Anna White was the Spender Scholar in 2010-2011. She used a range of photographic techniques during the year inspired by Humphrey Spender’s photographs of life in the town. As society’s views have changed quite a lot on how acceptable it is to photograph people undercover and without consent Anna used a collaborative approach.This included setting […]
Thanks to blog reader Dennis Pilling who visited St Chad’s Church and rephotographed the foundation stone laid by the then Lord Bishop of Manchester. His photograph shows how time has weathered the stone since Humphrey Spender photographed it in 1937. The Worktown observers attended the stone laying ceremony. We think that Mass Observation’s interest in foundation […]
It is easy to scan read photographs but if you look more closely there are often details which give a lot more information. We have been hunting for visual clues in the Worktown photographs which would help us to identify when and where Humphrey Spender’s photographs were taken. This strip of 4 negatives showed a […]
Queen’s Park in 1937 and 2013- different time of year obviously!
Our friends from the Mass Observation Archive at Sussex University were invited to guest edit the Today programme on Radio 4 on Boxing Day. You can listen to clips of the programme here and the full programme on the BBC’s iplayer until Wednesday 2nd January.
Earlier in the year we decided that looking for each of the locations in the 930 Spender photographs would be far too time consuming for just the two of us, especially as neither of us know Bolton that well, being a Mancunian and a Wiganer. So we decided it would be good to ask you […]
Join guest speaker and Director Ian Potts for a Q&A and introduction to ‘Stranger than Fiction’ (1985); a film about Bolton’s Mass Observation project in the late 1930s. The talk will be followed by a screening of the film itself. The event starts at 5.30 pm tomorrow, Thursday 22 November. Refreshments will be served.
These photographs record a visit to Kearsley Golf Club and Manor Golf Club by current Spender scholar Richard Gaskill. The Humphrey Spender Scholarship was set up to create a contemporary response to the Worktown Archive. Richard will be documenting the theme of Sports, Spectacles and Spectators with photographs over the course of the next year culminating in […]
If you’ve been to the Worktown 75th Birthday exhibition at Bolton Museum as well as visiting this site then perhaps you have noticed a design connection between them. Our web designer Perry was inspired by the iconic orange and cream design of the Penguin ‘Specials’ paperbacks and we continued the theme for the exhibition display […]
We finished our day of talks on Mass Observation at Bolton Museum on Saturday by heading over to Blackpool (Holidaytown) in the footsteps of the original Mass Observers. It was good fun to join relatives of original observers Julian Trevelyan, Humphrey Spender and Michael Wickham taking in the Blackpool illuminations and Saturday night mayhem. My […]