This exhibition shows photographs of North Hertfordshire towns and villages dating from the 1850s to the 1950s. Some views look almost the same today, but others show buildings and landscapes that have changed beyond recognition.

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Many of the Hitchin photographs were taken by local photographer Thomas Benwell Latchmore (1832 -1908) and his son Thomas William Latchmore (1882 -1946). The Latchmores were a Quaker family, with a grocery business in High Street. Thomas Benwell Latchmore’s first studio in the 1860s was on Bancroft, but in 1870 he purchased the business of an earlier photographer, George Avery, in Old Town Hall Yard, opposite this museum. He later moved to more spacious premises at 11 Brand Street, where he had a studio on the roof. This museum is fortunate to have over two thousand Latchmore photographs of Victorian and Edwardian Hitchin.

Other local photographers represented in our collections include H. G. Moulden, A. E. Lupton and W. J. Wilshere (all Hitchin), and A. Clutterbuck in Letchworth Garden City

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