The National Archives Labs

UK history photo finder

Please note: this application will close by 31 March 2013. All content can now be found in Collections on a map by selecting INF 9.

View the Collection

Get started with UK history photo finder.

This tool allows you to search and view digitised historical photographs of the UK and Ireland. Starting with the Dixon-Scott collection, which holds more than 14,000 photographs taken in the 1920s-1940s, we will be adding new photographic resources in time. You can search by location and view images for free.

The importance of the Dixon-Scott collection lies in its comprehensive and candid portrait of life during the inter-war years.

The photographer J. Dixon-Scott spent much of his time touring the country taking tens of thousands of photographs of the landscapes, towns, and people.  He was not only drawn to the rural ideal of the countryside and way of life but also to industrial townscapes and city scenes, capturing life amongst the buzz of the commercial centre, on the parade and the promenade, in the schools and universities, and at play on the sports field and golf course.

A collection of his work was purchased by the British Council and subsequently transferred to the Central Office of Information in 1948 after the latter purchased the British Council’s Photographic Department equipment and library. The collection is now held at The National Archives in the INF 9 record series.

Please let us know what you think by leaving your comments below. We’d like you to tell us:

  • Do you find this tool useful?
  • How would you use it for your research?
  • What other TNA data would you like to see used in this way?
  • How else would you use this technology?
  • How do you think it could be improved?

Comments (421)

  • Nicola Harold

    Just seeing this for the first time – looks interesting but haven’t had time to consider usefulness, however please insert ‘has’ on page ‘Dixon Scott photo finder’ second line after the word collection.

  • Tweets that mention The National Archives Labs » Blog Archive » UK history photo finder --

    [...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Andrew D Devenney, IHR, U. of London. IHR, U. of London said: The UK history photo finder is very cool – more than 14,000 photos from 1920s to 1940s. [...]

  • KN

    doesn’t seem to work in firefox on a mac. works o.k. in safari though.

  • Jill Baldwin

    Excellent, can’t wait to see other local photo’s

  • Jack Kirby

    Very useful although as with any resource, only as good as the indexing. For example a photo of Birmingham University from Bournbrook comes up under Birmingham, not Bournbrook, even though it’s closer to the latter than the city centre.

  • Jack Harker

    Also found a couple of location errors but that’s probably down to your data rather then the script. It’s working fine in Firefox on Windows 7 by the way.

    Is the entire collection digitised yet? The company I work for have a fair amount of experience in this area and would love to be involved.

  • Michael Hallam

    Wonderful – do we know the date of individual photographs?

  • John Gasson

    I would suggest adding (or linking to) details on copyright or terms of usage for the images.

  • Andrew-Bede Allsop

    This is such a useful tool both for historical research and general interest. I like the ease of use.

  • Toni Smith

    It won’t work for me although I wish it would as it looks like a great idea. I tried several places and nothing happened with the search.

  • Toni Smith


  • Megan Roberts

    I would endorse the view that this is useful for historical research and general interest and that it is easy to use.

  • Lynda Hirst [NZ]

    I’ve always found it difficult to find my way readily around the main site — I love the ease of use of this and the fact that even when I nominate a starting point, I can still move around the map and look up whatever takes my fancy. Love it… cheers

  • Tim Hitchcock

    This is wonderful. How precise is the geo-referencing? And have you considered a point of perspective to allow it work in combination with Streetview – the way envisioned by the HistoryPin project. These two projects (along with several others) just seem to be made to work together; and beg for ever more sophisticated mash-ups – with text, images, maps, audio, video etc.

  • Nigel Neil

    Completely useless. I’ve typed in a place-name, up popped a dialogue box for me to choose options, but when I selected an option all that happened was a message “error on page”. Does this mean there is a problem with this part of the website? Or, if it is is meant to signify that no matching images were found, it would be better if, after selecting the option, there was a ’search now’ button, and (if there are no images held) a message came up to say ’sorry, no images matching your search term were found’, or something of the sort.

  • Beth

    I could get neither the Photo Finder nor the Map Finder to work with Internet Explorer 8 on Windows 7, but it was fine when I used Firefox.

  • Monty

    No success here in South Wales – all I get for Newport and Cardiff is an OS map of Berwick-on-Tweed!
    It will be great when it works.


  • Rosie

    This really doesn’t work. The map is really poor quality and not functional. I gave up before even coming across a photo! I was really interested when I heard of this. Now I’m just disappointed.

    The National Archives reply:

    @Rosie @Nigel Neil
    Thank you for your comments. This application is still in development and we are working to improve its functionality, our users’ feedback is invaluable to this process and informs our updates and improvements. We hope you try again and let us know what you think.

  • Steve Welburn

    Very nice. Could really do with the ability to zoom out from London though rather than having to pan the country! Also looking forward to: (a) pictures of more obscure places; (b) older pictures; and (c) metadata for place, time etc. Links into the Flickr API for modern photos of places would also be cool!

  • Alexander Clare

    Provide the year the photo was taken. Thought that was obvious. Without it, it’s almost useless and spoils what would have been a great idea.

  • Lloyd Spencer

    Nicely functioning software (I am using Safari on a Mac). But 14,000 images is really a tiny collection. Quite a thin spread… of mainly rather bland images. Local collections (Leodis here) are so much richer in information.

    The National Archives reply:

    @Yvonne Allison Thanks for your comments. We will be adding more photographic resources in time, the application is still in beta and our users’ feedback will play a key part in how it is developed and expanded.

  • David

    Does not work with Internet Explorer v8 on Windows Vista

  • Steven Feldman

    Nice idea but the mapping is a bit clunky.

    It needs some other ways to search the archive by category etc and maybe include some contemporary public domain images of the same locations as an option.

    If you want some help taking this to the next level ping us at

  • Stuart Grant

    Really nice concept, though there seem to be a few browser issues on this (beta?) version.

    A few people mention the idea of fusing archives with modern imagery – there’s a nice example of this at, which pulls in Google StreetView, Panoramio, Wikipedia, etc.

    Thanks for setting up a fascinating resource.

  • Simon Fowler

    I’m not sure that the collection is either comprehensive or candid as JDS took very few photos of the industrial areas. The impression is of a middle class rural idyll, which is what his clients wanted (for examples of his work in context see the books he illustrated).

  • Yvonne Allison

    I was looking for old photographs of Skipwith, Wheldrake, Thorganby and Cottingwith, but all I got was a map of the area – a very pretty and comprehensive map which is very useful, but no photographs as promised. Was I doing something wrong? I am in Brisbane, Australia.

    The National Archives reply:

    @Jack Harker
    Thanks very much for your feedback. We will be adding more photographic resources, so please do check back in and let us know what you think.

  • Roland Stevenson

    Photofinder seems totally non functional
    07/07/10) No map, no thumbnail images, just placeholders. It should be very interesting but I can’t make any sense of it today.

  • Mike

    tried the photo finder, typed in Hull, got nothing, tried leeds, and then selected city centre, and got an OS map centred on berwich upon tweed – useless, not a photo in sight.

  • Kath

    Great just a shame not a lot of photos of the area I’m interetsed in. Perhaps I missed it but is there a more detailed ref than IFN9 for each photo as I may want to explore them in more detail. When exiting from larger photo I think close button should be in top right in line with small pic and many other applications. Corx: photos of Cheam seem to include Wallington.

    The National Archives reply:

    Thank you for your comments, Kath. We will be adding more photographic resources in time. Also, this application is still in development, so our users’ feedback is key to improving and fine-tuning functionality. Thanks for the suggestions, and please do keep checking back for updates.

  • ann claydon

    Used for first time today. Very easy to use, and found some photos I hadnt come across before. What a pity they weren’t dated. Very useful.

  • Pat

    Great idea but can’t find the photos. Lots of empty boxes, then a map of Berwick – not useful when searching for Brighton

  • Gill

    I could only get it to work if I looked at it in compatiblity mode; running IE8 and Windows 7. Tried looking up 3 places with success; However, one of the places searched (Barford St Martin, Wilts) showed 3 thumbnails on the map but told me there were 10 altogether. The other 7 turned out to be for Cranbrook in Kent; A check under Cranbrook, came up with 17 images, all which seemed to be correct.

  • Sheila White

    Tried entering place name in box and using drop down but all that came up (eventually) was a map of Berwick!

  • Margaret

    Works well in Google Chrome/XP. Wish there were dates on the photos.

  • Judith Kidd

    Think there may be problems with the site today as I can’t get the maps to load. Would really value the facility when it is running OK again.

  • Penny Jones

    Being a bit of a history buff, I found this site wonderful.

  • Deborah Tilley

    It’ll be great when the little problems are sorted.
    Loved the fast loading of the map and photos. The search facility needs treaking though. A search for Wales just suggests the Milennium Stadium, Cardiff! (It does pan the country quickly though).
    Didn’t like the way that all the previous photos looked at were shown again on different searches in different towns. Eg when looking at Blandford Forum, the photos from Swansea, Carmarthen and Solva (Wales) were shown again.
    Also, it’s a pain after looking at say 25 photos, to get back to the 1st, you have to scroll back through each one previously looked at.
    Is there a way for the general public to upload old photos or perhaps add info to existing ones via a comment box?

    The National Archives reply:

    @Deborah Tilley
    Thanks for bringing this to our attention, we are working to resolve the issue with the photo display. The photo finder application is still under active development, and while the public are not currently able to upload photos, or add information, it is a very good idea and something we’ll be taking a look at.

  • philip lloyd

    excellent project.
    it give`s an idea how our ancestors lived at certain periods in they’re lives

  • Alan Rowntree

    Might be OK if I could get into it.Doesn’t respond.

  • Marilyn Jessop

    Worked very well on Mac, using Safari. Looking forward to more images being added. As others have said, a date on the photos would be useful.

  • barry laughton

    Veryeasy to use, I would like the dates on the photos if available. Surprising, the paces I looked at “the more it changes, the more it stays the same” Barry

  • Sylvia

    Some really interesting photographs. For both family and social history purposes the addition of an approximate date would be an added bonus.

  • Rachel Henderson

    Absolutely useless! I tried the Valuation map finder, and the photo collection, typed in the place I wanted and ……nothing! Tried several times; all it said was ‘error on page’ Very disappointing.

  • Anne

    Like some other above I only get a blank page. Entering a place name gives options to select and then nothing. Only saw a map briefly (Berwick) but when I finally got it to Bedfordshire there were no markers and no result with clicking on the map. Never saw the map again on subsequest tries.
    I use IE8

  • kaz walecki

    Saw this for the first time today,can’t view the photo’s,is it because i’m on dail up or because i’m in Poland?

