Collection: Air Pictures Portleven Collection

1930 - 1939
Collection containing Photographic material
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The collection contains 356 black and white negatives. Most of the negatives are oblique aerial images of towns and industrial sites taken from an aircraft. The negatives are 5 inch x 4 inch glass plates and they are undated. They were probably taken in the 1930s. Some of the images have been published with the credit 'Air Pictures Portleven' and it is assumed that this is the name of the creator.

Within the collection are three distinct series. The first contains 11 images taken on the ground, mainly showing Eastbourne, East Sussex. The second contains 61 negatives containing '31' as part of their reference number (presumably taken in 1931) and thought to show aerial images of Wales. The third series contains 284 aerial images showing various locations in Scotland and England.

All series contain a proportion of unidentified locations.

Cities and towns featured include: City of London; City of Westminster; Newquay, Cornwall; Burslem, Staffordshire; Snodland, Kent; Salisbury and Wilton, Wiltshire; Bournemouth and Poole, Dorset; Dover, Kent; Croxley Green, Hertfordshire; Lancaster, Lancashire; Swinton, Stockport, Irlam and Tydesley, Greater Manchester; Barrow in Furness, Cumbria; Skipton, North Yorkshire; Otley, Bingley, Guisley, Yeadon and Rawdon, West Yorkshire; Ellesmere Port, Stanlow, Macclesfield, and Congleton, Cheshire; and North Shields, South Shields and Tynemouth, Tyne and Wear.

Individual buildings in London include: 'The Den' Millwall Football Club's stadium; Unilever House, Blackfriars; Twickenham Bridge and Hampton Court Bridge; The Crystal Palace; Battersea Power Station and gas works; Croydon Airport; and Star and Garter Hotel, Richmond.

Other buildings include: Netley Abbey, Hampshire; Wilton House, Wiltshire; Watford Troughs sewage works, Hertfordshire; and Barnsdale Hall and Lostock Hall, Lancashire. There are also a number of industrial sites in 'The Potteries', Staffordshire.

Types of industrial sites include: pottery, colliery, gas works, steel works, factory, paper mill, dock, shipyard, cotton mill, water works, ironworks, brickworks, alum works, quarry, mill, oil refinery, and power station.

Thirteen of the negatives are broken and unavailable.

A handlist is available.

Archival History

The collection was acquired by the NMR in 2010.


This Collection is divided into 1 Child Series
This Collection contains the following materials:
Photograph (Dry Plate Negative): 356


Source: Historic England Archive