Tuesday, February 19, 2013

UPDATED: Time to celebrate - but why?

I love this photo but I know absolutely nothing about it. I assume it was taken in Tunbridge Wells and it looks like a street party but what for? Perhaps VE day? The chap on the right seems to be in uniform but I think he's the only one.

If anyone has any thoughts on where it was taken or why a street party is being held, do feel free to share.

UPDATE - when and where

This post created quite a lot of interest on Twitter (for which I am very grateful - I love that people are interested in the photos) and there were many thoughts on when and where the photo was taken. 

Dizzernp managed to better date the photo by identifying the uniform pictured. Apparently it's 40 pattern BD (Battle Dress) which was worn by the British Army from 1942 but was replaced in 1949. This means the celebration could well be for VE day or VJ day in 1945. The lack of decorations is also a clue as it was clearly a time of austerity.

As for where it was taken, popular opinion seemed to be a street off Camden Road. Pat and her parents lived in Prince's Street so that would make sense. The image below from Google maps is taken in Cambridge Street looking into Prince's Street. What do you think? Could it be the same road?

Cambridge Street in Tunbridge Wells


  1. I'm sure it was taken in Prince's Street (Tunbridge Wells), where mum and gran/grandad used to live. That's quite a steep road, sloping down to Prospect Road.

    I expect there's some significance to the lad nearest to us in full 'black-face' make-up, I'm sure he's meant to be a chimney sweep as they were considered good luck (see Mary Poppins).

  2. You said you didn't know when I asked! I've got quite a bit of info from Twitter so will update the post when I'm more sure of it.

  3. A chimney sweep was good luck? How 'bout that.

    This is a nice photo, Rachel. I like seeing these. I think I see breadsticks, but I'm not sure.

    1. We're not sure if he is a chimney sweep actually - someone pointed out he doesn't have the accessories! Glad you like the pic, Ivy. It's one of my favourites. Just wish I knew why it has been kept.

    2. The soldier isn't carrying a gun, but you still know he's a soldier. If you were dressed as a chimney sweep would you want to lug your brushes round with you all day?

      Comparing the visible architecture in the two pics, it does look as though it's Cambridge Street though. Good find on Google Maps!

    3. Hmmm - most people seem to think the 'chimney sweep' is actually rather more racist than would be acceptable these days. Guess we'll never know though.

      I was comparing the architecture too - did a lot of zooming in and out and decided it probably was the right place.

  4. Chimney sweep or scary ass clown? Very cool picture.

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