A Derby project has received a £45,800 grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund for an exhibition celebrating the work of Derby Photography studio W.W. Winter Ltd during their 150th anniversary year.

W. W. Winter Photography Ltd was established in its present studio in Midland Road in 1867 and 2017 marks its 150thanniversary. To celebrate this milestone, photographs and items from Winters’ archive collection will be on display at the Museum and Art Gallery as part of this years’ FORMAT International Photography Festival, the UK’s largest biennial photography festival, (24thMarch to 23rd April) which is run and hosted by QUAD in Derby.

The grant will fund a major new exhibition called People, Places and Things, a retrospective of W. W. Winter Ltd curated by Greg Hobson, previously Curator of Photographs at the National Media Museum in Bradford.

People, Places and Things, W. W. Winters exhibition will be at the Museum and Art Gallery, as part of FORMAT Festival. The exhibition will include a selection of the earliest surviving photographs; a series of early ‘glass plate’ studio portraits of local Derby people made in the 1850s and 1860s. It will also include a display of vital, yet often overlooked objects, such as backdrops, studio furniture and props, alongside documents and items which tell the story of the studio and the wider history of photography. The exhibition will also present previously unseen items including business records, plans and layouts of the studio, as well as revealing the process of making a 19th century photographic portrait. Besides the main exhibition, a second exhibition space will be used to create a Victorian Portrait Studio in the museum gallery, for the public to engage with.

This project will also feature a participatory exhibition about the photographic heritage of Derby, called Your Photo Archive showing images from W. W. Winter Ltd, Derby Stereoscopic Company, Richard Keene and others. The project will be asking the public of Derby for copies of their old Studio photographs to add to this exhibition.

A series of workshops and talks about photographic heritage will also take place during the exhibition at various FORMAT venues, available to the general public. W. W. Winters will open its premises on several dates throughout FORMAT Festival, allowing the public to step back in time and experience the hidden treasures of a Victorian Portrait Studio.

W. W. Winter Ltd can further trace its origins back to 1852 when a photography studio was set up by Emmanuel Nicolas Charles. His assistant Walter William Winter took over the business on Charles’ death in 1863 and moved into new, purpose built premises (designed by Derby architect Henry Isaac Stevens) in 1867. It is believed that this date makes Winters the oldest photographic studio in the world.

Debbie Cooper, Exhibition Producer said:

“W. W. Winter not only preserved the visual history of the city and its people, but was also a central part of its social and economic fabric. The exhibition will include photographs revealing W. W. Winter’s connections to other local businesses of the time; shining a light on the photographic manufacturing industry which developed in the Midland’s nineteenth century.”