” - Peter Mitchell
RRB Photobooks are pleased to announce the forthcoming publication Epilogue -The Demise of the Quarry Hill Flats by Peter Mitchell. The book acts as a sequel to his 1990 publication Memento Mori, which documented the dramatic impact of the Quarry Hill redevelopment project in Leeds.
The book contains over 40 new images, documenting the abandonment and subsequent demolition of the site, adding a poignant final chapter to the 1990 publication and its later facsimile edition. Largely eschewing the archive material seen in Memento Mori, Epilogue takes a more narrative approach to telling this final part of the story. Mitchell is again the lone wanderer in an increasingly unpopulated and other-wordly landscape.
Quarry Hill was a large housing estate in Leeds built in the 1930's as part of a ‘great social experiment’ to accommodate an entire community of 3000 people. By the 1970's both the vision and the flats were crumbling and the decision was made to demolish.
Though the notion of Utopia underpins the narrative of Quarry Hill, from its passionately visionary beginnings to its step-by-step decline and final end, there are no real morals or easy conclusions to be drawn. As Bernard Crick wrote, it was “small things, not any inherent fault in the grand design, which destroyed Quarry Hill.” It was more about timings than anything else - a sad ending. Peter Mitchell’s chronicles and photographs simply show what happens to utopias when they implode.
For a limited period all copies will also ship with a 5x5" signed c-print (horse image)