Rare gems show town digging in for victory
of images – thus making my archive even bigger.
I am indebted to the kindness of such individuals and readers who readily think of me when discovering old photographs.
It’s always fantastic to uncover rare pictures showing Ashford during a previous era, and we display three such images here.
Sometimes when researching you get quiet periods where you do not source images from one week to the next. But a couple of weeks back, I was kindly donated a large number You know who you are, so thank you from the bottom of my heart.
I am currently investigating the possibility of digitising my archive, something which I have wanted to do for a while, and many who have seen my photo collection are extremely keen for this to happen. Once I have done this, I would like to create a website to display them securely for all to see and to preserve them for future generations.
Among the huge haul of donated images were the pictures featured this week, and I haven’t stopped looking at them since obtaining them.
They all date back to 1942 and are all scarce and very rare images of the town during the Second World War.
In all my years of researching, I could only dream of finding these gems, and now my dream has come true.
Do you have any photographs or slides that you would be willing to loan to me, to enable them to be scanned and featured in the Kentish Express? If so, please write to me: Steve Salter, Kentish Express Remember When, 34-36 North Street, Ashford, TN24 8JR; email me at rememberwhen_kmash@ hotmail.co.uk; or follow me on Twitter @SteveKMAshford.
Or you can leave a telephone message for me with brief details by calling 01233 623232.
High Street and North Street, 1942: A fantastic picture showing the High Street at its junction with North Street in 1942 in the middle of the Second World War. This rare view shows the splendid Fifty Shilling Tailors at the corner of the street, with Ashley Russell’s drapery store and cafe above. Note the style of dress and the presence of Army personnel on the left. Some familiar names, such as Headley the grocer and Dewhurst the butcher, exist here further down on the right.
Lower High Street: Another image from the same year, looking up the Lower High Street from its junction with East Hill. The vacant premise of Handover Brothers, the tailors, can be seen on the immediate left with its taped windows possibly consistent with wartime precautions. Further along on the left, ladies could get a ‘permanent’ wave in their hair for just 12 shillings and 6 pence. A public bomb shelter can be seen outside the Odeon Cinema further up the street.