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Historic aerial photographs of York and Yorkshire made available online
STUNNING aerial photographs of York and Yorkshire more than 80 years ago are among thousands made publicly available today through a new online project.
Conservationists have digitised thousands of rare and fragile photographs and published them on a new website: britainfromabove.org.uk
The site features some of the oldest and most valuable images of the Aerofilms Collection, a unique archive of more than a million aerial photographs taken between 1919 and 2006.
English Heritage and the Royal Commissions on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Scotland and Wales have worked together on the venture.
More than 15,000 photographs are made available today, including images of York Minster, Selby, Bridlington, Harrogate and a Test Match at Headlingley.
By 2014, a further 80,000 pictures will be added to the site.
Experts say that due to their age and fragility, many of the earliest plate glass negatives were close to being lost forever had they not been digitised.
Anna Eavis, head of archive at English Heritage, said: “The Aerofilms Collection embodies all that is exciting about aerial photography. What is equally remarkable is the skill of the expert staff in England, Scotland and Wales who have saved and conserved these vulnerable negatives and prints.”
The Aerofilms Collection was acquired for the nation in 2007 when the company was facing financial difficulties.
The website allows people to download images, customise their own galleries, share memories, and add information for images. They are also invited to identity the locations of a number of “mystery” images that stumped the experts.
St James’s Church, Selby, May 1926