  • Tlatet

    More precise location information would be nice. So would more information on the images, and the ability to combine text and location searches, but works fine for me, and a nice start.

  • Tamia Nelson

    Excellent resource. Only one complaint. The photos are not dated. One must guess at its vintage.

    The National Archives reply:

    @Tamia Nelson @Alexander Clare @Michael Hallam
    Thanks for your comments. Unfortunately, specific dates are not available for these photographs. However, we will be adding more photographic resources in time. Please check back in and let us know what you think.

  • Graham

    I haven’t had long to look at it. I first found it odd to single click to open an image (a double re-closes it) and I have found one inaccurate location – clicking on Staplehurst, Kent opens photographs for Hawkhurst. But I have found a photograph of the church where my Grandmother was married, which has since been demolished. A potentially useful site.

    The National Archives reply:

    Thank you for your feedback. This application is still in development, and we are working to improve the functionality. Our users’ comments are key to this process.

  • M Moverley

    I can’t make this work, It sounds a good idea. All I got was a pink square with lots of little tiny squares with a red cross in them. With a bit of clicking I did get map, but could not get any further, and then changed to a different location and got nothing at all. Needs some fine tuning.

  • Derek Hunt

    Very useful and easy to use. It works in Firefox for me.
    A zoom facility to enlarge the photographs would be very helpful.

  • pat

    error on page kept coming up. Tried London and fulham and hammersmith. No luck. Would like to know why this happens

  • pat

    thank you for asking for our opinion. I hope that it will work

  • Ann

    It doesn’t matter what I type in I get a map of Berwick every time, no photos! I’m in Hampshire.

  • Jackie

    Looked promising but couldn’t find anything that was relevant for me at present but selected a few to view. Unfortunately the page froze and couldn’t go any further.

  • Julia Hunt

    Cannot find any photos no matter what I type in the box. All I get is an OS map of Berwick.

  • Brian Glenn

    Map locator only showed Berwick regardless of loction entered. What do markers look like? Nothing obvious on map to click on to get photos.
    Using Windows XP & Explorer 8.

  • Jane Joslin

    couldn’t make this work on Windows explorer

  • Chris Willis

    This behaves the same as the 1910 map finder. Actually selecting by moving the map to Yateley doesn’t appear to have any mark-up for photo positions. One wd have thought that the RMA Sandhurst wd have had a photo, if nothing else in the region.

  • John Feast

    Great idea but can’t get it to work using Internet Explorer. I put in a town, am asked to select an option and then nothing happens

  • Ted Beard

    Just tried accessing the site, could only get Berwick-on-Tweed on the map rather than the towns I wanted, and then only with a bit of ‘fiddling’, I certainly haven’t found any photos as yet!!

  • Chris Clifford

    Could not find any photographs at all – has anyone seen any? Idea in principle is brilliant. Will return at a later date to see if things have improved.

  • Tony Sargeant

    Overall very good, but I found a problem.
    Just to the North of Aylesbury, Bucks is an icon, which when clicked on says “Cirencester Gloucestershire”

  • Phil Hazel

    Tried to access the site. Berwick on Tweed came up? not asked for. Tried to access various place names, nothing? You really do need to sort out this site.

    Deborah reply:

    Well, in fairness, that is what the National Archives is trying to do. It IS a Beta version after all and the whole point of asking our opinion is to do precisely that – sort out this site. It will be fantastic when the Alpha version is up and running.

    The National Archives reply:

    Thanks for your comments, Deborah. User participation is invaluable in the development of our new applications, please do keep checking back to try out new iterations and developments.

  • Philippa McCray

    Great idea, wish I could access the photos! Enter a town am asked to select an option and nothing happens. Map has only ever opened on Berwick-on-Tweed and can’t get any photos at all – looks like I’m not the only one!

  • Martin Baker

    I could not make this work. Tap in a place name (eg Blandford Forum) and the system took me to a map of Berwick. The ‘options’ things for alternative place names does not click through. Where are the symbols to see images, or am I just being dim !!

  • Christine

    Useless. All I get is a map of Scotland no matter what name I type into the search box

  • David Hawgood

    I tried it because I take photos and put them on the geo-located site and thought I could take the modern equivalent of the historic view. I got an OS map of London and links to photo areas, and got the 21 photos of Ealing OK, but now I can’t get back into the map and links, and the search doesn’t work (I tried Ealing as I know there are photos)

  • Anne

    It might be interesting if it worked. I tried typing ‘Edinburgh’ into the search box and it hung up. This happened in both Internet Explorer and Firefox, so it’s not a browser incompatibility.

    I don’t think it’s a good idea to have to search by location, because that’s a good way to overlook interesting images in obscure locations. I would prefer to be able to start with a map indicating where there are photos, and then zoom in to see the places I am interested in.

  • Sharon

    Can’t get it to work at all – tried in both Firefox and Internet Explorer and nothing will load for me.

  • John Harrison

    Can not get this to work in Firefox and win7 64 bit. I just get a blank screen after searching.

  • michael

    Doesnt work in IE, Chrome of Firefox. IE gives the error

    “Webpage error details

    User Agent: Mozilla/4.0 (compatible; MSIE 8.0; Windows NT 6.1; Trident/4.0; SLCC2; .NET CLR 2.0.50727; .NET CLR 3.5.30729; .NET CLR 3.0.30729; Media Center PC 6.0; Tablet PC 2.0; .NET4.0C; Creative AutoUpdate v1.40.01)
    Timestamp: Sun, 1 Aug 2010 21:03:16 UTC

    Message: ‘left’ is null or not an object
    Line: 2778
    Char: 73
    Code: 0

    Thats after typing in Newcastle

    The National Archives reply:

    Thanks very much for the detailed feedback – there was a fault with the maps application which has now been rectified. Apologies for any inconvenience.

  • Jerry Green

    Tried this on three different browsers (explorer, firefox and chrome) and all I get is message pictures loading. I see no pictures and no map.

    The National Archives reply:

    Thanks for your feedback. There was a fault with the maps application which has now been fixed. Apologies for the inconvenience.

  • Jonathan

    Is there any way of flagging up errors in the placing of photos, I have found one so far that is about six or seven miles from where it should be and also on the wrong side of the subject! Otherwise, great site!

    The National Archives reply:

    Thanks very much for checking out the site, and leaving feedback. The UK history photo finder application is still in beta, and we’re looking into how we can enable users to refine geo-references. Please do keep checking back and let us know what you think of developments.

  • John B

    It would be great if it worked – perhaps you can let me know when it is fixed.

  • John B

    I’ve just found that you need to have ‘compatability view’ turned on in Internet Explorer – the first time I’ve ever had to do this. I think you need to say this in big letters at the top of the main page.

  • John B

    I agree with Jonathan – there needs to be a way of correcting misplaced or incorrectly titled photos. I’ve found a few of these. It would also be useful to have an easy way of zooming in to see the detail on the photos.

    The National Archives reply:

    Thanks for your comments. This application is still in development and we are investigating how users can refine geographic references. Please do keep checking back for updates.

  • Clive Downes

    I’m looking for pictures of Farncombe in Surrey, but this does not work for me. I’ve written the name several times but it tells me the spelling is wrong !! It won’t work with the postcode either. I followed the instructions but it just doesn’t work.

    The National Archives reply:

    Thanks very much for your feedback. We are developing postcode search functionality and will be releasing this in the coming weeks. Please do check back and let us know what you think.

  • tuppence

    It is a shame that some pics are not shown anywhere near the place they depict.
    For example the Dover Road photos, located in a large ‘blob’ at Bapchild near Sittingbourne, includes images of Shooters Hill (35 miles away), Dartford and Faversham, and just one of nearby Sittingbourne. Anyone looking for images of Faversham will see no blobs nearby on the map.

    The National Archives reply:

    Thanks very much for your feedback. The photo finder application is still in development and we are currently investigating how we can enable it so our users can refine geographic references. Please do keep checking back for updates.

  • Tony

    The map for “Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire, TOWN” has a link just to the north of Aylesbury between Weedon and Aston Abbots, but when you click on it it shows photos of Cirencester in Gloucestershire!

  • Adrian C Whittaker

    Potentially very useful, but it doesn’t seem towork on my machine running Vista and IE8. The symbols are on the map (or what I take to be symbols) but clicking on them does nothing.

  • Adrian C Whittaker

    Further to my earlier posting about the inability to make the website work in IE8, tried Firefox and it worked a treat. Some absolutely splendid photos.

  • Adrian C Whittaker

    Photo DS.285/12 supposedly at Cobham, Kent, isn’t anywhere near it. I suspect that the first part of the caption gives the game away, “Stoke d’Abernon Church” – but the suffix “Cobham” has been added leading to the error.

  • Rosie in Sussex

    Quite useful – but (from my point of view) would be better if there were more pictures from Norfolk.
    Very nice to find pictures of places where my ancestors lived.
    I agree with the suggestion that some reference to copyright issues could be given.

  • Deborah Tilley

    Is the National Archives aware of the website Its search facility is excellent, being able to pinpoint a precise location. Maybe a chat with the founder Barry Hunter could help the NA. Great concept – can’t wait for the alpha version.

  • Deborah Tilley

    Just to clarify – the geograph website is

  • Clare in Folkestone

    Great idea! Looking forward to more photos being added. Sadly none for my ancestors on here yet – however, some lovely ones of Folkestone! Thank you :)

  • John Gunn

    Yeh well if you stay north of Newcastle you can pretty well forget this. Very few Scottish photos and north of the river Forth – fporget it!
    Perth and Dundee, both fairly important Scottish cities have absoloutely no photos.

    The National Archives reply:

    Hi John,
    thanks for trying out the application. We will be adding more photographic resources in time – the current range is limited to the Dixon-Scott collection – so please do check back later.

  • Cherry in Surrey

    Great site. First visit and found some good pictures of villages which link in with my family history research. Will be following the development of the site with interest. Thank you.

  • Mike Chopin

    I like the idea and the map is good with a fast refresh rate – It would be nice to have a map relevant to the date indicated on the photograph e.g. the new bridge being built at Hampton Court many of the roads and housing estates in Molesey didn’t exist – Cheers


    Good idea but whenever i typed a town from the Isle of Wight site told me that nothing found, check spelling.gave up in the end

    The National Archives reply:

    Hi Michael, thanks for trying out the application. The Dixon-Scott collection is limited in geographical coverage, but we will be adding more photographic resources in time. We hope you check back later on and find what you’re looking for!

