A Village Lost and found

8 Jan 2012 – 4 Mar 2012

Event times

9.30 - 5.30

Cost of entry

£5 Adults £3 Concession

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Brian May and Elena Vidal


The perfect antidote to the stress of life in the 21st Century, A Village Lost and Found portrays the idyll of life in a 1850s village, "far from the sound of the train's whistle".

Brian May, of Queen, and photo-historian Elena Vidal have revived a renowned series of 59 photographs - 'Scenes in Our Village' - a testimony and a tribute to a rapidly disappearing way of life produced by a master of Victorian stereoscopic photography, Thomas Richard Williams. In the mid 19th century, agricultural industrialisation was working its way into the British countryside, altering the rural landscape, putting an end to the old ways and changing man's rapport with nature forever. This soon to be lost world is precisely what Thomas Richard Williams endeavoured to record as he went back to his beloved village, Hinton Waldrist.

Pictures leap into glorious 3-D, viewed in the new focussing stereoscope which May has designed and produced, to bring the stereos to life. In every case the original verse which accompanied the view is reproduced. The feelings and thoughts evoked are reflected in the verses penned by Williams, one for each image. The combination of photographs and verses results in a detailed account of all aspects of rural life and a touching tribute to the joys and hardships that are part of it. In addition, May and Vidal have researched and annotated all the views - by exploring the history of these real characters, this idyllic village and its links with the present day, another layer of meaning is revealed. The result is a powerfully atmospheric and touching set of photographs.

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