Comparing Daventry ‘Then and Now’ in photo project

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A NEW photographic project to trace the development of Daventry and the surrounding villages was launched this week.

The Friends of Daventry Library launched their Then and Now project on Tuesday which aims to show how the streets of the town and the local villages have developed over the years by comparing old and new photographs.

Initially the collection has focused on the town centre, bringing together old postcards, photos and other images and trying to take photos of how the same vistas look today.

In future the friends want to expand the project one area at a time, and the next area they will be looking at is Drayton in Daventry.

Ted Sharp, a member of the Friends, said: “We want things like photos from the Air Training Corps when they used to meet in Drayton, or pictures of the old fellowship hall if anyone’s got them. Anything like that.”

After Drayton the project will move on to look at another estate and then local villages as well.

The project received funding from Northamptonshire County Council through Cllr Chris Long’s empowerment fund, which was used to buy a laptop and projector.

The idea is that the collection is not rooted to one spot, but that it can go out and stage regular exhibitions around the town and in the villages to bring the history of the district to people.

Cllr Long said: “I try to make it so the empowerment fund benefits all ages.

“With this it’s not only for those interested in local history now, but it will hopefully stand so that in the future today’s youngsters will be able to use it.”

The project is working in partnership with the Daventry Town Council Museum, which has a photographic archive covering all aspects of town life throughout the years.

And the images will be stored at the museum, allowing anyone to view them and discover more about the town’s past.

Librarian Mark Rowntree said: “The idea is to get the newer residents and more established ones together. We’re also involving young people as well.”

The Friends of Daventry Library next meet on Saturday, April 9, from 10am to noon at Daventry Library, in North Street, and are always open to new members.

Anyone interested in joining or who has photos which may help the Then and Now project can contact Gerry Thompson on gthomp22@btopenworld.com or on 01327 703653.