British photographic history

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Update: The Past on Glass digitisation project

Last year Sutton Archives was awarded £96,000 by the HLF to rehouse, digitise, catalogue and research the glass plate collection of the Edwardian photographer David Knights-Whittome  (shops in Sutton and Epsom). Since then we have recruited a part-time Project Officer who is managing the 23+ volunteers who are doing most of the work - cleaning plates, rehousing them in four-flap folders, digitising the plates and original envelopes, cataloguing the plates and researching the individuals photographed.

We have digitised over 1200 1/4 plates so far (there are about 10,000 plates in 5 different sizes) and created both a Blog and Flickr account enabling us to share the project with others. As David was active in the area between 1904-1918 the collection includes many WW1 soldiers and nurses - there are nearly 300 on our Flickr site. 

The Past on Glass Blog is contributed to by both staff and volunteers - telling the story of individuals we've researched, what we're discovering about David's technique and the ups and downs of such a project.

You can follow the Blog here - include your email address to receive updates -

Our Flickr account can be viewed here:

Enquiries about the project can be made to Abby Matthews, Project Officer, The Past on Glass 

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