  • John Stevens

    I can only echo the comments of many others above that I simply cannot get the site to work on IE8 and Vista. There are no placemarkers on the map and the search box does nothing at all. I realise that it is Beta but what is the point of releasing a version that is useless on the most commonly used OS and browser?

  • Sandy Norman

    Very useful as far as it goes. Hopefully more will be uploaded in due course.

  • John Stevens

    Further to my post of August 15th I have now managed to access the site using Firefox and what do I find? Thousands of unidentified and undated photographs! And this from the National Archives!! It would be funny if it were not so pathetic.

    The National Archives reply:

    Thanks for your comments John. We are aware of the issues in IE8 and they are being worked on – for now, the application will work in IE8 compatibility mode. We realise that this is far from ideal and thank you for your patience.
    Unfortunately, there are no specific dates available for the contents of the Dixon-Scott collection. However, more photographic resources will be added as the photo finder application is further developed.
    We hope you check back in future and let us know what you think of updates.

  • Guy

    Nice app. I too wondered about dates – I realise from the replies that these are undated but I wonder if the preview pane could say from the Dixon-Scott collection, photos are undated but were taken during the 1920s and 1940s. Some could possibly be dated and it would be nice to be able to add it.

  • Steve Coates

    Excellent resource. My mother-in-law loved the memories the pictures of Plymouth brought back.

  • Kate

    Lovely idea, though it doesnt seem to work on Windows XP . I was most dissappointd not to be able to access Waddesdon. Dated pics would be good.

  • Michelle

    I tried this on both Firefox and Explorer and couldn’t get it to work at all. My search term was Birmingham. I was offered options, and selected Birmingham, Birmingham, CITY. Then nothing happened.

  • Nancy Frey

    I couldn’t get it to work either. No matter what I entered I got the map of Scotland, lol.

  • Bill O'Brien

    Absolutely useless. I searched on 4 seperate occasions for BRORA, SUTHERLAND, HORNSEY and LONDON. On SUTHERLAND, HORNSEY and LONDON I was given a choice of several containg that word but after making a selection absolutely nothing happened. After a while I decided to access the mapping symbols but on each occasion a totally unrelated map centered on Berwich Upon Tweed appeared. I gave up! Alos you might explain what the CAPTCHA code is. I missed it out first time and have had to retype all of this.

  • Andrea Davis

    Great idea TNA but I think that it has been released too soon. As a librarian I think that the public should at the least be able to access the site in order to provide you with feedback. It appears that many including myself ended up with error messages and nothing to see. A short note about what is available would be helpful also.

  • Eddie Hann

    I was having problems viewing the photos in IE8 with Windows XP but switched to compatability mode and it works perfectly now

  • Chris Willis


    this still displays the same error as was previously shown by the valuation maps finder. The latter has now been fixed (in that respect). The map access does not work XP, IE8.

    Chris Willis

  • Anthony Fuller

    Slow and extremely cumbersome, I shall not bother with it.

  • Glenn Morgan

    Would only work on the photo finder after changing Internet explorer setting to Compatability View under TOOLS.

    When scrolling through photos it would help if NEXT button did not move up and down so that you can keep your mouse hovering over correct area of screen instead of needing to reposition it frequently.

    It has much promise as a site but was possibly released to us too early – or perhaps our (my) expectations of a beta site are too high!

  • Marian Laklia

    I found an early photo of the church where I was married, which was lovely. But labelled Bexley heath (its one word) not Bexley village – completely different! But close by so I suppose that will do. But typing Sidcup into the search box brought nothing – not even a “sorry no match”

    The National Archives reply:

    Sorry that you had problems searching this morning. The site has been so popular that we experienced some technical difficulties, but we’ve now made some changes so it should be working more smoothly. We hope you check back and try again – thanks for looking and commenting.

  • Liam McNamara

    This appears to be GB only – I can find no references for Northern Ireland. As such, it is of no interest to me.

    The National Archives reply:

    Hi, thanks for checking out the application and leaving feedback. While the Dixon-Scott collection is limited in geographical coverage, we will be adding more photographic resources in time. We hope you check back later on and find what you’re looking for.

  • Lynne Selby

    I rgularly look at photo archives and it would be useful to have them all on one site, but at the moment it is too general, the map is good though.

  • Tony Gale

    Excellent implementation. Works fine in Firefox on a Mac. Maybe contrast of images could be increased as they all look a bit dull but that probably is true of the originals.

  • Paul Weatherall

    Can’t find any markers on the map and the search function doesn’t work

    The National Archives reply:

    We apologise for the problems users experienced this morning. The large number of site visitors meant we had some technical difficulties. However, we’ve made some changes and everything should now work smoothly. We hope you check back and let us know what you think.

  • Chris Derrick

    Lovely photos of Weston super mare but can only be accessed from the map. Search for Weston super mare – nothing or even the Somerset search does not come up with Weston super mare. Very good though – works quickly which makes a pleasant change.

  • John Hart

    Had trouble at first (got a scrollable and zoomable map, but no photo markers), then read the comments here about using Compatibility View (I’m using Windows 7 64-bit and IE8 – it’s the icon that looks like a torn page next to the page address bar). Then it worked fine – points noted about initial limited coverage, but I think this is a good application that will in time be a useful addition to the NA resources.

  • Stuart Morris

    Excellent, can’t wait for much more to go online.
    How can I obtain a higher resolution copy of a very useful photo I have found? What are your repro fees (if any) if used in a local publication?
    Incidentally ‘Portland’ (Dorset) did not appear in the intial search, but eventually found by a roundabout route.

  • Jean

    I was looking for photos of Tottenham(N.London) All I got was a map of the Manchester area. When I eventually scrolled down to the correct area I was still unable to view the listed photos. Please remember that many researches are elderly and complicated processes to find the photos are not appropriate.

    The National Archives reply:

    Hi, thanks for looking and leaving feedback. We experienced technical difficulties this morning due to the high volume of users, but everything should be working now. Our Labs site is in beta, this means all of the applications are still in development stage and may not meet our usual standards of usability and accessibility. However, any that we do move up to the main site will first be tested and made usable for customers of all ages and abilities. Thanks again for commenting.

  • Caroline Adkin

    What could be a great idea is spoilt by the fact that I am in IE8 and like others, I can’t always get the page to load properly. When it does, very slowly, all I get is a map of Berwick on Tweed and an ‘error on page’ after having searched any other part of the country. This would be very useful if the page was working properly


    Photo finder not much use.I entered EASTCHEAP London EC3 and it said location could not be found.One of the main streets of the City !

    The National Archives reply:

    Thanks for commenting. The Dixon-Scott collection is limited in content, but we will be adding more photographic resources as the photo finder application is further developed. It is currently still in beta. We hope you check back later and find what you’re looking for.

  • Colin

    I tried to open a photo of Swindon, Wilts and got a map of BErwick-on-Tweed.

  • Graham Sturdy

    Like many of your respondents I would like to see many more photos, with dates wherever possible. My current interest is to find a photo of my g.g.g.grandfather’s bakers and confectioners shop in Offord Road, Barnsbury at around 1900; recognising that one may not exist.
    This has the potential to be an excellent facility. Keep up the good work.

  • patrick Nagle

    it may be a little more useful as the base expands to consider postcode entry for the end user.

  • Anne Loader

    I found some wonderful photos of Spalding (Lincs) tulip fields but when I looked on Fradley and Bloxwich (having been given quite a choice of places in the Fradley area on the scroll-down list) there were only photographic markers on nearby towns. I had presumed that because Fradley was specifically mentioned that there would be some pictures of it. Is this right?

    I think it is a great use of photos that would otherwise not be seen by the general public.

  • Jolly

    Just worked for me using Firefox and Windows XP. Only problem was one already mentioned where photos came up on wrong place.
    Would like to know if public could send you images for you to upload?
    A thought for some folk – many people who took photos in the past did not date them accurately! We sometimes have to accept what is there.

    The National Archives reply:

    Thanks for trying out the application. User collaboration is something we’ll be looking at later on. Please keep checking back for updates.

  • Bill Chinn

    Excellent resource, simple to use either via the search or the symbols on the map.
    Will more photographs be added?
    Will you be asking for photographs to add?
    If it’s UK, how come there’s nothing for Northern Ireland?

    The National Archives reply:

    The photos currently available are limited to the contents of the Dixon Scott collection, which is limited in geographic coverage. More photographic resources will be added as the application is further developed. At the moment, we do not plan to ask people to contribute their own photos, but greater user collaboration is something we’re looking in to. Please keep checking back for further updates, and thanks very much for commenting.

  • sue findley

    unable to view anything as you do not appear to have any locations available.

    The National Archives reply:

    We are sorry that you, and other users, had problems accessing the applications. We were experiencing technical difficulties due to the popularity of the site, but changes have now been implemented and all should be working. Thanks for looking and letting us know of your issues.

  • David Cant

    Worked fine on Firefox and Windows XP for my first search. But then returned a ‘location not found’ when I tried a new search in the same window – even tried ‘London’. Couldn’t get back to my original search place either.

    Would it be possible to have a backround map linked to the period of the photos?

    Would like a go to first, last facility rather than just next or previous.

    Overall a good idea and I hope you extend it.

    The National Archives reply:

    We’re sorry for the problems users encountered, we were experiencing technical difficulties, but fixes have been implemented and all should now be working. We are taking note of all your suggestions and these will help us improve the applications as they are further developed. Thanks for trying it out and telling us what you think!

  • Phil How

    It would be good if members of the public could submit their own old photos to preserve for posterity.
    Obviously this could end up getting out of hand, with people submitting holiday snaps etc.
    However, I have e.g. photos of the windmill at Rushmere st Andrews, Suffolk where my Nan was born, and where her brother, father, and grandfather were millers and farmers. I have photos from the 1920s and later, as well as 2 water colour paintings of the mill.
    When I am gone these will have no importance to my children, and will eventually be lost as a resouce and record for the future.
    It would be good if I could scan these and send them to the Archives to be kept.
    Obviously this would eventually be a massive archiving project, and presumably very expensive to fund, especially in the current financial climate, but it seems like a good idea.

    The National Archives reply:

    While we do plan to expand the photographic resources in the application, we are not currently asking for contributions from the public. However, user collaboration is something that we will be addressing on our Labs site – please keep checking back for updates, and thanks for checking out the photofinder and letting us know what you think.

