Photographer looks back at community’s heyday in exhibition

All smiles at the local dance.
All smiles at the local dance.
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A talented photographer is set to display a series of striking images from the village that her dad knew and loved.

Catherine Ruocco has launched the latest exhibition of her work which will go on show at the Central Library in Hartlepool from Monday, May 8.

Riding down the lanes.

Riding down the lanes.

It features scenes of village life in Blackhall which holds such dear memories for Catherine who lives in Hesleden.

The display will have an opening night from 6.30pm to 8.30pm and will be on show at the library in York Road until May 19.

And for Cath, it marks an important part of her life as it will be a tribute to her father.

She said: “As I walk the streets of Blackhall I find myself looking more for memories of my dear old dad.

Catherine Ruocco.

Catherine Ruocco.

“Did he walk down this street? Did this window look out at him as he passed by?”

Catherine added: “This is my tribute to my father Albert Anson.

“I search for glimpses of him, I see him playing in the streets.”

She said: “This is my trip down memory lane, exploring my heritage.”

A look at community life.

A look at community life.

Her recollections, she said, included her dad “leaving the now long gone pit, his face black with coal, smiling, happy that his shift in the depths of hell is over.”

Catherine paid tribute to the locals who helped her with the display.

“I couldn’t have done it without the people of Blackhall. Down to earth, friendly folk that they are, always welcoming, always happy to have their picture taken.”

Blackhall was the place where Albert Anson spent his life before his death around 21 years ago, at the age of 76.

Some of the villagers will be there for the launch of Catherine’s display.

To find out more about the event, and about other activities at the library, telephone (01429) 272905 or email

The library is open between 10am and 6pm from Monday to Friday, and from 10am to 2pm on Saturdays. It is closed on Sundays.