Croydon Camera Club History: 1890-2000
Preface Introduction The Club Foundation 1809 Soiree 1899 Movies Member Prestige Council Meetings 1903 Founding President Mees Years 1904-12 The Great War Between The Wars Recorded Years Riots! Police! 1931 Edridge Road, 1932 1932 Nudes Ladies and Exhibitions Club Room eviction The Studio: 1933 Cine! Ladies! 1934 Highs and Lows, 1936 A/V, Stag Party, 1937 Freemasonry 1938 Baird Television 1938 War! 1940: Bombed ! Annual Report 1940-41 Making Do 1941 War Ends 1942-5 A War Retrospective Ladies? 1946 Ladies Admitted 1947-8 35mm Slides arrive Struggling 1949 SLF Out! 1949-50 Troubled 1950 Outings 1951 Winter Season 1951 Celebrations Mees Visits Croydon 1955 1956 Nonexistence 1957 1958-1959 1960 More Success 1961 The Darkroom 1961 Frivolity 1962 All Change 1963 1965-1967 Exhibitions 1967 Photeurop 1968 Photeurop 1969 Years 1970-1972 Terra Nova Years 1973 Years 1974-1975 19 Selsdon Road Years 1977-1979 Changes 1980 Friends Meeting House Close the Club 1983 Progress? 1984 Turnaround? 1985 Years 1987-1988 Slow Revival 1989 About Club Outings The Helpers Postscript
A report on the CA Annual Exhibition (in which we were the Premier Club in 1963) said "as a Club we are neither excellent record workers, nor interested in slide making, or if we are, we are not interested in organising a Club entry". Out of 98 entries we only had 14 accepted.
This in the author's view was the principal cause behind the Club's virtual extinction. We enter a period when for 10 years or so members whose work is outstanding elect to show it where they want and not collectively in the name of the Club. The photographers of a few years ago had left and a new group of advanced workers in every sense had banded together under "Group 7" and are having great success individually. But in competitive Club photography where it is the constant repetition of the name Croydon as we travel from success to success the Club loses in the first competition and has left itself little chance of making a name having again come out of the SLF.
"Group 7" had now expanded to include photographers from other clubs and 20 in number held an exhibition of their work under the title "Modfot 1", at the RWS Galleries in London from 1-14 May and afterwards at seven other art galleries in England and Wales. The showing of a Photographic Exhibition in an art gallery marks the point in time when photographs were finally accepted as works of art. For this momentous event Croydon members Alan Richards, Peter Keverne, Fill Bullock, Tony Morris, Sir George and Lady Pollock were pleased to be part.
Mrs M. Marshall was elected to the Council of the Royal Photographic Society.
Despite efforts by the new President to stimulate interest, the "Colour Group" became dormant as there was "no enthusiasm" and in September 1967 he stated: "The Club gets precisely the Council it asks for and deserves but the welfare of the Club depends on every single member. We can only get out of the Club what we collectively put into it".
And one aspect of getting "out" was the decision to award book tokens at the Exhibition instead of medals, another retrograde step for one can get a book anywhere and anytime but a club medal is unique and only available through photography. However, cost governed, and book tokens did not require engraving! So the last time medals were awarded was 1967 and thus ended a tradition dating back to 1891.