Turn of the Century Royal Visit Recorded by Shaftesbury Photographer

On Tuesday 06 December at 2.30p.m. at Gold Hill Museum, Claire Ryley and Ann Symons will at last have the opportunity to deliver their presentation of photographic gems from The Shaftesbury & District Historical Society’s Tyler Collection. Together with another S&DHS member, Chris Stupples, Claire and Ann have discovered that Albert Edward Tyler (1873-1919) was a butcher’s son from Shropshire, who became a photographer’s apprentice in Market Drayton, and who by the time of the 1901 Census had set up as a photographer at 53 Salisbury Street in Shaftesbury. In the years prior to the outbreak of war in 1914, he must have been a familiar sight lugging around heavy photographic equipment as he captured images of the district and its people, most of whom understood the need to stand still. Audience participation will be welcome, as the Tyler photographs often provide more questions than answers.

Claire Ryley and Ann Symons, who will be delving into the Tyler Photographic Collection on Tuesday 06 December

Some of the Tyler images have been labelled by the photographer, but many have not. The reference to the Late King’s visit must have been added after Edward VII’s death in June 1910. The Prince of Wales’s Feathers visible on banners suggest that Edward was carrying out royal duties before he succeeded his mother Queen Victoria in January 1901. There was no certainty about the date, or the precise location, until it was noticed that there is a captioned enlargement of this photograph above the stairs in Shaftesbury Town Hall. The caption reads: The Prince of Wales handing his reply to the Address presented to him by the Mayor and Corporation of the Borough of Shaftesbury 21 October 1899.

Doubts remain as to what was being celebrated in October 1899, and exactly where, though clearly the photographer had an excellent, elevated vantage point, no small consideration when plate cameras were such bulky pieces of kit. We would be pleased to hear of any reports which shed further light on the context of this photograph. Likewise, Claire and Ann look forward to observations from the audience about other images from the Tyler Collection on 06 December. There are further details about Albert Edward Tyler (1873-1919) here.

This event will be free to S&DHS members and open to the public on payment of £3 at the door.