  • Mr R Greenaway

    Photographic Collection is superb and a wonderful resource for adding ‘depth’ to enhance documentary evidence for family history use.
    Probably asking too much and may not be possible but a date/year against each image would be great.
    Hope you will add milliions more from this and other sources.

    The National Archives reply:

    Unfortunately, specific dates are not available for the contents of the Dixon-Scott collection, but we will be adding further photographic resources as the application is developed. Thanks very much for your feedback and we hope you keep checking out the site.

  • Neil

    Started off well then fails totally. Using Firefox on a PC Windows XP.

    First time I looked it worked ok – only comment relates to indexing. I searched Weybridge (Surrey) and saw a marker by what had been Brooklands Racetrack – but the place name of the cards displayed was Brooklands Kent with a picture of an oast house.

    Second and far bigger problem is that having used it once I now can’t use it again. Even having shut down firefox and started afresh whatever place name I search for (even Weybridge which it found previously and London) it says that the place cannot be found.

  • Applemany

    I just had a look at the photos of Felixstowe and found on of Felixstowe Ferry there. Is there any way of knowing what year these photos taken?

    Several of the photos of Felixstowe say they are looking southward when they are looking Northward!


  • David Rose

    (a) For those in IE8 – you need to click “Compatibility View” (Top right-hand corner button) then it works fine.

    (b) Dates will be essential as the collection grows.

    (c) An opportunity for users to input annotations or, even, upload photos, would be great. Some places have changed so much it is difficult to recognise where they are taken… unless you remember, like me, that they moved the clock tower to build a road, or whatever.

    (d) Great idea, nice work, forget the moaners – they obviously don’t understand the word “Beta” – maybe use the term “Test site – in development”… Just a thought…

    The National Archives reply:

    Hi David, Thanks for your feedback. While specific dates are, unfortunately, not available for the Dixon-Scott collection, we will be adding more photo collections as the application is further developed. Also, we are looking into user contributions and this will be addressed on the Labs site in the near future. Hope you keep checking in!

  • Applemany

    I just had a look at the photos of Felixstowe and found on of Felixstowe Ferry there. Is there any way of knowing what year these photos taken?

    Several of the photos of Felixstowe say they are looking southward when they are looking Northward!

    The National Archives reply:

    Unfortunately, we do not have specific dates for the Dixon-Scott collection, but will be adding more photographic resources in time. Thanks very much for checking out the site,

  • Liz Grant

    I did not do too well as I could get nothing for any location in Scotland

    The National Archives reply:

    The photo finder application is currently limited to the contents of the Dixon-Scott collection, but we will be adding more photographic resources in time. We hope you check back later, and thanks very much for leaving feedback.

  • kat

    It will be a great insight when the minor teething problems are ironed out so a little patience is needed for the NA.

    Well done so far.

  • john ager

    Brilliant,ideal for those carring out family research and would like to add a few old photo’s of where there families lived.

  • Chris Willis

    Definitely broken today. The search can no longer find Yateley

    regards – Chris

  • Hazel Lister

    If I have photos which could be added to your collection is there a facility for sending them to you.

    The National Archives reply:

    Hi Hazel, thanks very much for trying out the application. We are not currently asking for photos from the public, but are looking into how users can be more involved. Please do keep checking back on the site for updates.

  • james fox

    8 sept 2010.
    I feel the site would be more useful if one could just type the name of the place and its location, without having to zoom in and out and up and down/left to right on the arrows.It is both nauseating and hard for “Senior Citizens” to try and concentrate and manipulate.It gives theimpression of those electronic road maps with “voice over directions” but not as efficient.
    James.Fox .Paris/France.

  • Roy Mellick

    No photos of Bermondsey in this collection but did note that the map used appears to be later than the 1920-1940 period as a street named ‘Mellick Place’ is not shown and was there up until 1935. How do you aim to cover this problem with future collections?

  • Jim Malcolm

    Fabulous resource, but as others have mentioned it requires dates for the images to be of real use.

  • Jon

    Maybe it’s just me, but all I get is a map of London, and the search box doesn’t recognise anywhere I enter (eg Leeds). If there’s a way of viewing the whole country and then identifying a specific area, that needs to be made much clearer.

  • Zoe Devlin

    I typed in ‘York’ to the search and it said ‘Location not found’, even though there are photos of York. Not all the photos have identifying information with them and the pop-up menu of images distorts most of the photos. The collection is obviously very heavily focused on the south so of limited use if your interest is elsewhere.

  • Florence Lehmann

    Just looked at the site for the first time. Does look very interesting and I would love to have a lot more time to spend with it.

  • Carolyn Heathcote

    It seems stuck on a map of London and won’t accept any entries for other places. the only photos in my area appear to be Wimbledon Common and the photos are quite small.

  • victor markham

    I have checked this out and the places I put in the search box were not available. That could be either because the photos have not been uploaded or the photograph had not taken any of those places.
    Checking the map in the Newbury area. North of Newbury there is a little camera near Curridge. I prompted this and excellent photos appeared but these were of Down House in Kent! Quite a long way from Newbury. This could have been due to there being a Down School near Curridge. Hence the confusion.

  • John Harwood

    Its gold dust a fascinating look into the past.

  • Marienne Faull

    First look at this site. I browsed, saw a photo in Hampstead, then went back searched for it & was given the message that it doesn’t exist- check spelling – try again.
    Images need dates to be useful in research.

  • Iain Flett

    The “enter location box” isn’t working today for any of the belowmentioned but if you have patience to travel around Scotland and drag on on the map index there are a good selection of picture postcard views of the usual suspects such as

    Anstruther Wester
    East Linton
    St Andrews

  • Richard Laughton

    A fascinating tool and very easy to use, if you know the geography. Unfortunately I am in Canada but it was great to go and look at some of the places where my ancestors came from. Now, if we could have this same tool to access all the photographs of the training camps during the Great War (1914-1919) that would be fantastic!
    Richard, Milton Ontario Canada

  • Mary, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, USA

    Excellent photographs of the Canary Wharf district. It helps to see these as working docks in contrast to the pedestrian/tourist location they are today. Keep up the good work!

  • Ian Simmons

    Very well organised but if you could only join up with the NMR collection of historic air photos then the value would be increased several-fold.

  • Clare Malley

    This looks a useful facility. It would be even better if older photographs could also be added.

  • Marion Lycett

    Liked the site so far. Are there likely to be more photos added? Found the location search didn’t work for me at all – eg put in Honiton, Devon and came up unknown and yet when I scrolled through the maps to find Honiton there was a photo. Everytime I wanted a location I had to scroll through all the maps to find it. Perhaps a complete map could be “clicked” on to go to an area. Also i would have liked the photos to have been dated – even if it was a guessometer!
    One error is a picture supposed to be Langport, Stoke-on-Trent which appears to be a picture taken in Somerset. Has been confused with “Longport” in Stoke-on-Trent?

  • Jenny Oliver

    Just had a quick search so far. One basic problem was that when you click on the small image to get the larger version, there seems to be no way back without starting the search over again – cannot return to the map. Potentially useful but a bit frustrating at the moment.

  • Win Alcock

    Lovely to take a look at old pics. I looked at Liverpool, – not a lot of photos available for the north west. There were 32 pics in the set. Trying to move to the next pic, I kept losing it and having to start all over again. Difficult to scroll down the thumbnails to where I left off. Gave up in the end without viewing the last 12 photos. Will try again another time, hopefully you will iron out the hiccups!!!

  • cj

    Great idea, good to be able to see where our ancestors lived and also where I currently lived looked like a long time ago.

  • Sue Hookins

    Really frustrating as looks a great tool but just does not work.

  • John Crane

    My first reaction is one of disappointment.
    I can find only 8 photos in central Cumbria. The photo designated to Askham, Westmorland states on the card “Northumberland”.
    For Keswick, after viewing the first photo of six? it would seem that to view the others you have to conduct additional searches!
    Much improvement will have to be made to make this site reliable and of any use to family historians.

    The National Archives reply:

    Thanks very much for trying the site and leaving your comments. This application is in beta, we are trying out the technology and approach and it will be much improved and refined before it is migrated to the main website. User feedback is invaluable to this process, so we hope you keep checking back and trying out new iterations and developments.

  • Roy Dent

    It has plenty of potential, but I feel it is not yet ready for prime time.

    To be a little more specific:

    a) The images at which I looked were of very poor quality, dark and very grey. I find it hard to believe that a professional photographer produced those images.

    b) The labelling, where it exists, is best described as eccentric. e.g there are no docklands in Bethnal Green. Labels on individual photos seem to be non existent. Not much use if the viewer doesn’t know what is being displayed. Some I managed to guess.

    On the plus side, contrary to some earlier reports here, I had no problems using Firefox. I suspect that NoScript may have been disabling scripts where problems. Easily remedied by the user.

    The National Archives reply:

    Roy, thanks very much for trying the application and leaving feedback. For this first, beta iteration of the photo finder we are limited to the contents of the Dixon-Scott photofinder, more photographic resources will be added as the application is developed and improved. Thanks again and we hope you keep checking back in Labs.

  • Rachel @ukfamilyhistory

    An excellent resource which I will be recommending to all my followers, as someone else has said, an ability to add comments on locations etc would be great!!

    The National Archives reply:

    Thanks, Rachel! User collaboration is something we will be looking at on Labs – please keep checking back in for updates and developments.

  • David

    The history photos are a great idea but how about adding an approximate date for them? I use XP and Firefox and the facility is very slick and easy to use. I hope for lots more photos in future.

    The National Archives reply:

    David, unfortunately more specific dates are not available for the contents of the Dixon-Scott collection, but we will be adding further photographic resources in time. Thanks very much for trying out the application and commenting.

  • H S

    Tried to click on the map, then on various camera icons. Works okay, but number system for photos a bit confusing. I then tried using the icon hand to drag round the maps, but ended up glinching. Once it’s all ironed out it will be a great tool for looking at an area. Would be good to have a way for other archives to add to this to build up a picture of the UK long gone with a comments page for each photo, so details about it could be built up with links to local history and genealogy websites.Don’t know how it is all being funded, but definitely a worthy recipient for government money.

    The National Archives reply:

    Thanks very much for your comments. We will be adding more photographic resources as the application is developed, and we are taking on board all of our users’ comments and suggestions. Please do keep checking back for updates.

  • John Shore

    No problems visiting the page,no problems using the map to locate photographs. From the comments, many people now expect everything to be perfect. Don’t they get a buzz from seeing images of the past and giving credit to the photographers who took them? They didn’t have digital cameras with auto settings.

