Photography – Pictures from the Past

Found in amongst a miscellaneous lot at auction, six boxes of black and white photos offer a glimpse into the past of one Mr AC Henwood. The story begins with the purchase of a fairly sophisticated, and expensive for the time, camera – a Petriflex V – bought from The Camera Shop in East Street, Chichester in 1965.

From the details noted, it looks as though Mr Henwood was stationed at the RAF base in Emsworth, Hampshire at the time, close to the Sussex border. The boxes are full of home developed shots; lots of portraits, family group shots and even a couple of weddings. The photos in the header shot sum up beautifully the new found freedom and style of the ‘60s; they’re fascinating to look through.

The two larger print photos below show a different street photography style; the first appears to be Amsterdam, the second with the punk couple is clearly taken much later and quite solitary and out of sync with the other captures. There is no indication of where any of the other pictures were taken.

Just one envelope of negatives and a handful of slides, everything else is photographs. A reference on this envelope to 324 London Road Photography but, given that there’s a London Road in almost every town, that doesn’t really narrow things down at all! 

Whoever the enigmatic AC Henwood is, he patently had a good eye for a picture, some decent photography skills and a plethora of family, friends and maybe even just acquaintances who posed happily for his camera. As well as the envelopes addressed to him, one of the boxes is marked ‘Simon Henwood Pre BA’. Despite all the clues, we’ve drawn a bit of a blank with researching the history of this collection. If anyone has any ideas about who the photographer or subjects are, or has links to the family, let us know and help solve the mystery… (*see edit at end of page)

Words by Siobhan

Auction lot courtesy of Ticking Along Antiques 

19th August 2019

* Edit 11th September 2019 – Delighted to say that the photos are now back with a family member who was unaware that they were still in existence. Huge thanks go to fellow photographer Nigel King for his help and the astute detective work that allowed this to happen. Photographers – print your pictures, put them in albums or boxes and leave at least a clue as to who took them; one day they might just end up back with someone who they will mean the world to.