The Francis Frith Collection.
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Features and Articles

Having over 100,000 historic photographs at your fingertips can feel a little overwhelming! On these pages we bring you some special selections of photographs, stories and memories that demonstrate the significance of The Francis Frith Collection to so many, and celebrate our unique shared British history.

A Royal Celebration

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We're all going to a royal wedding! To celebrate the wedding of Prince William and Catherine Middleton in Westminster Abbey in London on April 29th, we thought we'd delve into the lesser-known corners of The Francis Frith Collection to bring you a variety of Frith images with a "royal" theme.

Saturday Morning Matinee

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Sit back and remember the thrill of the silver screen for children in the 1950s - oh the fun to be had at the Saturday morning children's matinee!

The only place to be on a Saturday, take some time to recall the heroes and villains of the silver screen, singalongs at the interval, spending sixpence on lollies and ice-cream, and cherishing your membership of the ABC Minors!

Easter Memories

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Enjoy this collection of Easter memories, including rolling dyed boiled eggs down the hill, church services, and nostalgic Easter school holidays!

Howzat!

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What would a British Summer be without a game of cricket on idyllic village greens, urban cricket pitches or sandy beaches?

In this special feature, we present wonderfully nostalgic photographs of cricketing scenes and venues and memories of cricketing summers of the past.

Howzat! - We hope you enjoy them!

Mother's Day Memories

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Beautiful photographs inspired by and in appreciation of mothers everywhere. Days out by the seaside, feeding the ducks in the park, spending time together as a family. Enjoy this themed selection of images, and browse for towns and villages that hold a place in her heart.

The Great British Pier

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Since the mid-1800s, the seaside pier has been at the heart of the traditional British family holiday: memories of promenading fashionably along the boardwalk glancing down at the rushing, cold sea below, or playing the slot machines in the pleasure palace; or enjoying the sights and sounds of the funfair, and indulging in sticks of peppermint rock, candy floss and fish and chips. How glorious!

With the help of stunning Frith photographs we recall some of our finest piers in their heyday.

How we used to live

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Remember how we used to live, with this selection of nostalgic memories of Britain.

Enjoy wonderful tales of hard-earned Summer jobs in village shops, boyhood memories of trips to the airfield, hop-picking season and lazy family picnics!

Wartime Memories

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This special selection of memories and photographs speaks strongly to the wartime spirit so synonymous with the British nation.

Read evacuee memories of life in rural Britain, accounts of what it meant to "grow up British" during wartime, and of Remembrance Days of the past.

Every picture tells a story

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It's true that every picture tells a story, so here we feature some wonderful memories of days gone by inspired by photos from The Francis Frith Collection.

Enjoy tales of exciting days adventuring in hills and hedgrows, thickly buttered crusts of co-op baked bread, blackberry picking and milk-collecting in rural post-War Britain.

Egypt and the Holy Land

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The Francis Frith Collection was founded by the pioneering Victorian photographer Francis Frith in the 1860s. Although he is famous nowadays for the photographic record he began of Britain in the 19th century – a project that was continued by his sons, and later his grandson – in his own day he became a sensation for the series of very early photographs that he took of Egypt and the Holy Land. When he was only in his thirties, Francis Frith began a series of trips to the area which lasted from 1857 until 1860, recording in his memoirs that he wished to ‘track the Sun back to his rising, and see the lands upon which his beams first fell’. 

Francis Frith’ reputation as a photographer was based on these early journeys, and his images were widely seen in an array of publications. Enjoy this feature about the founder of The Francis Frith Collection's amazing photographic adventures.

Walk Down Memory Lane

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Take a walk down Memory Lane with this special selection of nostalgic images and memories.

We remember those Summer holidays at Butlins, messing around as kids in the village churchyard, frantically preparing for a Saturday night out on the town, and fun-filled days at the local outdoor kids' pool.

The Good Old Days

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Ahhhh - the Good Old Days! - playing hide-and-seek in the Rec, hours spent fishing for minnows and frog spawn, the slow pace of life in sleepy valley towns, and playing Cowboys and Indians along the embankment!

Enjoy these images and memories of a vanished aged!

A Policeman's Lot

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If you were in Britain in the 1950s, 60s or 70s then you probably remember a number of popular TV programmes about the police force, such as Z Cars, Softly, Softly, and Dixon of Dock Green, with Jack Warners genial greeting at the beginning of each episode - "Evening, all!".

This was the time of blue police telephone boxes, Panda cars, policemen taking their lives in their hands when they were on point duty at busy traffic junctions in towns, and when a local "bobby" was stationed in most towns and villages.

Love inspired

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Do you remember where you stole your first kiss or became engaged? How about the church where you were married or where you set up your first home together?

Photographs now preserved as The Francis Frith Collection, taken between 1860 and 1970 - will be sure to remind you of those you have loved and places in Britain you will forever hold dear.

Indulge in some romantic nostalgia with this special feature from The Francis Frith Collection.

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