    The National Archives reply:

    Thanks very much for checking out the application and leaving feedback – we’re glad you like it! We hope you keep looking out for updates and developments. User feedback is key to how we develop and improve what’s on Labs.

  • Nick Pollard

    Found using the page easy, I agree that the amount of moaning has been ridiculous. It makes it quite clear this is a test page, some people would obviously rather wait until everything is perfect, in which case just get in your car and visit the Archives! I remember when that’s all there was, so think yourselves lucky for this wonderful FREE service. One minor correction, the sole image for Walton on Thames is incorrect and is in fact HAMPTON, Middlesex. I also agree dates would be useful if this info exists.

    The National Archives reply:

    Thanks for trying out the photo finder – we are looking into the best way for users to submit corrections. Unfortunately, specific dates are not available for the contents of the Dixon-Scott collection, but we will adding more photographic resources as the application is further developed.

  • Stuart Bagnall

    Your transcriber has confused Feltham, Middlesex with Fetcham, Surrey, two places I know well. The pictures ascribed to Feltham are in fact of Fetcham – the confusion is caused by the unclear handwriting on the index cards.
    Best wishes for the project.

  • Dennis Hill

    This looks to be a good start on a much needed resource. Unfortunaely it doesn’t have anything for me at the moment but I will certainly keep taking a look. I assume more collections will be added as time and finances allow? There really should be an easy way for individuals to submit their own pictures initially to a ‘clearing house’ where suitability can be assessed before uploading to the portal.

    The National Archives reply:

    Thanks for giving us your feedback. We will be adding more photographic resources as the application is developed, so please do check back for updates. While we are not currently asking for photos from the public, user collaboration is something we are working on, and will be addressed on Labs in time.

  • Jan Simmonds

    I think this will be a useful tool but I agree that dates would be useful. Also of the half dozen or so places I looked at there were 2 mistakes. Brocklands Church in Kent linked to Byfleet Surrey (because of Brooklands I assume) and photos linked to the wrong Sutton in Surrey. A small niggle but does the map have to open focused on London – could it show the whole country making it easier to navigate to where you want to be. A very good start though.

    The National Archives reply:

    Thanks for checking out the site. We are currently looking at the best way to collate our users’ corrections. All feedback and comments are being collected and will feed into how the applications are developed, so we hope you keep checking back as they are improved.

  • Steph Clifford

    Brill site, looking forward to its expansion.

  • John Parton

    Excellent system.Very easy to access the local map , and the photos.
    Clearly it requires more photos to make a search of all areas.
    I was interested in Walsall , which is a large town, but there are no photos available yet.

    The National Archives reply:

    John, thanks for trying out the application and leaving your comments. We will be adding more photographic resources as the photo finder is developed and improved, we hope you keep checking back as new things are added.

  • Sharron Murray

    Great fun. Panning over the country was a little tedious and I couldn’t find any pictures of Ireland, but I suppose that will come with time. The fact the pictures added up each time a folder was opened was a little disconcerting at first, I thought there were 38 pictures of Rawtenstall, but only eight of Bradford. Apart from that easy to use, and I loved the way each photo opened- very classy.

  • Alison S

    Seen this for the first time today. Love the idea, a little disappointed that there are not more photos.
    I was hoping to e able to see pictures of streets etc.
    I think I was hoping for rather too much.
    Definitely something I will visit again in the hope of more material.

    The National Archives reply:

    Hi Alison, Thanks for trying out the photo finder. This is still in development and more photographic resources will be added as the application is refined and improved. We hope you keep checking back as more is added.

  • Liz

    Easy to locate photos and view them, however I couldn’t see how to easily close the photos without losing the map.

  • Derek W.

    I this the principle of making the pics available for whatever use is superb.
    My interest is Family History.
    I can not understand some folks problems using this in Firefox-perhaps they have not got the latest version.
    I have found that most sites that have some reliance on entering a location (not map ref) do not function well largely because it is almost impossible for index and queries to be exact. The method used by IGI batch search and some other geneology site overcomes this by enter country- wait for prompt; enter county say-wait for prompt and perhaps names of major towns : user clicks on nearest town, at which point the map could show the available flags within a reasonable radius of each big city.
    It would be nice to eventually extend the service to take in the old picture libraries existing in Referance libraries all over UK and perhaps to receive public pics..

  • Tracey Reed

    I had the problem too of incorrect photos popping up. Searching Hackney when photos of Shoreham by sea popped up. Interestingly that is what I had been looking at in one of my previous searches so I wonder if that has somethign to do with it.

  • Ray Wigzell

    Excellent, very useful. It works well and easy to locate an area. Dates if available would add to the usefulness.
    Noticed that Hawkhurst, Kent photo’s are located several miles north of were they should be!

  • Lynda

    Interesting site. I hope to get some useful results. Would like to see larger thumbnails of the photos.

  • Lesley

    If possible to add dates, would be very useful. Some info on copyright would be useful.Are photos taken before 1955 out of copyright in the UK?

  • Jeff Collinson

    Excellent resource. I will alert my friends of this wonderful facility.

  • peter Levarre-Waters

    This is a terrific site. Everything worked first time and was very easy to navigate. Pictures were easy to save and still contained all the relative info. In an era where everyone wants to charge for information it is refreshing to access such a great resource for free. There will always be the occasional bug or error but these also exist on PPV sites; or as I call them $$$$$ sites. The only improvements I can suggest would be a quick error reporting button on each picture and an enlarge button for those of us with poorer eyesight. Once again a great resource and will be much appreciated.

  • Stanley

    Everything worked fine for me ( at 2 a.m. U.K.time !)
    Only problem was that I couldn’t close the image when I wanted to go to another location so I had to keep going back to the page with the Get Started button. I guess you probably have this in hand. Thanks for a great project.

  • Mark

    had no problems navigating around the map after searching for my chosen town. I use Opera on a netbook. I think the images need to be bigger to be of any use to me…could not see any detail….and yes, it would be nice to have a date when they were taken.

  • Ian King

    Living Australia I am hopeing to find photos of the areas in which my family lived. This will provide a background as to the type of life they lead. Look forward to more photos

  • steve

    Could you add a close button on the image window as it doesn’t always auto close (timed) thus you have to close the browser page to get a new search window (IE8)

  • Arlene Bishop

    Still developing i know but it will be a great resource.
    Needs an ‘X’ top right of the image window as you have to shut the whole thing down just to look at another area.
    Would you open it up for the public to submit photos (after examination) this could be a really comprehensive site then, really exciting!

  • Denise

    Thought I’d have a look at my home town and was so pleased to see it included two really excellent photographs of my house, before it was “improved” by a previous owner. Is it possible to get copies of these please?

  • I Dawson

    Great idea but no good for me as it didnt have any in my area (Bradford). Will look again in the future.

  • J. Winter

    Excellent! This will be very useful for genealogical research for those of us not fortunate to live in the U.K. It will be even better when the scope is increased.

  • Ivan

    Excellent! Works well on my Mac running OS10.4.11 and Safari 4.1.1, no apparent problems. I’d support the idea of users being able to add comments, especially to identify exact locations – for example the photos DS553/1 through 28 are listed as St Paul’s School, which is correct, but the actual location is the old school site in Hammersmith, not the current location in Barnes. Also, DS303/3 shows East Sheen War Memorial in a view looking North towards Sheen Lane but is catalogued as “Barnes” (because that is the text on the card). Also, a facility to buy copies would be useful…

  • J Chalcraft

    Very interesting. Would have preferred a date the photographs were taken. When photo is enlarged it requires the ESC key to be used to return to the set of prints. Perhaps this could be mentioned in the instructions preceding the display.

  • Chris Willis

    Well done. It now works.


    a) readers may like to know that Alt-C closes the picture when they have expanded it. (A close cross might be useful)

    b) the set of pictures for Sutton have, I think erroneously, been attached to Sutton Green NE of Guildford. I think they refer to Sutton by Cheam.

    Chris W

  • Chris Willis

    There appears to be a problem with the last picture for Aynho (7/7)

    Although ctrl-right moves the pictures on , it also moves the map.

  • Piero

    I was born and grew up in the area around Westminster Bridge Road, Lambeth SE1. I was hoping to see some photos of this area pre-war and immediate postwar. After keying in the name Westminster Bridge Road the reply came – location not known, check spelling. The spelling was correct but still the same reply, Why?

  • Rob Marston

    Photo search is great but when I searched for Salford, Lancs, all the photos were of Manchester, Lancs.

  • Linda

    Great resource and worked well with my old, slow computer!
    Will look forward to more photographs being added in the, hopefully, near future.

  • Julian Scott

    Looks to be a great resource – especially when it expands to more photo collections.

    I had problems “closing” the enlarged pictures – your previous commentators’ advice to use Esc or Alt-C is very helpful, but I would reiterate the suggestion for a “close” cross to make it all less clunky

  • Barry Chinchen

    What does a marker look like? There are probably no pictures in my area though the map is excellent. I would like to see a version of the program to which I could add photographs.

  • Brenda Fleming

    Fascinating selection of photographs – are you able to add dates to them at some time please? This collection states ‘1920s to 1940s’ but if the actual dates they were taken is known, it would be most useful. Anyway, a great ‘tool’ and I look forward to using it regularly in my Family Tree-ing. Many thanks.

    The National Archives reply:

    Brenda, unfortunately specific dates are not available for the contents of the Dixon-Scott collection, however more photographic resources will be added as the application is developed and improved. Thanks very much for checking out the site.

  • LeslieSimmons

    I only by chance opened my EMail yesterday and saw the information about old photographs, how timely, becaue I had a visitor who has lived in the same road and house all her 82 years, and she was absolutely delighted to see images taken long ago of her town, they were certainly a big talking point, and of intense interest to her.
    I shall be using this facility for my research from now on.
    Are the National Archives intending to put up any further collections of old photographs?

    The National Archives reply:

    Thanks very much for trying out the photo finder, we’re glad you found it useful! We will be adding more photographic resources as the application is developed and improved.

  • Yvonne Tomlinson

    A great idea, but when I typed in ‘Highgate’ I was invited to chooses an otion. I tried two different options, clicked ‘go’ and the invitation to choose an option appeared again! I enjoyed looking at the pictures of Woodford and Chingford, but was frustrated when there was no indication of where some of the photos were taken. And there are none of Barnet!

  • Dianna

    Great tool. Nice old photos of Blackpool. But I couldn’t find the close button. Is it me?

