Monday, 27 January 2014

Save Photo discover the earliest surviving original photographs of Sir Winston Churchill

Left: Detail from Welldon’s House Group 1, 1891, original glass plate, © Save Photo.
Right: Welldon’s House Group 1, 1890, original glass plate, © Save Photo.

January 2014 – Save Photo Limited have discovered what may be the earliest surviving original images of Winston Churchill. They were discovered in the Hills and Saunders Harrow Collection, which they were contracted to digitise, conserve and catalogue for the private owner. The collection was found in poor condition in the dairy barn of a farm outside Cirencester in 2012. The private owner and Save Photo rescued the collection and relocated it to a secure and climate controlled storage at Save Photo’s headquarters in Warwickshire. Save Photo are carefully cleaning, cataloguing, storing and digitising the images for future digital consumers to enjoy.

For over 90 years, between 1860 and 1970, Hills and Saunders, photographers by Royal Appointment, captured memorable images of Harrow schoolboys, their families and the beautiful surrounds of this prestigious institution. This collection, of over 90,000 glass plate negatives, is possibly the largest surviving archive of its kind in the world. The Collection includes every member of staff, pupil and sporting team from Harrow School between 1860 and 1965. Glass plates rarely survive due to their fragile nature and other top public schools are known to have sold off or disposed of their plates.
Lizzie Davies, Save Photo’s archivist, discovered the seven images of Winston Churchill whilst she was matching individual pupils to the photographic plates using the original photographers’ ledgers and documentation. 

                                 A glass plate with original photographer’s handwritten notes, © Save Photo.

The Winston Churchill plates:

Seven plates have been discovered that show Winston Churchill aged between 13 and 17, during his four years at Harrow School as part of The Head Master’s House between 1889 and 1892, under House Master Reverend Welldon. Six are from The Head Master’s House ‘Welldon’ group photographs and one photograph features him in the Harrow School Rifle Corp. In The Head Master’s House group photographs Winston Churchill is depicted through his years alternating between unhappiness and contentedness, reflecting the statesman’s varied attitude towards his school years - though he didn’t excel at school, he revisited Harrow many times. One can see his schoolboy maturation during his years at Harrow, moving from the front to the back row. He can also be seen dressed in military garb with the rifle Corp, having joined very early on. One can see a keen alertness in his expression pointing towards his illustrious military career ahead.

                           Left: Detail from Welldon’s House Group 1, 1890, original glass plate, © Save Photo.
Centre: Detail from Harrow School Rifle Corp, 1892, original glass plate, © Save Photo.
Right: Detail from Welldon’s House Group 1, 1892, original glass plate, © Save Photo.

Churchill’s official biographer Sir Martin Gilbert offered a valuable insight into Churchill’s school-life attitude, writing: 'When, at the height of the Blitz in 1940, Randolph accompanied his father to Harrow for the annual school songs, Churchill told him, "Listening to those boys singing all those well-remembered songs I could see myself fifty years before singing those tales of great deeds and of great men and wondering how I could ever do something glorious for my country." '
Martin Gilbert, Churchill, A Life.

Peter Boswell, Managing Director of Save Photo comments ‘Save Photo Limited has been very privileged to work with such a unique collection of historical significance. Our team have been working on an intensive programme of conservation and archiving. We have been lovingly inspecting each photographic plate to ensure it is carefully cleaned, recorded and stored in high quality archival sleeves. With the First World War centenary events beginning this year, I am delighted that we have been able to add these amazing lost images to the portfolio of known Churchill images’.

The Winston Churchill plates that form part of the Hills and Saunders Harrow Collection will be offered for sale at auction later this year, details to be announced by the Private Owner in due course.


For more information about Save Photo, the Hills and Saunders Harrow Collection or to request interviews with Pete Boswell (Managing Director, Save Photo Limited), Lizzie Davies (Archivist, Save Photo Limited) or Rita Boswell (Previous Harrow Collection Archivist), please contact Claire Owen or Emma Double at Gong Muse, 0207 935 4800,

Notes to editors:
SAVE PHOTO is the UK’s leading scanning and digital asset development company specialising in supplying digitisation and scanning services to many of the UK’s major collections and archives.
Operating from their National Scanning Centre in Warwickshire, they have developed digital assets for many organisations and institutions that include the British Film Institute and the Imperial War Museum.
They design and manage bespoke end-to-end on-site or off-site projects that often involve millions of images and documents. They offer a range of professionally delivered services that include digitisation, cataloguing, meta-data, data storage, DAM and digital optimisation for all formats and type of archives and collections such as glass plates, negatives, slides, photographs, video, cine film, publications and documents.
Their well known ‘Photo Legacy’ scanning service for private consumers is available nationwide through leading retailers, Tesco, Boots, and Jessop’s providing people with a trusted photo scanning service for all their photographic, video and cine family archives.
For the latest news and developments go to or follow on Twitter at @SavedPhoto.
All rights to the images are reserved © Save Photo.


