Croydon Camera Club
Croydon Camera Club

Croydon Camera Club History: 1890-2000

Baird Television 1938
Famous explorer Kearton

The Winter Session in 1938 opened with a demonstration of the Calbro process by B. Chambers from Autotype Co and on 19th October Paul Martin showed slides taken between 1885 and 1897.(If only we had them now!)

A landmark for the Club was a visit on 26th October by Cherry Kearton, the famous explorer who had the distinction of being the first person to illustrate a book on natural history entirely by photographic means. He showed the Club over 100 slides of birds, animals and people in Africa, mostly taken at l/25th sec fll.


Cine shows followed - one by J. Masterton of the Southern Railway, "Cinematography as Applied to Railway Advertising". Towards the end of November a large attendance of Ladies and members saw a lantern lecture by A. E. Marsden "Sights of London". This lecture complete with author's original notes has recently been found and it is intended to re-issue it again on account of the historical pictorial record of London in the 1930s. The miniature camera interest was sustained by W. M. Bond who talked on "Contour Photography". The last meeting before the new year was cancelled due to "inclement weather", which presumably was a thick London fog.

Demonstration of Television

The first talk in 1939 was by H. T. Barton Chappie of Baird Television with a lecture and demonstration of TV. Public service television had started on 2nd November 1936, yet the prophecy was colour TV in the near future (it came about on 1st July 1967) and that eventually telephone subscribers would be able to see as well-as hear the caller.

The AGM on 15th February re-elected the "old guard" and the Vice Presidents elected were S. H. Wratten and A. E. Isaacs, founder members from 1890, and E. A. Salt. The first hint of a disturbance to international peace was noted when "Mr King could no longer assist on outings due to his ARP work". But such "clouds" did not deter the meeting from agreeing to hold a dinner in London on 10th April 1940 to celebrate its 50th anniversary. It was further agreed to have a cabaret but no dancing and there was an equal division amongst members as to whether Ladies should be admitted. It was decided to leave the decision in the hands of the Jubilee Committee but in the event the dinner did not take place due to the outbreak of war. We shall never know whether male dominance prevailed or not.

Ladies - Keep Out!

That the Club still preferred its machismo is shown when at a Council meeting on 3rd March it was reported that "Ladies are attending meetings when not a 'Ladies Evening' and a notice on the board restricting attendances is to be made more prominent". So Ladies - Keep Out!

A slide show on 5th April had four members using Dufay material, one Agfa and one Kodachrome. A lecture on "Filters" on 26th April was attended by Messrs Pledge and Wratten from Kodak Ltd and would you believe it - a gentleman by the name of S. H. Cakebread of J. Lyons Lab gave a talk on 17th May on "Optics" as related to his company's manufacturing products!

The end of May was the finish of the formal Winter Session and throughout the summer as was the custom, meetings for informal chats took place each week, made convivial by the bar. There were occasional lantern shows and several outings to places of local interest.

War Declared

The syllabus for 1939-40 was printed and despatched but before the Club reassembled for its formal session, War was declared on Germany on 3rd September 1939 and an era in the Club's history came abruptly to an end.