    There will be more pictures in the future – hopefully.

  • Ken Beagley

    What a fantastic resource!
    However, Godshill, Isle of Wight photos have been sited at Godshill, near Fordingbridge.
    The postman has been known to muddle those two up too, as they were both in Hampshire.

  • Chris Shaw

    Great to have access to these pictures, however I agree with the previous comments that if its at all possible to include dates that would be great, however I realise its not always possible.

    Love the idea mentioned above of readers being able to add notes of locations and other interesting comments, it could complete some very interesting stories!

    Look forward to this idea being developed further.

  • Les Curwood

    A very useful resource.
    I have found a picture of my grand-father’s shop where my father was born.
    It would be useful to be able to download a higher resolution of the photos.

  • Dorothea Rowse

    This is a really excellent way to make a brilliant collection of old photos available. It has worked faultlessly on my laptop. I live in Australia and am grateful for all the photographic resources that are steadily coming online. Many congratulations!

  • Grahame Boyett

    The system is certainly to yet fit for purpose. In looking at Blandford Forum I was surprised to find Ascot photographs I had previously viewed mixed in with them. At first I thought it was an incredible coincidence, but when these attached themselves to the Wokingham photographs I next viewed I realised it was a serious glitch.

  • John Shore

    Thats odd – I checked Blandford Forum about two days ago and the pics were indeed Blandford Forum! I will look again

  • Luis

    Excelent maps, better than Google’s and others. Thanks!

  • June Hawkins

    Disapointed that I couldnt find photo’s of Lambeth, especialy of the church where I had been christened 72 years ago, St Mary at Lambeth.

  • Linda Penn

    I found this extremely interesting. Being able to see the photographs of the places where your ancestors can help to put much into context. Hope that your are able to extent this collection in the future, especially to smaller towns and villages.

  • Pam Frith

    I have just discovered this FREE facility and I love it. I hope that it will be extended to include more places as time goes on.

  • Rosemary Seam

    Hello, seeking Synagogue St, Norwich, which no longer exists. My mother was born at no 15 in 1911. There are historic photos of it taken between the wars, in 1930s, I believe.

  • sue hill

    I found this tool very useful and it works on firefox. I would certainly like to see more photos over time of schools, churches, public buildings, places where people worked etc. It is good to get a pictorial of a partiuclar area from your ancestors’ time. I also enjoyed looking at the pictures of places I have lived and how they have changed.

    I feel it would be good for people to be able to upload their photos so that these images are not lost over time. Good luck with the site.

  • Gill Edwards

    This is a really useful accessory to our research although it does not cover as many places as i’d hoped.

  • Barbara M

    I spent a long time over summer taking photo’s visiting places of interest for my family history, and was so disapointed discovering the places no longer there, All i really needed was my armchair and this great galery, look forward to you adding more, and having a direct feed that i can down load to my favorites…thanks N A..

  • Shirallee Jarrett


    I just spent 5 minutes putting in a few thought out suggestions for this STUPID comments section to tell me to put in a Captcha code. AND it then lost my comments.
    IF you want people to put in comments can I suggest you explain how to do it and also explain where the comments box is.

  • william sharp

    A great idea especially for people like myself who lived in the towns and villages in Cornwall before leaving U.K. in 1952 to live in Australia. Am now 81. Hope to see many more photos of the small villages like Alternun, Lewwannick, Trewint etc
    John Sharp.


    I think the photos will be a great help for my research and look forward to seeing the range extended more. The only problem I see to at the present is that I would like to see a button to close the current set of pictures being viewed and go back to the maps. I find it can be done by using the task manager but this is not an efficient method.

  • Anne C. Plymouth,Devon

    I found the site very easy to navigate and shall reommend it to the volunteers I work with in a local image bank. Would appreciate some idea of the date images were taken.

  • Graham Fitzjohn

    No photos are shown for Peterborough , but when I looked at Hitchin the pictures were of Peterborough Cathedral

  • Brian Evans

    Nice idea – the system seems to work OK, but as some others have commented, the links to the photos appear to be a bit haphazard. Diss (Norfolk) gave me two pics of Diss, but when I looked at Hitchin (Herts), I got seven shots of Peterborough!

  • Katy Cox

    What brilliant ideas -wish I had thought of them!
    Maps – again brilliant and very user friendly.
    Photos – ditto

  • Keith Batchelor

    Very good. Easy to use. (Why can’t all TNA searches be as easy as this!)

    Brought back memories of where i used to leave despite not being that old! Buildings used to stand for a long time then.

    I also found out how my present location looked many years ago.

  • Linda Freakley

    Very good, easy to navigate. I’m making pages for my family tree, so the photos are great for illustrating my grandfather’s footsteps and those of my father’s.

  • David Ward

    Tried it for Exeter but apart from a few (3 or 4) photos of the city the photos all 21 of them concentrated on the cathedral. That’s fine for someone interested in the church between wars but useless for anyone trying to discover how the centre of Exeter looked then.

    There are enough photos on other sites to show this so whether NA History photo finder archives are bare of any decent photos or they have yet to build up their own stock I don’t know but hoefully this situation will be rectified soon

  • Josie Aslett

    very good, had no problems getting on site or looking at photos
    Almost saw where I live. will definately be looking again

  • Linda Hutton

    Read about the image collection in “Who Do You Think You Are?” magazine so thought I’d give it a go. A nice idea and works well up to a point, but the cumulative effect of several different searches appears to be that all the pictures you have even just hovered over are retrieved in the image pop up. By the time I had looked at Barnsley, Sheffield, Tynemouth and Durham I had a collection of over a hundred pictures to scroll through. Doesn’t make it easy to go back to one you particularly liked and must consume more processing power than just retrieving one search at a time?

  • Peter Rugman

    Excellent facility and easy to use. However, I found an error with one of the photos in Stoke-on-Trent. There is a photo of the Parish Church of Langport, Somerset which I think has been confused with Longport in Stoke-on-Trent.

    The National Archives reply:

    Many thanks for your feedback. Your comments have been passed onto the relevant team who will be able to look into the labelling of the photographs.

  • M Buik

    useful but would be better if dated and more specific about place

  • Janette Owen

    great site – found most of places I was looking for – found Clissold Park in Stoke Newington where I used to go as a child (50 years ago!) – can they be printed?

  • vtw

    When I clicked on Hitchin I got Peterborough photos

  • David Clay

    No photograph images will appear,tried several different major places.

  • Diane

    Really useful tool, just wish the photos were dated.

  • Allison

    I like it and whilst it might not have the coverage many people want presumably other photographers can be added later on.
    I did notice that each time I searched the results were accumulative so they were added to the previous results which meant I had 100s of photos. Not a problem but suggests a cache or similar is not being cleared somewhere.

  • Paul Foster

    Very useful and interesting but really does need dates….even if only approximate.
    One problem is that after clicking on an image to enlarge it, I haven’t found a way of going back to the gallery of small images….how is this done ?

    The National Archives reply:

    @Paul Foster
    Thank you for your comments. Unfortunately, specific dates are not available for these photographs. However, we will be adding more photographic resources in time and we are always looking at ways to improve our online resources so your feedback is really valuable to us. To get back to the gallery of small images, click the ‘close’ button on the bottom right of the enlarged image.

  • Katharine Pinkerton

    Yes, the maps are interesting and helpful for research. Is it possible to print them?

    The National Archives reply:

    @Katharine Pinkerton and @Janette Owen
    Thanks for your comments. We don’t have a print function as yet, but this tool is in development (with the help of your feedback) and we are looking to link to DocumentsOnline in the next release later this year, where you can buy high quality pictures, ideal for printing. Please do check back and let us know what you think.

  • Shirley Murray

    A useful resource – though quite limited.
    I too had a problem closing down the larger images – there is no ‘Close’ label – the cursor just changes to a hand when you hover over the bottom right of the image!

  • Pat Hill

    I also couldn’t get back to the small images or map without closing the whole window. There isn’t a ‘close button’ on bottom right hand corner of the large image but when you hover mouse over the area it does work

    The National Archives reply:

    We’re sorry to those of our users who have been unable to close the enlarged window. We believe this may be a browser issue and are in the process of solving the issue. This application is still in development and we are working to improve its functionality; our users’ feedback is invaluable to this process and informs our updates and improvements. We hope you try again and let us know what you think.

  • seguna

    maltese gangsters from soho area. who run the soho area in the fifties sixties and seventies

  • seguna

    tooting broaway england any old photos would be greatly appreciated

  • T. L. Compton

    Absolutely fantastic! I could spend hours going through these photos. Hope you will continue to add more to the collection. Anything from late 19th c.?

    The National Archives reply:

    @T.L. Compton
    Thanks for your feedback – it’s great to hear you’ve enjoyed using the UK history photo finder tool. We will be adding more photographic resources in time; the application is still in beta and our users’ feedback is invaluable in helping us develop our resources further.

  • Geo. Spooner

    For information, Photo Finder doesn’t work in Internet Explorer 9 (beta) in either default or compatibility mode, i.e. nothing happens when I click on the ‘Get Started’ button.
    No doubt IE9 compatibility is something you will address in due course.

  • Lyn Woodbridge

    Couldn’t get it to work. Came up with error on page

    The National Archives reply:

    Thanks very much for letting us know – this error has now been fixed.

  • Karl Eichner

    I am having a problem using the latest version of IE 8. I type in a city and am told there are no images. Even when I typed in London. My pop up blockers are off. Could be the most recent windows IE / Windows. Any advice?

  • Steve

    sorry not working just get very narrow vertical band of map

  • Barbara Jefford

    I hope this is only a temporary glitch but having looked at one set of photograps I was then unable to enter a search term to view other photographs of a different town. Clicking on the ‘Get Started’ links proved useless as the Seach page never reloaded.

  • Richard

    1) Shame the pictures are so small
    2) There’s only one photo of Aylesbury ..was hoping for a lot more..
    3) I like the general idea

  • Stephen Benham

    Interesting, but in the case of the two nearest photographs to me, (i) as an earlier commentator said, only as good as the indexer, or geotagger, or (ii) only as good as the original description. (i) In the case of the Aberdyfi photographs (your “Aberdovey”), the geotag is in the dunes at Ynyslas, on the other side of the river Dyfi. (ii) But fair play to the geotagger of the seaside photograph with the original title “Builth Wells, Radnor”, and a tut-tut to whoever on the Photo Finder team either mis-transcribed or silently corrected the title to “Builth Wells, Brecknockshire” (Builth IS in co. Brec. rather than co. Rad.). The geotagger has correctly identified the view as Y Borth, Ceredigion (neither co. Rad. or co. Brec. has a coastline). But a bit strange, correcting the smaller mistake in the title, but not the larger one.

