Sunderland Heritage Action Zone. An Assessment of the Historic England Archive Aerial Photographs

Author(s): Matthew Oakey

This report summarises the results of an assessment of aerial photographs held in the Historic England Archive for the Sunderland’s ‘Historic High Streets at Risk’ Heritage Action Zone. The assessment covered just under 1sq km and encompassed the area of the Historic Area Assessment being carried out by Wardell Armstrong LLP. The aerial photographs ranged in date from 1924 to 2017 and included oblique and vertical photography. Pre-war images provided an invaluable record of Sunderland before the Second World War air raids and subsequent large-scale redevelopment of the city. Several runs of good quality RAF verticals proved useful for identifying shortlived features relating to the war and for assessing the impact of bomb damage on the city. Post-war photography recorded several phases of demolition and rebuilding and vividly illustrated the changing character of the urban landscape. In particular the aerial photographs revealed significant detail that could not be gleaned from map evidence alone.

Report Number:
Research Department Reports
Aerial Photograph Interpretation Aerial Photography Second World War Heritage Action Zone


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