See TopFoto and the work of John Topham featuring on BBC1’s The One Show – this week.
Watch live on BBC1, Wednesday 22 May at 7pm (with 5 million others!) or via BBC iPlayer for the following 7 days.
On BBC iPlayer now here …about 45 mins in
They say: Available to license exclusively from TopFoto.co.uk, John Topham’s first work was in the late 1920s in the East End of London, and strictly against the rules since he was a policeman. Selling one picture of Mary Smith (the knocker up armed with a pea shooter) to the Daily Mirror for five pounds determined him to start up as a freelance, which he remained for the rest of his life.
Topham then based himself on the spreading edges of South East London documenting both urban and rural life – and the clash zones. After that came a handful of defining civilian war experiences, time in RAF Intelligence and, after the war, “a life of picturing the ordinary in an extraordinary way”.
Vintage, nostalgia, the British home front, pre-war and post-war Britain, funny and touching moments … the way we were.