  • Susie Scott

    Great start and look forward to further additions.

  • Edward Burwell

    First time user after reading my local paper.Entered ‘Leeds’, offered ‘Leeds West Yorkshire’.clicked on this & received ‘location cannot be found’ Never! – Basic error to fix!!

  • F Bourne

    I’d really like to use this as it sounds great, but am having trouble getting it to load – just seems to hang. I also noticed it doesn’t like placenames much. The selection you get is rather odd! I tried Moray, a district name, and didn’t get anything useful. It may be there isn’t anything there but I had hoped for a town name or two. Keep trying though, please!

  • Mary Marsden Sayers

    None of the places I keyed in provided a photograph, just a detailed map, so there still seems be be a problem.

  • Flora Campbell

    This is a great idea, but I cannot get it to work – have tried Firefox and IE8 on XP. Every location I enter I get “No photos at this location” – even places that I see from comments above that do have photos. Also it says you can select photos by clicking on the markers. What markers are these? I have scrolled all round the country on the map and cannot see any markers for photos.

  • Hilary Lawler

    i wish it would work for me Lancaster does not exist i wish it was better sorted.

  • Janet

    I tytped in quite a few place names and there was nothing for any of them. It would be nice if there was an index to browse through.

  • Robin Dunford

    Seems like a great idea, but it is taking forever (more than 15 minutes on a high-speed office connection – it’s my lunchbreak!) to load the map on the opening screen, so I have yet to see what it can do. Will try again

  • Ivy Lynn WILKINSON

    tried for pictures for Newcastle upon tyne, Gateshead, and Chatteris Cambridgshire no pics available for these places.

  • Leslie Howard

    Tried it and it did not work, Searching went on and on and on then the legend said no photographs at this location. Waste of space

  • chris bradley

    although applaud the idea, this really seems to be trying and emulating the bigger historypin project which does the same thing but more integrated directly into google street view. seems an unnecessary effort to create alternative resources rather than add to the larger?

  • karen

    I’m having the same problems as those described in previous email. Is the site too busy? I’ve just had an email from The Archive publicising the this new feature. so maybe I’ll try again in a few weeks.

  • Lynette Kirby

    frustratingly useless – justcontinuously loads maps in different scales but never gives an opportunity to view any photos

  • Jeannie

    Couldn’t find anything as the searcher just kept going for wherever I searched, London, Oxford, Hampshire etc. Would love to have seen some photo’s. Maybe because I am in Australia???

  • Jeannie

    The searcher just kept going on and on wherever I searched, disappointing. May be that I am in Australia?

  • db

    Tried it on bothe firefox and explorer and it didn’t work or took too long to load so gave up!

  • Ian Thirlwell

    At the moment it is unusable. The map never seems to finish loading. Tried several cities around the UK, including London, but none had photographs available.
    Keep it simple: get rid of the map & create a decent index to the photos.

  • Twig

    All I got was a google map, no better than getting out my paper road map really, is this an exercise for google to infiltrate my computer

  • J Claxton

    Drags on and on and does not show photos in any location

  • Paul Methven

    Couldn’t get it to work. For everywhere I tried there was a message ‘no photos at this location’ – even at the City of London which I tried in desperation. And the little ‘loading’ wheel never stopped turning!!

  • bev purcey

    I’m not sure what I’m doing wrong but the whole thing is very slow. There are NO markers on the map that eventually loads and I’m told with every place name I enter that no images are available. A frustrating experience. Can anyone help – I have firefox and windows XP

  • Kevthebrit

    This site is a waste of space!
    OH! It seems I have to write more!
    OK! This site REALLY is a waste of space!

  • Lesley Picker

    Cant seem to get it to work on Firefox, map or photos.

  • David Bowden

    I can’t get it to work on a Mac with Safari. The ’search’ sign runs continuously and the “no photos’ legend is permanent wherever I go. Same with the Domesday map.

  • chris

    I’ve tried searching for places other than in England, but no luck with the ones I tried for Wales. Should I be surprised?!!!!

  • Cecelia Lange

    I’ve used both Firefox and Internet Explorer. No matter what area I choose, there is a message that there are no photos. I’ve been everywhere! So — I must be doing something wrong.

  • John Bailey

    What a waste of public money – the site will not load so is of no use. Basically it is too clever for me – come on make it easier to use.

  • Pat Hill

    No, it didn’t work for me either. Just kept saying ‘loading’, had no pictures for several local towns, and said it hadn’t heard of Southend on Sea.

  • AlanE

    Very disappointed, can only get OS Map and loading symbol, haven’t managed to see any photos

  • M Moverley

    I have just put four different locations in, and for each one was told there were no photographs for that location, as one was the City of York I was surprised.

  • Vernon Smith

    Could not get it to work. Whatever I tried it just gave me a “loading” message and never showed anything.

  • Ian Rogerson

    IT doesnt workso how can I assess it

  • Stephanie McManus

    Can’t comment – have been waiting for it to load for over 10 minutes! Can’t be bothered to wait.


    No photos showing.Loading caption in centre revolving and nothing else.Map and sizing works.

  • Brian Hilton

    Every location I’ve tried says no photos this location?

  • Michael Bryant

    Been on your site and cant get a single photo funny but the village I was looking for Buscot in Oxfordshire is shown in the top left on your main page.

  • Ken Holt

    I tried two locations; one is the village where I have lived for the past 33 years. The other is Salford, a city since 1924, where I lived for the first 28 years of my life. Both drew a blank, so not of much interest to me.

  • Helen Reeves

    Using Mac with Firefox, put in several place names, no photographs found!

  • Jennifer Waller

    Using in Intel Mac with Firefox, I could only get some (very nice) Ordnance Survey maps but not photos. Once it’s up-and-running properly, it’ll be a great tool.

  • Pat Warren

    Tried lots of different locations. Each time it stated there were no photos to view. Gave up!!

  • Paul M

    Same experience as three previous comments. The map won’t completely load and no photos available for any of the locations searched. For the sake of TNA credibility this ‘tool’ should be withdrawn until the problems are resolved.

  • Chris Willis

    This (as well as the Valuation map finder) is now broken. Not even any error messages. Just a plain 1:50k map (which navigates ok), with no extra marking.

    Selecting Guildford or Sutton, Sutton by name returns “no pictures” or words to that effect.

    Chris Willis

  • kathleen

    I couldn’t get any pictures at all. Just kept saying ‘loading’ and nothing happened.

  • Adele

    Not working for me – not sure why???

  • Tony Shell

    I was unable to see a single photograph, what ever location I tried it said there was no picture at this location. I even typed in London & then Coventry same result. most disapointing.

  • peter Levarre-Waters

    doesnt seem to be working today

  • John Fairweather-Tall

    The very first image I accessed, just to see if this project worked, was Plymouth, Devon, and I went to St Budeaux, a district of Plymouth. St Budeaux is said to be in Cornwall! Quick, get it changed before Devonians of a more violent disposition than I see it.

  • Liz Grant

    I have tried twice and still cannot get it to work. This is very disappointing as i would really love to see some places I knew many years ago.

  • Bob Young

    As useless as the Domesday map. I could home in on my chosen postcode (though there were no photos there) but I got a pop-up box telling me that the map was still loading, and nothing I could do, save exiting the application, would clear it.

  • Lawrence Weaver

    Enjoyed what i have seen hopefully may find photos for Family Trees

  • Chris Willis

    This seems to be working in a reasonable way again.

    For some strange reason, King Edward VI school, Guildford, has been separated off from the other Guildford photos. Perhaps it is Witley.

    Wherever it sd be, it shouldn’t be north of Wellington College and west of Broadmoor.

    Cd be the Royal Grammar School Guildford, its royal charter was from E VI. (see,_Guildford ) .

    Schools with E VI charters are not uncommon.

    Chris W

  • John Gardner

    As someone interested in family history always useful to see how a place has developed, or not, over time. Noticed a transcription error on photo 942/5 Derby: Arboretum Lake and park.
    Should be Alvaston Lake and park. Alvaston being a suburb of Derby. My mother and her family have fond memories of the lake, now no longer there. Some form of map references may be useful so you can identify the location a little more

  • Chris Willis

    Photofinder: Windsor: St Georges Chapel (image 7, the one on its own) upside down.

    Walton-on-Thames – Surrey, surely?

    Chris Willis

  • J Claxton

    Greatly improved since yesterday.
    Thank you

  • Ray West

    Looked up the village where I live, no photos but when I clicked on the photo in Bridport it was of Burton Bradstock and similarly clicked on a photo in Melplash and it showed a photo of Corfe Castle and on a photo on Corfe Farm nearby it again showed Corfe Castle which incidentally is 25 miles away from those locations so a little dissapointed.

  • anne platts-lowe

    would be wonderful if I could find any photos of the areas I’m researching, but nothing is forthcoming. Is there an index of the areas covered?

  • Phil Pinnell

    looked up Croydon – all I could find were pictures of trees in woods. Could have been taken yesterday (with a poor camera).
    Did find photo of pub in coulsdon but marker was in wrong place

  • EveM

    I do so wish this facility would work, but I have tried it on a number of occasions and the site simply fails.

  • Karl Vaughan

    Nice idea but locations are way off. For example, Weedon in Buckinghamshire has one photograph shown and it is clearly Weedon in Northamptonshire – it even says so on the index card! Come on National Archives, check the locations first before marking where they are.

  • Geoff Davis

    Can’t display pictures! Using Firefox on a PC

  • andrea blount

    very interesting looking forward to photoes old and new of nether heage and heage derbyshire i will keep surfing

  • Michelle Mead

    Had a quick look at the photo finder.
    Fantastic !!! Can’t wait for more areas and more photos.

  • Diana Wright

    Would love to be able to use this in relation to family history, however all the places I looked up didn’t have any pictures?

  • John Bailey

    Not easy to find pictures.

  • Russell Ridout

    Great effort – but could do with a button to report an image problem – the first one I looked at (Herstmonceux Castle, near Hailsham is upside down.

  • Roger

    No coverage in our area Hutton Brentwood and error Igtham Mote, Kent show just out side Brentwood Essex!!

  • Bernadette

    My areas for research were not listed. However, to view that moment of history captured is thrilling and humbling. Any more ??

