A new delivery from the postman this morning gave me the idea to pop out and take some photos, and risk my life in the process.
There I was browsing Amazon after a sleep-deprived night, like you do, when I happened upon a brand new book about Tunbridge Wells. My fingers couldn't reach for that Buy Button fast enough. By now you are no doubt wondering what the photograph above and below have to do with that, well my dear reader, read on.
The book in question (pictured right) is called Tunbridge Wells Through Time by Robert Turcan and is basically 90-odd pages of old postcards with matching photographs taken from roughly the same angle, and when I say roughly I mean really roughly.
So, instead of filling this blog post with a postcard from my Tunbridge Wells Postcards blog with a matching photo today, I decided to get a bit arty about it and mush them together.
I chose a few photos from my postcard collection, the High Street seeming the nicest, and easiest, examples and ventured out with my camera. My choice of postcard was rather annoying when I arrived at my first spot as it seemed only possible to recreate it by standing in the middle of the road. Well I'd come too far to turn back now so I waited for innocent passers-by to press the Wait button on the Pelican crossing then dashed out into the traffic to click a few frames. It got me a few stares I can tell you but after about ten attempts I managed a pretty decent match.
Anyway, enough of the photos, back to the book. Well, errrr, it's probably not a book you'd spend hours reading again and again as it's sparse of interesting text and the photos are decidedly amateur. It's probably worth popping into the Christmas stocking for the Tunbridge Wells book collector in your life that has everything else but that's about all I can say, I'll leave you with the book's description and click the picture right if you want to buy it.
Disgusted of Tunbridge Wells' is a well worn cliche, however, it does encapsulate the genteel character of this Kentish spa. Before the popularity of sea bathing, holidaymakers gathered here to drink the waters for medicinal purposes.
The town grew to accommodate visitors with smart hotels and attractive terraces of Georgian and Victorian houses. The area's sandstone geology is revealed at Wellington and High Rocks and there is also evidence of Roman occupation in the town's roots.
Today a low crime rate, relatively full employment, attractive open spaces, good transport links to London and a vibrant retail sector have created a contented community. Changes to the townscape over the past century have been mostly sympathetic, but still very important.
The photographs in this book provide a fleeting view of Tunbridge Wells through time, and provide the reader with a fascinating tour of this Kentish spa's eclectic past and present.
At least it got me out taking photos, what do you think of them?