Martin gave us a light-hearted presentation made all the more engaging by his genuine enthusiasm for preserving and enhancing this valuable collection, dating back to 1886.
It was interesting to see how subjects for club photography had not changed a lot given the restrictions of the old technology, though the sheer quality of these large format pictures was very impressive.
Martin has made great efforts to discover the exact location of the street scenes and get them re-photographed so that we could see the changes.
For me, though, it was the people depicted who were the most interesting. Turn of the 20th century club groups looked like country house shooting parties, with tweeds and spats, chauffeurs hovering in the background, whilst the most moving (and surely of great significance and value) were the photos taken in the slums with a “transportable camera”. How fiercely the conditions those poor wretches lived in contrasted with those of our privileged photographers!
Thank you Martin for a very thought provoking evening.