  • E Currie Jones

    Pics are difficult to see and to enlarge – have to copy them onto own computer first. Nothing for the area I was interested in – Batley, Yorks. Ans why modern maps – why not comtemporary with the pics? But yes, great to have them.

  • Tony Abbitt

    I have always been fascinated by historical photographs and this collection is an evocative snapshot of times past. I have found the website easy to use and have experienced minimal problems navigating between photos (using Firefox and Windows XP). Where available, I would like to see the year in which the photo was taken. It would also be useful if it were possible for users of the website to leave comments against each photo, perhaps pinpointing its exact location, recording some local knowledge or highlighting any errors. A great facility which I hope to revisit regularly.

  • Anne Major

    Can’t open it. These sort of photos are available online anyway. Would rather see the money spent on putting more records online. A lot of us over the other side of the world can’t get to the Archives.

  • Patricia Lovell

    Looking through the site on Portsmouth there is a picture labelled HMS Victory – D.S.592/9?. This is from Gosport looking at Portsmouth – you can see the Dockyard and Cathedral, but not the Victory! Not your fault, bad attribution in the first place – but someone hoping for a picture of Gosport Ferry stage would not get this.

  • Roberta

    Great to see the pictures and look forward to a wider collection as time goes by. Would much prefer older photos though if possible. I found it hard to get back to the map after I’d double clicked on a photo collection and had to start the application again. Perhaps I am doing something wrong? Opening the photos up in a separate screen would work better so the map was always available.

  • Simon

    No use for my family history research – but the maps come up quickly- better than Google Maps for a quick ord. survey of a location.

  • Sue

    Tool did not work. Unable to view any photographs, waste of time!

  • A Moffitt

    Firefox/Windows XP Home Edition:
    Can only access one photograph. Noresponse when I try to do another search. Just keeps recycling the “Get Started” link.

  • Joy

    It would be good if there was a ’start again’ button to take you back to the beginning at any time. Also, it seems pointless being able to search parts of the map where there just aren’t any photos of that area – just makes it frustrating for the user. Unless, of course, you are planning on adding lots more images from all areas. e.g. I live in Belfast and closest image I could find was on Isle of Man.
    Really fun, interesting idea though, think it would be great as educational tool for schools.

  • thomas steel

    Whatever I try, I get ‘No photos at this location’.

  • David Thomas

    Where are you looking for? Try Stamford Lincolnshire if you want to see some good photos.

  • Gerry Hayward

    Went to look at Eltham Palace but it brought up Sussex Downs!

  • K Mary Voller

    I tried clicking on the Photographic Images collection several times. Nothing happens, but the screen takes a big jumpback to where it was.

  • Chester Forster

    A county index would be most useful or even a list of how many images there are for each county. To say the coverage of Cumbria is sparse is an understatement.

  • John Reid

    I tried this following encouragment at Catalogue Day but everylibk I tried on the ao gave file not found error. Using Firefox

  • Michael Green

    “Page not found” comes up every time that I click on one of the symbols. What a shame!

  • Caroline Webber

    I was excited that I might be able to view some historical photographs of places my parents lived in but alas it did not work – every time I clicked on yellow camera I got a message about the link not working. Disappointed but love the concept

  • David Thomas

    The system is working ok today, so try again. We have got a heat map which shows the coverage of the photographs. Mr Dixon Scott clearly liked to concentrate on the south east.

  • Clive Watson

    Total time-waster as no picture of the location I live in was available

  • Barrie Brinkman

    I would hope that the final version will allow browsing through a group of photos by creating albums I can step through the photos. Generally I think this is an excellent use of resources

  • Tony Richards

    Disappointing. Very few photos of the Deal region in Kent and no photos of Lambeth in London. The 2 regions where my family ancestors lived.

  • Peter Clare

    Think this will be very useful as more photos are loaded up. Seen to recall that the London Metropolitian Archives had loads of London based photos They would be nice!!

  • Trudi

    I tried to access your photo library, unfortunately the get started button but it did not work. I was looking forward to using the service for my work so please help.

    The National Archives reply:

    Trudi – thanks for your interest in the photo finder. We have a couple of suggestions that should help you. Firstly, make sure that Javascript is enabled so you can use the applications. Find out more about Javascript. Secondly, check for popup blockers which might be blocking the popup window. If you are still experiencing problems, please let us know the browser you are using and we can work to resolve any issues as quickly as possible.

  • Derek Voller

    Very Interesting site. On some pictures I would like to see a more detailed location, ie a street name. However I realise you can only publish the information that is provided to you.
    I would like to point out a mis-location. The pointer for Pilgrims Hatch, Brentwood Essex brings up pictures of Ightham Mote at Sevenoaks, Kent. TN15 0NT.
    Thank you for setting up this site. I shall use it quite a bit.

    The National Archives reply:

    Derek – Many thanks for trying out the application and for giving us your feedback. We’re always looking to improve our location data, so thank you for flagging this particular detail up.

  • John Dalton

    Very difficult to find photos. If you don’t know where they were taken, you have no name to enter. There needs to be a master map of locations, or a list of towns used.

  • Sylvie Sillince

    It just took longer than the time I had available to load the small photo. I waited for 3 minutes and then gave up.

  • Graham Bird

    The 14000 photos in the collection are actually spread pretty thinly over the UK, and seem to be primarily of smaller places. If you search Manchester, Glasgow and Liverpool there’s only one picture between them. Not much use if you’re interested in cities!

    The National Archives reply:

    Thanks for your comments. We will be adding more photographic resources in time, the application is still in beta and the current range is limited in geographical coverage to the Dixon-Scott collection. Your feedback will play a key part in how this resource is developed and expanded. Please do check back later.

  • Sarah

    I was hoping that I could use this website to help me identify locations in vintage photographs. But… unfortunately there is no keyword search feature.

    The National Archives reply:

    Hi Sarah, Thanks for checking out the application and letting us know what you think. The UK history photo finder is still in beta, and further development will be informed by user feedback – we hope you try again later as new developments and resources are added.

  • Roger

    In the Bristol area, there is a photo of the Cabot Tower. This is shown on the map as near the M32 which is incorrect. The location of the tower is marked on the map correctly, about 5km to the south west of location shown, or about 1km south east of Clifton. Hope you can amend the position of the marker.

    The National Archives reply:

    Thank you for flagging up this issue Roger, we will take a look. This application is still in development and we welcome your feedback to help improve the final version which we will send live. We hope you try again and let us know what you think.

  • landscaping Hockessin De

    Great post. I found what I was looking for. Do you mind if I post this on my website and give you credit? If not, it’s ok.

    The National Archives reply:

    That’s great that you have found our application so useful. Thank you for your feedback. You are welcome to post this onto your website with the appropriate credit.

  • Lyn

    I have no doubt it is a good and worthwhile site but for visually impaired person the colours used for the site cause major problems.
    Does the site have an alternate ‘Skin’ to enable people such as me to use it?

    Webmaster reply:

    Lyn – thanks for looking and leaving feedback. Do you find this is an issue across the Labs site as a whole or with particular applications? Our Labs site is in beta, this means all of the applications are still in development stage and may not meet our usual standards of usability and accessibility. However, any that we do move up to the main site will first be tested and made usable for customers of all ages and abilities. Thanks again for commenting.

  • Maureen Lister

    Can’t get it to work, every place I type in has “no photos at this location”

    The National Archives reply:

    Thank you for your feedback. The UK history photo finder application is still in beta, and will be adding more photographic resources in time. Please do keep checking back and let us know what you think of developments.

  • Sylvia Walch

    Seems a good idea and works fine, but unfortunately there are no photos of my part of Lancashire.

  • Ben Levick

    It’s a great idea, and I look forward to it expanding with more photos. However, in the area I was looking in (the Medway Towns in Kent) the locations of the photographs were wildly inaccurate, with at least one being in completely the wrong town!

  • Mary Twentyman

    Doesn’t seem to work with Firefox

    The National Archives reply:

    Mary – thank you for your feedback. Could you please specify exactly what isn’t working in Firefox? We will aim to get this fixed if there’s an issue.

  • Judy

    I found it easy to navigate, and quality of images very good. Useful for remote research

  • Clive Maier

    I realise I am coming late to this and before I say anything adverse, let me say it is much better to have these photographs accessible than not so I applaud the effort. I imagine this is a test bed for an image portal that will eventually cover much more than Dixon-Scott. However, while geotagging is always useful and I love maps anyway, I don’t don’t think the map makes a good front end because it presupposes that the important thing for a researcher is place rather than topic. The tool as it stands is not much help if one wants to find, for example, war memorials or bridges. I take it this is a consequence of the original and inadequate cataloguing of the Dixon-Scott collection and I recognise that it would be a major task to tag 14,000 images with keywords. And having said that, I can’t get past the initial map anyway. A progress wheel spins indefinitely, accompanied by the legend ‘loading …’. Another box on the map states ‘no images at this location’ although I know that to be untrue for the location I entered.

  • Best Google Genealogy Tools and Sites | Empty Nest Genealogy

    [...] UK History Photo Finder [...]

  • Paul Moran

    Does anyone know what the J stands for in J. Dixon-Scott?

    The National Archives reply:

    Thanks for getting in touch – it’s John.

  • Maggie

    THere are no photos at all for LOndon .. just none, none for any part of london!!

  • gertrude

    Absolutely brilliant can’t wait for more

  • CP

    Other ways of searching would be helpful eg. by place name, theme, building

  • Madeleine Black

    Like the idea, works on Firefox/Windows7, but Search needs tweaking. Walsingham finds Walsingham Wood, Little Colney near London. I had to input Houghton St Giles to get Little and Great Walsingham etc in Norfolk that I wanted.

  • Andrew Bale

    Just started and easily found what I was looking for so great resource. Only point is the referencing ie Bridgwater Bay and Bridgwater Canal are on the drop down list but have no photo records against them.

  • Daniel Magill

    I was looking for photographs of the original Greggs in Gosforth, but there wasn’t a single photograph for that area, infact there was only one for Newcastle-upon-Tyne.
    Otherwise, it’s a good idea.

  • Jill Cooke

    Nice idea, IF it would work. I’ve tried several locations and each time I clicked on the camera image it took an age to return the result: ‘page not found’. Gave up.

    I think a lot more work needs to be done on this one.

    The National Archives reply:

    Jill – all of the content from the UK Photo Finder can now be found in Collections on a map, please use this tool instead. The photographs featured in UK Photo Finder are from the INF 9 series, so you can select this in Collections on a map if that is the data you are interested in. We hope you find this newer tool useful.

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