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July 24, 2014

Old Photographs of Britain in the Mid-19th Century

Francis Bedford (1816 – 1894) was a prolific and well-respected photographer of the mid-19th century. He is best known for his numerous topographic and architectural views of Britain.

In 1857 Bedford became a member of the Photographic Society and in 1862 he was invited to accompany the Prince of Wales, the future Edward VII (1841 – 1910), as official photographer on a tour of the Middle East.

During the 1860s and 1870s Bedford travelled extensively throughout Britain, taking hundreds of views of British scenery. He was assisted by his son, William (1846 – 1893) whose work is almost indistinguishable from that of his father. From the 1870s onwards, William seems to have assumed responsibility for running the family business and many photographs of this later period are more likely to be the work of William rather than that of his father.

Torquay, Babbacombe Bay, from the Inn

Torquay, The Giant Rock at Watcombe

The Queen's Hotel, Aberystwyth

Torquay, Victoria Parade From the Pier

Torquay, St. Luke's Church, From Croft Road

Chester, Old Houses in Bridge Street

Rhyl, The New Pier

Rhyl, The New Pier

Snowdon, View on the Summit No. 1

Bangor, The University

Conway Castle

Cheltenham, The Promenade Drive, Looking Down

Llandaff, Old Gateway to Bishop's Palace

Warwick Castle, General View

Cheltenham High Street

Cardiff, the High Street

The Bute Docks, With Shipping

Hereford, The Old Wye Bridge and Cathedral No.1

Shrewsbury, Street View - Pride Hill and New Market

Bangor, View on Suspension Bridge

Clifton, Suspension Bridge and St. Vincent's Rocks

Clevedon From The Pier

Aberystwyth, The Parade and Beach

Torquay, Waldon Hill and Harbour, From the New Pier

Ffestiniog, Small Gauge Railway

Llanberis, Quarrymen and Velocipedes

Carnarvon Castle, View From Twt Hill

Sidmouth, the Esplanade, From the West

Dawlish, From the Railway Station

Dawlish, the Lawn from the Royal Hotel, no. 1

Moretonhampstead, From Court Street

Guy's Mill, From The Road

Chester, Eastgate Street and Grosvenor Hotel

Chester, the Old King's Head Inn

Stratford-on-Avon, Ann Hathaway's Cottage at Shottery

Exeter, Father Peter, Corner of High Street

Rhyl, East Parade and Convalescent Home

Conway Castle and Suspension Bridge, from the Landing Place

Llandudno, the Beach and Ormes Head

Llandudno, View on the Pier

Llandudno, on the Pier-head, the Orchestra

Rhyl, View on the Pier

Weston-Super-Mare, from the Esplanade

Warwick Castle, The Gilt Drawing Room

Denbigh, the town and castle

Chester, Eastgate Row, Looking East

Sharpham, on the Dart, No.2

Chester, Eastgate Row, Looking West

Kenilworth Castle, from the Castle Hill

Hereford, the Wye Bridge and Cathedral

Lynmouth, The Village From the Sea, No. 1

Hereford, Broad Street and Free Library

Hereford, Old House in High Town

Clovelly, The New Inn

Torquay, Abbey Crescent and Rock Walks

Torquay, Vane Hill from Waldon Hill

Malvern, the Promenade Gardens

Paignton, Adelphi Terrace

Paignton, the Pier and Esplanade

Babbacombe, from the Beach

Aberystwyth, Marine Terrace and Entrance to Pier, No. 2

Llangollen, View on the Canal, No. 2

Tenby, from St. Katherine's Rock

Dartmouth, H.M Training Ships and Old Mill Creek

Dartmouth, from Mount Boone, No. 2

Dartmouth Castle and Kingswear Castle

Totnes, Old Houses in High Street

Totnes, High Street and Seven Stars Hotel

Dartmouth, Castle Line Steamship and Warfleet

Warwick Castle, the River Front

Ilfracombe, Rocks at Wildersmouth

Leamington, The Pump Room

Ilfracombe and Wildersmouth

Warwick, West Gate and Leicester's Hospital

Leamington, The Town Hall

Leamington, The Parade and Town Hall

Dawlish, The Esplanade from Lea Mount

Clovelly, View Down Street

(Photos via National Media Museum)


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