Tuesday, 14 May 2013

Lives of the First World War

Save Photo are Official Digitisation & Scanning Partners of this amazing project.

Our teams have been working exclusively inside the Imperial War Museum's archives at Duxford for the last 6 months digitising photographs for this epic project.

Press Release

IWM & brightsolid partner to create digital platform 

Lives of the First World War 

IWM (Imperial War Museums) and brightsolid, the online publishing and technology arm of publishing group DC Thomson, are working in partnership to create Lives of the First World War – an innovative and interactive digital platform to mark the First World War Centenary. 

Lives of the First World War will hold the stories of over 8 million men and women who served in uniform and worked on the home front. It will be the official place for communities across the world to connect, explore, reveal and share even more about these people’s lives. 
This innovative platform will bring fascinating records from museums, libraries, archives and family collections across the globe together in one place. The team behind Lives of the First World War are working with national and international institutions and archives to make this happen. 

Over the course of the centenary, Lives of the First World War will become a dynamic, permanent digital memorial - a significant digital legacy for future generations. 
The platform will go live later this year, in time for the start of centenary commemorations from summer 2014. Further information, including a short film about Lives of the First World War can now be found at

Diane Lees, Director-General of IWM said: “The Imperial War Museum was established while the First World War was still being fought to ensure that future generations would understand the causes and consequences of the war and to remember the men and women who played their role. 

“Now that the First World War is outside living memory, we are the voice of those veterans and the custodians of their stories – which we can now tell through Lives of the First World War. We will be encouraging people of all ages, in all communities to join us in this project to actively remember these men and women. 

“I am delighted that IWM will be working with brightsolid. Their focus on innovation, their specialism in telling stories and making history accessible along with their international reach makes them our perfect partner on Lives of the First World War.” 

Chris van der Kuyl, Chief Executive of brightsolid, said: “We are proud to be working with IWM to create a digital memorial that will be an enduring and fitting tribute to the men and women of the First World War. I am sure that as the centenary approaches, members of the public will deepen these stories by uploading their own content in order to create a rich narrative tapestry for every man or woman whose life was shaped by the War. 

“The UK has an incalculable wealth of historical archives. Institutions like IWM are world leaders in making those records available online to millions of people worldwide. We are only beginning to realise the cultural potential of these archives.” 


Monday, 28 January 2013

On this Day: 28th January 1986: The Space Shuttle Challenger breaks apart after liftoff

The Space Shuttle Challenger disaster occurred on January 28, 1986, when Space Shuttle Challenger (mission STS-51-L) broke apart 73 seconds into its flight, leading to the deaths of its seven crew members. The spacecraft disintegrated over the Atlantic Ocean, off the coast of central Florida at 11:38 EST (16:38 UTC). Disintegration of the entire vehicle began after an O-ring seal in its right solid rocket booster (SRB) failed at liftoff. The O-ring failure caused a breach in the SRB joint it sealed, allowing pressurized hot gas from within the solid rocket motor to reach the outside and impinge upon the adjacent SRB attachment hardware and external fuel tank. This led to the separation of the right-hand SRBs aft attachment and the structural failure of the external tank. Aerodynamic forces promptly broke up the orbiter.

Photo Legacy: Making your memories last forever

Research courtesy of Wikipedia


Wednesday, 23 January 2013

On this Day: 23rd of January 1879 - The Battle of Rorkes Drift

Rorke's Drift, known as kwaJim ("Jim's Land") in the Zulu language, was a mission station and the former trading post of James Rorke, an Irish merchant. It was located near a drift, or ford, on the Buffalo (Mzinyathi) River, which at the time formed the border between the British colony of Natal and the Zulu kingdom.

The Battle of Rorke's Drift, also known as the Defence of Rorke's Drift, was a battle in the Anglo-Zulu War. The defence of the mission station of Rorke's Drift, under the command of Lieutenant John Chard of the Royal Engineers, immediately followed the British Army's defeat at the Battle of Isandlwana on 22 January 1879, and continued into the following day, 23 January.

Just over 150 British and colonial troops successfully defended the garrison against an intense assault by 3,000 to 4,000 Zulu warriors. The massive, but piecemeal, Zulu attacks on Rorke's Drift came very close to defeating the tiny garrison but were ultimately repelled. Eleven Victoria Crosses were awarded to the defenders, along with a number of other decorations and honours.

