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News: 24 June 2019

Volunteer Profile � Richard Swynford-Lain
Richard Swynford-Lain is one of over 1,500 volunteer photographers participating in the Images of England project. Here, he shares some of his experiences and thoughts about the project.
Photography for most people is a means of recording family history even though the results sometimes include hastily taken and over or underexposed pictures. But for me, holiday pictures led to a desire to include buildings that provided a permanent visual record of the history of places of interest that I had visited. Mid 18th Century farmhouse, Lower Caversham, Berkshire - IoE number: 039062 © Mr Richard Swynford-Lain
17th Century thatched cottage, Reading, Berkshire - IoE number: 038873 © Mr Richard Swynford-Lain My first awareness of the Images of England project resulted from reading a description of the project in an article in a weekend paper supplement early in 2001. The idea of a digital image library that could be accessed on a global basis appealed to me since it was a unique way to extol the (social) history of England. There is also the personal feeling of being able to make a small contribution in a project of such importance.
One unexpected aspect of being a volunteer photographer was range and quantity of structures assigned to me for photography. Early on it was clear that putting wallets of prints away in a drawer never to be seen again somewhat missed the advantage one had of being a volunteer photographer. To that end, I am creating my own library of annotated photographic images in flip type albums. Late 16th Century cattle shelter, Waltham St Lawrence, Berkshire - IoE number: 041006 © Mr Richard Swynford-Lain
Late 16th Century thatched cottages, Waltham St Lawrence, Berkshire - IoE number: 041001 © Mr Richard Swynford-Lain Being a volunteer photographer for the Images of England project is very rewarding. Meeting the owners often provides the chance to have many interesting and rewarding conversations that do not normally arise in the course of events. The underlying benefit and reward however is to be able to have the chance to discover and see such a large range of buildings and places that reflect our urban and rural history.

To view more of Richard's photographs click here.

If you are a volunteer photographer and would like to share some of your experiences while working on the Images of England project please send them to Alexandra Saxon:
Late 19th Century water tower, Tilehurst, Berkshire - IoE number: 039282 © Mr Richard Swynford-Lain
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