Photographs around Woking: Sidney Francis in the 1920s and 1930s

The Lightbox

14 July – 7 October 2018

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Take a trip into Woking's past with Sidney Francis's beautiful and compelling photographs.

Sidney Francis, Three Young Ladies in Fancy Dress for Woking's 1923 Carnival

Describing himself as a 'photographic chemist', Sidney Francis ran his business in Woking from 1923. His work included wedding photography, commissions for local businesses, event photography for local newspapers, the Woking News & Mail and Surrey Advertiser, and commissions for The Islamic Review.

This exhibition offers an insight into life in Woking and nearby towns and villages in the 1920s and 1930s. The collection includes images of sports teams, Eid celebrations, parades, dancers and musicians, and is testament to the vibrant and diverse community spirit that has always been a part of Woking.

Visitors will discover local residents dressing up and celebrating Woking Carnival in 1927; family-owned businesses such as dairies, butchers, printers and confectioners proudly displaying their wares; crowds gathering for Remembrance Day memorials; religious holidays at the Shah Jahan Mosque (Britain’s first purpose-built mosque) and families coming together for modest yet joyful weddings.

Venue information

Opening times

Tue – Sat, 10.30am – 5pm
Sun, 11am – 4pm

Closed Mon and Bank Holidays

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