Photo Legacy: Making your memories last forever

Research courtesy of Wikipedia

Images courtesy of National Archives UK under the Commons Agreement on Flickr


Tuesday, 22 January 2013

On this Day: 22nd January 1984 – The Apple Macintosh is introduced during Super Bowl XVIII with its famous "1984" television commercial

"1984" is an American television commercial which introduced the Apple Macintosh personal computer for the first time. It was conceived by Steve Hayden, Brent Thomas and Lee Clow at Chiat/Day, Venice, produced by New York production company Fairbanks Films, and directed by Ridley Scott. Anya Major performed as the unnamed heroine and David Graham as Big Brother. Its only U.S. daytime televised broadcast was on January 22, 1984 during and as part of the telecast of the third quarter of Super Bowl XVIII by CBS. Chiat/Day also ran the ad one other time on television, in December 1983 right before the 1:00 am sign-off on KMVT in Twin Falls, Idaho, so that the advertisement could be submitted to award ceremonies for that year. In addition, starting on January 17, 1984 it was screened prior to previews in movie theaters for a few week. It has since been seen on television commercial compilation specials, as well as in "Retro-mercials" on TV Land.

In one interpretation of the commercial, "1984" used the unnamed heroine to represent the coming of the Macintosh (indicated by her white tank top with a stylized line drawing of Apple’s Macintosh computer on it) as a means of saving humanity from "conformity" (Big Brother). These images were an allusion to George Orwell's noted novel, Nineteen Eighty-Four, which described a dystopian future ruled by a televised "Big Brother". The rows of marching minions have direct cinematic parallels with those in the opening scenes of the classic dystopian film Metropolis. The estate of George Orwell and the television rightsholder to the novel 1984 considered the commercial to be a copyright infringement and sent a cease-and-desist letter to Apple and Chiat/Day in April 1984.

Originally a subject of contention within Apple, it has nevertheless consistently been lauded as a classic, winning critical acclaim over time. It is now considered a watershed event and a masterpiece in advertising, and is widely regarded as one of the most memorable and successful American television commercials of all time.

Photo Legacy: Making your memories last forever

Research courtesy of Wikipedia

Images courtesy of Wikimedia


Monday, 21 January 2013

On this Day: 21st January 1903- Wizard of Oz premieres in NYC

The Wizard of Oz was a 1902 musical extravaganza based on The Wonderful Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum, which was originally published in 1900. Much of the original music was by Paul Tietjens and has been mostly forgotten, although it was still well-remembered and in discussion at MGM in the late 1930s, when the classic film version of the story was made. Although Baum is the credited bookwriter, Glen MacDonough was hired on as jokewriter after Baum had finished the script.

The 1902 show premiered in Chicago and later to Broadway in 1903, where it ran for 293 performances from January 21, 1903 to December 31, 1904, followed by travelling tours of the original cast. It starred Anna Laughlin as Dorothy Gale, Fred Stone as The Scarecrow and David C. Montgomery as the Tin Woodman (who is called Niccolo Chopper in the musical [in the books, he had begun life as human Nick Chopper]). Arthur Hill (no relation to the Canadian actor) played the Cowardly Lion, but in this version, his role was reduced to a bit part. An element from the show — the snowfall caused by the Good Witch, which defeats the spell of the poppies that had put Dorothy and the Cowardly Lion to sleep — was later used in the famous 1939 movie.

Photo Legacy: Making your memories last forever

Research courtesy of Wikipedia

Images courtesy of Wikimedia


Saturday, 19 January 2013

On this Day: 18th January 2005 – The Airbus A380, the world's largest commercial jet, is unveiled at a ceremony in Toulouse, France

The Airbus A380 is a double-deck, wide-body, four-engine jet airliner manufactured by the European corporation Airbus, a subsidiary of EADS. It is the world's largest passenger airliner and, due to its size, many airports have had to upgrade their facilities to properly accommodate it. Initially named Airbus A3XX, the aircraft was designed to challenge Boeing's monopoly in the large-aircraft market; the A380 made its first flight on 27 April 2005 and began commercial service in October 2007 with Singapore Airlines.

Five A380s were built for testing and demonstration purposes. The first A380, serial number MSN001 and registration F-WWOW, was unveiled in Toulouse 18 January 2005. Its first flight took place at 10:29 am local time (08:29 UTC) on 27 April 2005. This plane, equipped with Trent 900 engines, flew from Toulouse Blagnac International Airport with a crew of six headed by chief test pilot Jacques Rosay. After landing, 3 hours 54 minutes later, Rosay said flying the A380 had been "like handling a bicycle".

The A380's upper deck extends along the entire length of the fuselage, with a width equivalent to a wide-body aircraft. This allows for an A380-800's cabin with 478 square metres (5,145.1 sq ft) of floor space; 49% more floor space than the next-largest airliner, the Boeing 747-400 with 321 square metres (3,455.2 sq ft), and provides seating for 525 people in a typical three-class configuration or up to 853 people in all-economy class configurations. The A380-800 has a design range of 15,400 kilometres (8,300 nmi; 9,600 mi), sufficient to fly from New York to Hong Kong, and a cruising speed of Mach 0.85 (about 900 km/h or 560 mph at cruising altitude).

As of November 2012 there had been 262 firm orders for the A380, of which 92 have been delivered. The largest order, for 90 aircraft, was from Emirates.

Photo Legacy: Making your memories last forever

Research courtesy of Wikipedia

Images courtesy of Wikimedia