This book is not by a local author and has been out for about 11 years. Sadly nor does it include any photographs of Stock, but it does include a number from Essex and the immediate area. Nor strictly is the title accurate.
What's so interesting about it is that the photographs were taken by American service men in this country during and at the end of the second world war. Understandably the whole country is not covered. Manchester and Birmingham to give two examples have never been major tourist destinations. Equally suburban semis, coal mines and steel works weren't exactly favourite subjects for tourists. Surprisingly there are in photographs of pre-war council houses, docks and the London rush hour. On the other hand photographs of tourist sights such as St Pauls, the Tower of London, the Scottish Highlands, Cornwall, Oxford and Cambridge and East Anglia abound. Equally so do photographs of agriculture, churches, pubs and strange forms of transport (for Americans) such as double deck buses. Understandably taking photographs of war damage by unofficial photographers was not permitted during war or for that matter military installation, never the less there is some evidence of this in some of the photographs The book never the less does give a flavour of what Britain looked liked during the second world war and because any civilian development other than that connected with the war had ceased by the end of 1940 a hint of what the country looked liked before the war
Of particular interest to Stock people are photographs of Colchester, Bishops's Stortford, Constable country, Cambridge, Norwich and London..
I did say that the title wasn't strictly accurate. That is because colour photograph was available before the first world war never mind the second, as witness the discovery in late 1995 of colour photographs taken in Writtle in 1914 and a know colour film of George V's coronation of 1911. Never the less colour photograph was not very common in the 1910s, 20s and 30s. (Huge hint. If any one knows of the existence of early colour photographs of Stock or the immediate area please let me or Roger Watling know. Stock in colour in the 1930s would be very interesting)
If I do have any criticism it is that the layout of the book does have a tendency to chop bits of photographs off. Forgetting that the book is worth having. I would recommend using Amazon to buy it as prices do vary. I got my copy from a shop in Victoria Street, London two years ago for £6.99 reduced from £14.99.
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